I have built a small sub-assembly with a small docking port. I have also added a small docking port to my rocket. During construction in the VAB the ports never snap together but I am able to align the two.

Once I am landed however there is no option to decouple. The only option given is "control from here" on the right click menu.

I seem to be missing a step?

  • It might sound obvious, but did you try clicking the other docking port? There is usually only one of the ports which has the "decouple" option.
    – Philipp
    Mar 24, 2015 at 8:28
  • Posting a screenshot might help to find the problem. When that doesn't help either, posting the .craft file of the vessel would allow us to try to reproduce the problem.
    – Philipp
    Mar 24, 2015 at 8:35
  • I had this when I didn't realise they weren't actually coupled in the VAB, they weren't aligned and so actually were welded.
    – Paul
    Apr 17, 2015 at 21:59

2 Answers 2


Docking ports can be docked to anything in the VAB, but can only be undocked afterwards. As your docking port doesn't have that option, it seems that it isn't docked at all! There probably is something else holding your ship together, as without a working docking port it would've fallen apart. There are several reasons this could've happened:

Are you sure you placed the docking ports the right way round? It should look like this when docked: It should look like this when docked

Are you building a 'loop'? It is impossible for parts to have multiple connections to each other. For example, you can't connect a part to your ship using multiple docking ports in parallel, as that would create a 'loop'.

  • 2
    Your last sentence is a bit misleading. While it is impossible to have parallel connections in the VAB, you can have parallel collections when you dock during flight: wiki.kerbalspaceprogram.com/wiki/File:Triple-docking.png This used to be a common technique for more stable connections before the large diameter docking port was introduced and docking connections were made a lot less wobbly.
    – Philipp
    Mar 24, 2015 at 8:27
  • @Philipp Is right. You can multidock post-launch (although it is basically the hardest thing to do in the entire game). In the VAB multidocking (looping as Aaganrmu calls it) is impossible.
    – Coomie
    Mar 26, 2015 at 1:35
  • @Coomie no, the hardest thing to do in the entire game is to return from Eve surface. Actually, I don't find multiport docking that difficult. You just align like you would for normal docking and then rotate the craft until the ports align.
    – Philipp
    Mar 26, 2015 at 8:13

Decouplers can decouple when only one side is placed against a non-decoupler node in VAB. However, it must be a node, not a surface.

A decoupler has a back side and the decoupling side(the side that would couple to other decouplers). The backside may be placed anywhere on the craft surface. However the decoupling side must be connected to a node. If you put the decoupling side on a surface instead of on a node, then it will not have a decoupler option.

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