Re: SPACE: Beyond Apollo

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Fri Apr 14 2000 - 10:31:43 MDT

On Sunday, April 02, 2000 6:42 PM Spike Jones wrote:
> Ja, however we dont have that design any more. It is folklore in the
> space industry which I have been trying to confirm or overturn for
> years. According to the legend, after the end of the Saturn V production
> run, the drawing package was not only not preserved, it was intentionally
> destroyed, so we couldn't build one now even if we wanted to. A reliable
> source has told me that at least part of the package still exists in the
> archives at Johnson, but he could not confirm that it was all there.

I've heard much the same. Saturn V is not the only proven technology that
one could "reuse." Aside from other American rocket models, there are
Soviet era ones too that could be worked over -- as opposed to reinventing
the rocket.

> Another source claims that the drawing package was not fully up to date
> ever; that skilled craftsmen knew how to make certain parts and that
> these tricks were never entered into the drawings back in the go-go
> rush of the 1960s, altho this latter part strains the imagination.

Perhaps, though I suspect a lot of this could be reverse engineered. It
would probably be much easier than coming up with a whole new design.

> That sure wouldnt fly today.

I'm not so sure. Documentation is often slip shod at any company -- even
ones claiming to use ISO 900x.

> The conspiracy theorist hold that the Saturn V drawings were destroyed
> in order to prevent the Saturn V from being considered a competitor
> for the space shuttle.
> I suspect a more likely explanation is that no one awarded a contract
> to preserve the drawings and so North American Rockwell, et. al. didnt.
> Anybody know?

Not me.

Daniel Ust

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