timmers_uk Posted August 28, 2016 Share Posted August 28, 2016 (edited) Okay ... Well it was a struggle at times. We had smiles. We had tears. We had Bill collecting Jeb's toenail clippings and refusing to leave the vehicle for several weeks, but I have completed by first Elcano challenge, that of the maritime crossing of Kerbin. The craft I used was my fifth iteration on an amphibious self-sufficient Stock compatible design (I'll go back to the rules and recheck the exact name - I have a couple of mods loaded but the craft works fine totally stock). My shakedown trip out to the island and back went so well we struck out straight away on our Elcano challenge attempt (which is unfortunately the reason I have no screenshot of the departure - hopefully it doesn't mean we have to do it all again). Things went well until coming up to stop #4, where overconfidence on fuel requirements to reach land left me out of fuel and drifting on the open seas. This was the point to bring out my support plane to drop a refuelling drone - something I'd expected to use at some point, and tested in waters local to KSC. Turns out I succeeded there more by luck than judgement, but eventually, after many aborted attempts (and the odd F9), we were refuelled and off again. I had hoped to recover my refuelling drone back on land and bring it back to KSC in my now landed support plane ... but ... nope My intrepid crew used this fuel to get to land, passing the unfortunate ex-care package on their way, and rendezvoused with the support plane before making their way on. From there we made good time, pausing only to refuelling (leaving margin this time, and avoiding unbroken sea crossings, up towards the land bridge and our single major portage. At some point during this stage, we broke 2 of the heatsink and 2 solar panels. I think it may have been a 'sporty' departure, but I can't honestly remember how it happened now. It was definitely my own stupid fault though. During the portage, I found that whilst beautifully stable as a boat, and relatively speedy (50-70m/s depending on fuel state), on land, the vehicle was ... sketchy, with a distinct tendency to take random left + right turns. 1/10 would not buy again! Still, by keeping speeds to about 30m/s, and watching my heading like a hawk (rover guidance was no use at all here), we made it across the land, and had some really nice views along the way (though we took a lot longer to make it across the land bridge). A swift trip down the coat took Jeb + Bill back to the equator from here. And as this was uneventful, the decision was made to take a detour down to the south polar ice flows - partially to ensure we went equally as far south as we had north, and also as this part of Kerbin is somewhere we'd rarely visited, and never travelled to before by land. It was at this time that we had a wee accident as the craft doesn't exactly slow down quickly on water, and turns kindof like an oil tanker. Still. We only lost 1 headlamp, and learned something new ... the south polar ice flow is ringed with blooming enormous cliffs. It was as a result of this that we had to perform our second aid mission, as the plan had been to beach and refuel, and in the absence of any way to get up a huge cliff, we were stuck. As the first refuelling mission had gone so well (not) the decision was made to send an autonomous suborbital drone to refuel, rather than the whole cargo plane + airdrop approach. This went mostly well, however the landing left the drone with no engines (oops). This wasn't the end of the world, as we'd added Vernors as manoeuvring thrusters this time around, to avoid the failings of our last care package, which could make a glorious 0.2m/s across the water. It easily refuelled Elcano 5, with plenty left over, but lacking main propulsion, was left as a memorial to our folly (and took the place of the flag we couldn't plant). From there we zipped back north to avoid exploiting our southern latitude, and continued our voyage. It was refuelling back at the equatorial coast where things began to fall apart between Jeb and Bill. Who knows why. Maybe the paddling pool had been a mistake. ... To be continued. I shall finish the chronicle of the voyage later tonight. Full voyage at (http://imgur.com/a/6eHPD) Continued in part 2 Edited August 28, 2016 by timmers_uk continued in part 2, and aaghhh formatting Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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