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Loren Pechtel

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Posts posted by Loren Pechtel

  1. This game hates me!

    While my rocket insists on turning prograde the instant the booster comes off the fins will slow it fine.  If it comes down on land, fine, but if it goes into the water it pops up to turn turtle and blows up (and where did that fireball come from?  There was no fuel on board!) when it hits the water coming back down.  I'm going to have to rearrange the recovered portion to lower the center of mass.

  2. 6 hours ago, Snark said:

    Yep.  Body lift is your friend.

    That works.  Though I'd suggest that you can be a lot bolder than that-- in my experience, I can just dive right in, i.e. set Pe to 30 km or something similar.  Depends on your ballistic coefficient (i.e. ratio of mass to drag) and just how fast you're coming in (e.g. from LKO, from Mun/Minmus, or from solar system).

    Doing the "prograde nose-up body lift without heat shield" thing works absolutely fine from LKO for just about any craft.  I suspect it probably works reasonably well for a Mun/Minmus return, if the craft's not too dense (though it might need a higher Pe and maybe more than one pass?)  Interplanetary returns will probably be too hot to do this way.

    Unfortunately, I didn't have the part you suggested unlocked.  I did find there are now two separate sets of grid fins, though--the second is heavier and more expensive, but has more heat tolerance.  I held onto the booster as long as possible as I've found it tends to help (why?!?!?!), when it was about to blow I triggered the fins and blew the booster--and despite a bunch of fins my craft insisted on going in prograde.  The fins did their job, though, my chutes were green while still above 10,000m.  My kerbals didn't even get mad at the wild tumble they took when the booster came off.

  3. 9 hours ago, Snark said:

    Moving to Gameplay Questions.

    @Loren Pechtel You're talking about "how to do reentry with a long/skinny craft", yes?

    My usual approach for a craft like that is to put a pair of steerable fins on the back (the AV-R8 works great for this).  When I attach them, I make a point of using bilateral symmetry (i.e. like the SPH) rather than radial symmetry, so that when I set them to "deploy", they deflect in the same direction rather than opposite from each other.

    Then I just reenter :prograde: on a somewhat-shallow entry path, make sure the control authority on the fins is cranked up to maximum, and set them to "deploy" so that they aerodynamically hold the craft in a nose-up position, similar to a spaceplane reentry.  The combination of drag and body lift from the fuselage does the trick:  the craft slows down nicely, without losing altitude down into the soup until it's slowed to a safe degree.

    Well, what I'm currently struggling with isn't exactly skinny but it's long compared to it's width.  So you're saying to deploy the fins and come in prograde?  I've done that high up before when returning from a moon--set the periapsis to 50km and come in prograde, it doesn't get too hot and it lowers the apoapsis.  Takes a few passes to get down to low orbit speed but it means a lot cooler dive when I finally do fall out of orbit.

  4. Before my normal solution was grid fins (I forget what mod they come from).  Put them at the top of the rocket, deploy them at around 2000 m/s and it didn't matter how long (big passenger bus) the rocket was, it stayed retrograde.  Now with 1.4, though, they're delicate--I tried leaving them folded until I got in trouble--and they burned off anyway!  The only solution I see now is the utter kludge of building a rocket that doesn't care--keep the size constant, put a heat shield on the nose also, then a decoupler and a nose cone.  Blow the cone before re-entry and come in prograde.  Sometimes it flips but there's a shield there, also.

  5. 13 hours ago, 5thHorseman said:

    I really like 2 (of course, it's what I said :) ).

    I like #6. Maybe extend it so a scientist can capture the extra science that hasn't been gotten yet, that they would have gotten had they been there the first time.

    1, 3, 4, and 5 encourage probes over Kerbals and it's already too easy to just send probes everywhere.

    I'd love 7 to be expanded into either a whole bevy of things (to represent anything from space telescopes to suicide Jool Atmospheric probes that you have to get to a certain depth in Jool's atmo to get full reward) or - just maybe - a replacement science system for career where all science doodads are removed and you must complete contracts for science, that dry up as you get more science points for a world.

    I do agree that many of these encourage probes--but I don't see that as a big problem.  If you're just going somewhere to do one thing unmanned is the way to go.  Kerbals should be used for the missions where flexibility is required.  Expanding on #6:  There's a big pile of science available in a biome that is obtained by putting a scientist in a lab landed at the biome and they gather science at a rate based on their skill level until all the science from that biome is gathered.  This wouldn't be just a click and go like most science missions.

    Thinking about it, the gravity scanner should also be modified.  No biome-based science, but rather a fair pile of it that's obtained slowly from a probe in a polar orbit about the body.  That's how gravity maps are made.

  6. My thoughts on fixing science:

    1)  Everything that you get from instruments should be 100% transmissable.  The idea that you need to bring back the instrument makes no sense to me.

    2)  No more clicking.  Automated science sampler should be incorporated into the core game.  You simply need to bring the instruments to the place.  I would also apply this to EVA science.  (Make a few changes to the how science is handled internally.  Uniquely tag reports, direct reports to every part on the craft that can store them.  The entire UI of ASS could be removed, replaced with "automatic" switches on resettable experiments.  The only thing you would have to click is those experiments and only if you couldn't reset them in flight.)

    3)  All experiments that are resettable should have higher tech versions that don't need resetting and thus can be done unmanned.

    4)  An "experiment" that can get a surface sample--thus allowing sample return missions.

    5)  Remove the crew report.  This one makes no sense.

    6)  Putting a scientist on another world EVA should permit collection of much better samples.

    7)  A new type of contract:  Haul instrument package (which would simply have a shape and a weight, we don't need a bunch of fancy graphics) to a certain biome, leave it for a certain duration, if landed it may include a return it to Kerbin requirement.  It "pays" in the science (they provided the package, you get to share what they learned.)

  7. On 9/20/2018 at 8:26 AM, DStaal said:

    ScienceAlert is updated, and would also do what he wants.

    Actually, not quite.

    Science Alert only understands science that can be gathered right now.  If you want EVA reports you either have to send someone out when you enter a biome (which Science Alert will not be aware of!) or stick a Kerbal in a command chair--but that doesn't work if you're playing with a life support mod.

  8. 30 minutes ago, IgorZ said:

    Expected. Almost nothing is working as expected in 1.5.1 for the stock female suites.

    And if you want some fun. The model object, which the items were attaching to before the update was named "body01" (they are looked up by a name). It was the same for all of the models. Guess how it's named in the new version of the female stock suites? "mesh_female_kerbalAstronaut01_body01" it is!!! Indeed, nobody will confuse male and female suites now. I bet the squad team had a good reason to do this renaming! E.g. Jebb could accidentally take Valentina's suit, and it posed a threat to the whole mission? Anyways, we now need a fix to KIS.

    Well, that would leave Valentina with a suit that doesn't meet female sanitary needs and has no space for two of her body parts....

  9. 9 hours ago, Rocket In My Pocket said:

    Not sure what your issue is?

    Water tends to "cushion" a parts landing, absorbing some of the force; it's not unheard of for discarded parts to survive impact. Not to mention the first parts hitting the water absorbing most of the force and making it more likely for parts behind them to survive. I see it all the time; ram a plane into the water at top speed, and you'll see some parts float up most likely after the explosion. Finally; physics engines aren't perfect; sometimes things are happening too fast during a crash and parts just get "ignored" or left out.

    Also, as @RocketBlam said, a shallower trajectory would be the better solution, play however you want though!

    This is the first I've seen parts survive impact at terminal velocity.

    I do agree that in the normal case you want to come in shallow.  However, for sub-orbital tourist contracts it's actually cheaper to go straight up and down, slowing on your rocket takes less fuel than building up enough horizontal velocity for a safe entry of a longer rocket (to haul several tourists per flight.)

  10. 1 hour ago, RocketBlam said:

    I'm not sure what the solution to your impact problem is, but you're doing the opposite of what you should be doing when you come in. If you can't shed enough speed before you impact, you need to make your approach shallower. That leaves you in the air for longer, so the friction can slow you down.

    If you still aren't slowing down enough, you can burn retrograde to get rid of some speed. It uses fuel, but not as much fuel as the way you're doing it now. In fact burning longer during the launch, to get that trajectory more shallow, would probably be even more efficient. There's a point at which the air will do it all by itself, unless you have a very streamlined ship (like, with a pointed nose, facing prograde.)

    You misunderstand--I'm landing fine.  While my approach isn't the conventional one it works and costs no more.  What I am not understanding is why I'm sometimes getting back part of the discarded booster.  It should be going **splat**!

  11. New game, getting some money from suborbital tourists.

    I've always had a problem bringing suborbital rockets in smoothly as they don't have the horizontal velocity of orbital ones and thus don't tend to slow enough.  I decided to try a new approach--go straight up and use the engine to shed my velocity on the way down with the fuel that normally would have built horizontal velocity.

    The mission is going as expected but I seem to have lit the booster a bit late, I'm coming down a bit fast.  I blow the booster and trigger my drogue chute.  I acted quickly and didn't shut off the engine first--it flies up into the sky beside me.

    I get down, recover my rocket and it's tourists and then notice something in the water--most of the fuel tanks of the booster!  It must have come down at terminal velocity, how did anything survive?


    Stranger and stranger--while I'm waiting for the internet to come back up so I can post this I find another smaller chunk from another flight of the same rocket bobbing in the ocean and I find a lone decoupler on the ground.

  12. 12 minutes ago, linuxgurugamer said:

    You don't need to resurrect it, it's already in the Recycled Parts mod.

    What you want is the Recycled Parts RSCapsuledyne, which is a subset of the entire mod, you can install it by itself using CKAN


    !  Taurus HCV - 3.75m Stock-ish Crew Pod 1:1.5.3 (KSP 1.0.5)

  13. 2 hours ago, linuxgurugamer said:

    And I'm saying that you need to set the compatibility mode, see the following image.  Note that this is for a 1.4.5 install, so no need to specify 1.4.5.  I could also have just checked the 1.4 at the top:


    I have set these.  The problem is the part I wish to resurrect--the Taurus 3.75m stuff--doesn't have 1.4 support at all but is listed as a dependency.  If I install that manually will yours then install?

    Is there some licensing issue that you have to modify the old one rather than simply include the files?

  14. 1 hour ago, linuxgurugamer said:

    Yes.  As I said, you need to tell CKAN to see mods for 1.4, 1.4.1, 1.4.2,1.4.3 as being compatible.  All my mode, even if not listed as compatible for 1.4.5, will work in 1.4.5.

    Most mods for 1.4.1-1.4.3 will work for 1.4.5.

    I install everything in my games using CKAN, if it is listed.

    I'm saying the old mods are listed as dependencies and they won't install because they don't support the current version.

  15. 55 minutes ago, jcheil67 said:

    I apologize if this is not the right place to post suggestions, please advise if it is not.

    I would like to see the ability to have an alarm set when any craft enters a certain specific biome based on the different levels (i.e. flying low, high, space high, low, etc).

    Also an alarm when any craft changes into one of those "levels" (regardless of biome) from another level.

    So many time I might have a craft in a polar orbit waiting for a certain hard to reach biome to come into view. Would be nice to just let the game run and be notified when that happens insteda of sitting there time warping watching the biomes go by.



    Your wish is called "Biomatic".

    Now your wish should be for it to be updated to current.

  16. 19 minutes ago, Lord_inter said:

    There was a space dock that acted like a kerbal with a tool, was REALLY useful not having to rely on a kerbal and being able to build thing autonomously, it scaled up the weight and distance it could reach as it got larger

    That sounds like a very useful part!  Trying to do anything large with spacewalking Kerbals is an exercise in frustration if it's even possible at all.

  17. 1 hour ago, IgorZ said:

    KSP has another thing that breaks "the perfect orbits": the math calculation errors. It may not be obvious in a time span of 1-3 months of game time, but in a long run they accumulate to add enough deviation. So I was thinking about a mod which constantly monitors the satellites and doesn't allow them to deviate from the designated orbit.

    What would be really nice is a mod that monitored a ship and kept it from coming apart.

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