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Why doesn't anyone use the Inline Clamp?


Tortoise
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I frequently use it with spaceplanes. As i use Ferram Aerospace, the standard ports get ripped off by drag forces during launch. Besides that it looks cool and i love the animation. I stopped using it in .23.5 as its mass was increased to 1 ton... Now that it has been changed back to 0.3 tons in .24.2 i cant wait to unlock it in my new career game. I love that part.

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I don't use them because it's too easy to slap a regular clamp-o-tron to the side of an actually useful fuselage for generally better results, not even counting the reduced mass and better space use. I'd love the inline clamp-o-tron a lot more if any of the following were true:

1.) it saved mass over having an empty fuselage part with a clamp-o-tron on it

2.) there was some purpose to having walkways on the ship

3.) the docking port would extend/telescope outwards to make docking easier

This.

If there was a docking port that extended out it would make docking parallel to a station so much easier.

At the moment, it's just a shielded port (already useless) built into half a structural fuselage. Shielded port is 0.1t, fuselage is 0.1t so why is this 0.3? It should really be 1.5t just to break even.

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At the moment, it's just a shielded port (already useless) built into half a structural fuselage. Shielded port is 0.1t, fuselage is 0.1t so why is this 0.3? It should really be 1.5t just to break even.

I assume you meant 0.15t. I think since it's half the size of a structural fuselage, its mass should be based on adding 0.05t of a half structural fuselage with the 0.05 of a clamp-o-tron, and the 0.05 of the docking port shield (that's where the 0.15 comes from), but then the net mass should actually be a bit lower since they are all merged together. So I'm thinking 0.125t mass. Wouldn't hurt to also have a 0.05t half fuselage. I want one of those all the time. It's the full size that I rarely want. It's just not worth all that mass to use the inline clamp-o-tron instead, so I'll use L/Ox or RCS tanks, or batteries even though they end up less stable and more noodly.

----------

I have noticed a lot of people quoting uses for this thing in which they would be served at least as well if not better with a regular port (or a shielded port for deadly reentry) stuck on the side of another piece. The only significant difference is the part count.

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It seems a bit niche to me. Spacecraft that are going to move under their own power I and most players generally want to be symmetric, which is trivial with radially-attached docking ports but won't generally work with the inline port. Space stations I and most players generally want lots of docking ports on for expansion, and that's easier with radially-attached ports or ones stuck on a 6-way hub. There are good use cases for the inline port, but not so many.

Though it did get me thinking, a 2.5 m version might be handy, you could dock larger spaceplanes or sleek interplanetary ships to stations with it.

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I always use it on my ssto's because I like the way it looks for refueling and stuff, as pictured below. I think it looks more slick and in line (who knew?) with the rest of the airplane fuselage. A standard docking port on top of my plane makes it look unaerodynamic, although I ain't using FAR. It needs to be pretty, 1st priority.

Dyja1jd.jpg?1

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I see it as a handy extra port for when nothing else is available. And it may be a weak connector, but that is really as intended, as it is just meant for docking and undocking, not as a long-term connection where maneuvers would also occur.

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1. Too heavy.

2. Too ugly.

3. Too weak.

The part simply needs an overhaul. I'd rather deal with the reduced aerodynamic efficiency (using FAR) of a standard port than use this thing.

I usually put Jr.s on my space planes and I just build my stations accordingly. The Spaceplane Plus port has the right idea, include mono propellant. You need to have it* for docking anyway, so this kind of makes an excuse for the weight.

*Ok, you don't NEED to have it.

Edited by Alshain
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I like them for spaceplanes and dislike them at the same time. If I want to dock an ssto to a ship driving to another planet, keeping the ships compact and the weight down the center line can be easier to work with using a standard port mounted in the front or back. Just flying into space and docking at space stations or with other ships in the vicinity is where I use it. It looks sharper, but does have its own restrictions.

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I use this port on spaceplanes.

For all you talking about how you want it this way and that, why not modify it to suit your needs? Why wait for Squad? We can do it ourselves! If you have ModuleManager installed, copy this patch and save as a CFG file in your GameData folder, and get the 100 monoprop and the reduced mass. Edit it as you wish to suit your needs.


@PART[dockingPortLateral]
{
@mass = 0.125
RESOURCE
{
name = MonoPropellant
amount = 100
maxAmount = 100
}
}

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For all you talking about how you want it this way and that, why not modify it to suit your needs?

Because MM doesn't make it look better, nor does it resolve clipping issues. It doesn't even fit with stock parts, it's just that ugly. Compare the inline to the fuselage, it just looks terrible. The clipping issues can be worked around (though really it should open more like "supermarket doors" sliding inward rather than outward like a car door), but overall there is more wrong with it than the just the weight.

Edited by Alshain
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Because MM doesn't make it look better, nor does it resolve clipping issues. It doesn't even fit with stock parts, it's just that ugly. Compare the inline to the fuselage, it just looks terrible. The clipping issues can be worked around (though really is should open more like "supermarket doors" sliding inward), but overall there is more wrong with it than the just the weight.

I get the clipping issues if you place stuff on each side of the doors, but textures can be changed too. Honestly though, the entire stock parts catalog doesn't really have a unified look. Not at all really.

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I get the clipping issues if you place stuff on each side of the doors, but textures can be changed too. Honestly though, the entire stock parts catalog doesn't really have a unified look. Not at all really.

I agree, but there are various themes to be found in the stock parts, this one fits in none of them. The fuselage, the jet fuel, and the Mk1 cockpit for example all fit seamlessly. The inline in theory would be best utilized on planes like this (rockets just have so many other places they can put standard ports, or even the shielded), so you'd think it would match. But it doesn't, it doesn't actually match anything in the game, or at least not in the 1.25m parts. It kind of matches some of the larger fuel tanks. But again, it's not just one thing, it's all of them together. There is too much wrong with it, I just don't like using it.

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The fuselage, the jet fuel, and the Mk1 cockpit for example all fit seamlessly.

Although I can understand your other points, I must disagree with this one. Mainly because the Mk1 cockpit has heat tiles, which abruptly stop at the Mk1 fuel tank. This is weird because it seems to me that volatile fuel might need some heat protection. Not even to speak about how patchy it looks if this is again followed by a Mk1-Mk2 adapter fuselage.

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Although I can understand your other points, I must disagree with this one. Mainly because the Mk1 cockpit has heat tiles, which abruptly stop at the Mk1 fuel tank. This is weird because it seems to me that volatile fuel might need some heat protection. Not even to speak about how patchy it looks if this is again followed by a Mk1-Mk2 adapter fuselage.

Good point, maybe not seamlessly, but still better than the inline clamp-o-tron

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I think is has it's niche to fill

I tend to use it as something different on station's and SSTO's.

It works well enough to be used as a docking port for small carft like station solar array's :cool:

And yes it needs to have its weight reduced of mono added to it to explain for the extra mass but I like it as it's yet another stock part with animation to it.

NgWv9lT.jpg

xb6aHci.jpg

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