pallet together, I cut pockets out
of the Styrofoam to hold the flight
battery and GPS receiver. There
are also pockets for less
important batteries like for the
audio locator and servos.
I finished by cutting out
channels for the cables
connecting these devices to the
avionics. The fit is tight so the
batteries and GPS receiver can’t
The final layer of the pallet is
the lid which is another sheet of
Coroplast. It is bolted over the
top of the pallet, and covers the
GPS and batteries. The nylon
bolts holding the bottom of the
pallet together are long enough
to also bolt the lid down.
Attaching the GPS/
Battery Pallet to
Prior to placing the
GPS/battery pallet inside the
airframe, I fill the volume
between the avionics pallet and
the GPS/battery pallet with
Styrofoam packing peanuts. The
peanuts transfer the weight of the
GPS/battery pallet to the entire
bottom of the airframe.
Distributing the pallet’s
weight to the airframe removes
the need for the pallet to support
the weight of the GPS and
batteries during the peaceful
ascent. However, it is more
important during descent when
chaos will repeatedly slam the
The GPS/battery pallet bolts
APPROACHING THE FINAL FRONTIER
March 2014 63
The battery/GPS pallet with its lid removed. Each item, the GPS, and
assorted batteries are placed inside of a form-fit pocket.
Now, you can’t see them.
A second sheet of Coroplast is
bolted over the batteries and
GPS receiver. Four nylon bolts
and nuts secure the lid into
place over the pallet.