Elcano Challenge - Attempted circumnavigation - Overland's Thread (Multi Class Landliner Trains)

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Ummmmm, K? Everyone has their own opinions, Its jus... I think they are monstr.... UH I mean... unappealing to me. Still big. Their fireboxes were too small for their size, and were prone to wheel slips... WAIT WAIT WAIT, TWO DOMES NEXT TO EACHOTHER?!?! Ummmm, k?

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Overland    1054
Soon my good friend we shall have steam locos in KSP..
Starting small such as a lombard log hauler tracked land train loco.. All I need to find is a way to sync the sounds properly or for an engine to fire once the cylinders at full pressure.. Similar to how I use the jet alternators and rover wheels as a proper throttle for a diesel loco

Steam needs a bit more engineering though.. I want a proper fire from an engine visible from the IVA cab and chuff sound being audible not just pitch change like diesels

All possible..slowly coming to reality
I also found KAS magnets make more dependable kracken resistant couplings.. But we need to use switchers to marshall a train.. So battery electric yard locos are on the roadmap too..

Ill release my 44 class generator engine and wheels over the next week..works fine with mechjeb or kos on the reverser (lock wheelthrottle to 1.)

Youll need a joystick or wheel though
So yeah..its all coming slowly but nothings been forgotten :)

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Overland    1054

Little update..


My PCs dead so ill be getting a new more powerful and dependable rig very shortly  .. This will bring back the 8 to 10 car trains of 2013 (year not 20 class!)

All data was saved to a flash drive so 4016s still where she was left

For the meantime heres 4427 climbing hills then inbound to ksc during the forum outage :)


4427 grade climbing


Inbound KSC



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Overland    1054
Posted (edited)

Wow, 2015.. its been that long since ive had a functioning 44 class locomotive and PC...

well! heres to a new start.. ive spent 2 entire days real time battling 1.22 KSP, in and out of notepad, SPH and every other thing past the point of sanity

the fruits of 2 days work has been 4432 - a fully capable landliner 44 class locomotive with the old diesel electric engine functioning perfectly.. 




This week - is the week.. it starts again.. for better or worse.. they'll be a 44 class plying the lands of kerbin.. ive made 4432 as close to 4408 and her sister trains as I can, nothings been enhanced unrealisticly. she still runs on hot with too much throttle.. has horns to wake all of kerbin and the time honoured detroit engines of 4016 and 4410

I sit here the night before work week starts tomorrow.. yet its not work im thinking about.. its the drive after work of these beautiful, intimidating and deadly machines.. so much lore has been made.. even down to a personal level of chai tea being the official drivers drink of the 44 class locomotive on the elcano challenge. levels of room lighting, insense sticks burning that have to be sandalwood to comply with the original attempts.. pure atmosphere, memories .. ones of loss and success..

I greatly look forward to it :)

so, tomorrow it starts

Overland - Signing onto the footplate of 4432 with a long road ahead



As tradition would have it, todays struggles including the above hill test with both engines roaring.. wheels slipping and spinning.. the success and failures that have become a signature of driving these engines. was all to this tune.. an accidental playlist progression brought me to it at the right time.. enjoy :)


Edited by Overland

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Overland    1054

My God........ Thats just..  Beautiful :) 

Firstly - some music to drive by 

That has *NOT* changed one bit... how to put it all into words is the hard part.. so much to convey.. preserve.. still feeling the buzz, almost tearworthy revival of a land trains journey.. so much joy.. a familar comfort.. goosebumps.. 

Why I gave this up was only because KSP changed, I once thought it impossible to get back what was good

Tonight.. it was shown to me  I was wrong.. Very wrong.. and to any modder, any pilot, any driver that thinks resurrecting an old craft or part isnt worth it, lost in a sea of updates and confusion ...

heres a shout out to all those who might have given up and thought it all not worth it...


Take it from me, a dedicated land train driver that gained so much and lost alot when versions changed, wheels became faulty and everything fell apart...


It is worth every moment... all of it.. so go back to your old mods, fire it up.. work on it.. resurrect that ship that once was the pride of your fleet and the source of joy beyond everything you can describe... its not lost.. just do it


Never give up...what you gain when its finished.. you'll know just like I did tonight



4432 Seen here - Prior to her first departure onto the mainline

I didnt know what to expect - after so long having a fully capable land train back on the road - all features present and nothing missing, even using the old docking port couplings having slaughtered the stock-kraken known as Autostrut 

What I got was nothing short of the feeling of walking into a warm heated room on the coldest night - Everything just felt.. Right :)

MC2 Madcatz Xbox wheel infront of me, pedals under my desk serving as the transmission dead man pedal shifting the wheels into full forward drive ready for the generator to pump power into the wheels, 

Engine 1 was started - the starter motor running momentarily and a thick cloud of smoke rose into the air signalling that the engine was now running. the slow chug of a Detroit diesel bus engine gaining speed to idle.. 

Ditch lights turned on.. alternating left and right.. headlights on, marker lights on.. Brakes released.. 

The locomotive started to creep forward at idle...5ms... 10ms.... I hit the throttle to 3/4..high 20s.... 4432 was alive.. :)


Runway lights streaking past, slow turning of the steering wheel mid way - the traditional departure point - 4432 and her train bounced over the hump off the runway and onto the great green mainline.. KSC now becoming scenery.. something ive not done for almost a year..


atleast not anything serious with the intention to not having KSC on the horizon... 4432s journey started.. soon she'll be the lone train in all of kerbin. the empty wasteland ..  so beautiful yet so empty.. nothing and no one.... the all that there is.. 4432 vs kerbin.. its a terrifying feeling.. and I mean that with no jest what so ever.. kerbins emptyness does.. feel.. empty. not just the lack of anything.. its something I both missed and.. dislike as much as I like :)


The first hill was reached outside of KSC - 4432s speed started to bleed off sub 15ms.. one unique feature of 4432 unlike her sister trains before her is that she has full power with only one engine, a straight torque curve configuration file.. slow spooling engines.. nothing fake or hidden.. but lighting up the second engine gives absolute power.. uncontrolable speed.. but with it torque a plenty to fight hills

I advanced the throttle to full.. hearing the detriot engine slowly spool upto full warcry then lighting engine #2 as they started to syncronise and reverberate with one another,.. goosebumps were felt in all honesty.. with the locomotive now starting to gain speed on the hill, both engines working in harmony.. everything was just perfect.. the sights, the sounds.. the thick exhaust cloud as all engines were at full power. .sparks flying into the nights sky.. beauty in engineering indiscribable so much so that I only wished I had time to film it..  

Once she crested the hill, engine #2 was shut down.. leaving engine #1 carrying the train forward..

its now I must also state that I stress none of this made up.. none of this is told for a story.. all this absolutely happens this way.. such is the joy of a proper functioning land train :) 


Sadly not everything was going too well.. as the journey went onto around 50km with the mountains used as a navigation waypoint now becoming massive in the cab window, it became evident I forgot RTGs for headlights, power slowly bleeding down to 650 from 1000 or so... in a few hours 4432 wil have no headlights and that simply wont do.. still.. enjoying this so much.. I pushed on :) both engines lit for a powerful bit of torque to accelerate from 15 to 32ms..

the music for this point in the journey had become less. inspiring to regulate speed and caution - in some strange but familar irony.. it became the theme of this very moment 

4432 powered towards the mountains.. slowly a forrest started becoming visible.. with repairs needed and upgrades required.. it was decided this was the terminating point for this service up ahead


it was then fate had its say as it usually does.. the mun lining up the the mountain spire, the forest growing close.. despite the darkness, beauty was evident..  the ground was akin to a rolling sea.. engine had been at idle for some time and no sign of slowing down or over speed.. engines were shut down.. silence fell and 4432 coasted a great distance into the forest first lines of trees ahead before coming to a halt to plant a flag, the 63K marker point




at 63km from point of origin.. the journey for tonight was over.. it made for an awesome picture none the less.. 

A flag was planted to resume tomorrow



While not much distance was covered.. and in tradition. most of it will be backtracked for upgrades needed before the full journey, its been a very very beautiful first drive... dense in its complex emotions and moments.. certainly everything I missed about driving land trains.. 

4432 has become one with the land train lore.. her running number and stories of her anchievements and failures.. will remain with the ranks of 4408, 4016 and 4427 before her..  A fine starting chapter to a locomotive a long time coming..


In short.. as @Fengist once said "Da Choo Choo is back!" 

Indeed it is good friend :) and once again thankyou for the inspiration so long ago for all of this

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Dafni    573
Posted (edited)

Thats some great KTPing again Mr Overland, finally. She is a beauty. Long live 4432!

Edited by Dafni

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Overland    1054

Thankyou my friend :) its good to see you :)


might just be able to put a train on kerbalx sometime soon..just need alternate 3d models for the now old engines..an easy task

configuration files being nowhere close to stock..a bit of model aliasing for the land train M1s and itd be good to go :)

With some luck I may be able to film tonights run..its funny how things never change, even in 2015 the great 4408 had to turn back just the same for a winch and fuel ports

4432 just needs fuel tanks converted to pure LF so not carrying around 4000 units of oxidizer.. Maybe a bit of a repaint too.. KAS fuel port should be useful but having cracked the IVA kracken, coupling up a new fuel wagon also works if sent on a rocket

All will be told tonight..headed for bombo outpost, the little crater beach 80km from ksc along the coast

Im hoping thats the last stop before following 4408s path to the snow capped mountain :)

Thanks again for dropping by, means alot :)

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11 hours ago, Overland said:


a lot. 

That being said, Congrats on gettin' your train workin' again. Though I never really read your logs in depth, it was always kind of cool to see your trains! 

Here's hoping to a new beginning for you and your trains! 

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Overland    1054
Posted (edited)

Thankyou @SpaceplaneAddict :) its indeed  been a very hard road.. but as my previous post detailed.. and I back it up once again in saying its been totally worth it, shes just a train.. full of modded mods from myself yeah but still just a construct, I can only imagine the pain developers of plugins and standalone mods feel when their beloved creation set free into the wild suddenly stops working with version change.. this community goes through quite alot at times.. im sure its all worth it in the end though :)


Didnt get much done today - home late from work so only 2 hours before sleep - 

4432  got her final refit before getting back on the mainline -



a little quirk I forgot is when editing the configuration files of certain parts, say a fuel tank to have pure LF vs LFO mix.. the craft file actually contains fuel values.. as such the loaded craft file in SPH will still show the unchanged values.. this little puzzle required a few reloads to remember.. pulling apart a wagon, replacing the old fuel tank with the new one which.. was the same thing except refreshed - now ment 4432 has pure LF fuel and runs 1600 per wagon


Im thinking of increasing it an extra wagon just for the range.. 

Still though like their railbound cousins.. any manner of train works great on the flat level.. its when things get steep and nasty pain sets in.. so we'll have to see

Repaints were in order.. and a little feature greatly useful.. a single red indicator light just below the cab door


 it turns red when brakes are applied..

given the amount of times ive had runaways as a slowly idling diesel electric locomotive has found its footing and eased forward with a mind of its own, despite its somewhat unconventional placement and that im sure it sticks out.. in time its likely going to prove to be a valuable addition to standard operating equiptment abord the 44 class locomotive and all manner trains

Here 4432 is seen on strange kind of roads, some would say the very restrictive kind.. ensuring ones direction...

nope!. dont like it one bit.. BE FREE!!! :)

Edited by Overland

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AdrianK.    126

I remember I found this thread a few months back. Good to see the 44 class running again! :D 

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Dafni    573
On 15.5.2017 at 11:12 PM, Overland said:

Thankyou my friend :) its good to see you :)


Thanks again for dropping by, means alot :)

You are more than welcome, good Sir. A single line of feedback is the least I can give you for all those moments I spent marveling at your creations. And I enjoy your writing style a lot too, it really conveys the passion and love for KSP land trains. Great stuff.


16 hours ago, Overland said:

4432  got her final refit before getting back on the mainline -


Now look at her! She looks gorgeous! The brake light is a nifty little addition, looks good on her too!

Thanks for sharing and keep it up!

Greetings from Switzerland, where trains roll on rails  :sticktongue:    ... just messing with you, and I dont want to sound too cheesy here but I think you'd enjoy the infrastructure too, all the bridges and tunnels etc, and the views you get sometimes too. Have some postcard pics.



train love international


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Fengist    1043

Da Choo Choo Lives. 

Here's one from 2013 I made. Some inspiration for your journey.


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Overland    1054

oh shes beautiful :) sorry my friend I didnt see your reply.. must have missed an alert.. what was the mission like with the train? any threads to link? :) 

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Overland    1054
Posted (edited)

A Day of oddity -  

Settling down for the night for a long drive - its been bugging me about 4432s lack of water capability - 

Todays music was the unofficial star citizen soundtrack - which ended up portraying an unusual situation in its unsure but inspiring tones


such problems were solved in the past by an elcano iffy-thing of not using boats by simply coupling a "Marine-wagon" to the front of a 40 class -

4432 doesnt have a front coupler, but using Ov class monopropellant engines I could easily turn main generator output into water propulsion jets by simply swtiching off the wheels and revving the engines to active monoprop engines

so it was back to the SPH for a while for a bit of a refit.. given the size of these engines are in 1.22 now vs the tiny small Lv-1 size they used to be.. 

putting them onto the locomotive was unslightly.. like sticking a trombone on the back of a supercar? .. yes very horrible visions there.. dont think it! :D 

so the passenger/gaurdsvan got assulted with these ugly things.. 

it was then time for a test before she got back underway. 

what happened was.. a colision between KSPs new sub friendly water - untested myself in any serious manner - certainly not after 4408 died off ...

and a 100 ton train. 


the results were..  

my first successful reentry ever! 


waiting for the locomotive to start floating....... waiting..... waiting..... oh.. right

100 ton locomotive vs subable(?) water means.. 

Subable(?!) Train.............


And... 4432 found a solution to crossing water 

in short.. there land under water and its good enough.. I know every part *does* have a pressure limit - this makes me scared

as does looking out the window and seeing water.. 

all things considered though, the almost slow motion descents of downgrades, the maximum 11ms full power speed.. 

its a very relaxing if not.... wrong..  wrong way of crossing water.. 

but 4432 herself.. seems quite happy as do her crew :)


No - this isnt normal at all.. very un-normal.. a train doesnt belong here!


Nope again... 



But no ones screaming with tongues flapping.. so maybe its good :)


but.. happily now back on land.. despite the strange diversion and likely the most un-train thing ever written on this thread in its long history :)


Edited by Overland

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Overland    1054
Posted (edited)

A Sub-Trainian indeed :) And thanks for visiting my thread by the way your buffalo is wonderful rover, it helped me refine the later RTG low speed land trains, a fine machine worthy of many travels and stories itself :)


an eventful drive - what we didnt gain in distance.. we gained in.... atmosphere, attachment.. 
having resumed regular train operations heading to the previous landmark of 63km with a new refitted 4432 on dry land (?!)

the mechanical symphony of detriot diesel engines slowly chugging up and down the RPM scale as terrain demanded, brake applications and meaningless yet glorious horn blasts while battling steep hills again filled the kerbin landscape..

 if 4432 is the only living thing on this planet.. she like her sistertrains before her makes damn sure she makes up for it in presence alone :)

with a mix of star trek innerlight theme, mike oldfields flowers of the forest and theme to the visitor Ds9 episode making the littlest things meaningful by default.. things were going well.. steaming towards the 63km flag marker detailed earlier in this thread



Suddenly. things changed. Framerate dropped.. checking my computer to find nothing wrong, the problem slowly became evident.. we had entered a physics bubble. judging by the framerate.. there could be only one thing

I'd left a train somewhere!

each locomotive have their own class number, its more than a number.. its a name.. its a personality.. its the train itself and everything in that instance of what it means to be that number.. 


4432 is 4432..  having 2 of them invalidates lore...foundations of KTP operations.. 

this was uncharted territory..


Throttle was eased back.. coasting towards this target as the metres counted down from 1000.. a cloud of smoke and familar chugging of an idling detriot engine was now possible to hear.. 

the previous "4432" i'd forgot to revert to hanger, or drive back.. I thought I did for the refit of RTG's yet. the presence of a locomotive infront of me, infact 2 locomotives both 4432, different configurations yet very much similar presented a very real .. problem



Out with the C4!

leaving the locomotive where she stood wasnt really an option, driving this one back also has its moral objections for similar reasons -

yet emotionally attachment in play,  so common in this job as a land train driver - taints such decision as simply blowing up the locomotive..


to the credit of KAS/KIS, a more reasonable course of action was taken..  to the benefit and happyness of all :)


4432 mark 1 - became an unnumbered 44 class - a local workhorse.. the flag was passed from one locomotive to the next..

engines shut down, brakes applied.. made safe and secure, work started on removing her class plates



NOW out came the C4!!! :D 



But it was only her class plates, and only after both locomotives here moved to a safe distance.. without guilt, waste or sorrow the journey can resume. A locomotive joins the ranks of the KTP reborn as local motive power - to be renumbered 4433 when time permits :)BqgvK7O.jpgBefore departure - a photo op (Kerbal Rail Photography) was undertaken of the 2 locomotives side by side - a thing of beauty :) F3K3r1C.png

With a final farewell to 4433 and her crew from the cab of 4432 -




The journey now resumes - as 4432 steams towards former "bombo outpost" - Last position of 4016 - from there its onwards to the horizon :)

Some people might ask - if im doing the elcano challenge why all the diversions, refits, posts.. why not just do it..

The answer is one of ease -

Because trains are about the journey - and its been a great one of them - this very thread tells it all - not just on the surface of kerbin but a journey for me too.. with over a year contained within this thread (I think?) certain events have historical meaning - nothings left behind and the craft themselves grow into the story.. so much more than rovers going to a destination - doing the elcano by train is as much proof of concept of a trains capability as it is the experience of it all.. 


One that im very proud to be involved in :)  




4433 has now found a new home - below the waves :)





Edited by Overland

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Overland    1054
Posted (edited)

A mornings drive - from the badlands of the loopline - heading over the sea of green tranquility - 

Heartland was reached - some 140+ KM from KSC - a point where the original 4408 had a video captured of calmly traversing over the terrain at 3/4 throttle while gundam Nicol's piano theme played in the background - the moments where kerbin doesnt seem so alone... it feels like a comfortable home.. familiar terrain of a home town.. somewhere I know so well, theres a certain route that gently rises and falls enough to not worry about brakes or overspeed for extended times..  Only watching the navball keeping a heading of 315..  carving its way between mountains and hills, bare green land with not a tree to be seen... as close to a moment of  xen that I feel is possible in a land train, otherwise known as 100 ton rolling machines of death and destruction :)


Nothing exciting to report - nothing exploded - no one died - 10s of kilometres passed by with the occasional thought for trailblazer 4408 and 0.25 KSP, some would say a better time.. alas while not perfect .. I find im making my peace with 1.22+.. everythings still the same in the end :)

With the day slowly approaching afternoon and things to do - on some flat land 4432 was brought to a slow stop - engines shutdown..  a flag planted - Marker 3 

Once again assaulted by the gods of incidental music on a playlist im fond of - at the right time this very track made the act of shutting down a locomotive - safe on a save file - one of the more typical conclusions to a days drive KTP Elcano operations has become known for (and none of it is faked - if it wernt so random, it'd be cheesy :)


All is well - resuming when I can :) 

Edited by Overland

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Overland    1054
Posted (edited)

Engineering Sidetrack

How does a "Diesel Electric" Locomotive work in KSP -

Explained earlier in this thread a long time a go - a few things have changed yet some remain the same.

Today I present the art of the Diesel Electric locomotive, "In Action" and when I say in action this is 4433 - her wheels are a little different to that of current 4432.. a few different values between most of my locomotives preserved between saves ensures that each train isn't just a copy of each one - but has its own quirks, gifts and talents (Or drives like a pig for no apparent reason when it wants too!)


I stress it works better on the ground and under resistance of the train - plus extra wheels, thrusters for course correcting with SAS/RCS...


I reveal to you the dark arts in all its glory!

- Note: The horn is a LV-1R with sounds added to startup/shutdown :) 


These engines generate Monopropellant - Alternator line in the CFG file, they generate just 3 thrust 

Wheels are set to use Monopropellant - as it also powers the RCS thrusters for course holding & RCS "Sanders" that help push the locomotive into the terrain while climbing hills via SAS


Technical explanation isn't mathematical, infact trying to calculate the ballence has always got it wrong horribly - resulting in a locomotive dragging to much to one side or being overpowered unresponsive to throttle (Too much power) 

theres 2 states of a wheel - running and underpowered/off with a slight delay or ramp between the two later - 

this means that at full power all wheels are running - at idle none or just one is running.. a locomotive at idle will slowly creep forward.. yet on a slight incline wont be effected - the system is far more evident climbing hills where torque not speed - comes into play - even beyond pure numbers - a fully powered system will still benefit of having 2 engines running providing an oversupply of power

(Unique to the mark 7 44 class - Earlier locomotives required 2 engines for full power)


Add to this a wheel ramps down its power requirement as it gets closer to the torque cutoff speed - in that a locomotive running at near top speed of 26ms will use less power than one climbing a hill at 10ms... the later requiring full output of the engines - this I only discovered while driving battery powered trams well after this idea was hatched a few years back

The whole thing is kept "in gear" but holding the pedal on my steering wheel set flat akin to a locomotive deadman pedal or pushing the aero trim fully forward (Alt W, or X to reset)

With the trains wheels aiding in keeping the locomotive straight with better balancing, a near perfect system can be achieved, 

Powerful, Noisy, Smokey, Moody, Horrible, Explody.. 

All those wonderful things ive come to expect and love about driving these wonderful deadly machines



Edited by Overland

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