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  1. I really want to see a Gilly Space Program --- it'd be a completely different game, as you're effectively starting from an asteroid base. Build all the big, spidery, low-g ships you want! Then strap SRBs onto them and watch them collapse and implode.
  2. I'll admit I had been trying for Eve, not Duna. I will give Duna a try. Thanks very much. (A really nice-to-have feature on the map is to show projections forwards in time. It already does it for intercepts *anyway*, it'd just be nice to have it more flexible...) For planets in a different orbital plane, I wonder whether boosting into roughly the same orbit as the target planet, doing a plane change manoeuvre, and *then* attempting a rendezvous would be at all feasible? I suspect that would raise the fuel consumption to silly levels as you're effectively doing two complete orbital transfers instead of one, but it's worth a shot. @Ernst: what you're talking about is a bielliptic transfer orbit, IIRC. If you want to get somewhere with very little fuel you raise your apoapsis hugely, do a tiny correction at apoapsis, and circularise again when you've got where you want to go. Wikipedia has an incomprehensible maths-filled page with a good picture: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bi-elliptic_transfer It's cheaper than a Hohmann but takes forever. I think changing inclinations is supposed to be done at the point when your ship's crossing the line when your orbital plane and the target plane meet. In other words, rotate the map view until you see the two orbits as lines, not ovals; and it's when your ship reaches the point where the two lines cross. Actually picking the optimum angle to do the burn is beyond my expertise but for minor changes a vector due north or south seems to be good enough, but you may need to correct your trajectory afterwards.
  3. So I've got reasonably good at shuttling between Kerbin and Mün/Minmus, without doing any calculations and instead just pointing the nose and throttling up (using the wait-until-the-destination-comes-over-the-horizon technique). It's not very efficient but it works, and my current lander has absurd amounts of fuel so I don't really care about efficiency right now. However, interplanetary transfers are a lot harder. I've read up on it and how to do the standard Hoffman minimum-energy transfer orbit, and, basically, it involves doing the maths first. There's nothing wrong with that, but I feel that given the general seat-of-the-pants KSP style, there ought to be a more Jeb-like way. In particular, a fast high-energy transfer should be relatively easy: get into Kerbol orbit, raise/lower apoapsis until your orbit crosses your destination, tweak until you enter the destination's SOI, wait until you get there and burn like hell to circularise. It would use a huge amount of fuel but it should be doable. Unfortunately I have yet to make this actually work. None of the planets are in the same plane, they tend to move a lot over time so trying to find where a planet will be in the future is hard, and the SOIs are so small on an interplanetary scale that they're really easy to miss. Has anyone had any luck with this approach, and if so, any good tips? (Any suggestions involving protractors or trigonometry will be staked out on the launch site the next time there's an engine test.)
  4. I've found that if I connect the parachute directly to the capsule it's much less likely to break off. Putting a ASAS between the capsule and the parachute generally didn't work. Many kerbals died to bring you this information.
  5. Hmm. That's about where I do my burns, but I need a lot more than five seconds of burn time. My epic atomic interplanetary explorer lander pulls about 1/3 of a gee on full thrust. Is there a better way to do this? ...incidentally, Jeb got his wish: full instrument landing. Bob was flying because he's the only one who can see the radar altimeter and a window at the same time, but this turned out to be pointless as he's flat on his back and the only thing he could see was stars. I would video it and put it on Youtube but it would make for really dull watching. Next time I do this I need to take more care about the landing site. I ended up on a mountainside but was lucky and stayed upright. In the Apollo landers the astronauts stood upright, and could see out --- I should investigate the other capsules and see if any have better sightlines for use as landers.
  6. To get back, get yourself into a roughly equatorial orbit around the Mün, wait until you're travelling in the opposite direction to the Mün's motion, and throttle up. Once you've left the Mün's sphere of influence you should be in a nice elliptical orbit taking you back down to Kerbin. You shouldn't have any trouble with that. I've gotten back from the Mün using nothing but RCS thrusters in the past (including the takeoff).
  7. I had an 'aha!' moment the other day, and suddenly I can do landings. Hell, last night I managed to land on Minmus for the first time ever. *Twice.* The secret is, keep the retrograde marker in the middle of the navball. This means that you are thrusting in precisely the right direction to cancel out both your vertical and horizontal velocity. As your velocity decreases, you'll see this move towards the middle, which means that you're going straight down. Your goal is for your velocity to be as close to zero as you can manage just as you touch the ground, but a good lander design and the heavy duty lander legs can absorb quite a lot --- you just have to be careful not to bounce. If you apply too much thrust and start going up, the retrograde marker will go nuts and vanish. This just means that it's flipped to the other side of the navball because you're moving in the other direction. Don't follow it, just point the vehicle straight up, reduce thrust, and once you start going down again it'll come back. Note that this means that aborting landings is easy! If you start to topple over after landing, throttle up, get off the ground, get the nose pointed straight up and just try again. Also, quicksave is your friend. If you have a flight stick, use it; it's much, much easier that way than using the keyboard. (If you don't have one, you can get one off Amazon for less than the price of KSP, but of course I have no idea if those are any good.) My last lander had a huge RCS tank (this was the one I landed twice on Minmus with). I never used it.
  8. A standard Windows process can only address 2GB of RAM (because the 4GB address space is divided into 2GB for the user process and 2GB for the kernel). So more than about 3GB of physical RAM is wasted. *But* there's a magical Windows option to change the address space split, to give 3GB to the user process and 1GB to the kernel. I've never tried this. Does anyone know if KSP is smart enough to use the extra RAM if it's available or if it just assumes that 2GB is the maximum it can allocate?
  9. I learnt how to fly (and get to the Mün) from watching Winterowl's youtube series, starting here:
  10. Yep. For control surfaces of any kind to be effective, they need to be as far away from the centre of gravity as possible. I typically put an ASAS right at the top, just under the capsule's decoupler, and a bunch of canards right at the bottom. Putting them on the SRBs isn't terribly effective because you're going to jettison them after twenty seconds, so you'll want them on your fuel tanks, but remember that they will rotate and bashing into your fuel tanks is unlikely to make for a good ascent. With configurations like yours I've had good luck placing them on the side of the tanks; this lets me put them further down than if I placed them on the outside. And it makes the rockets much more stylish.
  11. So I dug up my old flight stick. Works very nicely, and makes flying aircraft so much easier (like, feasible). I can land aircraft now! It's a shame that KSP only recognises the X and Y axes, so I don't get the rudder or throttle, but I can live with that. (I gather this is a Unity bug.) Unfortunately when the stick is set to pitch and roll, which is what you want for aircraft flying, it's now pretty much useless for orbital manoeuvring. For that, I want pitch and yaw. I also want bigger dead zones, because as there's no self-righting impulse in space, if the stick is offset slightly my spacecraft start to spin. But in flight, I need them to be as small as possible. And while it's technically possible to fly a plane with rudder and elevators I don't actually know how. And then there's rendezvous, EVA and münwalking, all of which require different joystick maps. I know it's possible to change the joystick mapping by quicksaving, quitting, reloading the game, fiddling with the settings, and then quickloading again; but that's an incredible PITA. Is there any way to change the joystick map on-the-fly? Ideally I like to have several set up and switch between them --- hey, I have buttons on the flight stick to do that! --- but I'll live with what I can get.
  12. That nightclub is totally epic. Were you landing that behemoth of the crew bus on the Mün by hand? How were you manoeuvering it so smoothly? I have terrible trouble landing on the Mün, cancelling out the residual lateral velocity, and have never dared try a targeted landing yet... I'm also interested to see you using the nostril engines. I always thought they were too weak and heavy to be useful.
  13. It's Jebediäa of the Valley of the Wind! ...there's something very odd about the aerodynamics here; you're to be gaining height with no engine. I know that KSP's aerodynamics model is pretty approximate --- what's happening?
  14. Bielliptic transfer orbits FTW! It also occurred to me that one feasible way to get Hally home would have been to have her get out and push --- EVA jetpacks refuel in the command pod, IIRC, so you get unlimited dV that way. But it would be very long and very tedious and it's unquestionably cheating.
  15. The grapple is all stock parts --- just the lightweight landing legs arranged in a circle. And, facepalm about the tanks. As the R-series started life as a lander I wanted the CoG low, which is of course totally not what you want for orbital manoeuvring. (In fact, on reentry the R-series had 1/3 full in the external tanks and the internal tank was untouched. Still, better fuel you have but don't need that fuel you need but don't have, eh?)
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