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Effective docking aids (for 1st person)

Discussion in 'Survival' started by Cronos988, May 15, 2015.

Thread Status:
This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.
  1. Cronos988 Junior Engineer

    Hey everyone,

    So I have been playing with a self-imosed "no 3rd person" limit for quite some time, and have gotten pretty good at camera-assisted docking with connectors. That said, it's still fiddly, and only really works for static connectors. Getting a ship in position to dock with a piston-mounted connector is often very imprecise, requiring me to basically monitor the connection process.

    And then there is merging, which is an incredible PITA to do without 3rd person. Connectors at least give you a.) direct feedback via the pull and are b.) not all that demanding in terms of accuracy. Merge blocks require pin-point accuracy, have no feedback and failure to dock properly can have catastrophic results.

    So my question to you guys is: do you have any good ideas for docking aids? I considered projections, but I am not sure what the most efficient projection would be. I have had good sucess with cameras that are below and several blocks behind the blocks I want to dock/merge, but that is not always an option, especially on large ships where you can't simply slap another block on.
  2. fourthquantum Senior Engineer

    There's a mod called Autopilot that will dock automatically for you. But I'm not sure that's what you're after. I guess you could always use wheels in someway.
  3. EEBKiller Trainee Engineer

    Im using simply remote controls and antennas.

    I hop out of the vessel i have to dock, connect to it via antenna /broadcast and then remote control it to its destination watching with my "own" eyes. You are also able to turn your head in 1st person with Alt + Mouse
  4. Devon_v Senior Engineer

    Have you considered a hybrid system where you use connectors to guide the ship into place so that you can make the merge?

    Something like


    so that the pair of connectors pull the ship into alignment.
    • Like Like x 2
  5. Don Leo Trainee Engineer

    I've installed cameras on my ships, even small ones. I'm in the early phases of a new survival world and I need to only align with a connector to drop off ores. I put a camera facing down next to the ship connector and just swap to the cam to check if I'm aligning.

    Could maybe put the camera on the place you need to land and connect via antenna?

    edit: ooo, what about puttingon some gattling guns or something that gives a laser dot for guidance
    Last edited: May 16, 2015
  6. torgo Apprentice Engineer

    Camera on the ship, sound block as the target. Center camera on sound block (assuming they are both correctly placed in relation to their respective connectors), drive it in. I've also tried something a little more creative with LCD screens as the target. Just need to learn some programming to swap the images as the ship closes in to make it perfect.
  7. GotLag Senior Engineer

    I've used paint markings, and aligning camera views with certain blocks. For example, centred detail blocks like pillars and interior lights can give you convenient places to put your camera crosshairs.
  8. Cronos988 Junior Engineer

    But that doesn't actually work, because the camera crosshairs are off-center (the viewpoint seems to be the same as it is for a cockpit, where your head is at about 2/3rds of the block). It's accurate enough to dock two connectors directly, but it's too inaccurate for merge blocks or aligning a ship with a piston-mounted connector.
  9. GotLag Senior Engineer

  10. iN5URG3NT Senior Engineer

    How about using spaceballs or wheels around your connector like this:

    X = Blank
    C = Connector
    O = Spaceball/Wheel

    Front: Side:
    XOX OO
    OCO OO
    XOX OO

    Might help you line up connectors without breaking your ship,
  11. Sinbad Senior Engineer

    I mount a camera or cockpit on the station or carrier I'm docking at that has a good external view of the merge blocks. I get roughly aligned using painted crosses, a switched off interior light or something else for reference. then I step out (or switch back to station control for drones) view the camera (or jump in the cockpit) then remote control it in with a good view. although I am eagerly watching Wicorel's small autominer mk3 for when autodocking gets figured in. http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=433545870
  12. dustnbone Trainee Engineer

    Using a pair of connectors to "pull" the merge block into alignment seems like the simplest solution to me. And some visual aids to get close enough to allow the connectors to take hold.
  13. Mike55520 Apprentice Engineer

    My merge blocks are always bordered by a pair of connectors on either side, it automatically aligns the merge blocks plus allows cargo xfer
  14. ndwar Apprentice Engineer

    If you place a camera on the block above the connector, then align your sight just above the connector you are trying to dock with* you get almost perfect docking each time.

    *~The lights on the connector really help here, aim slightly above one of them.
  15. Ronin1973 Master Engineer

    If you mount a spotllight within camera view and shine it adjacent to the receiving connector, the focus of the light will change as you get closer to the target. You can read your distance by just looking where the light is and how tight the circumference of the beam is.
  16. QuantumInc Trainee Engineer

    I have noticed that in the case of small grid to large grid connections a camera attached to an armor block directly on the small connector will line up exactly with one of the lights on the large connector.
  17. Radma Kanow Apprentice Engineer

    Sensor triggered LCDs. Place 4 LCDs somewhere where you'll have good visibility, in a cross pattern. Link 4 sensors (one for each LCD) that detect your ship. Set LCDs to display arrow pointing toward docking point / X. Program sensors so they change LCDs display picture with INPUT=arrow, NO INPUT = X. Set sensor fields when your ship is docked.

    This way all you have to do is generally align towards docking point, sensors will do the rest. At first you'll see X'es (you being out of range). When you get off-course and enter sensor field - LCD will display an arrow showing you in which direction you must move to re-align. When all 4 LCDs display arrows it means you are at proper position and all you need is to move forward just to get connection.

    Ta-da, you have docked easily.
  18. kcjunkbox Senior Engineer

    Docking camera mod. Let's you put a camera right inside of the connector so you just line up with the other connector looking through the camera that is in your connector. Easy
  19. Jacob Ellinger Trainee Engineer

    you know how connectors have those lights on the sides? I just put a camera on the right side of the one on my ship and align my camera with the light on the side of the one on the ground and it is generally correct and will 100% of the time land you close enough that it docks.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  20. Sagi Apprentice Engineer

    a sensor connected to a light when your ship is very near to the docking stations alse helps alot.
  21. Michael_6748967 Trainee Engineer

    The way I to do it is to have a dedicated landing pad for each ship, landing gear on the ship, and color blocks yellow on the pad where the gear should land and lock. Gently tap the C key repeatedly until the feet make contact with the landing pad (it will bounce a little), then hold C until the ship sits flat on the pad. That way I end up consistently straight, level, and in line/range of the dock's connector. Add a piston+connector on the landing pad, then configure the piston's max distance. Add a button panel to reverse the piston and switch lock of the dock's connector.

    Last edited: Jul 19, 2016
  22. russo_bolado Junior Engineer

    Another way to effectively dock ships was the use of Autopilot with Remote Control in the same axis as the Connector; with carefully placement of Waypoints, correct orientation + a Timer Block to aid connection, you could safely lock, even in 1st person.

    But Autopilot is bugged in its current iteration, which leads us to manual docking. @Radma Kanow's idea is very nice, though.
Thread Status:
This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.