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Multiple Clamp-O-trons for added stability in refueling station


pepe_kerman
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I want to build a refueling station in orbit of Kerbin with five of the big orange tanks. I want to do it in a 'x' shape, but i'm afraid it will be unstable due to the mass it will have. To fix this, i thought about using three Clamp-O-trons lined up.

My question is: would this configuration work? Does the game allow for three docking ports to be attached on the same side?

Here's an illustration of my idea.

dGUoFhT.png

Edited by pepe_kerman
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Unless something's changed, it does work... the game will only technically dock with one pair out of the three, but the magnetic forces will hold the other two together with reasonable strength. As already mentioned though, you have to be pretty precise with docking to make sure all three connect at once.

EDIT: You can also use autostruts to hold them together - the 'grandparent part' option would probably be good here.

Edited by GluttonyReaper
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9 minutes ago, GluttonyReaper said:

EDIT: You can also use autostruts to hold them together - the 'grandparent part' option would probably be good here.

Autostruts can work but they are no guarantee. Don't go overboard using Autostruts as in certain cases they can induce oscillations that can rip a craft/ship/station to pieces.

If you're not against using mods there's always Kerbal Attachment System. Among many other things KAS allows you to have a Kerbal attach struts on EVA.

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5 hours ago, pepe_kerman said:

I want to build a refueling station in orbit of Kerbin with five of the big orange tanks. I want to do it in a 'x' shape, but i'm afraid it will be unstable due to the mass it will have. To fix this, i thought about using three Clamp-O-trons lined up.

Why you don’t just radially attach the others tanks directly in the central one and launch it in one piece?

Vaguely related question: How it'll be supplied?

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Welcome to the forums!

All I can think is that maybe you want those outside tanks detachable and re-attachable  so that you can use them as drop tanks for other vessels (perhaps with Sr docking ports on the end) or maybe in cargo bays?) It's about the only reason I can think of that you wouldn't just launch it in one piece, as @Spricigo mentioned. If you really do want to attach them with docking ports, and you don't intend to have engines attached to any of the outer tanks, I would go with @Physics Student suggestion of a docking port Sr. I've placed the regular docking port on the side of tanks many times, but I don't think I've ever done that with a Sr. Not sure if it'll sit flush or not. If so, it's probably the way to go. Their width will give you better stability, and since you'll only be using them in space, you can set rigid attachment and they'll be even more stable. Even if you have an engine on the center tank, and you accelerate slowly, they shouldn't wobble around too much. So you'll be able to move your station, if need be. I'm really just shootin' in the dark here, though. If you give a bit more info about your overall intentions, I think you'll get some answers that will help you better.

Edited by Cpt Kerbalkrunch
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It is very doable... and I just realized I have no shots of the particular ship in question in my Imgur gallery.

Sooo, I must point you to one of my older YouTube videos where I discuss methods to line it up for my ship the Ares Helm.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8BM8Na3hNY

From about 2:30 through 7:00 I show you how it works.  I will say that they are PAINFUL to dock correctly though, and wouldn't do it again except for style points.

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