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United States Air Force Museum Replica Collection


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While I was walking through the National Museum of the United States Air Force last Saturday, I was reminded of all the KSP replicas of those same aircraft. Some of them looked like they can be done with pure stock parts and no DLCs, while others (mostly the older ones) need mods that come with more parts.

 

So, I started this thread for everyone to showcase their replicas of the aircraft that the four large hangars (plus the Missile Gallery) have on display. The guidelines for this showcase thread are simple:

  • You are free to use any and all parts necessary, including ones that come in DLCs and mods.
  • Vehicle has to be functional.
    • Which means pictures/video of the craft in action.
    • Similar performance stats are a plus.
    • EXCEPTION: if the craft in question could not move on its own (as in it needed to be attached to a larger assembly to go anywhere) then the functionality requirement may be waived.
      • e.g. the Apollo 15 command module. You'll only need one picture of your best replica (or half-assed; it shouldn't make a difference in that case), since it's useless unless attached to the rest of the spacecraft.
        • If you want to make the rest of the rocket assembly, fine. Only the capsule made it to the museum, and that's what I need.
  • Vehicle has to look as close as possible to whatever real-life craft you're trying to copy.
    • Therefore, it is highly recommended that you have photographs to reference.
  • Build something not yet claimed on the checklist (link below) first.
    • EXCEPTION: for craft that appear more than once in the museum (such as the Superfortress and the Twin Mustang), you may only sign off on one of your craft's variants. Leave the rest of them for others to claim.
      • e.g. I only do one Twin Mustang; the one in the Korean War section in Hangar 2. I'll leave it to someone else to get the other Twin Mustang in Hangar 3 and claim it on the log.
    • If you want to show something that's already been showcased on this thread, fine - but you don't get credit for it.
  • I don't care if you built the craft 7 minutes or 7 years ago, so long as it's yours.
    • If you have an old stash of aircraft replicas that you're willing to showcase (and can work), great.
  • Weaponry (e.g. guns, bombs, missiles) not necessary, although I won't object to them either.
  • If the original aircraft was manned, so is your replica. If the original aircraft was unmanned, so is your replica.
    • I won't object to a probe core for your manned aircraft if it doesn't deviate too much from the aesthetic, so long as you include the appropriate crew module/s.
  • You don't need to match the passenger/crew capacity of your original aircraft, so long as your replica comes close to looking like its real-life counterpart AND it's functional.
    • e.g. if you use one or more Mk. 3 Passenger Modules for an Air Force One variant, as long as your aircraft makes a convincing replica I don't mind you exceeding or falling behind its real-life counterpart's passenger capacity.
      • Those things weren't designed for carrying a lot of people anyway; just provide comfort for the president and his staff.
      • (SIDE NOTE) Whoever builds the Douglas VC-54C "Skymaster," I'm not requiring you to install an elevator in the back to load polio-stricken passengers in and out. If you do and the plane still flies smoothly, even better.
        • The one housed in the museum was designed specifically to transport then-president Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who needed a wheelchair.
  • Craft files a plus.

 

Below is the link for the replica checklist:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1tA9IGsSCQIuTFjw9eNHYcgv8JboCxKiAy9ep5-nflR0/edit?usp=sharing

 

Here are the instructions on how to use it:

  • Pick an aircraft that has not already been built
    • Like I said earlier, if you want to build something that's already been done here, don't steal credit from the original kerbalnaut.
      • And for duplicates, you can only claim one of the type. 
  • Once you're done, write:
    • Column D: Your KSP Forum name
    • Column E: The link to the specific forum post showcasing your replica/s
      • It is acceptable to put more than one craft in the same post. Just leave a link for everyone to find it.
    • Column F: Whatever DLCs you used to make the replica
      • If this doesn't apply to that specific craft, leave it blank
    • Column G: Whatever (parts) mods you used to make the replica
      • If this doesn't apply to that specific craft, leave it blank
    • Column H: (IF YOU WANT TO) Additional notes that other readers may find interesting
      • Please don't modify someone else's notes. If you want to debate/talk to someone about their craft, don't do it on the spreadsheet.

Source for my list: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_aircraft_at_the_National_Museum_of_the_United_States_Air_Force

 

I'll start us off with my favorite, the SR-71 Blackbird.

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  • The SR-71 Blackbird on display in the SPH
  • Picture taken February 2020.

 

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  • Ted Kerman enjoying himself flying at high altitudes at a speed higher than the aircraft's real-life counterpart.

 

There you have it, folks. Have fun, and I can't wait to see what you got.

Edited by Mars-Bound Hokie
Writing duplicate entry and "just sitting there" exceptions
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I guess it would be appropriate to start off with, well, the start of it all?

https://kerbalx.com/swjr-swis/Kerman-Flyer

"It's an older model, sir, but it checks out."

Would this qualify? There are some obvious concessions to the likeness, but as pure stock non-DLC replicas go, this is pretty close. Up to you though.

 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, swjr-swis said:

Would this qualify?

"This aircraft is crude, but it should be adequate to pass off as a replica of the Wright flyer."

  • In other words, yes it qualifies.

 

Impressive work with making it all-stock and non-DLC, by the way. I never saw that coming. Feel free to write your name in the checklist.

Edited by Mars-Bound Hokie
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8 hours ago, Mars-Bound Hokie said:

Impressive work with making it all-stock and non-DLC, by the way. I never saw that coming. Feel free to write your name in the checklist.

In my defense: it was built in 1.2.2; DLC didn't exist yet so there wasn't much of a choice. Been toying with updating this to at least 1.3.1, so the aero performance is up to date with all the later versions. I just haven't got around to it yet.

The Wright brothers went through a number of different iterations of their Flyer, and record of the differences is sketchy at best, so it's hard to put a finger on exactly what iteration this is most like. I added it under the Wright Flyer "B", because the military version was the one that added a machine gun, I think. I've seen no pictures that show the whole of that one, and I've never been to the museum, so I don't know for sure. If you think it should be otherwise let me know.

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  • 5 months later...

Since I visited the Air Force Museum again yesterday (twice - and yes, twice on the same day) and the Armstrong Air and Space Museum - along with the Waco Air Museum in Troy, OH, I was inspired to play KSP again and revive this thread.

 

Anyway, here's my next entry: the Boeing YF-118G Bird of Prey.

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  • The YF-118G Bird of Prey on display in the SPH.

 

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  • Jeb and Bob circling around the KSP to depart 2-7-0 (west).
  • Afterburner activated.
    • Flight starts in subsonic mode.

 

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  • Successful landing after a nice test flight.

 

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  • Bob golfing performing an experiment on Kerbin's surface upon landing.
  • The Mk. II cockpit has four repair kits and four experiment kits in the cargo bay.
    • I don't know if they stayed in the craft file upon upload.

 

Can't wait to see what you all come up with. 

Spoiler

On an unrelated note, I recently got the Breaking Ground expansion pack. I wonder what kind of aircraft engines I can come up with now.

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And here I go again. Behold, the Boeing X-45.

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  • The Boeing X-45 on display in the SPH.
  • Closest I could get to a functional replica with all stock parts.

 

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  • Flying as close to its real-life counterpart's cruising altitude speed as possible

 

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  • Safe landing.
  • The F3 Menu said that almost 2,000 km was covered, and I had approximately 75 units of fuel left.
    • A little disappointed that I didn't make the real-life counterpart's combat range of 2,400 km. Even so, that's still pretty impressive.

 

Come on, people. I can't cover the whole museum by myself here (even though I have Breaking Ground). I can't wait to see your all's replicas in action.

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The one pictured was the 2nd attempt, the first one I did was before the DLC s, the electric motors, servos and props of the DLC helped the flight performance of this one greatly, still a little wonky when transitioning to foward flight. Probably one of the tougher builds for me technically because of all the variables.

https://kerbalx.com/kerbalwerks/Bell-V-22

 

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After some playing around with the Breaking Ground DLC, I finally managed to make a replica of the Lockheed P-38 Lightning.

 

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  • The (gas-powered version of the) aircraft in the SPH.
    • More on that story later.
  • I didn't have any US Army Air Corps flags loaded in my game, so I stuck with the US flag. 
  • It took me a long time to not only get a motor-blade combo that worked, but a balanced CoM and CoL placement.
    • The regular propeller blades were weak, so I went with the duct fan blades (especially since they never failed).

 

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  • Jeb flying up north in the aircraft in an attempt to climb over the mountain range.

 

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  • The aircraft's performance stats were pathetic, but they were adequate to maneuver through the mountains to the north.

 

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  • Nice cockpit shot.

 

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  • After a successful landing, Jeb stepped outside for an "Old-timer's selfie."
    • A camera on a tripod with a timer.
  • Apparently, he didn't set the timer correctly and it took a shot of him going up the ladder.
    • "I was going for a pinup pose on the nose."

 

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  • For a while, I thought the off-road takeoff test would fail since it took me the full runway's length to get off the ground. Good thing this worked.

 

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  • All Jeb said was "WILDCARD, BI(censored)! YEEEEEEHAAAAWWW!" before bailing out of the aircraft. Upon recovery, the probe core indicated nothing was wrong with the craft before Jeb bailed - causing it to crash without a controller.
  • Jeb was unharmed, but the same couldn't be said for the P-38.
    • It's "manner of death" was marked as "Pilot Stupidity."

 

The "Electric Boogaloo" Origin Story

Spoiler

I was disappointed by this craft's performance, although the rules did say that it had to look as close to its namesake as possible AND be functional. Since @18Wattcompared my Eve drone prototype to the P-38 (although he typed P-47 by mistake), and said prototype worked out so well in my electric vehicle circumnavigation challenge, I figured I might as well modify my P-38 prototype for electric motors. 

Not surprisingly, it performed way better than its gas-powered counterpart.

 

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  • The "Electric Boogaloo" version of the classic P-38.
  • This version originally didn't have solar panels and RTGs, but over 25k electric charge isn't so bad.
    • Of course, you can only use it for so long before it's done for.

 

Truth be told, this version would have been a valid entry for this collection. After all, it does look like its namesake AND, as seen in the screenshots below, it works. 

 

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  • What a beautiful day for flying, especially for the solar panels.
  • The electric plane didn't need the entire runway to take off, unlike its gas-powered brother. 
  • Like the Eve drone prototype I previously mentioned, its speed leveled off at ~120 m/s (even at 1/3 throttle) and its altitude fluctuated while remaining straight and its wings level.
    • At least the altitude change wasn't too concerning, unlike the gas-powered P-38.

 

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  • Off-road landing test successful.

 

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  • Off-road takeoff test successful.
  • Jeb was ordered to fly back to the KSC and was threatened with termination if he bailed out without reason again.

 

Craft file: https://kerbalx.com/Mars-Bound_Hokie/P-38-Lightning-ELECTRIC-BOOGALOO

 

So, there you have it. My replica/s for the Lockheed P-38 Lightning. Now that you know about the two variants, which one of those two would you rather take into battle? Feel free to answer in your replies below.

  • Personally, I'd go for the electric version due to superior performance alone. If the mission is taking place during the day, then I have unlimited range.
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12 hours ago, Mars-Bound Hokie said:

I was disappointed by this craft's performance

A while back I adapted a very similar looking plane with dual props, on a request for help in this forum. The final version performed very nicely for a gas-powered prop. Feel free to take any part of that build to get a performance boost for yours. I think it should be possible to get upward of 250 m/s out of it, even with the bigger wingspan yours has.

https://kerbalx.com/swjr-swis/DDE-proptest2

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On 10/5/2022 at 1:37 PM, swjr-swis said:

A while back I adapted a very similar looking plane with dual props, on a request for help in this forum. The final version performed very nicely for a gas-powered prop. Feel free to take any part of that build to get a performance boost for yours. I think it should be possible to get upward of 250 m/s out of it, even with the bigger wingspan yours has.

https://kerbalx.com/swjr-swis/DDE-proptest2

Thank you very much, @swjr-swis. I took your advise and updated the gas-powered P-38 version, tested it, and posted it on KerbalX.

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And now, for my next trick, I shall replicate the North American F-82 Twin Mustang.

 

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  • The North American P-82/F-82 Twin Mustang on display in the SPH.
    • It had a "P" designation in its early days, then the Air Force began assigning "F" in front of fighter aircraft.
  • Due to the large difference in landing gear height, the craft was tilted with its nose(s) pitched up in the SPH.
  • Its root part is the probe core on the left fuselage (from the pilots' perspective).
    • To increase power capacity and lower the nose length difference, the right fuselage has a battery between its cockpit and motor.

 

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  • Night flight around the KSP.
  • I decided to revert to launch and wait until late-morning to do the off-road landing test.

 

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  • Flying around with both its ladders deployed. 
    • At least Jeb didn't jump off this time.
  • At a couple points during the test runs, this prototype was performing at (if not better than) its real-life counterpart's absolute top speed.

 

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  • "Who says men can’t be pinup models?" (Jeb)

 

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  • Turned around and flew toward the mountains.
  • To save fuel while maintaining altitude and velocity, I had to reduce throttle to less than 1/3 (forgot exactly where).

 

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  • After clearing the mountain range west of the KSC, I landed in some bumpy terrain. Good thing I had the reverse thrust action group handy (although I didn't know if the real-life version had it).

 

WORD OF ADVICE: Pay attention to the takeoff and landing instructions on the craft page, and you'll be fine. 

 

Come on, kerbalnauts. I can't do all 245 remaining craft all by myself (243 if you ignore the second Superfortress and Twin Mustang). If we all work together, we can cover the entire museum's collection in no time. 

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This has got to be the laziest entry on here: the Apollo 15 Command Module.

 

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  • Using Vesselmover, I relocated this three-piece capsule to the admin building.
  • If you look at the picture of the command module on display, you'll find that this screenshot and the photograph don't look that much different.

 

Only 244 to go - and yes, that includes the two duplicates I mentioned earlier. I'm eager to see some (slight) design variety.

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