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About dawg

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    Bottle Rocketeer
  1. I'm getting some super weird effects with Vernier engines. I put 4 of them on a rocket for the first making history since all my mods don't work right, but for some reason trying to turn had them rotating my craft instead of turning it. Epic crashes ensued. I tried many different designs and it just wouldn't turn properly, it'd spin to the right when turned right.
  2. I use it for: - All the information windows. You need to know all of this and most either isn't available in the base game or is tedious to get. - Ascent when it is available (career mode). - Most maneuvers. It allows me to do other things while they're happening. I can do them without it, but it takes that much more time. - Landing, because throttle control isn't fine enough for me. - Rendezvous/Docking. It was incredibly useful when I was doing my JOOL-5 mission because I could set each of my reconfiguration "ships" to do something different simultaneously. Flying each one manually would have been very inefficient time-wise, and I don't do this for a living. Being able to use it well is almost as hard as learning to do the maneuvers manually. If you don't know what you're doing, it really can't help you, and using it wrong is very wasteful... I don't think I'd spend as much time playing if I didn't have it because it would be too much of a time/attention sink.
  3. I can't get over 1.5km without the beam exploding. I launch at a 45 degree angle using a mainsail... If it goes much beyond that, it explodes on impact. Haven't got it into the ocean yet.
  4. Don't feel bad. This is an extremely hard mission. It took me over two real life weeks of quite a few hours every day (I'd estimate 6+ every weekday and most of the day every weekend day) to build, test, get all the parts for this mission into orbit, and assemble my ship. Also, send extra fuel missions. That's what I did...
  5. My total science at the end was 9609.1... Sadly, it was dark. In the foreground you see the remains of the lander and in the background the hitchhikers and the science modules. Jeb is such a lunatic.
  6. Thank you, sir. :-) Heh, retrospectively, it was a bit of a waste of weight. It was specifically designed to help the lander survive crappy landings by protecting the built-in engines and allowing it to land if I broke a leg or four off. The funniest part (which I haven't posted pictures for) is that the landing on Kerbin was also pretty ugly. The lander made a free fall from quite a height and everything except the can itself and a few structural pieces were destroyed. Priceless. The bonus to Laythe for me was that I went there first, so I could bring a lot of fuel and parachutes for it. The atmosphere isn't as dense as that of Kerbin and it's not as tall, either, so you only need to get above 56km to get out of it. In that picture where I had just dropped my fuel tanks I was doing a circularizing burn. I'm fond of Vall. It's worth a visit. ;-) The booster section was 4 stages. Stage 1 had an extra-large tank and 4 aerospikes, 2 had 4 poodles (terrible choice on my part), 3 had 4 aerospikes, and 4 had 4 48-7Ss. I had to start from a relatively high orbit, then burned retro (slowly; if I were to do it again I wouldn't use those awful poodles which are way too heavy) slightly above the horizon (as you described) until I was low and slow enough to land, by which point I had dropped stages 1 and 2 (the heavy one), and I landed with stage 3 nearly empty. Lifted off with 3, dropped it after it ran out, then returned to orbit with a pack almost exactly like yours, which I dropped before I made it back to the tug. I had some concerns that I wouldn't get off Tylo with what I had left, but the lack of atmosphere really helped. I think you could enter Pol orbit in my lander with RCS alone. Thanks. :-) Also, for the record, I used the nuclear engines on the tug when the entire ship was under way. Thank you for the awesome badge for my signature, too! I'll wear it with pride.
  7. Well, that was ugly. I finally got down to Tylo last night on the 50th or so try, thanks to Ziv's great advice and after realizing that MechJeb was lying to me on my dV (I ran clean out of dV and still had a bunch of fuel; the calculation is completely screwed up after all of the rearranging of my ships) and that the poodles were a really bad idea (too heavy and too much thrust vectoring, so it was hard to do fine control). It's an ugly place with no redeeming qualities, except that it's massive and can help you get out of Jool's SOI. The trick was to not use my lower two engine stages and to eject them as they ran out of fuel, eventually landing with about half of the third stage's fuel burned (of the four in the attachment to the lander). Leaving was surprisingly easy, and probably easier than Laythe... Heading in to Jool with both ships: The landers aerobraking in Jool's atmosphere: The crew ship in orbit around Jool just after releasing Jeb for the trip to Laythe: Approaching Laythe with the transfer tug and the lander: Parachute landing on Laythe: Jeb on the ground in front of the lander with a flag placed: Laythe really is a lovely place: Sadly, this landing spot wasn't the best. It was neither high enough for a great view nor low enough to get to the liquid, so it's just grabbing samples, doing science, making reports, and returning to orbit... Returning to orbit: Rendezvous with the transfer tug: I didn't take any shots of the swapping of parts and crew in preparation for Vall, nor any step before being on the surface. Suffice to say, it went flawlessly. For Vall, we have Neilnard commanding the lander and a small booster that we use to help with the landing since there's no atmosphere. This was, as I mentioned, when I had all the problems with the docking port. I did, in fact, tug it over behind the transfer tug, with the bottom of the lander attached to the rear of the transfer tug... The return was smoother as I left the broken part on Vall (which I later terminated from the space center). On the surface after landing: A curious formation (the anomaly on Vall): Planting a flag: Back at the lander. Using the jetpack here was a joy, the gravity was perfect to not go shooting off uncontrollably, not high enough to crater hard, and if you didn't give it a little upward power you'd slowly return to the surface... Before returning to orbit, Neilnard moved all the fuel from the booster pack into the main lander's tank, released the docking port, and returned with just the universal lander body. No problems at all. Preparing to dock with the transfer tug after returning to orbit: Orbiting before the return to the mothership: Tylo was a hell. True hell. Bill was the poor schmuck that Jeb talked into flying this one. It was easier landing on Mun manually than landing here with MechJeb's assistance. As a result, after so many shots at it, I wasn't taking any screenshots at all, so all I've got is this picture after Bill was down, took a sample, did a report, and had planted a flag... Also, I just noticed when I looked at the picture that the landing site was in one of those 1m high areas that covers large low-lying sections of the moon. The ascent was painless... While waiting in orbit, the mothership moved from the 50Mm orbit around Jool to an 80Mm orbit and met up with the refuel ship that was sent with more monopropellant and fuel. Next up is Bob and Bop. Jeb thought it'd be funny. Just after decoupling from the mothership: Landed near this mysterious glowing artifact in a northern crater, with the lights on. This is the first time the higher landing gear was actually used. It was on there to protect the engines and helped level the lander when here. The reaction wheels were more than enough to keep it standing on two legs or flipping it back up on Bop... Scenery: Little do most of you know, but back on Kerbin Bob owns Famous Bob's Meat Shack. He really wished he had brought his butcher knife. Bob, would you stop poking the eyeball? Posing for one of those big game hunter type photographs: The return was so effortless that Bob wasted fuel on the return to the mothership by using all the engines... Mothership docked with the refuel ship that also brought out some more science equipment. With one, I got some readings of the area high above Jool. The last moon, and the last kerbal that hasn't been to a moon, is Will. He's going to land on Pol... So, this was actually a little hard in a completely different way from Tylo. You see, the lander had too much thrust. Even a tiny amounts were enough to cause wild launches. The lander fell over and ended up rolling around on the ground. Like Bop, you could flip it over using the reaction wheels, so I did just that to get it sitting upright. Standing up... Look at me! You call this gravity? Will, you need help: Returning to the mothership: Here is a look at all the flags (Bill needs caps lock)... Now to return, hopefully with all the science equipment and the lander in the same vehicle. There's probably enough fuel with the lighter vessel to make it to Dres, Duna, and Ike, but those might have to wait for after the space program is saved... The ship now has dropped one of the part moving tugs and the refuel ship in preparation to use Tylo to get out of Jool's SOI.
  8. Jeb is done with Laythe and it was far easier than expected. Between using almost no fuel coming in (parachutes) and the aerospikes, it wasn't challenging at all. By the time I was in orbit I still had about half my dV left (due to dropping the tanks I didn't need anymore)... Aim for just above the atmosphere, which is about 55km high. I did 58km and had plenty remaining to get to the transfer tug. After making it back to the fuel ship for fuel and to the mothership for a kerbal and science pack, I found that my lander booster for Vall has a broken docking port on the bottom (in the last picture it is the third large docking port from the left). I spent over an hour trying to get it to dock, but it never would in spite of having been docked through the ship split and the trip over. I might have to attach a rearrangement tug to the science pod on top and the other side to the rear of the tug to get the lander into orbit. Very frustrating. I might not need the booster, either, if Laythe is any indication. But I really don't want to risk losing anyone or the lander can. Before I left Kerbin I swapped out my reconfiguration tugs for even beefier ones with lights pointing both ways. The lander/fuel/propellant ship went first and arrived a little over 2 months before the team. In that time it established a circular orbit around Jool between Vall and Tylo outside their SOIs. I'm getting better at reducing my consumption of fuel, but I may still need to send another ship from Kerbin to provide fuel and monopropellant (tentatively plan to use one of my standard heavy asparagus rockets with the center configured for traveling to Jool since fuel isn't my problem). Retrospectively, attaching monopropellant tanks to the tops of fuel tanks I planned to jettison wasn't a good idea. After Tylo, I'll be able to live with just enough for swapping science pods, though, so if I hadn't wasted so much on that broken docking port I would have had plenty to spare... For some reason Jool's atmosphere didn't register as an atmosphere for the nose cone. I did, however, get some other readings during the aerobrake. When I send a fuel ship I may also send more science pods. The trip has been fun so far, but building the ship was a big project. I guess I got a lot of good reusable parts out of it...
  9. I've been working on an entry for this. Initially, I thought I'd need a separate lander can for each moon and wasted days building a complex ship that allowed storing one eva/surface sample in each can that stayed on the mothership (so landers had command chairs on them). Surprisingly, I had a similar transfer tug ship, reconfiguration tug, and science pods that could be attached to their respective lander cans... This is, by far, the biggest single mission I've ever done. Usually my missions are one-way trips to establish a foothold on another planet or moon. I have Kerbals on almost every planet/moon in a space RV, so they're never expected to come home (though I've swapped them out from the Mun, Minmus, and Duna before). I realized that this would be distinctly easier if I could ship lander parts to orbits around the moons... Since I have to send a refuel trip anyhow, I decided that such a huge vessel was simply too unweildy, so I'm sending two ships far enough apart that I can pilot each through their aerobraking. The lead ship has Jeb in the pilot seat of the lander, the transfer tug behind that, and the hitchhiker housing behind that with all the science pods. For the crew, we have: Jeb, Bill, and Bob being joined by a couple rookies named Will and Neilnard. The last 4 rode up in a shuttle and transferred after Jeb finished assembling the ship, but before I decided to launch another set of engines and split the ship apart (that was a bigger project than it sounds, since I had to yank the landers out from between the transfer tug and the crew quarters, which left 4-5 sections floating separately at some points). I sent up a bigger reconfiguration tug with the second engine so I don't end up with such messy reconfigurations... I bound keys for: Turning the transfer tug's engines off, the nuclear engines on, or all four on. Quickly releasing the reconfig tug and turning on the headlights on it. Extending all ladders. Sensor operation for the Jool aerobrake. I wish I could reprogram command buttons while on a mission... The staging is an awful mess that I'll sort out for each lander as I do their missions, since it seems to merge them randomly when you dock. Total part count is around 550-600. Hopefully I get to do at least part of this trip tonight, considering how much time and preparation it took (literally days of assembly). The plan: Transfer to Jool, with an aerobrake in Jool's atmosphere with each ship. If possible, aerobrake in Laythe's atmosphere and aim for an orbit between Laythe and Vall with the mothership. The lander/refuel mothership should end up somewhere between Laythe and Tylo. Laythe Transfer to an orbit around Laythe with the initial lander configuration. Drop the lander, find a good landing spot (Laythe is almost all liquid with small islands), then land using the chutes as much as possible to conserve fuel. Collect samples, readings, and explore. Return to orbit near the transfer tug. Pick the lander back up with the transfer tug and return to the mothership. Connect to the main mothership. [*] Rendezvous with the lander/fuel ship, transfer fuel into the engines on the main ship, along with the lander stages, then leave it here if it has enough fuel to be worth visiting again, otherwise send it sub-orbital on a moon or Jool. [*] Vall Connect up the Vall lander stage below the lander and attach both to the front of the transfer ship. Remainder is basically the same as Laythe, except I could land anywhere. I'll probably aim for the anomaly as I've never been there before. [*] Move the mothership to an orbit between Tylo and Bop, with a gravity assist off Tylo, releasing the transfer ship and lander within Tylo's SOI. [*] Let the mothership go into a higher Jool orbit as we bring the lander stage into orbit around Tylo. [*] Tylo (crossing our fingers that we have enough fuel in the lander to get to the surface and back into orbit; it's the one I fear the most) [*] Depending on the dV remaining for the mothership, we might start moving it into orbit around the remaining moons. We'll see. [*] Bop [*] Pol [*] Depending on remaining dV, consider some sightseeing on the return trip. In the end it should be nothing but the lander, hitchhikers, transfer ship, and engines. We may dump the transfer before the return, but we'll see. MechJeb claims I have 10k dV on the mothership and 9k dV on the lander/refuel ship... I'm roughly estimating that I'll be half-way through the second set of fuel tanks by the time I reach Jool on both ships... Should be plenty for the whole mission, but I'll still need to be careful since some of that is actually fuel in the lander stages. Here's the whole, final, ship before I split it apart: Here's the Mothership (I call it the lead ship): This is the refuel/lander stage ship: Here goes nothing...
  10. After learning about the FL-T100, I did an almost identical one to #12 with an octo2, T100, 2x Toroidals, and a 48-7S. Total mass was 0.97t and it made it to orbit with 80m/s left over. I wonder if you could launch something almost that small with a lawn chair on it for an ultra-light lander for the Jool moon challenge. I just got a couple large tugs assembled in orbit with ~16000dV; I just need a command pod with a hitchhiker and a handful of landers that are efficient and can carry a single Kerbal...
  11. Heh... I've never used the FL-T100. That's a better ratio than mine. Impressive. This is practically model rocketry...
  12. I made an even smaller one... Much more complex, though, and it does use Oscar Bs and Toroidal fuel tanks. Before launch... 1.52t! In orbit, with only a tiny bit of fuel left... It's 2 Oscar Bs, an Octo2 core, a 48-7S, MJ (on an OB), and a stack of Toroidal fuel tanks. End dV was 87m/s, starting at 1.52t, with an ap of 70,585m & pe of 69,256m... I'm not sure it's possible to go lower in mass and actually get off Kerbin. The only smaller engine is the LV1, which I don't think produce enough thrust to lift a single fuel tank off the pad in Kerbin's gravity, but I could be wrong.
  13. Way too big bro... I'm not sure if I have enough for a score here, but here's what I've got: Before launch: In orbit: If the Oscar B had the right fuel:oxidizer ratio I suspect you could do it with a single Rockomax 48-7S rocket. Believe it or not, the hardest part of my launch was getting enough electricity because RCS will suck it all down before you get to orbit and a battery burns another 35-40dV... The probe core and mechjeb actually use it faster than the engine will recharge it even when at full throttle. It turns out that this engine has just enough vectoring to get you in the right orientation to get into orbit without it. I could probably burn some dV on a chute and actually bring it home, but it'll run dead in about one orbit or so... I could get a better score with more weight, though, since you want a minimum of dV remaining. Also, this is a grand total of 4 parts.
  14. I thought it was about building/designing/delivering spacecraft to celestial bodies and exploring them. If I'm not mistaken, real space agencies have observatories and trip planning. We have "look at the map and launch when Kerbin is at X o-clock and Target is at Y o-clock", followed by a relatively-imprecise transfer. Mind you, this is coming from someone that only started using it two earth days ago after weeks worth of real-world hours of flying (I think the Steam clock is over 300 hours). Eventually launching becomes a monotonous chore. This lets me sleep more (IRL), too, as I'm not planning and doing tiny correction burns manually. It's not completely mindless, either, as it sometimes really screws things up (wastes tons of monopropellant, electricity, etc). I definitely see why it seems like practically everyone making videos is using this mod... Automation really makes the process far more enjoyable and consistent.
  15. You can "terminate" them in the KSC Tracking Station... It'd be really awesome if you could terminate all unmanned debris with fewer clicks, though.