Tutorial by Oicani Gonzales on how to get to the moon and back:
Our hero, Jeb:
The VAB (Vehicle Assembly Building)
When entering the VAB to construct a new craft you will be prompted by a window asking for which command module to use. More can be added with mods mods.
All of the following parts are vanilla and not all available parts are listed here. More can be added with mods.
Solid Fuel Rocket
Description: High thrust for a short period of time. And unlike the liquid fuel rocket its fuel is stored within itself.
Liquid Fuel Rocket and its fuel tank
Description: Moderate thrust for a longer period of time, this time can be extended by stacking fuel tanks on top of eachother
The liquid fuel rocket works by attaching the rocket muzzle itself to the end of the liquid tank.
There are two kinds of liquid engines, they are largely the same. However, one supports engine gimbal which increases how steerable it is by changing the angle of the thrust. You can see which one is which in the game by hovering your mouse over them (it's also the one on the right).
Command & Control:
Advanced S.A.S Module
Description: When activated (default key 'T') this module will try to compensate and keep the craft orientated exactly how it was when activated. If you have winglets and/or RCS blocks attached to your craft it will automatically make use those as well to keep it straight.
Description: As long as this module is attached to the rocket and you hold the F key (or t to toggle), it'll apply force to attempt to keep the rocket straight. More of these will make the craft more stable but will add to the overall weight.
The difference between regular and Advanced S.A.S is that regular makes it difficult to change rotation, whereas advanced tries to maintains one rotation.
RV-105 RCS Thruster Block
Description: This part uses RCS fuel which is provided by the RCS Fuel Tank. What RCS does is that it enables more powerful rotation and translation motion. Rotation is what is implies; rotating motion of the craft. Translation, however, is when you move the entire craft forward, back, left and right, up and down without any rotation.
Abbreviation stands for "Reaction Control System".
Default key 'R'.
Structural & Aerodynamic:
FTX-2 External Fuel Duct
Description: This fuel duct transports fuel from the firstly placed connection point to the second, meaning it goes from one fuel tank to another. This is perfect for external fuel tanks, because fuel will be depleted from the tank that was chosen first and fill the second one. That empty fuel tank can then be jettisoned.
LT-2 Landing Struts
Description: These are landing struts which are used to land a craft. When these are placed on your craft (preferably using symmetry on) they are folded upwards in such a way that they are space efficient, and when deployed (default key 'G') they rotate to a downward position (as seen in the picture above).
TT-38K Radial Decoupler
Description: attachable to the side of a module, and on it other things (such as rockets) can be attached.
When the stage that the decoupler is part of is activated, the decoupler detaches from the module it's attached to. Extremely useful.
TR-18A Stack Decoupler
Description: This decoupler is only attachable to the top/bottom of a module, and it will detach itself from the module above it when its stage is activated
TVR-1180C Mk1 Stack Tri-Coupler
Description: You can attach 3 modules to this one while it itself is attached to a single module. However, it's not detachable itself like the decouplers.
EAS-4 Strut Connector
Description: Can be added to make your craft more stable by connecting two points; creating a rigid connection.
AV-T1 and AV-R8 Winglets
Description: Aerodynamic wings that are attachable to your craft.
Utility & Scientific
Description: Attachable to anything like everything else and will extend a parachute when triggered in a stage. Its main use is to land the command pod safely in case you re-enter the planet or didn't reach space.
The orbital map (Default Key 'M') displays your current orbit. Your orbit is represented by a blue and green line (blue at the Apoapsis, green at the Periapsis). There are also two nodes at the lowest and highest points of orbit, these are called Periapsis and Apoapsis. The highest point is Apoapsis, and the lowest is named Periapsis. When referring to an orbit around the earth (in this case Kerbin), Apogee and Perigee can be/are used.
This is what it looks like when an orbit has been established.
When holding your mouse over any of the three nodes visible (Ap, Pe or the pod node) they will display information regarding that node's altitude and speed.
Correcting your orbit:
To modify your orbit, here's what you do:
To lower your Apoapsis, make a Retrograde burn at the Periapsis.
To raise your Apoapsis, make a Prograde burn at the Periapsis.
To lower your Periapsis, make a Retrograde burn at the Apoapsis.
To raise your Periapsis, make a Prograde burn at the Apoapsis.
Now, what is prograde and retrograde? They are simply the names of which direction of motion you're facing. For example, if you're facing the same direction as the direction of motion, that's Prograde, and when facing the opposite direction of motion is Retrograde.
You can also thing of the whole orbit-correction-thing in a more simplistic and logical way: lower your speed to lower the altitude of the orbit, increase your speed to increase the altitude of the orbit.
By modifying your orbit is also how you reach the Moon; you raise the Apoapsis to the Moon's distance (11,5 thousand kilometers) and hope for the best. Although you must also time it correctly so that you and the Moon "meet" eachother at one point, namely the Apoapsis.
Orbital data: https://gist.github.com/1073201