Meet The Asylum Inmates…

A brief introduction to BARCLONE’s core design team.


C. P. McGraw

In 1971, Craig McGraw received a small freon-powered toy rocket from a family friend. Included in the box was an Estes catalog, the one with photographs of the models posed in a moonscape setting. This gift was a devious thing to do to a pre-teen, as it embedded the roots of model rocketry into his brain which today run frighteningly deep through what remains of his sanity. Starting in 2003, he began designing his own rockets and sharing these with the community-at-large. The BARCLONE concept now spans three separate websites, and contains just under 800 designs from over a dozen designers.


Jay “Centuri Guy” Goemmer

1971 was also a pivotal year in Jay Goemmer’s model rocketry experience. Jay discovered that Centuri products were available from a drug store in Jerome, Idaho, and in a hobby shop in nearby Twin Falls. He recalls listening to radio interviews with then-30 year Pearl Harbor veterans in December 1971 along about the time he tossed his partially-assembled Centuri Javelin into a tree outside. (Tempting the rocket gods just before he turned 10 years old… This was *not* a good sign.) All the same, Jay managed to finish building his Javelin and launch it successfully. This began his initial 7-year involvement with model rocketry, which he finally abandoned for Much More Interesting Things.

Fastforward to summer 2000, when Jay was between broadcasting jobs. An internet search for “Centuri” turned up websites including Jim Zalewski’s “JimZ” archive of model rocket plans. One thing led to another, and _Sport Rocketry_ magazine published Jay’s first article “Lee Piester: An Unassuming Legend” in the January/February 2003 issue. Shortly thereafter, Jay became an incurable Semroc fan, and groused about the price of RockSim for two years before finally buying Version 7.

Somewhere along the line, Jay found Ye Olde Rocket Forum (YORF) and hooked up with BARCLONE founder Craig McGraw, and the rest is history. (Or hysterical. You decide.)

Jay is directly responsible for Semroc’s Tau Zero, the BARCLONE Prometheus, and a substantially smaller output of rockets than fellow designer James Pierson from neighboring Washington State, USA.


James Pierson

In the summer of 1998, an unforeseen tragedy of immeasurable proportions struck the Pierson family. At only the tender age of 31, James Pierson watched one of his neighbors launch a model rocket. Sadly, not once did his lovely wife Julie ever imagine, when she innocently presented him with a model rocket starter set of his very own shortly thereafter, that her genuine act of kindness and affection would irreversibly alter the brain of her once-sane husband; and that he would progressively become the obsessed, saliva-drooling, one-man model rocket design house he has proven to be today. As with so many other individuals who have suffered the onset of this disease, it did not take long for James to become totally bored with the trivial, limited-scope, nearly pablum-like offerings then-available from the major players in the hobby. The earliest manifestation of this boredom compelled James to immediately began putting pencil to paper, which resulted in his creating reams of new designs that voraciously fed off of his growing dementia.

At some moment in the second stage of this horrible disease, an unsuspecting co-worker triggered a common symptomatic response through the visual stimuli of old, vintage models which had been originally available during James’ adolescent years. This co-worker, although only thinking that James was merely potty and not, as he actually was by then, already fully certifiable, presented James with a box of rockets purchased from a garage sale for a mere $2.00. The box, likely the aggressive result of another victim’s family intervening to save the remaining sanity of their own loved one, included a collection of Estes kits, specifically the F-61 Starfighter, Mini Bomarc, EAC Viper, and the Patrol Cruiser Excalibur. James’ subsequent behavior change included starting his own website called the “Rocketry Preservation Society”, and frequenting one of the disease sufferer’s favored first “crack houses”, E-Bay. Now seeing himself in his tortured mind as a “true collector and preservationist” in a noble cause, but in reality only succumbing to the twisted “grab it and growl” mentality of the incurably infected, James started spending huge sums of money from the family bank account and “collecting” many “lost” rocket kits. With the additional gentle, subtle pressure of a criminally-deranged model rocketry pusher and remorseless addict named Scott Hansen through his operation of Ye Olde Rocket Forum – in reality yet another “opium den” of small-scale astrophysics that deliberately targets poor souls such as James – James found himself falling deeper into a sadistic combustion chamber of endless rocketry lust and pleasure. Here, the odor of freshly-burned black powder hung thick at every door, hallway, corner and thread – the “magic incense” of this hedonistic underworld. But such pleasure and vice comes with a terrible price to pay. Before long James was forced to retreat back into model rocket designing, where he immersed himself with a vengeance.

By the summer of 2006, James was fully into the third stage of the disease. This phase of dementia saw the purchase of the insidious computer program Rocksim. The crystal-like strength of this potent software empowered James’ ego to digitally engineer the designs he had only been drawing on paper for years. Turning once again to his friendly pusher at Ye Olde Rocket Shoppe, James found a sense of parallel-universality with the equally savaged minds of Craig McGraw, Jay “Centuri Guy” Goemmer, Carl “@Semroc” McLawhorn, and numerous others drifting around in the Barclone cauldrons. Ye Olde Rocket Forum and Barclone have pandered excessively to James’ addictions, allowing him to display his designs for the whole world to view and thus become entangled in the same self-inflicted disease.

It is suspected that this disease has now begun to enter its terminal phase, from which there has never been a successful recovery for anyone. A person like James is doomed to live with the effects and ravages of believing his ideas could be produced in kit form until the day of their own demise. This phase can torment the afflicted for decades, because there are extreme cases where such events occur (case in point – the fully committed and terminally-diagnosed Jay Goemmer and his “Tau Zero”, which was released in December of 2008 by Semroc). This drives the victim into spasms of intense parts-searches and late-night sessions with Rocksim. Once a sufferer reaches this final orbital plane of non-reality, it is usually best that he be treated with patience and understanding, support and tolerance. It is heart-warming to say that the Pierson family is thus coping.


Buzz Nau


Steve Naquin

History has shown time and again that the sixties proved to be the downfall of so many promising young minds; yet none so tragic or so complete as that of a grammer school student named Steve Naquin. Growing up near the city of New Orleans had its own distractions and vice, but the pathos which consumed young Steve originated from within his own home, within his own family. Not realizing the trail of misery that his generosity would ultimately set him wandering down, Steve’s own beloved father began innocently, but shortsightedly, introducing him to the true underbelly of all hobby crafts, model rocketry.

A local “techno-opium den”, with the perverted name of “Model Car Raceways” as a cover, kept a selection of the then-available rocketry items tucked away for the hard-to-please addicts. Steve soon became a regular visitor: When only at the age of eight, much too young to realize the dangerous viper basket he was about to open, Steve was given a Centuri Astro-1 Starter Set. One by one the dripping fangs bit into his mentality hard, injecting the poison of rocketry deeply into his veins, and before long Steve was found hitting the “hard cider” in motor selection – C power. The thrill of such power made Steve oblivious to the pain of watching his birds fly away, or drift into the clutches of Lake Ponchartrain; and his father, equally oblivious to the danger and determined to soothe his son’s torture, quickly compensated for the losses with fresh “fixes” of new, unbuilt models. But as with any addiction, simple hits would soon no longer be enough to satisfy his voratious appitite for smoke and flame.

Entering his teen years, Steve’s craving for more and higher power drew him toward the near-sounder sizes of models, such as the Aero-Dart and the Hustler. Only the lack of greater funds prevented him from losing all contact with reality; yet his hunger could not be satisfied with mere token designs. Fantasy and Scale designs teased him relentlessly. To gain the currency he needed to feed his rocketry addiction, he sank to performing pure menial labor as a weekend lawn cutter.

Hope blossomed for a time after high school, when Steve managed to break away from the addiction for a short hiatus. But it was too good to be true, and before very long the sharp stab of the poison drove Steve into the deepest pit of rocketry – high power. Only the strong survive the experience of the alphabet soup of power levels well above “A-E”. Steve has discovered an online dispensery of toxcicity known as “Advanced Rocketry Group”, who sing a siren’s song for those lusting after “the genuine article” – real sounding rockets. Steve has found the crystals of the EnerJet 2250 and 2650 wrapped up with the more lurid mantles of the “Trident Cluster Series”.

Steve has also located, and participates in, the vile “Ye Olde Rocket Forum”, where he has become a regular contributor to the BARCLONE Designer’s Studio threads.


PantherJon


RKT2K1


Tweener


Gerald Wallace


THOR


InFlight


Chris Timm


Maricopasem


CoachJT


EVModels


BikeGod


Andrew Scott


Drew Tomko


David Hash


ManicBAR


Tony Vincent


Feyd


Slickwilly


Blindeye2



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