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About SkunkTwerks

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  1. Added to the to-do list! Speaking of the to-do list, I finally got around to polishing up an old project: the SkunkTwerks Z-95 Headhunter. Reference ortho by unusualsuspex SkunkTwerks proudly presents the Z-95 Headhunter, predecessor to the illustrious T-65 X-Wing. Piloting this light fighter is a great way to establish nerd dominance over the dweebs at Mission control: you can say you basically flew the X-Wing *before* it was cool. Hotkey 1 toggles vertical engine, hotkey 2 toggles horizontal engines. A vertically-oriented QBE (Hotkey 4) is included to facilitate vertical landings. Hotkey 5 toggles the vertical engine gimbal. Optimized for atmospheric flight and VTOL capability. In other news, I finally got around to seeing the Last Jedi last weekend! It pleased me greatly to see all the new ships, even if @Jett_Quasar beat me to the punch on building some of the most memorable ones. (No hard feelings, you rock!) Those ski speeders though... talk about ridiculous craft design! May the Schwartz be with you, -SkunkTwerks
  2. Work-in-Progress [WIP] Design Thread

    Thank you! I'm so glad all the hours of work paid off in terms of visual accuracy. All of the finished SkunkTwerks T-65 X-Wings (ATMO/SSTO/ATMO+VTOL) can be found and taken for joyrides via the links in my signature.* The AIRBRAKE hinge actuators aren't as visually sneaky as @Servo's (I guess that's what you get in a newer model T-70, instead of an old-school T-65), but what mine lack in visual perfection they seem to make up for in stability. They do a great job of keeping the wings from flopping around during mode switching, which is essential when you have (yes!) great big heavy 1.25-ton Drill-O-Matics on each wingtip, plus two Mk.0 fuel tanks, some wing panels, Big-S elevons, and heavy Engines + Mk.2 fuselage + Pre-cooler. All in all, each finished wing weighs nearly 9 TONS and is nearly 10 m long from wingtip to the RCS Port at the central fulcrum. I'd rather not do the math because the loads aren't conveniently distributed at the end of the lever and I'm not an engineer... but for a 3rd class lever, that sure seems like an awfully large load on an awfully long load arm. And yet with auto-strutting and rigid attachment, ONE AIRBRAKE is all it takes to lift the wing. I ended up using two pairs each to reduce wobble, but I've learned a very important lesson: AIRBRAKES are STRONG! (So are RCS Ports, I-Beams, Structural Panels, and the Force.) I may try to add VTOL capacity back to this bird at some point, but for the moment it's plenty complicated enough already. One problem at a time! Hopefully I'll have more time later this week to resume working on it. -SkunkTwerks *Death Star not included. Sorry!
  3. Work-in-Progress [WIP] Design Thread

    WOW. That is BEAUTIFUL work @Servo. You really nailed the aesthetics! I'll be very curious to see how you set up your internal hinges, I had some ideas but couldn't quite figure out how to do it. Feel free to PM me if you'd like to put heads together and collaborate. One of the hardest challenges I keep facing when building Star Wars craft has been balancing aesthetics, flight performance, and part count. It's always a compromise, but it's absolutely awesome when you can really nail two of those. Meanwhile, the SkunkTwerks X-Wing Prototype development continues. As of Prototype Version 17, I have achieved S-foil cycling in flight! The great news is that the hinges are sturdy enough to handle it. But it's still pretty shaky and not all the wings dock into place consistently. Docking port placement is key, and it's been really fiddly work to get them all in the perfect position. Losing control of all engines and most elevons during mode switching definitely compounds the challenge. I may need to add redundant docking ports for a better chance at successful re-docking. Flight config Battle config (note the altitude lost during reconfiguration tailspin) Back to flight config. It ain't pretty yet, but it works. Kinda. Progress is progress. -SkunkTwerks
  4. Star Wars Things

    I love Star Wars stuff! I hope you'll post some pictures, videos, or craft downloads soon.
  5. Oooh, that looks pretty cool. What's it called? It looks like a great excuse to build another hinge! Progress on the X-wing "boba in a straw" hinge is slow but steady. It's still a bit fiddly, but as of right now I can get all four S-foils to move back and forth from Flight -> Combat configuration and back without destroying the hinges most of the time. Getting it to work consistently in flight will be the real challenge. -SkunkTwerks
  6. Time for another peek at the Twerkshop behind the scenes... The quest for hinged craft continues. Next up, the X-Wing! @ShadowGoat and I bounced some hinge ideas off each other today, and I came up with what I shall fondly call the "BOBA IN A STRAW" hinge. Plot twist: it does not actually involve Boba Fett. Very disappointing, I know. The challenge: I needed a hinge strong enough to support HEAVY S-foils loaded up with Drill-O-Matics, fuel tanks, and engines. Did I mention they'd be experiencing aerodynamic forces during motion as well? This hinge needs to be SOLID. I also wanted to keep the part count to a respectful minimum so more people can enjoy flying the X-Wing at decent framerates. After trying a few other options with much higher part counts, I took inspiration from, you guessed it... bubble tea with wonderful chewy boba / tapioca pearls, sipped through a big fat straw. Today I learned that the "BOBA IN A STRAW" hinge idea is strong, quite low in part count, and seems to work beautifully in partial prototype! And all it took was at least six major revisions and a TON of delicate fine tuning. Radically simplified X-Wing prototype using loaded ore cans as engine stand-ins. Structural I-Beam and Panel colliders highlighted in yellow, RCS port colliders highlighted in red with Collide-O-Scope. How it works: I used structural panels and long I-Beams to create a long "straw," then filled it with RCS port "boba." The outermost RCS bearings on each side belong to (and rotate with) the left S-foil. The middle RCS bearings on each side belong to (and rotate with) the right S-foil. The innermost RCS bearings are part of the fuselage and keep the S-foil bearings from sliding fore/aft. I will add more "boba" to this "straw" later when I add the lower S-foils. Looking down the straw. When the S-foils are released from the docking ports, the RCS ports are trapped in place and can only rotate in place... theoretically speaking, of course. If the docking port angle & offsetting is even a little bit off, they can easily break out of their straw and cause all kinds of explosions. Using AIRBRAKES to push the S-foils up from flight configuration into combat configuration S-foils locked in combat configuration without support from AIRBRAKES. Note that the red RCS ports still aren't quite in perfect alignment despite many meticulous attempts... *shoots force lightning from fingertips* Lessons learned so far: 1) It seems that all docking ports must reach a certain distance apart before they can re-magnetize and re-dock. A meter, maybe? Hard to tell exactly. Docking ports will need to be closer to the wingtips so they'll have enough swing distance. So unless someone can think of a better solution, a few docking ports will probably just have to hover in midair above & below the ship when it's not in combat configuration. It's not super pretty, but I'll grudgingly sacrifice some beauty for functionality. Hopefully this won't conflict with the landing gear when I get around to adding the lower foils. 2) Docking ports must be *perfectly* aligned, or they rip their attached RCS ball bearings right out of their I-Beam housing upon docking. Or sometimes they only partially rip the RCS bearings out, and then everything falls apart the moment the docking ports are released. 3) Saving on part count means using heavy parts. Fortunately the X-Wing is really overpowered with its stacked Panther-RAPIERs. Not sure I'll be able to get it to work on the VTOL craft (so many potential part-clipping problems), but it might work just fine on the traditional runway takeoff variant. The prototype craft file is available upon request, PM me for the download. I'm all ears for insight and collaboration. May the Force of fine-tuning be with us all, -SkunkTwerks
  7. Happy Holidays, Star Wars KSP nerds! As a boxing day present, SkunkTwerks and ShadowGoat proudly present their collaborative craft, the GoatTwerks Variable-Geometry Alpha-3 Nimbus-class V-wing. In addition to VTOL capability, this starfighter can lock its wing radiators into flight position for extra maneuverability during combat and swing them back to stowed configuration for landing. After many hours of hinge testing and flight testing, 9 out of 10 rebel Kerbals agree: this ship is the coolest Twerkshop project yet (the other one misheard, and thought we were talking about the B-wing). Based on these two orthos from unusualsuspex: Flight Configuration and Landing Configuration. GoatTwerks Variable-Geometry Alpha-3 Nimbus-class V-wing Flight notes: Use of SAS is strongly recommended, RCS not included. Craft geometry changes are not guaranteed to function at airspeeds over 110 m/s in level flight. Similarly, wing-swings have been tested one at a time. Releasing both sets simultaneously may result in undesirable flight patterns. Don't forget to throttle back up after each wing set re-couples and locks into place. Not sure why, but KSP automatically cuts the throttle to 0 every time the craft becomes "whole" again. Make sure to swing the wings back into Landing Mode and extend the rear landing strut before returning to the ground. Velocities under ~12 m/s are strongly recommended for touchdown. Hotkeys: 1: Toggle vertical engines 2: Toggle horizontal engines 3: Toggle horizontal afterburners 4: Control from vertical "astromech droid" (most useful during landing) 5: Control from cockpit 6: Toggle vertical engine gimbals. Disabling gimbals significantly reduces craft wobble when using SAS's Hold Retrograde function during landing, but enabling gimbals can be handy for takeoff in rough terrain. 7: Undock lower wings for Landing/Flight Mode switch. Transfer control to the OKTO2 and hit W (landing -> flight) or S (flight -> landing) to finish the job. The lower wing Landing -> flight switch usually happens all by itself thanks to gravity and drag. 8: Undock upper wings for Landing/Flight Mode switch. Transfer control to the OKTO2 and hit W (landing -> flight) or S (flight -> landing) to finish the job. Folding the wings from Flight -> Landing Mode... Lower set locked into place. Upper set in motion. Fully reconfigured and ready for landing. Vertical landing using Astromech Droid and SAS's retrograde hold. Many special thanks to the KSP engineers who helped make this craft functional. @ShadowGoat made the initial request for this craft, then designed a brilliant functional prototype dual hinge system for this Variable Geometry version. The slick, lightweight, strong RCS port hinges were first introduced by @quitessa and refined by @Azimech. Yours truly, @SkunkTwerks provided the initial fixed-wing model and made lots of tweaks to the hinge prototypes to adapt them to the V-Wing. I personally had a blast making new friends in the KSP community, and a ton of fun learning about hinges. Fun fact: the V-Wing's hinge assemblies required at least 15 major overhauls to become as smooth, strong, and stable as they are now. Also, stay tuned to @Jett_Quasar's Star Wars Replicas thread, as a V-Wing is scheduled to make an appearance in one of his upcoming videos. May the Force be with you this holiday season, -SkunkTwerks P.S. As @MiffedStarfish just pointed out in the KerbalX comments, ideally the wings would all swing into position at the same time. But ShadowGoat and I couldn't wrap our head around a good way to do that... If anyone reading this has a clever idea for how to do it, I encourage you to join the collaboration!
  8. Jett Quasar's Star Wars Replicas

    Yesss! I would be honored indeed to see my V-Wing fly in one of your stories! Can't wait to see what you'll do with it. I love it! In that case, I won't take it personally if/when the V-Wing goes down in flames. I'll be cheering its destruction, because as @ShadowGoat mentioned, we are slowly working on a swing-wing version that should be really friggin' cool when we get it to work. Also, absolutely beautiful work on that new U-Wing. Comparing it to the orthos, you took the visual accuracy waayyyy up, especially on the wing geometry! And I love the little details like the solar panel squadron markers... "Blue Three" sure came out looking sharp!
  9. Excellent work, I appreciate your bravery in working with the setup you've got. On the plus side, being able to watch your kerbal get stretched and deformed in slow-motion at 8:18 was hilariously cool. Love how you added the Mk1 cockpit for maximum viewing enjoyment, and your tweaks to the firing chamber do indeed seem to be more efficient in getting kerbals to load and fire. Interesting! Well that would certainly seem to disprove my hypotheses about atmospheric cooling. Must really be aero heating that's blowing them up! Thanks for doing some science.
  10. Jett Quasar's Star Wars Replicas

    I agree! Top-notch work as always, Jett, really love the snow-speeder aesthetics.
  11. Thank you, I'm glad it brought you joy, mirth, and creative inspiration. I hope you'll consider post your Dongshui Wanlan video here once you've mastered the fine art of aiming panicked kerbals. They are not the most aerodynamically-predictable of beasts. I am 100% supportive of creative riffing when credit is given to all the creators!. My little cousins and I would love to see some of the carnage their crazy idea has inspired. I'm having a scientific observation moment here, between: AND: Innnnnnteresting. I wonder... Is the thick atmosphere the only thing cooling them down as they are heated by the cannon? Or are the aero forces of the atmosphere moving the kerbals out of the hotspot of the engine's point thrust vector before they soak up too much heat? And how might we tell the difference? Hmmm, any Kerbals want to volunteer to help me test this hypothesis? ... No? ... Nobody? ... Not even Jeb? Okay, fine, I'm heading over to the Administration Building to select the "MASS CONSCRIPTION" strategy. *evil laugh* Haha, sounds like 80% of my mornings! I almost left that little "blooper" out of the video, but thankfully my sense of humor got the better of me. Cool, I'll have to try that out. Perhaps on a Paris Gun-inspired chassis? As for a craft screenshot... Post it! Post it! Post it! *cheering wildly* (Don't forget!) -SkunkTwerks
  12. Yikes, lots of posts, not enough new crafts to download... So much work, not enough play.... SkunkTwerks to the rescue! Here's the original ortho from unusualsuspex at deviantart. I tried to stick to it as closely as I could, and I'm happy with the results. The SkunkTwerks Aurek-class Tactical Strikefighter ATMO+VTOL Specially requested by @ShadowGoat, this flashy fighter is an excellent choice for winning a Sith War, a Galactic War, or a Bidding War in the Mission Control Building. Well-balanced VTOL makes takeoff easy. Hotkey 1 toggles vertical engine, hotkey 2 toggles horizontal engine. A vertically-oriented QBE (Hotkey 4) is included to facilitate vertical landings. Flight notes: Nimble and quick, though sometimes does funny things when pitching and rolling simultaneously. Capable of cool, controlled yaw slides. And of course, the SkunkTwerks Aurek-class Tactical Strikefighter SSTO Because of course we wanted to fly it in space! RCS sold separately. Clamp-O-Tron Junior behind the cockpit allows orbital refueling. Super easy to get into orbit. SkunkTwerks “SSTO Or Your Galactic Credits Back” Guaranteed Ascent Profile: Engage SAS and throttle to full before starting engines. After takeoff, pitch up to 10 degrees and hold 10-15 degrees climb. At 10,000 m altitude, pitch down to 0 degrees to begin level flight, then allow pitch to drift up naturally. Switch RAPIERS to closed cycle (Hotkey 1) as soon as velocity begins to drop, allowing pitch to drift up naturally until desired apoapsis is reached. More efficient ascent profiles may exist, but will void the warranty. AIRBRAKEs extended for no-stress re-entry. The forward wings and 70% deployment shield them from most of the aero heating, meaning you probably won't need to retract them to keep them from burning up on all but the most aggressive descents. These birds were a blast to build! The ATMO version will likely be one of my first projects to revisit once I've mastered some small & sturdy hinges --- this one is supposed to have variable wing geometry and I'll be thrilled if I can make that work. Now THAT is a cool craft. I downloaded and examined it, then promptly downloaded EditorExtensionsRedux so I could try to replicate it. The hinge is simple, strong, and compact, and might be exactly the kind of thing that might work wonders for the V-Wing. Thanks for suggesting it! Well shoot. Have you checked the SPH for potential saboteurs? Some of those hardhat-wearing kerbals wandering around on the hangar floor look like they might be Empire sympathizers... May the Force be with you all, and all your KSP projects, -SkunkTwerks EDIT: P.S. It was really fun being one of the Threads Of The Month for November. I'm so grateful for all the love these crafts have received, it really inspired me to build and share more crafts. When I joined this forum I thought it would be cool if my replicas made a couple dozen people smile... But wow, over the past two months you crazy KSP forumers and KerbalX followers have downloaded SkunkTwerks crafts over 1,220 times. Thanks @Dman979 and whoever else nominated the thread, and thanks a bajillion to the rest of you for reading along. I never expected such an awesome warm reception. May the force be with you always!
  13. Nice! I'm still hopeful... sometimes the kerbals vaporize purely from the engine exhaust heating. Bet if you try it with a few more, you might get it to work. If you do, I'd love to see screenshots/videos/craft downloads! YES. (What, oh what have we started!?! Forgive us, almighty Kraken!) Is it possible to fit a Kerbal in a structural fuselage? If so, that could really simplify things... One of the hardest parts of building the KL50000 was trying to get the kerbals contained directly in front of the source of the thrust. Turns out KSP is pretty picky about hatch obstructions, and we never figured out how to get a foolproof loading chamber. I will pass that compliment along to my little cousins, they're the ones who came up with the brilliant idea! -SkunkTwerks
  14. It's been an offbeat week in the Twerkshop, trying to learn new hinge designs and struggling with some "sensitive" crafts. The Z-95 Headhunter ATMO+VTOL prototype is giving me headaches... I'm so close, yet so far! I've run into some unexpectedly tricky challenges during flight testing. It handles decently during very casual, cautious flight, but in harder maneuvering the Headhunter's long nose catches the wind and the wings/elevons are too far aft to control the momentum. Plus, there's not much room for vertical stabilizers, so yaw control is difficult. For something I assumed would be a cake-walk, it's proving to be a surprisingly tough craft to balance. Stay tuned! Thank you @klond for the thoughtful hinge reply! I tried a few hinges this evening, including your cool cubic strut one. And thank you @qzgy for suggesting Collide-O-Scope! That sure takes a lot of guesswork out of part spacing. I'm all fired up about finding a very compact & sturdy low-speed axle for variable-geometry crafts like the V-Wing and possibly the Aurek, and the hunt is on... Here's a glance a couple of my experiments so far. This thing just goes round and round to test hinge stability. Here I tried to replicate the RCS-ball hinges I saw on @Azimech's engines (collision mesh highlights from Collide-O-Scope). It's pretty nifty, but I'll need to keep working to get more stability on the vertical axis. As you can see, this one's pretty floppy on everything but the horizontal axis. Next step might be to play with EditorExtensionsRedux so I can make longer axles and taller stacks of axle-housing. Checking collision meshes on a thermometer-thermometer hinge. Still trying to find the sweet spot! TL;DR There's no shortage of stuff spinning around and exploding in the Twerkshop right now. Mistakes are being made in a semi-systematic manner, and science is happening. But I made solid progress on the Aurek prototypes! I will post SSTO and ATMO+VTOL variants once I've snapped some screenshots. A variable-geometry version might come later if I can make some hinges that are small enough, strong enough, and stable enough to work during flight. AWESOME. That's a super cool craft! Can't wait to see what you've created. May the Force of sheer stubborn persistence be with you until it works, -SkunkTwerks
  15. Took me a while (videos are a lot more time-consuming than screenshots) but... As you wish! Video covers loading, double-loading, firing, clearing kerbal jams, magazine reloading, and a projectile-eye view of the action. But where's the risk and danger in that? And why would I waste rocket fuel accelerating anything other than kerbals? Excellent question! Short answer, it's theoretically possible but I haven't tried it... My Kerbals often explode from aero heating at low altitude, and I haven't bothered to fit the craft for high altitude flight. If you'd like to modify and test it at high elevations, please feel very welcome to do so and tell us about your results. Awesome, I'd love to see your design. When it's finished I hope you'll post it here! -SkunkTwerks