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What are you least skilled in?  

109 members have voted

  1. 1. What activity or procedure still gives you the most headaches?

    • Rocket ascent
      7
    • Transfers
      21
    • Rendezvous
      11
    • Docking
      7
    • Precise landing
      25
    • Plane flying
      8
    • Plane landing
      30


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So, reading the forums, I noticed that many people say they suck at docking. For me, it's one of the easiest things (provided I constructed the docker properly), but I just can't land where I want, either with lander or plane, especially with landers. I don't even know why, I can do excellent ascents, rendezvous is no problem and I prefer doing it by myself, starting and flying a plane is also not hard, but for landing I usually let the Mechanical Jebediah handle it.

But what do YOU suck at and why?

Edited by MisterBennock
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For me docking is also easy by now. Landing a rocket at a certain spot also isn't too hard if you have the dV to spend to hover for a while. (I.e. if I have 2 - 3 times as much dV as I would need for a simple landing...) But landing a plane? In one piece? I do manage that now more often than I used to, but it still goes wrong often enough.

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How about all of the above?

My ascents to orbit are woefully inefficient.  I haven't yet launched a craft with enough Dv left over to try transfers, rendevous, or docking. A whole planet is about as much precision in landing  as I can manage. I can build an airplane that will take off and fly,  and I can steer to the vicinity of marked targets,  so that's probably my best skill.  Aircraft landings I can walk away from are still iffy. I need moar practice.

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Precise landings are what I’m worst at without a doubt. While not very difficult when the body I’m landing on has no atmosphere and low gravity (like the Mun, or even Moho I’m fine with), the problem arises when there’s higher gravity and an atmosphere, because it becomes a lot harder for me to predict my path. 
On the flip side it does give me an excuse to build rovers more often than I probably need to..

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1 hour ago, 5thHorseman said:

Planes by a large margin. Mostly because I never really understood why I'd spend so much time to learn them when I could go to space instead.

Says the guy who flew a space rock

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For those saying precise landings in atmosphere, the Trajectories mod is well worth a look.

I can do late burn precisionish landings in vacuum but I've had so many control flight in to terrain incidents doing it I stick with the less efficient but much safer approach of coming to a stop a couple of km up and then a suicide burn landing, which has the added advantage of giving you time to use RCS to land exactly on target.

Planes on the other hand...  I find WASD control pretty awkward, and I've never got the hang of the trim controls.  I really should give it a go with joystick but in general it's safe to say I suck at planes...which is a bit embarrassing as I have a degree in Aeronautical Engineering and about 8 hours solo in gliders :D

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3 hours ago, Spoolx said:

I have the most trouble with transferring to a different body via maneuver nodes. I set the exact transfer angle and all that and I still struggle to make good transfers.

Try planning on mid course adjustments.  I generally break up an interplanetary trip into thirds, just because the floating point errors add up 

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I'm terrible at precision landing and direct ascent rendezvous. Especially as others have pointed out in atmosphere. My solutions to the landing one are to pack more dV as AHHans said for vacuum landings, or glide slopes and airframe parachutes in atmosphere.

I've learned to love space planes for that. I'm pretty good at the rest of the items on the list though. Gravity turns I actually learned by watching the Gravity Turn mod do it, reading about why that's efficient, and putting it into practice. I can fly them pretty ok manually now.

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Definitely transfers. I know all the theory and such and my burns are nice and efficient, but getting a Moho intercept AT ALL is difficult for me. Even with a mid-course plane change.

 

The second is probably aircraft landings. While I have landed planes on pretty short "runways" like <100 meter aircraft carrier decks, I often get stuck floating over the runway, even the KSC runway, or hit it much too hard and break something. Often I end up with too much or too little energy because my final approach is bad.

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2 hours ago, Pds314 said:

Definitely transfers. I know all the theory and such and my burns are nice and efficient, but getting a Moho intercept AT ALL is difficult for me. Even with a mid-course plane change.

 

The second is probably aircraft landings. While I have landed planes on pretty short "runways" like <100 meter aircraft carrier decks, I often get stuck floating over the runway, even the KSC runway, or hit it much too hard and break something. Often I end up with too much or too little energy because my final approach is bad.

If the inclination is an issue for you I recommend using slingshotter. Its a great mod for when the game doesn't want to show you the closest approach when you want it. That being said moho is always a headache. 

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3 hours ago, Pds314 said:

second is probably aircraft landings. While I have landed planes on pretty short "runways" like <100 meter aircraft carrier decks, I often get stuck floating over the runway, even the KSC runway, or hit it much too hard and break something. Often I end up with too much or too little energy because my final approach is bad.

You are landing too fast, a fairly common mistake.

There are some mods which can help, Navhud is one, Flight Markers is another.

You have to remember that for an airplane, altitude = energy.  In other words, if you are too high and try to dive to get lower, your speed will increase.

First thing is to know how slow the plane can fly. This takes practice in flying just above stalling speed.  Try flying at 100m and slowly reducing the throttle, keeping the same altitude.  Once you know that, you can use the throttle to control your altitude. Use the elevator to control your airspeed.

Next. Line up with the runway a long ways out.  This is so that you don't have to maneuver during the landing.

Depending on the plane, you shouldn't  be more that 200-300 meters high when you are about 3 km away.

Now control your altitude, slowly descending to meet the end of the runway closest to you. You should be about 5-10m high when you cross the threshold of the runway.

Finally, reduce the throttle and slowly pull back.  The plane should NOT balloon up, if it does, then either you are going too fast or you pulled back too much, or both. As you pull back the plane should slow down and settle on the main landing gear.

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Ascent isn't usually difficult as long as the rocket is reasonable. I.E. stable or at least only requires SAS and a small amount of micromanagement and delta-V and drag aren't too marginal (3100 delta-V is okay. 2900 usually isn't).

 

Rendezvous isn't hard. Although sometimes I do multiple orbits.

Docking isn't hard as long as at least one of them has RCS.

Precise landing of rockets can be hard. But it's not usually a huge issue.

Plane flying isn't hard unless they're unstable or have L/D only barely above Weight/Thrust ratio.

50 minutes ago, linuxgurugamer said:

You are landing too fast, a fairly common mistake.

There are some mods which can help, Navhud is one, Flight Markers is another.

You have to remember that for an airplane, altitude = energy.  In other words, if you are too high and try to dive to get lower, your speed will increase.

First thing is to know how slow the plane can fly. This takes practice in flying just above stalling speed.  Try flying at 100m and slowly reducing the throttle, keeping the same altitude.  Once you know that, you can use the throttle to control your altitude. Use the elevator to control your airspeed.

Next. Line up with the runway a long ways out.  This is so that you don't have to maneuver during the landing.

Depending on the plane, you shouldn't  be more that 200-300 meters high when you are about 3 km away.

Now control your altitude, slowly descending to meet the end of the runway closest to you. You should be about 5-10m high when you cross the threshold of the runway.

Finally, reduce the throttle and slowly pull back.  The plane should NOT balloon up, if it does, then either you are going too fast or you pulled back too much, or both. As you pull back the plane should slow down and settle on the main landing gear.

Yeah I know generally what a good landing looks like. That doesn't mean I don't sometimes make a mistake in that regard and end up floating for miles above the runway or stalling out early.

Edited by Pds314
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