Gordon Fecyk

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About Gordon Fecyk

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    Rocketeer, eh?

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  • Website URL http://www.antiwindowscatalog.com/
  • Skype gordonf@pan-am.ca or live:gordonf_3

Profile Information

  • Location Manitoba, Canada
  • Interests I do IT for a living, especially desktop support, so I'm most interested in making popular applications safer to use and games safer to play.

    Since discovering KSP I've done some novice film making. Look for the "Agencia Espacial Kanada" channel on YouTube.
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  1. Just in case you have Kopernicus installed, v1.3.0-4's ground scatter is broken. I had to revert to 1.3.0-2 to replace ground scatter. Otherwise, if this is full stock, I do know ground scatter sometimes doesn't load until a scene change. Even switching to and from a distant craft would suffice.
  2. Are you talking about the additional mounting points available on fairing bases? That's a 3.75 m fairing with trusses enabled, but they don't appear unless you attach something to one of the nodes above the fairing base.
  3. And here we are: The Fat-Star McTater-Tot 2.51: It's still picked up a bit of mass, at just under 166 tonnes including 36 t cargo, but this is a longer and wider version. Total wing surface is 180 m2 and fully loaded it is an obscene wing load of 0.92 t/m2, but this thing is unusually nimble like an oversized fighter thanks to its manta ray-like wing configuration. The elevons act as air brakes. Cargo capacity: At least 36 tonnes and four crew to 100 km low Kerbin orbit, with a little bit of dV to manoeuvre and return. If you need more dV in space, try adding FL-T200 tanks to the front of the outer nacelles, or replace the Mk1 structural fuselages with FL-T400s. Power plant: 6 x JX-4 Whiplash, 4 x T-1 Aerospike. Note that the rearmost wet wings are empty to keep the centre of mass further forward. Add Liquid Fuel if you must, for instance to spend more acceleration time on the Whiplashes if needed, but be mindful of the plane's balance. Tank priorities are set to drain from rear to front. Craft file here (18 KB ZIP). Full instructions are in the craft description. Full stock parts, designed for Ferram Aerospace on KSP 1.2.2 and 1.3.0; change the version value to load the craft in 1.2.2.
  4. The Mk1 nose cockpit is pretty fragile, but it isn't impossible to re-enter if you're very careful. I managed to return a stock Aeris 4a from Minmus orbit and managed to fly one of Thrimm's low-tech space planes to orbit and back, even with Ferram Aerospace Research loaded. For the stock craft and that Minmus challenge, I used a Mun assist to lower my Kerbin Apoapsis from 44 000 km to 11 000 km, then chose a Periapsis of just over 49 km. Any lower and I'd have cooked Criskie Kerman (Crispy Kerman?) for sure. For the LTS Dove, I added an antenna to the nose so it would bear the brunt of the heating, but the cockpit was still a little toasty. I seem to remember discussions about the re-entry shockwave being the major source of heat, and that any parts in contact with the shockwave would heat up. Flatter surfaces would bear that heat better because the shockwave would not be in direct contact with the surface, which is why the command pods re-enter retrograde without overheating too much. Sharper noses like that Mk1 cockpit's nose would easily contact the shockwave since they're nose-first and sharp. Putting an antenna or another object ahead of the Mk1 cockpit would separate it from the re-entry shockwave a little bit. Take a look at the LTS Dove-F for an example.
  5. Taking a look here and at KerbalX, I see a lot of good stock trucks. But I didn't easily see anything that could push a 2.5 m package into a Mk3 cargo bay. Is there such a thing that someone's made? I was going to attempt this, but then read, "from the launchpad. SSTOs are way too common." Still, I spent so long making the aircraft so now it's about bragging rights. Maybe I'll load the plane onto the launchpad and taxi it to the runway out of spite...
  6. The craft seems to want to pitch up when it's empty and on runway approach. I can rebalance fuel to fix that, and I've already set up tank priorities to drain rearmost tanks and wet wings first. Sideslip is still there but it seems manageable; I might try adding strakes to the wing edges to help with that. Haven't had a chance to try since then, but it shows a lot of promise.
  7. @capi3101 Thanks so far for the assistance. I don't have the craft file available now, but I redesigned the craft to use twelve Big-S wings including the two horizontal tail planes, two Big-S tails, and supporting control surfaces. That gives 180 m2 horizontal wing surface with about the same wing span. Also removed one pair of Whiplashes and tank sets, reducing the fully loaded mass to around 150 tonnes. That's still a wing load of 0.83 t/m2, but I also found I need a lot less Liquid Fuel (-2000 units), so I can reduce that mass to 140 t and get wing loading down to 0.77 t/m2. That's still very high based on your recommendations, but the craft seems to fly better now. FAR still complains about some sideslip numbers at speeds below Mach 0.4 at sea level, but if I can reach 150 m/s or more on take-off it can manage. On return, the empty craft's stall speed is down to 90 m/s and I can land without drogues. Barely. The updated design resembles an @AeroGav creation he calls the "Auto-Ray," just scaled up. It uses his 'wave-rider' style of ascent, accelerating to around 1100 m/s at 18-20 km up before igniting the Aerospikes, then slowly climbing / riding the edge of the middle atmosphere until orbital speed. I have to keep a 6-10 degree angle of attack up there until I get close to 2 km/s, so I might fiddle with wing angles to compensate.
  8. Moreso at higher altitudes and higher speeds. The craft will drift to the right, but I'm sure I built everything with lateral symmetry. That might get fixed after adding more tail planes, like it did when I converted Thrimm's LTS planes to FAR. I can deal with drogues. A 150 m/s stall is tame compared to the Mk2 missiles I've landed at 200 m/s or so. Drogues seem overpowered now, compared to FAR Lanchester on KSP 1.1. Still, I might be able to build longer wings that get swept back further. The static stability assessment in FAR tells me I'm wrong in at least two places at low speeds and altitudes. I'm usually better than that. If I can hit 175 m/s on take-off though, it seems OK. Where's the wing surface calculator you mentioned? Or is there a formula, spreadsheet, or something I can look at? Thrimm had a basic engine calculator, but that was for stock aero and not FAR.
  9. @Nixod321 and @capi3101 Sorry for confusing one thing: That displayed mass includes the 36 t cargo; you can barely see the orange tank in the image. An empty craft (Ok loaded with fuel) would be 142 t. But given eight Big-S wings and four Big-S strakes plus control surfaces, that's about 140 m2 horizontal wing surface. So I'd have to double this and more, somehow. Capi, you might have been onto something mentioning the engines. I can get an empty craft to space on half of the engines, but had a major problem with asymmetrical thrust once in space. I could cut four of the Whiplashes and two of the Aerospikes, and either edge-mount the two Aerospikes or clip all six engine assemblies into the wings. That would also eliminate the accompanying tanks and air intakes, reducing the mass considerably. I wouldn't lose style points for clipping fuel tanks into those wings, would I?
  10. Most of that is fuel. As I have an excess of fuel on landing, I might be able to ditch the set of FL-T400s, or trade them for FL-T200s. Having the excess could prove handy in space. I tried LV-Ns instead of Aerospikes, but I can't get the thrust I want. I've crammed fuel where I could without compromising the cargo space. "Fat-Star" seems appropriate; this and other FAR space planes I've flown have been little more than horizontal rockets or flying fuel tanks with lousy TWR. Each wing is three Big-S wings and two Big-S strakes, and lots of autostrut abuse. If I move those any further forward I'll block the hatches on the cockpit. I could attempt to graft more wings to the assembly; I'm trying to keep this stock, avoiding TweakScale and Procedural Wings. There has to be a limit though; too much wing would mean too much drag in the upper atmosphere. Having the centre of mass more forward also seems to mess with re-entry, where reaction wheels then have to work harder and drain more electric charge. Adding more batteries does let me adjust the CoM though. "Lawn dart" behaviour is something I'd rather avoid; the thing regularly crashes into the water on take-off with that. I could have two Big-S tail planes; that could work like it did with the LTS series.
  11. How about EVA Transfer as an alternate to Kerbal Attachment System to refuel craft? And is this specific to rockets or are space planes allowed? I imagine anyone with a functioning single-stage-to-orbit aircraft and EVA Transfer would knock this challenge out of the ballpark.
  12. Help wanted with "Fat-Star McTater-Tot" I'm having trouble with this craft, named after Keptin's Basic Aircraft Design post: Craft file here (15 KB ZIP). Saved with KSP 1.3.0, but you can edit the version number to 1.2.2 and load it there. Tested with Ferram Aerospace "Lewis" edition. Power Plant: 8 x JX-4 Whiplash, 4 x T-1 Aerospike. Capacity: 36 tonnes cargo at least, four crew. Probe core provided for un-crewed deliveries. I have flight instructions in the craft description. I can return an empty craft from low Kerbin orbit with about 2400 LF and 1600 OX remaining, so I imagine it has a fair bit of delta-v from LKO. I'm running into these problems: I can't make flaps work like flaps with the elevons and canards attached. It does take off from the edge of the runway. Craft shimmies left-to-right a bit depending on speed and altitude. More reaction wheels help, but that's a strain on electric charge. Pretty high empty stall speed: 150 m/s, mostly from lack of flaps. Drogues are a must for safe landing. It does fly if you pay attention, but a significant distraction may be disastrous. I've thought about adding more tail planes, but they don't attach well to these Big-S wings. Any suggestions?
  13. I thought about that as I maintain 1.2.2 and 1.3 kits. But aside from the exploration contracts disappearing, everything else migrated without difficulty. I had to re-extend some antennas and solar panels, but the import had CommNet turned off so I could do that and then turn it on. But OK, I'll try a 1.1.3 to 1.2.2 conversion first, and see what happens to the exploration contracts. As I test-played through the 1.1.3 to 1.3.0 converted save, it re-generated a Duna exploration contract starting with a fly-by. [Update] Migrating the same save to a 1.2.2 installation also ate the exploration contracts. Same behaviour as the 1.3.0 migration.
  14. I successfully copied a 1.1.3 save to a 1.3.0 installation. That save had separate "Fly by Duna" and "Explore Duna" contracts that seem to have disappeared after loading the save into 1.3.0. I know the exploration contracts were redone in 1.2.2 and the old contracts were probably omitted as being invalid. Other contracts migrated without loss. But this save is part of a story I'm filming. Aside from hacking in a new exploration contract, is there a simpler way to migrate these contracts into a 1.3.0 save, or more sensibly, to merge them into a single exploration contract? The fly-by contract was pretty simple, to put a craft into Duna's SOI. The explore contract was to orbit Duna, send science from space around it, land on it, and send science from the surface of it. They came from different agencies, the first from KWF and the second from StrutCo.
  15. Time to tune the engines based on higher atmospheric pressures. I'm not sure what sure what direction to take them, though. Playing with NASA's EngineSimU, I learned that higher pressures mean more mass to pull the engine through. Not changing anything else, this means a lot more thrust if one can sustain the fuel (or oxidizer in my case) flow, and the engine doesn't overheat. On Eve though, the thicker air means more lift and not needing as much thrust. I might want to simulate an engine governor that actually reduces thrust in higher pressures. This is a realism / gameplay balance problem now. I can certainly do more thrust based on the EngineSim numbers, and have engines fall off or melt without careful throttling. Or I can 'design in' a throttle governor by reducing the thrust. I could even adjust both atmCurve and atmosphereCurve and have specific impulse change with pressure, simulating the requirement of a higher chamber pressure, much like OhioBob's engines provide more thrust at higher pressures with lower specific impulse. I could also leave them alone; they seem to work fine as-is from a gameplay view.