AlphaMensae

[1.3.1/1.7.x] Modular Launch Pads v2.0.0: Beyond launch clamps: Create a whole launch facility with mix-and-match parts [30 July 2019]

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Does anyone have tweakscale configurations for this mod

Edited by Nigel Cardozo

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Now hit a snag with my plan to have 8 height variants for each tower in the Multi-Tower:  I have to include all the top nodes and attach nodes for the umbilicals for each main tower style, as the various heights between the towers vary.  That's not good, as I want to keep those nodes restricted to each height variant to avoid node spam ans nodes in mid-air.  So a change in plans:  There will be less height variants (3, maybe 5), and each style+height option will be separate, so just one switcher instead of two (one for the style, one for the height, using the semi context-based switching B9PS can do).

It's odd number of heights as I want the middle one to be the size-specific variant for the BDB rockets. :)

 

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Delta II tower now with umbilicals!

 

I found that the general drop umbilicals used here have enough offset capability in the mount that they can be moved forward just a bit so they pipe will just clear the railing when dropped, so they can be used on the center attach node on the tower.  Of course, swing arms won't have that problem ;)

The other two height variants are done and in Unity, now adjusting the colliders, and then have to build the attach nodes for them.  I'm also going to to finish the nodes for the Atlas V tower, now that there's only 3 heights to deal with. :)

 

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Atlas V and Delta II tower variants are done for the Multi-Tower, and it is now on the Github, AlphaDev branch.  Also uploaded into the Patches folder was a revised new BDB patch file to include the new Delta II lower tank, which has a different name than the earlier one.  You can always attach the stands and pads to an engine's lower node (if there is one), but it's much easier to have a big node well below the bottom of the engine. :) 

Next up will be some truss-type towers, in at least 2, maybe 3 widths; also thinking of a Titan III/IV-type tower to round out this first batch.

 

 

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55 minutes ago, AlphaMensae said:

Atlas V and Delta II tower variants are done for the Multi-Tower, and it is now on the Github, AlphaDev branch.  Also uploaded into the Patches folder was a revised new BDB patch file to include the new Delta II lower tank, which has a different name than the earlier one.  You can always attach the stands and pads to an engine's lower node (if there is one), but it's much easier to have a big node well below the bottom of the engine. :) 

Next up will be some truss-type towers, in at least 2, maybe 3 widths; also thinking of a Titan III/IV-type tower to round out this first batch.

 

 

What about the spacex crew access arm? Please do that next.

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People who don't use MLP are really missing out...

uyK7ZNM.png

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@CobaltWolf Awesome pic! 

And to be honest the current v1 release is basically just the Soyuz and Saturn pads...and the Saturn pad is the only one sort of "modular".  :D  I did what I could to make it something like a general-use pad, but it just isn't suitable for that role...just too big. ;) 

Version 2 is essentially going to be an all-new mod.

--------------------------------------------------

Oh, and a dev update:  I'm going to make the Atlas V and Delta II towers separate parts, with the title of "Special Tower:".  They're just too different from a general-use tower to be included with the Multi-Tower,  and I want them displayed individually in the part picker window, so you'll know they exist. :)  

The Multi-Tower will now be just three widths (with different heights) of truss-type towers.  There will be more than just three heights available, as it's easy to do the attach nodes for umbilicals with simple symmetrical towers:  each taller variant includes the previous one's node, plus some new ones, and I just repeat that for each height.

Edited by AlphaMensae

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Progress update!  I have not been idle.... ;)

The General Multi Tower has changed. The Atlas V and Delta II variants have been split off into separate parts, so the Multi Tower is now just three widths of a truss-type tower. That isn't all though, as it is now a one-part modular tower as well. Separate full and no-top section versions of each of the three heights of each tower size are available, and the base section can be turned off as well, allowing the sections to be stacked to create a taller tower. The demo here only shows the Small and Medium sizes, the Large one will be built next.

It took some thinking and some wrong turns before I finally came up with a system that worked.  It's not as elegant as the other mutli-switching parts of v2, but I didn't want a bunch of extraneous attach nodes visible for the various tower section sizes and heights, so there are separate full and core-only variants for each of the heights for each size.  They had to be separate options so I could customize the umbilical and top attach nodes for each size and height.

I'm also going to convert the Saturn tower to this new modualar system.  It will require that the elevators be moved into the Mobile Launcher Base itself, but as the Saturn pad is now a specialized pad, I have no problems with this.  The benefit is the elimination of two parts, as the base and top will be integrated into the tower section.  The crew access section will remain separate, as it's too specialized to be integrated.

The new Atlas V and Delta II towers, plus the current WIP General Modular Multi Tower, will be on the Github shortly.  Warning:  it could break craft files!

 

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Oh, I just realized that I never put the updated Tech Tree Nodes .cfg I had made a few months ago (now has a node for the general pads) on the Github.  It is now on the AlphaDev branch. :)

Overwrite the existing tech tree .cfg in ModularLaunchPads/Tree with this new version.  Or delete the one in ModularLaunchPads and use the new AlphaDev version.

 

The Large size for the Modular Multi Tower has been made, now have to add the attach nodes.

The three tower sizes:  Small is 1.25m square; Medium is 2.5m square; Large is 5.0m square.

Tower core heights ( without the base and top sections, which are each 2.5m high): Small: 2.5, 5.0  and 10.0m;  Medium: 5.0, 10.0 and 20m;  Large: 10, 20 and 40m.

Edited by AlphaMensae

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The large variant of the General Modular Multi Tower is done!

 

Next on the to-do list is the General Crew Elevator, the General Swing Arm umbilical, and the SpaceX-style variant for the General Crew Arm.  I've decided to put that variant with the General Crew Arm, as that one is already set up for multiple lengths and hatch interface options.

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Well, I was going to upload the updated General Modular Multi Tower to the Github, but the .mu is too big to upload at 34MB; the limit is 25MB.

I could .zip it, but that putting a .zip into a repository is just bad form.

I have other options:  One, split the tower into the three parts, the small, medium and large sizes.  Or two, use a potential feature in the newer B9PS versions that allows moving a transform; this would result in a much smaller mu file, but would mean dropping KSP 1.3.1 support.

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6 hours ago, AlphaMensae said:

The large variant of the General Modular Multi Tower is done!

 

Next on the to-do list is the General Crew Elevator, the General Swing Arm umbilical, and the SpaceX-style variant for the General Crew Arm.  I've decided to put that variant with the General Crew Arm, as that one is already set up for multiple lengths and hatch interface options.

Yessssss

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37 minutes ago, Nigel Cardozo said:

More development news? 

Can you please wait? The latest news are from yesterday. @AlphaMensaeis not a machine.

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1 hour ago, Cheesecake said:

Can you please wait? The latest news are from yesterday. @AlphaMensaeis not a machine.

Thanks!

As I mentioned, I work a full-time job now M-F, so dev time is limited during the week, so major news and updates will come slowly.

I have started work on the general crew elevator, but it's still in the modeling phase, so nothing really to report :)

I am also still pondering what to do with with the modular multi tower. Splitting it apart would be simplest and keeps 1.3.1 support; the B9PS solution is on hold pending the update from blowfish.

 

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Something else about B9PartSwitch:  stack node moving was added in v2.5.0, which was for KSP 1.5.1.  That alone is extremely useful for me, but I've held out using it since blowfish doesn't do backports for B9PS.  Once transform moving is added as well, it will be very hard to continue to not use the newest B9PS.

I just did a test, and v2.6.0 of B9PS (recompiled for KSP 1.6.1) does work fine in 1.5.1...maybe even in 1.4.5 as well (not tested).  So potentially only KSP 1.3.1 will be dropped, as the post-1.3.1 version of B9PS do not work in 1.3.1 (I tried it :D ).

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14 hours ago, AlphaMensae said:

Thanks!

As I mentioned, I work a full-time job now M-F, so dev time is limited during the week, so major news and updates will come slowly.

I have started work on the general crew elevator, but it's still in the modeling phase, so nothing really to report :)

I am also still pondering what to do with with the modular multi tower. Splitting it apart would be simplest and keeps 1.3.1 support; the B9PS solution is on hold pending the update from blowfish.

 

 

 

15 hours ago, Cheesecake said:

Can you please wait? The latest news are from yesterday. @AlphaMensaeis not a machine.

Sorry @AlphaMensae I just love your work they look really neat

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Work on the General Crew Elevator is progressing, it has gotten up to the 85m height option:

RWM8dFt.png

And it's gonna go higher...to 105m at least. :)

I'm also going to add a cage structure with swing-out doors to the elevator pad, making it more of an elevator car, to keep Kerbals safe as the ride down can be a little rough. ;)

 

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The General Crew Elevator is already going to be reworked into a one-part modular tower like the service tower.  In a test, I'm going to include the base section-which has the actual elevator transforms and animation--in the part.  This means additional tower sections will have the elevator animation toggles, but if the base is switched off, so will the elevators, and those extra toggles won't do anything.  Need to right-click the base section to activate the elevators.

Another change: the simple elevator pad has been made into a full car with swing-out doors to keep Kerbals safe inside. :)

 

 

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One problem with the auto-doors: when the car is put at a lower height via deploy limit, the doors are closed...oops :) So the doors are manually opened/closed now, and can be turned off entirely as well.

I'm also going to put an extendable walkway into the car's floor pad, so the crew elevator tower can be used for pad access as well, replacing the separate pad access elevator. It could also be used as a simple spacecraft access walkway, as it will have railings too.

 

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I found a little issue with the American Launch stand - Rectangular: It can be rotate, but only the plate, not the feet.

L1wpQC2.png

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4 hours ago, Cheesecake said:

I found a little issue with the American Launch stand - Rectangular: It can be rotate, but only the plate, not the feet.

L1wpQC2.png

 

Yep, that's due to how a launch clamp is set up within Unity and the .cfg.  There are three specific transforms-one each for the footing, stretchy columns and column topper called the "pivot" (since in a radially-attached clamp this is where the arm rotates)-that ModuleLaunchClamp requires, and they do not rotate.  This causes that mis-alignment with a non-symmetrical shape like the rectangular stand's main plate.

I wanted one stand to be non-square or round,  so this will stay, but can add a square version of the the same width. :)

 

 

Edited by AlphaMensae

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At last the Modular Multi Tower is done! And the .mu is under 25MB! :D 

I took a break from the General Crew Elevator to finish the Multi-Tower when a simple and all-too-obvious solution to node issues with the existing small variant came to me.  Basically I just chopped the top section for the small tower in half, making it 1.25m in height, so the 2.5m small core section's top nodes wouldn't interfere with the base section's.  Now, making a short tower this way probably would never be done, but it's good practice to make sure the tower works with any combo of size and heights. ;)

This enabled me to eliminate the full and core-only versions of the tower combos, making the full .mu file with all three tower sizes in it under 25 MB, so I could put it on the Github.

 

 

It's now on the Github, in both the AlphaDev and v2_General_Pads branches.

The name of the .cfg file has been changed, so be sure the old one is deleted, or just redownload the v2_General_Pads branch.

Edited by AlphaMensae

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This looks pretty neat! Looks a lot better than my launch towers, thats for sure. Cant wait to try it out for myself

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