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Bakkerbaard

Wondering Out Loud: Seven questions

Question

Hey, so. I'm wondering about a few things and I figured it best to just stick the questions in one topic. Keep the place tidy.

Before I start wondering out loud, it might be handy to let you know I'm on PS4, so I don't have access to any of them fancy mod contrapshuns all you PC kids use these days. And I'm grossly noob here. Like, at the "don't name the dogs we send into space because they're not coming back anyway"-stage, so I'll need to be spoken to like a six year old. Possibly one that colors outside the lines.

1. I play in sandbox-mode, because I like to screw around and, honestly, career-mode would be commercial suicide. I do send probes equipped with an M700 ahead to scan oribital bodies I'd like to visit, but right now that's just because it seems like the spacey thing to do. I know how to work the scanner, with the polar oribit and everything and I get the fancy overlay, but do I get anything more usefull than a festive looking galaxy out of it, as a sandbox player?

2. Is there a catch-all set of rules-of-thumb to get any rocket into orbit? Something working around all the maths, like: Point rocket up, reach set altitude, point rocket east, pray to a Kerbal-deity. The trainings do a pretty good job of getting me up there, but are kinda light on how I got up there. Right now, I'm just burning op too much dV (why not fuel? DeltaV is fuel right?) getting into acceptable orbit, which leaves me with too little to get where I'm going. I seem to recall reading somewhere: Get Surface up to 100m/s, get altitude up to 1000m and tip easward at a 45 degree looking angle, have HDG read 90. Practical results indicate this is wrong.

3. At what altitude do I need to start looking at vac-thrust instead of atmo-thrust? 70,000?

4. As far I can grasp, most rockets have about three stages. I usually end up with nine. At least, nine points of action in the stack-list (on the right when building): 0 - Parachutes, 1 - Engines on upper stage, 2 - Decoupler, 3 - Engines on middle stage, 4 - Decoupler, 5 - Engines on lower stage, 6 - maybe decoupler for SRBs, 7 - maybe SRBs. To a space-noob this would seem like seven stages.

5. Here's my theory on building a rocket: Stuff up top that you wanna get somewhere and minimal fuel to do minor corrections / Fuel and engine to travel from Kerbin to where ever and establish orbit there / Fuel and engine to establish orbit around Kerbin / Fuel and big-ass engine to off the ground. Is that theory sound?

6. Why is my stand-up guy-rocket (really? Censor went from my word to "stand-up guy"? Well, my word wasn't better) flipping over? Going up it's okay, then when I ever so gently nudge it eastward to HDG 90 it's like an invisible space hand slaps the head of the rocket (you know, actual science!) and goes: "No! Thou shalt not go to space! Play GTA instead!" I've got wings slapped on the rocket, recently I've also started using wings with control surfaces, I try to keep my rockets as short as possible, most of the time to no avail. And whenever I do get one going, I can't figure out why that one worked. I take it and I enjoy it.

7. Where does the data of gravity and atmosphere of a planet or planetoid go and when does it come in play? So far I've only been able to succesfully scan Mün and Minmus, but those don't have an atmosphere, as far as I know. I suspect some of the others do and I would like to know about it before I tell Jeb to take off his helmet. Or, for the near future: Minmus. How's the gravity there? How do I find out? I'd like to land something there instead of burying it.

So, yeah. I'm probably wondering about more things, but I can't think of them now. Thanks for your time!

Edited by Bakkerbaard

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On 4/25/2018 at 12:52 PM, Corona688 said:

Either lash on your solids with a strut at the top, or enable autostrutting in the right click menu.  And make sure the decoupler grabs them in the middle, so they're shoved straight away | not pushed on-end / .  You can also use seprotrons to get them away from the main rocket more quickly.  And always point prograde when discarding empty-solids!

I like to fire as many stages simultaneously as I can.  Crossfeed is enabled in decouplers and fuel priority is set so all fuel comes from bottom-most stages until depleted.  This reduces the amount of dead weight you carry in the form of noncontributing engines and empty fuel tanks.  They call this kind of asparagus twisted-candle, because it actually looks like asparagus.

the-refresher.jpg

Tricky part is, engines won't die when they should, you have to watch tank levels.  I wish they'd let you set a minimum fuel priority for engines.

If you turn off crossed on the decouplers and use fuel ducts going up then you might get the behavior your want.

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19 hours ago, Nicias said:

If you turn off crossed on the decouplers and use fuel ducts going up then you might get the behavior your want.

Very difficult to do built vertically.  You need girders and it ruins your aerodynamics.

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On 4/25/2018 at 9:52 AM, Corona688 said:

Tricky part is, engines won't die when they should, you have to watch tank levels.  I wish they'd let you set a minimum fuel priority for engines.

Now there is a brilliant idea.  Simple and effective.  You should post that in the "Suggestions" sub-forum.

Additional thoughts in spoiler section, since this is getting kinda off-topic for the thread.
 

Spoiler

When I saw your idea, I initially thought "oh man, that would be awesome!  I should write a mod to do that!" ....except having spent a little time digging into it just now, looks like it would actually be pretty hard.  It would require modding resource flow itself... and that's not designed in a way that's very moddable.  Could it be done?  Probably.  But it would be a big huge chunk of work that would essentially require rewriting the entire fuel-flow functionality of the game, which would be an awfully tall order.  I'd hoped that I could nip in there with a little surgical tweak, so that it would be a small and simple mod to write.  But, alas, not so much.

I think this is the kind of suggestion that wouldn't be too hard for Squad to implement... but is very hard for a modder to implement.  (I could be wrong about either or both of those assertions, but that's the impression I get from some initial poking ar it.)  So... a nice suggestion for Squad, I think.  :)

 

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