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Everything posted by RizzoTheRat

  1. My initial design for a science lander had it stood on top of a launch vehicle attached via a docking collar, so it could return to low Minimus orbit and refuel from the boosters remaining tank. However it appears docking collars are a bit too wobbly for this and combined with the fact that the collars don't snap to position meant I ended up with an off center payload and an unflyable wobbly rocket. With several struts on it was rigid enough but pulled to one side and my plan to reattach the booster stage for the flight home made Jeb feel seasick. Mk 2 has a docking collar on the top of the nosecone and one on the side of the main tank, with the lander attatched to the booster by a normal decoupler ring. This is nice and stable but means I can't fly home on the booster as planned. Is there an obvious trick I'm missing here for producing a rigid vessel that can split in to separate sections but dock back in the original positions?
  2. Given that this is my current lander configuration I don't think adding a lab would make it too top heavy. Not sure of the dimensions but as an alternative to sticking the lab on top, I might be able to get 3 materials bays and 3 tank/engines arranged around the lab with the 4th materials bay on top and the capsule on top of that. Good point about re-entry parachutes though. Si the crash tolerance higher if you splash down rather than landing on..er..land.
  3. I saw an interview with a NASA astronaut who reckoned the most unrealistic thing about the film Gravity was that as far as he know there wasn't a single female NASA astronaut who would let go of George Clooney if they got their hands on him
  4. Given how low the gravity is on Minimus is it easier to land the science lab as well as the experiments and do a series of short suborbital hops to cover various biomes rather than docking with an orbiting lab every time? I put 2 landers on Minimus last night, both with 4 x Materials labs and 4 x goo canisters. With that configuration it was easiest to have 4 fuel tanks and 4 engines which means it's massively over powered and over fuelled so ought to cope with a lab too. After I'd done all the experiments in a crater I had Bill hop his lander up on to the highlands to take another soil sample and EVA reports, and hardly used any fuel doing it.
  5. Only my 4th mission outside Kerbin orbit and I decided to go for a big science mission Glad the aerodynamics model isn't very good On the way to Minimus Jeb plants the flag Bill sets off in the second lander while Bob stays in orbit to collect data at high and low altitudes on an eccentric orbit Jeb and Bill have plenty of fuel to get back to Kerbin independently but it might be a bit tight for Bob, although he's carrying a lot less mass than he was on the way out.
  6. That's what I was going to do but I'm now slightly confused, I'd read that linked post as meaning you can only ever achieve 40ish% of the total science by using the lab, can you keep going back several times to end up with the same amount of science as if you'd returned all the experiments? Here's my original Minimus lander. It's evolved slightly as it's done 2 Mun shots since then so I've researched some new parts. The next iteration will be wider as it was tricky landing last time as I hit a slope
  7. Very rarely buy any processed foods except filled pasta, although we do quite often have sausages from our local butchers. On the rare occasion I do eat any processed food I usually find it very salty. Stuff we regularly cook includes bolagnase, lasagne, tomato/veg based pasta sauces, soups, chilli, fajitas, currys, roasts, grilled meats and fish, stir frys .... all sorts really. Plus I make my own bread and the mrs makes a few jams and chutneys.
  8. I think that pretty much sums up my KSP experience so far too
  9. Change "nice margin for error" to "reserve to cope with poor piloting skills" and you're spot on. I've landed that configuration on Mun twice now and both times used aerobraking to get back down to Kerbin as I've been worried I wouldn't have enough fuel to deorbit Having just read the first bit of the "science bomb" thread linked above I've now got a better idea how the science works and will go for a quad materials bay/goo lander next time. Thanks to the science from the last trip I've now unlocked the mainsail and big orange tank so I reckon I should be able to launch a big mission with 2 or 3 landers on it which separate in mun orbit and return independently.
  10. I use the smallest Rockomax tank on my lander to give a nice wide base for the feet, and enough fuel for a 909 land me on the mun and get back to Kerbin with a materials lab, a couple of goo canisters, and a Mk1 capsule. Good tip on the radar altimeter, I'd assumed that was something I'd eventually be able to research and add on to the ship. On my second foray to the Mun I had Jeb (should have been Floyd really) land on the dark side of the mun, only to realise he'd forgotten to specify landing lights on his craft. He reverted to the tried and tested technique of the "temporal altimeter"...namely quicksaving and making a note of the altitude the crash happened at
  11. Sadly he didn't manage to get a selfie a few minutes later when he hopped out of the hatch and the capsule fell over on top if him
  12. The problem with that is the more detailed and accurate the model is, the smaller the target audience, and as a result the price has to be higher. Personally I can't wait until some of the things you mention are improved, but a lot of people want an easily accessible cartoony game that sucks them in. As for those saying they'd happily pay a lot for it, would you have done without having played it, or only having played the demo? The current price is very competitive for computer games, and there's a big trade-off between unit cost and number sold.
  13. After his successful second mission to the Mun, Jeb managed a rather interesting landing in the highlands
  14. Not convinced. If you go straight up you've got a "horizontal" component of velocity of whatever the surface rotation speed is, assuming an equatorial launch that's about 1000 mph on earth, no idea on Kerbal. To get a geosynchronous orbit above earth you're going round the world in the same time, but 35M km higher up, so need to be doing about 7000mph
  15. Interestingly there are people looking at using little cubesats to clear up space debris. A British company Surrey Satellites are looking at developing low cost cube sats that attach to orbital debris and drag it out of a stable orbit. They're using some interesting COTS kit like mobile phones as flight computers and X-box Kinect sensors to map their surroundings. http://www.sstl.co.uk/STRaND-2-docking-nanosatellite
  16. Useful tip on the thrust limiter but I'd be worried that I'd get it wrong and need full power but can't access it fast enough If you've not already seen it watch Scott Manley's tutorial on landing on Minimus, his approach of burning retrograde to keep your speed to 100m/s or so on the way down mean's you get a good feel for the controls before you get low enough that it really matters. I used an LV-909 on my Mun lander which was probably quite a bit heavier than it needed to be and I still ended up over doing the thrust a few times at low altitude. I think the above post has got the gist of it, practice, practice, practice.
  17. As one of those noobs I'm glad I don't seem have made as many mistakes as some, but so far... Reached orbit with craft I intended to send out to Minimus before realising I hadn't fitted solar panels. Took off in my vertical launch atmospheric test aircraft (no landing gear researched yet hence the vertical takeoff) before realised I'd forgotten to fit parachutes to get it back down again. Failed to uncover the mystery of the [ and ] required for a rescue mission and asking the question on here. Wondered why my jet powered aircraft went in to an uncontrolled spin at about 20km and spent ages trying to fine tune the centre of mass/lift before realising the wings were stalling. The last one is probably the most embarrassing so far on the grounds that I have a degree in Aeronautical Engineering and several hours solo in gliders I came across KSP via a thread on another forum (Pistonheads) where there seemed to be a several people who just thought if they just went straight up fast enough they should stay there and hadn't figured out how orbiting worked.
  18. As a noob taking my first tentative steps in to space my exploits seem pretty tame compared to many I read on here, however I'm impressed with Jeb's progress this weekend: Running out of science to do on or around Kerbin Jeb took 3 canisters of goo and a materials lab in to Mun orbit on the very first foray outside Kerbin orbit. This gave enough science to research some important stuff like solar panels and landing struts to enable longer missions. He then went to Minimus on his next mission, and made the first ever powered landing. He chose to do this not because it was hard, but because Scott Manley said it was easy. His payload of 3 canisters of goo and a materials lab again made an important contribution to science. He very nearly lost his life in the name of progress on his next mission, to plant a flag on Mun, and perform vital research on the surface with his with 3 canisters of goo and a materials lab. Landing used more fuel than anticipated, leaving him very short for the return trip. Luckily he had enough doughnuts on board to manage a slightly longer return journey, hitting a highly elliptical orbit around Kerbal and aerobraking through 4 orbits to eventually splash down only a few miles for the space centre. In recognition of his efforts Jeb has been given this evening off but then his task for the rest of the week will be to visit different biomes on Mun and Minimus to conduct further vital research.
  19. Dammit, I searched for searched for terms like Rescue mission, EVA, Thombar and Suit and didn't find anything. I'd better read the rest of that Far now
  20. Some excellent info, thanks. Think I need to start with Engineer but FMRS sounds ideal for a 2 stage spaceman.
  21. One of the missions I've just attempted is to rescue Thombar Kerbin in orbit. Poor chap seems to be cruising round Kerbal in his space suit at about 110km. I've built a rocket with a second cockpit which is empty, and rendezvoused with him in orbit, but now I'm stuck. As he doesn't work for me it seems I can't control him and use his jet pack to get him in to Jeb's spare seat whcih was my original plan. I've gently bumped the crew hatch in to him but I think he's asleep and not taking the hint. I've not researched the robotic arm yet but if I get that and grab him presumably I still won't be able to get him on board to be able to get him back to Kerbin safely. Any suggestions?
  22. Played the demo briefly years ago, but decided to give it another go at the weekend and now have the full version. Loving the new career mode. The science part was a bit of a drag early on but now I'm starting to get contracts that give me a decent amount of science too it's picking up, and the contracts provide a great way of getting in to the game as you need to think about how you'd test each part which gives a fairly good progression. What I hadn't realised is what a massive time sink this thing is, I've been glued to it for hours the last few evenings My tentative steps so far: Pretty much reached the limit of science I can achieve on Kerbin and in orbit with EVA observations, ground samples, temperature readings and mystery goo, I've been trying to land in different places every time for soil samples but not sure if I've covered everywhere. Built a vertical launch (no wheels yet) jet plane which has been very useful in performing contracts to test stuff in atmosphere (parachutes, decouplers, engines etc), and with 4 radial chutes I can recover it intact so it doesn't cost me much. Way easier than trying to attain the right height and speed in a rocket Researched docking collars and RCS thrusters last night so lofted Jeb in to a 100km orbit and then spent a large part of the evening working out how to get Bill's identical ship to dock with him (Bill's first mission so I'm blaming the time taken on him not me ). Definitely a satisfying feeling when I finally managed it. Shame there doesn't seem to be a test docking collars contract though as that seems to be an important step in learning to explore the universe. As I'm running out of low orbit science I think after I've had another few practices at docking I'll go for a Munar orbit and get some science out there, along with getting an idea of how much power I need get there and back, before I go for a landing. I guess I ought to have a go at controlling a lander type craft on Kerbin before I try and land it on the mun though. By then I should have researched some more parts to make space planes viable, and see if I can manage single stage to orbit, or a reusable 2 stage design. So a few questions: Is there an easy way to check if I've got all available science from the Kerbin habitats, or do I need to go through the list of all the science I've done to work it out? Does the game allow a SS1/Whiteknight style 2 stage aircraft where both parts are flyable, or if I build something with 2 pilots and separate in flight will one stage just automatically crash? Why isn't there a Chris Kerbin with big moustache?
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