The Saturn IB (pronounced “one B”) was requested by NASA as an interim launch test vehicle for the Apollo program. Assembled, this 2-stage rocket was almost 142 feet tall, approximately 22 feet in diameter, weighed about 590,000 lbs. at lift off and could carry a payload of 41,000 lbs., which closely approximated the weight of a partially fueled Apollo Command and Service Module (CSM) or a fully fueled Lunar Module (LM) into earth orbit. The 1B was needed for early lunar simulated flight tests before completion of the larger Saturn V. It was powered by eight rocket engines burning a refined version of kerosene fuel (also known as RP-1) with liquid oxygen (LOX). The booster of the 1B consisted of eight Redstone tanks (four holding RP-1 and four holding LOX) that were clustered around a Jupiter (a sub member of the Redstone rocket family) rocket LOX tank. Four of the outboard engines were mounted on gimbals which provided a thrust vectoring method able to steer the rocket during lift off. Another distinguishing feature of the 1B was the eight fins surrounding the base booster that provided aerodynamic stability and control.
To replicate lunar orbital testing, the Saturn 1B shared the same S-IVB upper stage design that would be used on the Saturn V during the Apollo launch program. The only significant issue between the what the Saturn 1B could do vs. the full-size Saturn V was that the S-IVB on the Saturn V burned only part of its propellant to achieve earth orbit. This was necessary so that it could be restarted for trans-lunar injection and the S-IVB on the Saturn IB needed all of its propellant to achieve earth orbit.
The Estes Saturn 1B SA-206 is a stunning 1:100 scale recreation of the Saturn 1B and Apollo spcaecraft stack as it appeared in 1973 for the launch of the first Skylab crew. Every detail is there from the Launch Escape System atop the Apollo Command and Service Module, to the first-stage H-1 engine nozzles (remove for launch). Textured body wraps, injection molded components, and other plastic formed parts add a level of realism to this Master-Level kit that every scale modeler will appreciate. Launch your finished model using one of the recommended Estes engines for a spectacular liftoff and dazzling two-piece recovery under dual parachutes. On display or in the air, the Estes Saturn 1B is a marvelous addition to any fleet.
Skill Level: Master
Length: 26.8 in (68.1 cm)
Diameter: 2.62 in (67mm)
Est. Weight: 6.9 oz (196g)
Projected Max Altitude: 1000 ft (305m) on an E12-4
Recommended Engines: C11-3, D12-3, E12-6