Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited


0 Neutral

Profile Information

  • About me
    Bottle Rocketeer
  1. Dang it, I missed it in those too. I love little touches like that in a this game.
  2. So I'm early in my 1.03 career game, and I launch a rocket with 2 in-line cockpits behind a mk1 to do a 2 passenger sub orbital contract because, hey money. I'm not sure why, but I right-clicked the in-line cockpit and saw a button for "lights". Curious, I clicked it, and ...... So when did this get added, or have I been missing it this whole time?
  3. So, I got greedy on a mission to Minmus. 3 contracts in 1 mission: launch a satellite, rescue a Kerbalnaught from orbit and and another on the surface. So I loaded a fairly big rocket for me at this stage of the game. Tucked a tiny satellite in a cargo bay, filled another bay with science, put a fully crewed 3 Kerbal capsule on top and a 4 Kerbal hitchhiker with 2 empty seats for the new crew I was going to pick up. If you're going to go might as well go big and send everybody for that free crew XP. The mission went pretty well, the launch was iffy (big rocket, low TWR, lumbering is an apt description, sorry no pic.), but it eventually got there. The satellite launched with little fuss, but adjusting orbit to grab the circling Kerbal was trickier than I planned, but eventually he was on board. Adjusted orbit again to take me over downed Kerbal, and landed around 1km (good for me) from him. The terrain was hillier than I liked and the landing was rough with the ship falling over, no damage though. Unfortunately at this point I did finally save the game, but then soon realized I didn't have enough fuel left to get off planet and make it home a gain. Without a docking port I was looking at eva'ing 7 Kerbals to a rescue ship and losing all that science, not a situation I liked. So Jeb was confident he could launch and come down on one of the flats where a rescue ship would have an easier time landing near, and easier transfer evas. It almost worked. Right before touchdown the fuel ran out and the ship bounced hard. It broke up, but nothing was destroyed. Since I was sending a rescue craft anyway, no problem I thought. (Score: 7 Kerbalnaughts stranded on Minmus) I redesigned the original craft, omitted the non needed satellite and added a a second hitchhiker module. I also redesigned the lifter to have a better TWR ratio. Unfortunately at this point I left out a small second stage booster that pushed the original craft out of orbit and most of the way to Minmus, this would be a problem later. The new craft touched down just 7 km from the crash site and rolled (I was thinking ahead here) along the flats to the crash. There science was done and the 7 original crew transferred to the empty hitchhiker modules on the rescue craft. (Debris field and rescue ship) Shortly after returning to orbit I realized I didn't have enough fuel to get home, again. I didn't want to make a rescue ship big enough to rescue 10 Kerbalnaughts, plus my only pilots were all stranded was well. So I used the research I had to unlock the claw, and designed a robotic ship with a claw, and lots of fuel and sent it to Minmus to rescue the rescue ship. (Score: 10 Kerbalnaughts stranded in orbit of Minmus) The "docking" wasn't pretty but eventually I snagged the rescue ship by the tail and boosted it back to Kerban. I left the Grabber ship in orbit because it still had lots of fuel, and you know why waste it. (Rescue ship snagged by grabber ship) And wouldn't you know it. I got greedy on a Mun mission and tried to get some science from just 1 more biome. So again 7 Kerbalnaughts stranded in orbit. So I fired up the grabber, adjusted its orbit to get it the Mun. It wasn't pretty but eventually the grabber was making the final adjustment to snare the ship by its engine just as I had done before. That's when the grabber ship ran out of RCS fuel. The collision sent the manned ship reeling. Neither ship had any RCS left so I prayed and just went for it. I got lucky and snared the manned ship near its center of mass so control wasn't too bad unless I went to full throttle. (Grabber with another ship to be rescued) With no RCS fuel in the grabber I let it burn up in reentry following the manned ship. It was a good ship that did what was asked of it. Morale of my tale: Don't be greedy on missions and SAVE OFTEN!
  4. So my gamed bugged and wouldn't let me place any maneuver nodes. I reloaded the game and was surprised to find my ship was now held together by magic after being sawed in half. Everything worked fine and the mission finished with no troubles. The little fairing under the heat shield disappeared. Never had it happen before, or since.
  5. I was kicking myself for sending that rocket out without struts, I do know better. I was surprised when all it did was fall over and not disintegrate on the pad. So I went back to the VAB and made some changes. I threw out the 1.25m stage and replaced it with a 2.5m stage. This gave a better base for the bottom struts. Then simpley strutted one lander to the next. Here's some pics without the fairing in place so you can see the landers And now with the fairing And finally in orbit just before the final burn to circle orbit The thing wobbled really badly in the atmosphere but managed to make obit in one piece. Unfortunately the game crashed as I was preparing the Mun orbital insertion burn and corrupted the save file. Oh well, maybe I'll pull out sandbox for awhile and play with massive rockets.
  6. So I started a new career game using FAR and fairings mods. Been doing OK. Decided to do a multi landing mission to Mun with four of my little landers/return craft. Since I'm using FAR I stacked them all up on top of each other, wrapped them in a fairing for launch, stuck a really big (relatively) rocket under them and sent it all to the launch pad. When physics kicked in, this happened. Surprisingly nothing broke, it just swayed back and forth like that until I could recover the craft. Time for more struts it seems.
  7. So I've been playing this game for awhile now. I cut my teeth on the demo and eventually bought the full game. Throughout this time I've always played stock. I wanted to "learn" the game and mechanics before adding anything extra to the game. Now, I did utilize some on-line "helps", the parachute calculator and the interplanetary guide for example. Lately I'd been finding myself getting frustrated by having to "guess" so much on making my rockets. It was getting frustrating playing for a couple of hours only yo realize the mission you've been on the whole time was always going to fail because I didn't have enough fuel (ie dV) to make it home again. So earlier this week I relented and installed not 1, but 2 mods for the game. Still trying to rationalize my decision as not having a direct impact on the game play. I installed Engineer Redux, and Kerbal Alarm Clock. I kept telling myself that they weren't changing the game, just giving me information I should have already had. I have already noticed a big difference running these mods. First and most noticeable, I'm finally starting to build small. I've always been afraid of not having enough fuel, enough thrust to finish a mission, so I've tended to build big. With Engineer giving me the TWR and dV of my rockets as I build them, coupled with the excellent dV charts I've started to strip down my builds. Engineer has also helped me make my landing more efficient. I always wasted a lot of fuel coming down by slowing down too early. By placing a maneuver node on the surface set to basically zero out my velocity to show me the needed dV and estimated burn time, coupled with Engineer's terrain altitude and time to impact, I can better plan my landing burns to be later and use less fuel than before. By needing less fuel to land, I can build smaller landers. Smaller landers can be launched using smaller rockets. Or, smaller landers can be sent to farther places with my current rockets. I can stop at just 2 right? So, am I Doomed? Are there cookies?
  8. I went with 4 LV-N instead of 2 for 2 main reasons, 1: If all went well I would be able to use it for later, longer, bigger missions. Just plug some fuel tanks below it and off we go. 2: I really hate waiting through long burn times. Yes, the transfer window was not optimal. I had missed the optimal time but thought it was close enough anyway. I guess I guessed wrong. I went with the LT-45 on the lander because I didn't know how much power (TWR?) I'd need to get off Duna, wasn't sure if say a 909 would do it. Still not sure. The big engine required the heavy landing legs because they were long enough to reach the ground from the fuel tanks. The lighter landing gear would have required a strut. Also I went with a single engine because those sides tanks can be jettisoned when empty. The eight legs is my bad, a hold over from my early days landing on Mun when I had a bad habit of breaking legs. I got in the habit of bringing extra. SO ship design probably OK, piloting not so good.
  9. So, my story. In career mode, with ~2/3 unlocked. Having just unlocked nuclear engines I decided to get ambitious and send Jeb to Duna (and bring him back too.) I went with a two ship design, a Tug ship to go there and back, and a lander to land on both Duna and Kerbin. The Tug consisted of 4 LN engines and Fuel tanks, an SAS wheel, monopropellent, RCS thusters solar panels and lots of struts. A docking port at the bottom of the centeral fuel tank is where the lander attached. If all went according to plan the Tug would end up in orbit of Kerbin, just needing to be refueled for later missions. On lander I ran into my first issue, how much power would I need to get from the surface to orbit and docking. I could find the dV, but wasn't sure which engine would be required to lift the 8-10 ton lander. I decided to go big and used the LT-45, just to be sure. The lander was designed so I would only need the engine to deorbit. On Duna I would need a short burst right before touch down to ensure a safe landing, but most of the slowing would be by parachute. On Kerbin, the parachutes could do all the work. And here it is. OK, some words about me. First, I play stock, no mods, not sure if I'm just to lazy to install them, or to stubborn. Next, I am not the most efficient flyer. I always seem to burn more fuel than probably most others. This leads me to bring along more fuel, which leads to needing more power, which leads to needing more fuel.....yes it's a viscous circle. Also I think I tend to overbuild things, part of the fuel thing I suppose. But I never seem to trust that something so small, with so tiny engines and so little fuel will actually get there. And now my talk begins. I had a surprising successful first launch. I launched it all as one unit, and with the Tug so much heavier than the lander I worried about the stress on the docking port. But struts and bracing down to the launch vehicle took care of it first try. I even had enough fuel left in the launch vehicle for a 2 second burn on the escape. But here our first issue was encountered. Duna was not in the optimal position. I was too late. Instead of ~45° it was closer to 30°. Oh well, go for it, I should be OK, I always bring extra fuel. OK, after initial burn I was close, my mid course correction got me an intersect, at this point I was starting to worry about the fuel, I had burned an awful lot. OK, inside Duna SOI, but way off, didn't realize my inclination was so off, I was way below the planet and not going anywhere near it. Another long burn to get into orbit, and a second to circularize it. At this point, nope not going home, doubt I could get back out of Duna space. Well lets do the lander and see how that works since were here. Unlocked, deorbit, landed, everything worked right, yeah. Took off, got my orbit close, got the inclination matched, tried to get close to Tug. Oops ran out of fuel still no where close to Tug. Also noticed small design flaw, the lander was suppose to have 2 sets of RCS thrusters, one at each end of the ship so I didn't have to worry about unintended torque if they didn't line up with the CoM. The bottom set is missing. So After all this fustration I reloaded and earlier save and set the whole thing to a fiery death. I did end up having pity on Jeb and brought the lander down safely just before the water claimed it. So was it all me? Was the ship never going to fulfill it's mission? Some of both? How do I get to Duna and back?
  10. So, I'm in career mode and I've done the mun and minus landings. So next up, rover on mun. Problem I don't have any rover wheels unlocked. Hmm, I do have some wheels from the landing gear for my planes. So I whipped something up and wow, it worked. It landed on it's tails where the rear 2 legs took the impact from the landing. Then, since there were only 2 legs back there the whole thing slowly tipped forward unto the bottom four legs (retracted in the above screenshot). Once the whole thing settled, the airplane landing gear was deployed, which actually lifted the rover slightly. I had left the bottom legs deployed thinking they would help stabilized the 3 wheeled rover over uneven terrain. But in the end one of the front legs usually caught on something and pinwheeled the whole thing. RCS thrusters provided forward thrust. Unfortunately I didn't have enough RCS fuel to get anywhere far from where I landed, but it was fun. Relaunching from the surface involved pointing the nose uphill and firing the main engine. It can be lonely up there.
  11. I think an fairly easy and simple first pass at a life support addition would be to simply make the system require a small but constant draw of electricity to operate. No available electricity to the capsule, sorry, not going to be able to do anything. (No wanting to be morbid I think if a capsule somehow regained electricity then everything would work). This would make early career flights very time dependent until batteries and solar panels are discovered. Bases and deep space flights would need to make sure they had enough electricity to power themselves through the long nights. You could even make a new generator part that used rocket fuel to produce electricity.
  12. So I bought the full game, and while it was downloading I decided to do one last mission in the demo, a Mun landing with a "rover". Now the demo doesn't come with wheels or any way to control a ship except in the 1 man capsule, so I had to try something creative. So I decided to do more of a skimmer/hopper "rover". I threw some RCS tanks under a capsule, added some legs and a SAS control and was ready to roll. Except now I had to figure out how to get it there. My first thought was to add it to the side of my "standard" small Mun lander. Unfortunately RCS tanks don't attach to radial decouplers. So I had to put it inline on the ship. So I added it under what is normally my small lander. Added four fuel tanks to act as landing legs. Added engines and landing gear, braced the tanks and crossed my fingers. After some testing on the launch pad, reconfigured the "rover" so it didn't interfere with the tanks of the main ship tested again, liked the results and went to step 2, build something to get it to the Mun. After repeated handling problems with a large asparagus launcher, I settled on a kinda hybrid asparagus. With stacked tanks in a hexagonal arrangement. It flew, it did the job, but didn't control well. (it was later discovered that I had left off a SAS module from the main ship. It also should have had it's own RCS system.) Ready to launch. And we're on our way. Here you can see the "Rover" tucked in the middle of those tanks. And in case you ever wondered what it says on the bottom of a monopropellent tank (No, the image is not flipped) Kinda expalins alot. (I love these small details. If I hadn't built this ship this way I probably would never have known) We did finally land: Dropped the "rover" and relaunched to move the ship off the "rover" Unfortunetly without a SAS, or RCS the ship was incredibly unstable. It was very top heavy as the center return ship still had a full tank. In hindsight I should slapped some legs on it and jettisoned the outer tank legs after the "rover" was dropped. And our bad luck continues. With out a way to test the "rover", too late it was discovered to be unstable. It needed more and differently placed RCS nozzles. I also would have raised the attachment point of the landing legs to lower the center of mass of the "rover" After all that (and a couple of tries) I got the return ship off the Mun and returned to Kerbal. It's with a sad eye that we now close down the KSP (demo). But also with a joyful heart we open KSP, the full game. (Question, how do I insert pictures so they're not so small on the page?)
  13. So I downloaded the demo and started playing around. After some fun, some frustration, some confusion, I watched some of the excellent tutorials here and my ambition was stirred. We landed on Mun! Not perfect, but it didn't fall over with the leg broken off. Actually there was an earlier touchdown that broke two legs off. But some quick panicking and the some full throttle the ship blasted off again as it was falling over. We successfully launched and landed a SSTO: Again with the landing leg! No hardware for docking in Demo so what can we do? We sent 2 ships in orbit to rendezvous and exchange pilots. unfortunately the really cool shot of the Kerbalnaughts exchanging high 5's in orbit as they change ships didn't turn out. SO now I think it's time to bite the bullet, admit I'm hooked, and get the full game.
  • Create New...