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9 hours ago, Northstar1989 said:

Calling things edge-cases and saying "there's a mod for that" is simple defeatism.

It's plain common sense. Changing the DSN range is a stock feature already, if it doesn't go far enough for you then increase it some more.

Since your answer to every suggestion you've been given has been a variation on "but it should be stock" I see no further point trying to reason with you.

7 hours ago, OHara said:

What do you think of a longer strip mowed into the grass ? 

That's a less favourable runway heading, it would make it harder to do an approach when returning from orbit; east-west runways work best for that. It's also a bit superfluous since the entire area around the KSC can be used as a very big runway in any direction you like. Almost any smooth-ish terrain can be landed on depending on your aircraft.

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25 minutes ago, jimmymcgoochie said:

the entire area around the KSC can be used as a very big runway in any direction you like. Almost any smooth-ish terrain can be landed on depending on your aircraft.

The level 3 runway should just be the runway graphic on the ground, stretched all the way from the grasslands to the sea.

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The argument for a larger runway is an old and repeating one. That is no surprise. But this answer definitely is.

12 hours ago, Superfluous J said:

I'm surprised that no one has mentioned the real reason the runway isn't any longer than it is. Kerbin is small enough that the runway we have is large enough to show the curvature of the planet. That's why planes roll forward on deployment: the runway there is actually sloped downhill.

Any larger and it'll just be worse.

Possibly related, it makes sense that the KSC's runway is as short as it is because in a scaled down system, keeping a real length runway would be excessive. FAR problems aside, and aside from the inherent issues of trying to launch an X-37 horizontally, The 2.5km runway is quite enough in most cases, once you know what you're doing when designing an aircraft, and in the case of FAR, when you're able to elegantly address your lift:mass ratio without needing to install SMURFF at stock scale.

Aspire to be able to design any capable large or small aircraft that has a low stall speed and can nose up worth a damn. But there will always be a case like X-37 or Skylon which have very little lift surface ratio and need a very high runway speed (and to fall off of the runway) in order to lift off.

Having a wider runway would be nice since sometimes the craft yaws just enough to threaten to hit the runway lights and have a RUD, but would be nicest for landings/touchdowns when your craft is heavy enough that even with a lot of wheels, it takes really long to slow down with brakes on. To that end I would extend the runway westward. On a few occasions I've had a larger runway. GPP with KK and its included KSC++ has an upscaled runway. And in JNSQ I added that extra runway myself but for some reason it kept drifting and mis-aligning. I didn't get many chances to enjoy it though as I generally open KSP just for a joyride with a spaceplane or to troubleshoot mods.

...

There definitely is something to be said about a design being fundamentally bad if it needs an airbrake to help [on landing]. It's only good at Mach 1 or higher speeds, generally in the stratosphere, and within its weak thermal limit (so anyone knows, that airbrake is from fighter planes. It's not for spacecraft, therefore its weak tolerance and the existence of mod that makes it also a heatshield).

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I'm throwing this thought out there just to see what replies it gets, so here goes: Why don't you guys just learn how to build and fly planes properly? If someone said "Docking is too hard, lets add a tractor beam cuz I can't manage to maneuver my craft properly", people would tell you to learn to dock properly, no?

 

Here are some things mentioned in this thread and the solution to them in no particular order:

Yaw control ineffective? Try more vertical surfaces, make sure they are aligned prograde (use angle snap on rotation widget), mess around with control authority and movement. Yaw control is supposed to be ineffective if you are going -30* to +30* deflections. Try something smaller. Remember, when flying real planes, you messed up big time if you NEED to use full control surface deflection when not doing something like aerobatics. Of course, keyboard controls will make this difficult but visualize the fact that KSP thinks you are slamming the controls back and forth and design around this shortcoming of the game.

 

Wing size/stall speeds - This will take significant testing to tweak to a well-balanced aircraft and is admittedly usually where I give up and just launch something large for a change of pace. The basics are pretty straightforward though, start with your wings a size that "looks good" for your plane. Test fly, note down what you are trying to improve - in this case stall speed. Now back in the editor, use the rotation tool to add angle if incidence (angle of the wing relative to prograde of the airframe)to the wing. try 5*. Test fly, note new stall speed. Rinse and repeat until you maximize your design. Now go back and do the same but for dihedral (angle the wings make relative to the airframe when viewed head on...-o- vs \o/). The larger the angle from zero with the wingtips being deflected upwards will increase stability in the roll axis...to a certain point...clearly its not effective to have your wings at 80* dihedral. Unless you are an advanced designer, I would suggest a modest dihedral of 5* just to ballpark it...more advanced designs might have anhedral to enhance maneuverability...see the Harrier wing layout for an example. All of what I said is for cruise, so lets get to the nitty-gritty of making your plane dirty..I.E. gear and flaps out for slow speed flight.

***This is the big "SECRET"*** You can spend literally hundreds of hours tweaking your plane, but before I tell you how, I will tell you the thing you need to master first and that is airspeed control. Your plane still probably handles like crap even after tweaking the angle of incidence and dihedral/anhedral of the wings...that's OK. Test fly and use a landmark...your choice, whatever is easiest, but set a speed and hold it for a fly by. Now fly it again but slower...say 5m/s slower...and continue doing this while trying to do simple maneuvers like heading changes and note how your aircraft flies. You will come to a point where the wings simply do not generate enough lift and that's fine. Try flying that airspeed for as long as you can. You NEED to be flying slower than that to land. Landing is literally running out of lift from your wings while you are in close proximity to the runway. Chances are you can't really control the aircraft at this point, but at least you got practice at slow speed flight. Now we add some trailing edge flaps to give that extra bit of lift/control-ability when you are really bringing it in slow. Flaps help in two ways - they lower your stall speed and change the wing layout to allow you to have a more nose-down attitude for the same airspeed vs. without flaps. Add small flaps at the wing root to start. Ailerons for roll control are always outboard, flaps inboard. Do the test-flight thing again and tweak the deflection angle of the flaps, or size of flaps to suit your aircraft. This will probably take a while, but basically you are aiming for a speed that is slow enough you can coast to a stop and brakes are useful to expediate your landing...***you should have a landing speed slow enough that if your brakes hypothetically failed, you wouldn't care*** This is independent of aircraft size! Look on youtube for real life examples...the heaviest and largest aircraft have roughly the same landing speeds as smaller ones. If you have a large/heavy aircraft then the next step is leading edge lift devices AKA slats. Take those really long and skinny wing parts that are a throwback to the original C7 aircraft parts and toss them on the front of your wing. Again, play with the deflection angle to the aircraft's suiting, but in general you are looking to make your aircraft control-able at the absolute lowest speeds you can. Usually the deflection angle of the slats is lower then the trailing edge flaps. I hesitate to give numbers due to the sheer amount of configurations allowed by KSP, but in general, the heavier the aircraft, the more emphasis you ideally should have on the slats.

 

I'm going to post this now so you guys can tell me if I am full of crap haha, but if this is helpful, I'll post more tips.

Edited by Meecrob
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In my Shuttle challenge series I repeatedly landed a 40 ton Shuttle on the runway, at various times with 80 tons of cargo or an asteroid on top, and I have never needed more than a fraction of the runway length. I also landed my Shuttle's flyback booster on the runway numerous times, and despite it being considerably bigger than the Shuttle, it also never needed the entire length of the runway. Hell, I have landed both shuttle and booster on the Island runway a few times after I overshot the KSC.

But there is one thing I would like to see: a full length taxiway alongside the runway, with a couple of additional runway exits. Especially for a Shuttle with flyback booster, it would be nice to be able to vacate the runway at various points along its length after landing the first one, to make room for the second landing.

For people who have a hard time taking off from or landing on the runway:

  • Add enough wings to your craft that it is able to fly at a reasonable speed, no more than about 100 m/s.  For comparison: touchdown speeds of real-life high performance aircraft vary from about 70 m/s (F-16) to 100 m/s (Space Shuttle), 105 m/s (X-15) with 123 m/s (F-104 with its blown flaps inoperable; with these flaps touchdown speed was 85 m/s) the maximum I have been able to find. 
  • Don't have the nose of the craft pointed down too much when it is on the runway. That way it will be hard to lift the nose (a maneuver called "rotate" in aviation) and get the wings to generate lift. If the wings point downwards with respect to the airflow, you are generating downforce. Useful if you are building a Formula 1 car, not so much for a plane.
  • Put the main landing gear slightly behind the center of gravity. If the landing gear is too far back you will not be able to rotate. I see a lot of spaceplanes that are only able to take off by running off the end of the runway, and often the problem is that the landing gear is too far back. A good test is to do a high speed taxi on the runway, and see if you are able to rotate. If your craft is well-balanced you should be able to taxi your plane a considerable distance on the main gear alone at a speed just below touchdown speed. A high speed taxi run also enables you to test the brakes.
  • Try to land with as little speed as possible while still flying. Approach the runway somewhat above this speed, and once you reach the runway threshold (at about 20 meters altitude or so), pull up slightly to lose more speed - this is called a flare. If done correctly you will start losing speed without gaining altitude. If you do gain altitude when flaring, try again with a lower approach speed. 
  • A more general tip is to try to design aircraft that are able to fly with SAS turned off. With SAS turned on, a KSP plane does not fly like a real plane at all, as the SAS will try its best to keep the nose of the craft pointed in the same direction, whatever you do. Learn to use pitch trim (Alt-S for trim up, Alt-W for trim down). Pitch trim is used in real aircraft to keep flying level without applying any force on the flight controls. The higher the speed of your craft, the less pitch trim you will need.
  • And another general tip: consider playing a different flight sim to learn to sim-fly. I for one can't wait for MS flight simulator 2020. Building and flying planes in KSP is in some respects much harder than, say, sim-flying a Cessna in MSFS: in KSP you take on the roles of aircraft designer and high performance test pilot, two jobs considered very hard in the real world. Whereas the flight characteristics of a Cessna are very well known, the performance of any KSP airplane design is anyone's guess untill you start flying it.
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17 hours ago, Superfluous J said:

I'm surprised that no one has mentioned the real reason the runway isn't any longer than it is. Kerbin is small enough that the runway we have is large enough to show the curvature of the planet. That's why planes roll forward on deployment: the runway there is actually sloped downhill.

Any larger and it'll just be worse.

Er, I mentioned that. 6th post.

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3 hours ago, Meecrob said:

Yaw control ineffective?

What yaw does for me 100% of the time is make the plane yaw a bit to the side, then rubber-band back, then start rolling the plane to the side and pitching towards the ground.

I don't even know what it's supposed to behave. I mean, I'm an Ace Combat player so I know what yaw does, but not how it works in KSP. So basically, each and every single one of my attempts to line up with the runway use pitch/roll only and end up diving headfirst over the edge of the runway because I've got no fine control. Hence why I'd like a wider runway.

3 hours ago, Meecrob said:

use the rotation tool to add angle if incidence (angle of the wing relative to prograde of the airframe)to the wing. try 5*.

Already doing this, I use 2° most of the time and tweak until SAS is slightly pushing the nose down while supercruising. Don't use dihedral because I don't even notice a difference.

3 hours ago, Meecrob said:

You NEED to be flying slower than that to land.

2 hours ago, QF9E said:

Try to land with as little speed as possible while still flying. Approach the runway somewhat above this speed, and once you reach the runway threshold (at about 20 meters altitude or so), pull up slightly to lose more speed - this is called a flare. If done correctly you will start losing speed without gaining altitude. If you do gain altitude when flaring, try again with a lower approach speed. 

And that's the thing: I can't precision-decelerate without airbrakes or thrust reversal. I can cobra to decelerate from supersonic to subsonic in a hurry, but that's it. Flaring always results in me either overshooting the entire runway because I'm approaching at 150 m/s minimum or stalling out into a 30 meter vertical drop onto the runway.

2 hours ago, QF9E said:

Add enough wings to your craft that it is able to fly at a reasonable speed, no more than about 100 m/s.  For comparison: touchdown speeds of real-life high performance aircraft vary from about 70 m/s (F-16) to 100 m/s (Space Shuttle), 105 m/s (X-15) with 123 m/s (F-104 with its blown flaps inoperable; with these flaps touchdown speed was 85 m/s) the maximum I have been able to find. 

My takeoff speeds are usually around 80 m/s. No problems with takeoff, only landing.

 

Maybe we should be taking this discussion elsewhere?

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11 hours ago, Fraktal said:

What yaw does for me 100% of the time is make the plane yaw a bit to the side, then rubber-band back, then start rolling the plane to the side and pitching towards the ground.

I don't even know what it's supposed to behave. I mean, I'm an Ace Combat player so I know what yaw does, but not how it works in KSP. So basically, each and every single one of my attempts to line up with the runway use pitch/roll only and end up diving headfirst over the edge of the runway because I've got no fine control. Hence why I'd like a wider runway.

Already doing this, I use 2° most of the time and tweak until SAS is slightly pushing the nose down while supercruising. Don't use dihedral because I don't even notice a difference.

And that's the thing: I can't precision-decelerate without airbrakes or thrust reversal. I can cobra to decelerate from supersonic to subsonic in a hurry, but that's it. Flaring always results in me either overshooting the entire runway because I'm approaching at 150 m/s minimum or stalling out into a 30 meter vertical drop onto the runway.

My takeoff speeds are usually around 80 m/s. No problems with takeoff, only landing.

 

Maybe we should be taking this discussion elsewhere?

Ok, so this is the perfect example of how video games try to simulate comfortable, relateable concepts but are wrong...same as movies, etc.
You should feel a "rubber band" when yawing. Yawing only changes where your nose is pointed, not your velocity vector. The rubber band is your vertical stabilizer saying "love you, stop hitting me in the side" but you are already past this point I take. I honestly think the best course of action is you posting a craft file because you are clearly not a noob. There is something that is probably not intuitive to correct with your design. Seriously, I think I sound like a jerk but honestly, the runway is way too big if you design your craft right

 

Feel free to message me, I'm replying because I bet there are a ton of people lurking who have the same issues you are having. But you said loss of control at low airspeeds and nose diving..You are supposed to lose control at low airspeeds, the trick is making it just controllable enough...If you consistently nose dive, you are running out of lift. Either get lower or add flaps. Get lower as in fly that sucker onto the ground like a badass...or more reasonably add flaps and reduce your landing speed. Even with action groups, KSP is crap for setting flaps. Try between 20 and 30* and do a fly-by along the runway...see how it handles...try to roll it without the nose dropping

Edited by Meecrob
Forgot to add..
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On 5/23/2020 at 4:37 PM, Northstar1989 said:

I know about (and use!) the DSN slider in Career.  The Stock DSN range is unrealistically low- even for a scaled-down Kerbin system.  The real-life Voyager spacecraft maintained (very weak) comms as far out as a bit past the orbit of Pluto, WITHOUT the kind of heavy dish-spam (you need TONS of the largest dishes for thos, due to diminishing returns from stacking antennas...) you need for anything like thos relative range in KSP

Note: despite its semi-similar physical characteristics, Eeloo is NOT a close analog of Pluto when it cones to Comms.  The Kerbin system only has one Gas Giant (despite the dev's originally promising two!!) which Eelop is sometimes CLOSER to the sun than.  By contrast, Pluto is far out beyond the orbits of all 4 gas planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune) in our own Solar System!  A comparable analog in KSP would have to cone from mods, like maybe Outer Planets Mod- the planets from which you CAN'T reach with a level 3 DSN even with the slider set to 2x, without ridiculous amounts of dish-spam (your only real option for probes is a Probe Control Point on the same mission!  And transmitting science home with 1-way probes?  Forget about it!)

You do realize they had to build additional infrastructure between when it launched and when they contacted it past Pluto to accomplish this right? If they had the same DSN, and compression methods they did when they launched it then they would've lost contact with it.

And the other reason this is the case is because KSP expects you to actually build out a relay network between you and the destination, and even gives you plenty of contracts to put satellites in nice convenient orbits around other bodies so you can even get PAID doing it. If you're actually trying to contact a probe directly with just the Kerbin DSN all the way out at Eeloo not only are you honestly not playing the way it was intended, but you're also setting yourself up for constant frustration as things eclipse and block your tenuous signal the entire way out.

Also aren't you playing a 3.75X Rescale? That's going to make the inverse-square law hit you hard, and break the stock dishes and DSN ranges. And that's not a stock problem at that point; that's you having a modded system and needing an additional mod/patch to bring it back in line with the expected balance that you broke by using mods.

Now for the real fun one here

Spoiler
On 5/23/2020 at 4:21 PM, Northstar1989 said:

A small unmanned shuttle, meant to launch inside the fairing of a rocket and land horizontally, X-37B style.  I gave it 2 small 0.625 meter jet pods (underpowered, meant for cross-range more than actual level flight), a 'Spark' rocket engine, and a 'Cub' Vernor thruster.

The fuselage was ultra-light, 1.25 meters, with structural fuselages in the back for length (as I was using FAR, the wings were highly-swept: the spaceplane was optimized for stability in high-speed re-entry and supercruise, not takeoff- which it would never do on its own in actual missions).

I placed the engine pods ABOVE the wings (to augment Lift, seems to be a thing in FAR, as the spaceplane couldn't fly at under 200 m/s without this, but was flyable down to about 90 m/s with it: after which it was impossible to maintain altitude without stalling the plane, due to very high wingloading).

I ended up having to drastically expand the wings (reducing sweep in the process due to fairing constraints), turn it into a supersonic BIPLANE (doesn't work well in FAR to my knowledge, though in real-life this can drastically improve supercruise performance if the wings are placed the right distance apart to cause destructive interference between the shockwaves.  Only works to reduce Drag at one speed for a given design, though, much like the forward below-water bulge on a ship hull...) and reduce the fuel-loading to kess than 1/3rd just to get off the ground for testing!

The thing could easily take off with a longer distance to accelerate: just with its built-in negative AoA on the ground (important for landings where the plane doesn't bounce, but makes takeoff harder) it had trouble getting off the ground at under 120 m/s (just BARELY feasible once I added the Vernor).  I had to also give it so little rocket fuel, to reduce liftoff speed, that the rockets flared out mere seconds after takeoff- often causing the design to nosedive into the ocean as it hadn't built up enough speed for the jets to reach maximal Thrust yet...  Making it to a high enough speed and altitude for stable flight only occurred about 10% of the tume before redesigns (note the rockets were needed to get the thing up to transonic speeds, where the jets could take over...)

This design wasn't built for actual horizontal takeoff, and it flew just fine at high speeds and altitudes- like was intended.  It ended up needing larger wings anyways for a safe glide-slope at KSC (this was how it became a biplane with only 60 degree wing-sweep instead of 72), as initially it came down way too fast and wasn't capable of prolonged level flight at such low speeds (once again, it could maintain altitude at Mach 0.7 and above- the 0.625 jet engines produce max thrust at Mach 1.3, and thus are *very* tricky to use in FAR planes with low TWR...) but I should never have had to make such drastic redesigns because of only a 2.5 km runway at KSC!

KSC in real life has a 4.5 km runway with 120 meters of paved width (90 meter runway, 15 m shoulders)- vs. 70 meters width and 2.5 km length in KSP...

This should never be necessary in KSP.

How hard is it to just give us a proper, 3.5- 4.5 km long runway?!

The runway segments are all virtually identical.  It doesn't require any new modeling- you basically just reuse the middle segments over and over!

The reduced width is a pain, but justifiable: craft in KSP need not be as large as their real-life counterparts.  But smaller planes (with the same TWR and wingloading) tend to have WORSE performance than larger ones, both in real-life and KSP: especially with FAR installed.  So we actually need a LONGER runway for takeoff if anything! (landing, admittedly, is easier with smaller planes: and usually the factor that drives runway length.  Hence why the Shuttles had a 12.1 km landing strip in the unpaved lakebeds near Edwards Air Force Base they used whenever landing in California!)

 

So this is filled with all kinds of wrong; first you didn't mention ANYWHERE in the OP that you were using FAR. That's important, and means that you're getting replies assuming stock aerodynamics which won't be helpful. FAR removes the fudge factor that stock KSP uses to allow such small lifting surfaces to generate enough lift to make "Kerbal-Sized" planes possible. This also means your takeoff, landing and stall speeds will all be much higher if you don't account for it.

And about making the runway longer; it's not about modeling time. It's that the combination of Unity's colliders, Terrain system and the lack of FP precision actually makes getting surfaces level much more difficult than just eyeballing it.

Iv'e made huge planes in KSP using FAR, and it took some time. But they made orbit; biggest issue was the landing gear.

 

 

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Spoiler
19 hours ago, Meecrob said:

I'm throwing this thought out there just to see what replies it gets, so here goes: Why don't you guys just learn how to build and fly planes properly? If someone said "Docking is too hard, lets add a tractor beam cuz I can't manage to maneuver my craft properly", people would tell you to learn to dock properly, no?

 

Here are some things mentioned in this thread and the solution to them in no particular order:

Yaw control ineffective? Try more vertical surfaces, make sure they are aligned prograde (use angle snap on rotation widget), mess around with control authority and movement. Yaw control is supposed to be ineffective if you are going -30* to +30* deflections. Try something smaller. Remember, when flying real planes, you messed up big time if you NEED to use full control surface deflection when not doing something like aerobatics. Of course, keyboard controls will make this difficult but visualize the fact that KSP thinks you are slamming the controls back and forth and design around this shortcoming of the game.

 

Wing size/stall speeds - This will take significant testing to tweak to a well-balanced aircraft and is admittedly usually where I give up and just launch something large for a change of pace. The basics are pretty straightforward though, start with your wings a size that "looks good" for your plane. Test fly, note down what you are trying to improve - in this case stall speed. Now back in the editor, use the rotation tool to add angle if incidence (angle of the wing relative to prograde of the airframe)to the wing. try 5*. Test fly, note new stall speed. Rinse and repeat until you maximize your design. Now go back and do the same but for dihedral (angle the wings make relative to the airframe when viewed head on...-o- vs \o/). The larger the angle from zero with the wingtips being deflected upwards will increase stability in the roll axis...to a certain point...clearly its not effective to have your wings at 80* dihedral. Unless you are an advanced designer, I would suggest a modest dihedral of 5* just to ballpark it...more advanced designs might have anhedral to enhance maneuverability...see the Harrier wing layout for an example. All of what I said is for cruise, so lets get to the nitty-gritty of making your plane dirty..I.E. gear and flaps out for slow speed flight.

***This is the big "SECRET"*** You can spend literally hundreds of hours tweaking your plane, but before I tell you how, I will tell you the thing you need to master first and that is airspeed control. Your plane still probably handles like crap even after tweaking the angle of incidence and dihedral/anhedral of the wings...that's OK. Test fly and use a landmark...your choice, whatever is easiest, but set a speed and hold it for a fly by. Now fly it again but slower...say 5m/s slower...and continue doing this while trying to do simple maneuvers like heading changes and note how your aircraft flies. You will come to a point where the wings simply do not generate enough lift and that's fine. Try flying that airspeed for as long as you can. You NEED to be flying slower than that to land. Landing is literally running out of lift from your wings while you are in close proximity to the runway. Chances are you can't really control the aircraft at this point, but at least you got practice at slow speed flight. Now we add some trailing edge flaps to give that extra bit of lift/control-ability when you are really bringing it in slow. Flaps help in two ways - they lower your stall speed and change the wing layout to allow you to have a more nose-down attitude for the same airspeed vs. without flaps. Add small flaps at the wing root to start. Ailerons for roll control are always outboard, flaps inboard. Do the test-flight thing again and tweak the deflection angle of the flaps, or size of flaps to suit your aircraft. This will probably take a while, but basically you are aiming for a speed that is slow enough you can coast to a stop and brakes are useful to expediate your landing...***you should have a landing speed slow enough that if your brakes hypothetically failed, you wouldn't care*** This is independent of aircraft size! Look on youtube for real life examples...the heaviest and largest aircraft have roughly the same landing speeds as smaller ones. If you have a large/heavy aircraft then the next step is leading edge lift devices AKA slats. Take those really long and skinny wing parts that are a throwback to the original C7 aircraft parts and toss them on the front of your wing. Again, play with the deflection angle to the aircraft's suiting, but in general you are looking to make your aircraft control-able at the absolute lowest speeds you can. Usually the deflection angle of the slats is lower then the trailing edge flaps. I hesitate to give numbers due to the sheer amount of configurations allowed by KSP, but in general, the heavier the aircraft, the more emphasis you ideally should have on the slats.

 

I'm going to post this now so you guys can tell me if I am full of crap haha, but if this is helpful, I'll post more tips.

 

This post frustrates me, and does so despite knowing you're just trying to be helpful. Why?

Because this is one of the biggest issues with even wanting to make planes in KSP! If i want to know how to do 20 gravity assists to do a grand tour of the Kerbol system; there's dozens of tutorials out there! If i want to know how to do anything but the most basic plane design in KSP? Jack excrements.

I can't git gud if there's nothing for me to get better with.

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If make the runway longer than the physics range in KSP (2+ km), won't this cause visual disappearing problems like I faced playing with KerbalKonstructs trying to build a chain of towers?

Did somebody create a KerbalKonstructs skyscraper taller than 2 km?

Edited by kerbiloid
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On 5/23/2020 at 10:37 PM, Northstar1989 said:

like maybe Outer Planets Mod- the planets from which you CAN'T reach with a level 3 DSN even with the slider set to 2x, without ridiculous amounts of dish-spam (your only real option for probes is a Probe Control Point on the same mission!  And transmitting science home with 1-way probes?  Forget about it!)

Pretty sure OPM lets you upgrade to a lvl4 tracking dish.

8 hours ago, Incarnation of Chaos said:

This post frustrates me, and does so despite knowing you're just trying to be helpful. Why?

Because this is one of the biggest issues with even wanting to make planes in KSP! If i want to know how to do 20 gravity assists to do a grand tour of the Kerbol system; there's dozens of tutorials out there! If i want to know how to do anything but the most basic plane design in KSP? Jack excrements.

I can't git gud if there's nothing for me to get better with.

I've designed planes myself, and thanks to KSP''s lack of spaceplane tutorials despite the plane hangar being labeled as the spaceplane hangar (Was it a mistake to call the plane hangar that, Squad?) I've never made anything big that doesn't explode on landing. Let's hope that KSP 2's developers aren't trash at teaching players to do things.

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just add some chutes....if you deploy them a split second before you touch down, your plane will pitch up, bleed speed, and land. It is really just trial and effort for building sstos too...

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15 hours ago, Lewie said:

just add some chutes....if you deploy them a split second before you touch down, your plane will pitch up, bleed speed, and land. It is really just trial and effort for building sstos too...

Please don't dismiss others' concerns.

The KSC runway is unrealistically short.  There is no reason players should have to struggle against this (and unlike many other aspects of spaceplane design, the length of runway needed for takeoff does NOT decrease with the scaled-down Kerbin system vs. real life).

Also, I'm not sure if you knew who you were talking to- but I'm an old hand and a pro at this game.  I can build spaceplanes in my sleep.  That doesn't mean I don't get incredibly annoyed at having to work with a runway that's a fraction of the size of ones in real life (also, it makes landing harder: which is still hard for extremely high-performance planes optimized for hypersonic performance in FAR- which forces you to make trade-offs in the design of your planes that make landing much harder, if you want the best performance for your spaceplanes...)

Edited by Northstar1989
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On 5/25/2020 at 4:55 AM, Incarnation of Chaos said:

You do realize they had to build additional infrastructure between when it launched and when they contacted it past Pluto to accomplish this right? If they had the same DSN, and compression methods they did when they launched it then they would've lost contact with it.

Additional GROUND-BASED infrastructure.  This would be the equivalent of purchasing a Level 4 DSN upgrade after a probe's launch in KSP.

On 5/25/2020 at 4:55 AM, Incarnation of Chaos said:

And the other reason this is the case is because KSP expects you to actually build out a relay network between you and the destination, and even gives you plenty of contracts to put satellites in nice convenient orbits around other bodies so you can even get PAID doing it. If you're actually trying to contact a probe directly with just the Kerbin DSN all the way out at Eeloo not only are you honestly not playing the way it was intended, but you're also setting yourself up for constant frustration as things eclipse and block your tenuous signal the entire way out.

You lack an understanding of the relative distances involved.

Relay networks are not meant to drastically EXTEND your DSN- they're made to provide signal around the far side of planets/terrain, and somewhat increase signal-strength while already in range.

To obtain 64% signal strength at 56.5 Gm (about 86% the SMA of Jool) further than the 80% signal range of the level 3 DSN (250G of power) you would have to add a 282 G relay (FOUR of the stock 100G relay dishes- for a MASSIVE relay mass measured in metric tons) in an orbit 56.5Gm out from Kerbin.

This would give you 64% signal when the relay was on a straight-line path between Kerbin and Jool (only a VANISHINGLY small % of the time) at a distance of about 82.8 GM (Jool-Kerbin when NOT in phase, but still not anywhere close to opposite sides of the sun: where distances exceed 130 Gm) using a 15G antenna on the craft in question.

At that point, where you invest that much time/effort in just relays, you're playing Kerbal Relay Network, not Kerbal Space Program.

 

In short, it's unrealistic to expect players to use Relay's to obtain a strong Kerbin-Jool connection.

I'm not going to debate this further- you seem set on trying to argue against this no matter what justifications I provide the stock DSN clearly needs a level 4 upgrade- for player sanity as well as realism...

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1 hour ago, Northstar1989 said:

Unlike many other aspects of spaceplane design, the length of runway needed for takeoff does NOT decrease with the scaled-down Kerbin system vs. real life).

This is correct, but unlike real life, its easy too get high twr designs in stock (high twr= shorter take off distance), and stock aerodynamics have really good coefs of lift at low speed (acting like high aspect ratio gluder wings at liw speed, and swept/delta wings at high speed), which makes low landing speeds relatively easy.

Scaling up the system makes it harder to achieve acceptable twrs (for orbital craft), and increases dry mass when landing, making it harder. At 3x I often taxi off the runway.

Anyway, stock scale doesn't decrease the runway length needed, but stock aero and part balance makes the stock runway fine for stock spaceplanes.

Start scaling up, or modding aero, and the runway length becomes a problem.

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35 minutes ago, KerikBalm said:

Scaling up the system makes it harder to achieve acceptable twrs (for orbital craft), and increases dry mass when landing, making it harder. At 3x I often taxi off the runway.

Anyway, stock scale doesn't decrease the runway length needed, but stock aero and part balance makes the stock runway fine for stock spaceplanes.

Start scaling up, or modding aero, and the runway length becomes a problem.

This is lmall largely true- but so many players play with mods (including FAR- which makes landing harder) that this has to be a consideration.

And, even if I am wrong about whether it is reasonable to account for modding, it *IS* easier to land of a longer/wider runway (new players- who likely start on Sandbox or Science, and thus with a max level runway) need all the help they can get in landing planes!

We shouldn't be making the game needlessly hard- this IS a game, after all- and I'm fully convinced that 90% of the opposition to this just comes from veteran players who want to think they are somehow "better" just because they can land huge spaceplanes right on the runway, and newbies csn't.

We shouldn't humor such horrible, selfish, arrogant egotism, and should make the spaceplane aspect of the game easier by adding a longer/wider runway at the KSC (and if you ask me, upgrade the Desert Runway as well- which new players rarely use, but are in for a huge shock if they do try- as it is even worse...), helping the mod crowd (a group that includes me- it's MUCH harder to land  ENORMOUS spaceplanes on the runway with RSS or FAR) as well in the process..

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Everyone, since there has been roo much off-topic discussion of the lvl 4 Tracking Station idea, and my ideas have continued to develop (there are other reasons for lvl 4 buildings- such as bigger/cooler-looking buildings with actual parking-lots), I have created a new thread on lvl 4 facilities.  I would request that you please take any discussion of the DSN, and NOT the runway idea, there.

OP will be edited as well.

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9 hours ago, Northstar1989 said:

Additional GROUND-BASED infrastructure.  This would be the equivalent of purchasing a Level 4 DSN upgrade after a probe's launch in KSP.

You lack an understanding of the relative distances involved.

Relay networks are not meant to drastically EXTEND your DSN- they're made to provide signal around the far side of planets/terrain, and somewhat increase signal-strength while already in range.

To obtain 64% signal strength at 56.5 Gm (about 86% the SMA of Jool) further than the 80% signal range of the level 3 DSN (250G of power) you would have to add a 282 G relay (FOUR of the stock 100G relay dishes- for a MASSIVE relay mass measured in metric tons) in an orbit 56.5Gm out from Kerbin.

This would give you 64% signal when the relay was on a straight-line path between Kerbin and Jool (only a VANISHINGLY small % of the time) at a distance of about 82.8 GM (Jool-Kerbin when NOT in phase, but still not anywhere close to opposite sides of the sun: where distances exceed 130 Gm) using a 15G antenna on the craft in question.

At that point, where you invest that much time/effort in just relays, you're playing Kerbal Relay Network, not Kerbal Space Program.

 

In short, it's unrealistic to expect players to use Relay's to obtain a strong Kerbin-Jool connection.

I'm not going to debate this further- you seem set on trying to argue against this no matter what justifications I provide the stock DSN clearly needs a level 4 upgrade- for player sanity as well as realism...

Do you know how many relay sats i have right now?

Four

One at Eve, One at Duna and One around Minmus and Kerbin.

You know where i'm at?

Jool; with full signal strength.

Again; if you are in a 3 times rescale and you have not modified the Dishes and the DSN then you will have issues.

For stock scales, the Level 3 DSN and Relay sats are fine.

On 5/25/2020 at 12:21 PM, Bej Kerman said:

Pretty sure OPM lets you upgrade to a lvl4 tracking dish.

I've designed planes myself, and thanks to KSP''s lack of spaceplane tutorials despite the plane hangar being labeled as the spaceplane hangar (Was it a mistake to call the plane hangar that, Squad?) I've never made anything big that doesn't explode on landing. Let's hope that KSP 2's developers aren't trash at teaching players to do things.

And i have also; though the only way iv'e landed larger planes is with chutes.

But yeah; KSP2 needs to improve onboarding significantly.

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On 5/24/2020 at 7:20 PM, Superfluous J said:

The level 3 runway should just be the runway graphic on the ground, stretched all the way from the grasslands to the sea.

Wouldn't that make more sense as a starting point.

Level 2 then adds the basic runway, level 3 adds a north-south that cuts off part of the grass. best not to upgrade till you have your landings down.

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9 hours ago, Incarnation of Chaos said:

Do you know how many relay sats i have right now?

Four

One at Eve, One at Duna and One around Minmus and Kerbin.

You know where i'm at?

Jool; with full signal strength.

Again; if you are in a 3 times rescale and you have not modified the Dishes and the DSN then you will have issues.

I am not playing re-scale right now.  And full (100%) signal strength at Jool is literally impossible without mods (there is *always* a signal drop: even in Low Kerbin Orbit.)  Above 99% signal or so, the game rounds up to 100- but to get 100% at Jool (or anywhere) requires a maximum range equal to more than 100x the signal path length, on average.

My discussion of the DSN was an aside from the topic of runways.  If you want to discuss it further, why not start a thread on that topic?

1 hour ago, Superfluous J said:

No because it's undeniably the best runway possible.

No one ever said "drive your plane back on to the runway it's easier to launch from there"

(In KSP)

And THIS is why we need a better ACTUAL runway!

Because right now, the grass has become the default landing-zone, at least, for most players.

A more realistic (larger) runway length and width would at least make the runway a bit more desirable...

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Agree. It's annoying to have to takeoff crazy fast jets with small wings and low initial acceleration and SSTOs from natural terrain and the polar icesheets.

Edited by Pds314
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