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15 hours ago, Jack Joseph Kerman said:

Doesn’t pretty much any rover without self-propulsion drive slow as molasses on Minmus? Low gravity reduces how much power the motors will apply, reducing top speed. 

I know that, but I think it's more to do with the weight of the van. The whole thing weighs about 22.5 tons, it wasn't particularly fast on Kerbin to begin with, but Minmus' almost nonexistent gravity only makes it worse

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On 11/19/2021 at 2:05 AM, Jack Joseph Kerman said:

Doesn’t pretty much any rover without self-propulsion drive slow as molasses on Minmus? Low gravity reduces how much power the motors will apply, reducing top speed. 

no, not really. acceleration is lower because the wheels will skid on the ground, but there is no gravity limitation to top speed. well, except the speed at which you stop driving on the surface and you start taking suborbital jumps. that speed depends on the topography as much as anything else. on minmus, on the flattest grounds, i reached 58 m/s - the theoretical limit for the ruggedized wheels. even on the other terrain, i could easily reach 30 m/s, thanks mostly to minmus being very even.

It's also more difficult to control the rover in low gravity; it takes practice, and special training. if you're not deactivating reaction wheels, them alone will veer your rover off course.

To drive in low gravity, my preferred method is to have a rover with powerful reaction wheels, which are deactivated during normal driving. have a hotkey to activate them, and do it when you start losing control. use the reaction wheels to keep your rover wheels pointed at the ground. this way, the rover won't be ever broken.

top speeds i reached on small moons with this approach and ruggedized wheels are:

minmus: 58 m/s (flat), 35 m/s (normal terrain)

pol: 12 m/s (normal), 20 m/s (downhill); poll terrain is extremely rugged, it's impossible to move without bouncing around places

bop: 50 m/s; despite its mountainous nature, it is rugged on the large size, but the surface is smooth enough to pick up speed.

Ike: 70 m/s (downhill) at that speed, it's more suborbital jumping than driving. I could have gone even faster, but I broke a wheel

gilly: 4 m/s. doesn't look like much, but 15 m/s is enough to orbit, it's actually a lot. stopping was complicated.


there seems to be a hard limit of 1/4th to 1/3rd of the orbital speed, go that fast and you won't be in contact with the ground anymore. unless on perfectly flat ground.

rugged topography lowers that limit.

the wheels themselves have a 58 m/s limit, which can only be surpassed going downhill

jumping downhill faster than 70/80 m/s is too likely to break wheels

gravity itself is not much of a problem unless you surpass the hard limit

Edited by king of nowhere
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5 hours ago, king of nowhere said:

powerful reaction wheels, which are deactivated during normal driving. have a hotkey to activate them,

I have my rover controls bound to the arrow keys so that I can just leave SAS on all the time in low gees. A lot of my smaller rovers probably just front flip if somebody with normal keybindings tries to drive them now that I think of it.

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On 11/15/2021 at 3:54 PM, INPrint said:

Viking-M-2 science rover exploring Mün



Viking-class is currently my main type of uncrewed science rovers for yet another Soviet-themed career. The most noticeable feature of its design is adjustable angle mechanism of two main solar panels, which can be set to any angle between 0 and 60 degrees. This helps not only to provide more sunlight when sun is far from zenith, but also to protect panels from breaking during hard wheel-to-surface collisions. Top speed of this rover class is just above 30 m/s, but recommended cruising speed is 20 m/s. To get rid of excessive maneuverability, which can be dangerous in low-gravity environments, only front pair of wheels are steering. This measure sacrifices a bit of low speed performance and makes any attempt to move backwards very clumsy, to say at least, but travelling within cruising speed margin is mostly safe. Two SAS modules can provide additional steering at low speeds or stabilize rover during jump or freefall. Clearance is enough to travel across most edges but the sharpest ones without scratching the bottom, and chassis is sturdy enough to survive impact with vertical speed less than 25 m/s, though these are not recommended. Full science pack, excluding only materials bay, makes sure that any region exploration with this rover will provide throughout and reliable data. Two joint sockets at the rear may be used for transportation purposes, e.g. by Vikhr' spaceplanes.





Yoink! Your (quite good tbh) design is now mine

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Some rovers ranging from 2017 to 2021...

In order:

1) Craft refueling rover powered by rockets instead of torque

2) Long-distance exploration rover with mining equipment and fuel cells to keep it powered during night operations

3) Hybrid rover/plane/boat for Eve exploration, has folding wings and electric ducted fans

4) Mid-tech, long-distance rover powered by torque and rockets to compensate for its weight






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6 hours ago, SSTO Crasher said:


moderators can I have this post moved to sstos, the problem is that I tried to get a url but it’s so long that it will crash the page whenever the forums restores the content

Sorry, what? Try hosting your image on Imgur. It's easy and no-charge. 

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11 hours ago, SSTO Crasher said:

Where is the converter on Imgur 

There is no converter. You create an account, then upload your image to the account. Once the image is uploaded to the account, right click and select "copy image link" then paste that in the forum text field area. Presto - you're done.



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Active Bendy Rover

An ongoing work in banging head against wall.


The idea was to make a rover which could handle higher speeds on Mun and not flip. So far it works pretty well but only on Kerbin. Not really fast in any sense but whatever speed you can get out of it on Kerbin it wont flip even on slopes. Of course you can flip it on certain terrain but it's an improvement.


The passenger section translates to the inside of the corner and the inside wheels are pulled up and inward bring the COG closer to being directly over the inside wheels. The outside wheels extend and push down. The passenger section also rotates to try to maintain ground clearance. The motor sizes, torque, transverse rates also change while steering. The hinges provide some nice suspension when you get the settings just right. However, 'just right' tends to often mean 'that bump' and other bumps are not so right.


To get it working on the Mun i have to tune the 'suspension' to the gravity there. The biggest current headache is the lateral transfer not just flipping the thing to the inside of the turn :lol:

Kerbal X page


To compare with or without the hinges just disable the controller. I like making it because it's fun but sometimes i think it's no better than a rover without extra suspension which is lighter because less parts and lower.

Oh and if i try to put damping into the KAL i only get a range of 0 to 1 which gives 0 to 1 on the hinge instead of the 0 to 200.

I have several versions with various heights etc....by far the best performing on the moon is the one with a kraken drive for downforce but if you manage to flip that and the drive is pointing up in the sky it's a very very long accident.



Edited by WaveyD
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