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Category Archives: Getting Started

Manufacturing 201 – Tech 2

Tech 2 manufacturing is a clickfest. If you don’t like having to do a great deal of clicking, just wanting  to installing jobs once a week, move on. You will be clicking a lot.

That said, the profits with Tech 2 manufacturing can be pretty good. They’re more sensitive to market conditions than many T1 products, but all that means is, check your numbers before you start.

Tech 2 BPOs

First, get the idea of Tech 2 BPOs out of your head. You will, likely, never lay your hands on one. They can make substantial profits, but they’re limited on throughput. They generally sell for several years of profit. Sure, they have a low time investment, but other than that, they’re generally not worth it. They’ll tie up a substantial quantity of capital, with a low ROI. There are one or two markets where you can’t compete with them. These are small markets, however. Ones where the BPO throughput is high enough to completely fill the demand. The majority of Tech 2 stuff, across all of New Eden, comes from Invention. And that’s pissed off a fair number of people with the BPOs.

Invention

This is where most people start with Tech 2 manufacturing. You can, sometimes, buy T2 BPCs on the market. They’re relatively rare, however, and expensive, compared to inventing them yourself.

Skills:

Required:

  • Science 5
  • At least one of the following. They’re requirements for the science skills.:
    • Engineering 5
    • Mechanics 5
    • Electronics 5
  • At least one of:
    • Amarr Encryption Methods
    • Minmatar Encryption Methods
    • Gallente Encryption Methods
    • Caldari Encryption Methods
  • At least 2 of the science skills. You’ll find these normally running in pairs, like Quantum Physics is common with Hydromagnetic Physics, or Nanite Engineering with Molecular Engineering.

Worth having:

  • The rest of the encryption methods.
  • A larger number of the science skills.
  • Laboratory Operations 5
  • Advanced Laboratory Operations 4. These two are just so you have more slots to work with.
  • Scientific Networking 1+. For when you move into a POS, or want to roam.

You may notice I’m not mentioning levels for a lot of the skills. That’s because you can work with them at 1. Higher is better, and will give you better results, but you can get started at 1. Plan to get them to 4, but it’s not a requirement to get started. Just take it into account with your math.

The invention process

Pick something to make. Exactly how you do this, is a whole different topic. The short version is: Think about what people use; then check the math (say, using my blueprint calculator)

Tech 2 BPCs are created from Tech 1 BPCs. In general, you want max run copies for modules (300), weapons(300), drones(1500) and ammo(1500), and single run copies for ships and rigs. The ME and PE of the Tech 1 BPC is irrelevant. 0 is absolutely fine. Mine tend to be better, but that’s because I also often manufacture from the BPO they’re copied from.

The skills you need to invent from the Tech 1 BPC are on the Bill of Materials Tab, on the Invention tab (big surprise). It can be worth checking the details for the resultant BPC as well, to make sure you have the skills to actually manufacture the module. Those show up on my Calculator.

The materials needed to do the invention will also show up on that tab. They will consist of:

  • A data interface.
  • 2 different kinds of Datacore.

The datacores will match the science skills required to invent the module. The interface will match the racial Encryption Methods skill. There are different interfaces for doing modules/weapons/ammo/drones, rigs and ships, per race.

The datacores will be used up, regardless of if you succeed or not. The interface will not be used up, and will be immediately available for doing another run. So if you’re doing this all in the one station, you only need one of each type.

There are also Decryptors that you can use. These are getting renamed in Odyssey, to a consistent naming scheme. For now, ignore them. They’re valuable when it comes to ships and rigs, but for most invention jobs, they’re a waste of money. I’ll cover them in a note below.

You can also use Meta versions of the thing that you’re inventing. This will affect the chance of success, depending on your skills. Higher skills = a better bonus from a Meta module.

The Method

  • Stick everything in the appropriate hangar. If you’re using a POS, the BPC can be in the corp hangar at the station, but everything else needs to be in the array.
  • Select the blueprint, right click it, and pick ‘Invention’.
  • Select the appropriate installation slot for actually doing the invention in.
  • Select the input/output hangars appropriately.
  • Pick the Meta module if you’re using one.
  • Pick the decryptor if you’re using one.
  • Pick the output type. Some things can turn into two different types. Like a Rifter can become a Wolf or a Jaguar. Most are 1 to 1 though, requiring no changes.
  • Hit ok
  • At this point, you’ll get a quote. If you’ve put everything into the appropriate places, you can hit accept quote.
  • When the job completed, deliver it. you’ll be told if it succeeds or fails. If it’s succeeded, you’ll have a T2 BPC.

The Math

You will fail when you do invention. You’ll fail a great deal. Suck it up, and put the cost into your calculations.

The chance of success, for invention, depends on your skills, the thing you’re inventing, the meta level of the module you’re using (if any) and the decryptor you’re using (if any). The formula is pretty simple, but to make life easy, I have a standalone calculator, as well as building it into the blueprint calculator (just click on Invention Material Requirements).

The Invention Formula

Base * (1 + (0.01 * E) ) * (1 + (S * (0.1/ (5 - Meta Level))) * D

  • Base – Base chance
    • Modules and Ammo have a base probability of 40%
    • Frigates, Destroyers, Freighters and Skiffs have a base probability of 30%
    • Cruisers, Industrials and Mackinaws have a base probability of 25%
    • Battlecruisers, Battleships and Hulks have a base probability of 20%
  • E – Racial Encryption Skill
  • S – Science Skills. Add them together.
  • Meta level – The metalevel of the module you’re using.
  • D – Decryptor modifier. Use 1 if you’re not using one.

So, a Tech 1 item (no meta level) has no effect. A meta 4 item, when you have both skills at 5 makes a huge difference.

When working out how much to charge yourself for each blueprint take the number above (it’ll probably be 0.something. 0.42, if you have the minimum skills needed. Divide the cost for one run (materials, slot costs, your time cost) by that number, and you’ll get the cost per blueprint. (divide that by the number of runs, for the cost per unit) Yes, I initially said multiply. Consider that a brainfart. The calculator does it right 😉

The Number of Runs you’ll get

In general, if you use a 1 run copy, you’ll get a one run copy back if you succeed. If you use a max run copy on modules/ammo/weapons/drones, you’ll get a 10 run copy back. If you use anything with ships and rigs, you’ll get a 1 run copy back.

The only way to change this is using a Decryptor.

The formula is:

MIN(MAX(ROUNDDOWN( (Input T1 BPC Runs / T1 Max Runs Per Blueprint Copy) * (T2 Max Runs Per Blueprint Copy / 10) ), 1)+ Decryptor Runs Bonus, T2 Max Runs Per Blueprint Copy)

Those numbers are all in the SDE. Specifically the table invBlueprintTypes

Manufacturing

Actually making Tech 2 stuff is pretty much the same as making T1 stuff. Get the materials, cram them into the right hangar and install the job.

The only real difference is /what/ those materials are. You’ll have a bunch which are construction components. These are made, in general, from things made from Moon Goo. Consider making them yourselves, as the profit margins on a bunch of them are pretty damn good. You will need the science skills for this too. Cost them at an appropriate isk/hr when you do all the math for the final product.

Notes

Blueprint Copies

These are the hardest thing to lay your hands on, when you’re getting started in invention. Empire copy slots tend to be filled up for days in advance, and you’ll need a bunch of copies to keep up with your manufacturing. Many T2 producers throw up a POS with an advanced lab or six, to keep themselves hip deep in copies, so they can move with the market. Consider low-sec stations for your copies. They’re low bulk, so something small and fast can shift them.

Decryptors

These modify your chances of invention, and the output ME/PE/runs of the blueprint. They’re used up when you do the invention, and tend to cost millions, so be careful what you’ll use them for. Make sure you’ll be making enough profit on an average run for them to be worth it. My calculator does /not/ take the cost of decryptors into account. Modules are generally not worth it. Ships and Rigs can be, especially with a boost to the number of runs you get back.

When you’re using a decryptor which modifies output runs, consider using max run copies for ships and rigs. These will give you 1 additional run, over a 1 run copy. With the higher copy time as the downside.

Did CCP nerf the invention chance with this release

No. Random is random. You will get runs of bad luck, just as you’ll get runs of good luck. These may coincide with a release. If you look at the figures, as a whole, they will average out. And you will remember the bad runs, more than the good runs.

Starting Capital

Have a lot. You’ll be burning through BPCs at multiple per hour, with a cost of >200,000 per run in datacores (successful or not). Then there are the materials for the modules. The margin is better than T1, but you’ll still need plenty.

Manufacturing 102 – Research

Research is an important aspect of industry in EVE online, though it’s one that, initially, all you have to pay attention to is the output, rather than how to do it yourself. This is because there are plenty of people out there who are more than willing to sell you the fruits of their labours, saving you time and ISK when you’re just getting started.

All forms of research take up a slot. You can increase the number of slots you can use with the Skills Laboratory Operations and Advanced Laboratory Operations

The Forms of Research

There are three basic forms of research which you can perform. Copying, Material Efficiency research and Production Level research. The latter is also called Production Efficiency research, just to confuse matters; it has nothing to do with the skill. For now, we are totally ignoring Invention and Reverse Engineering. I’ll return to Invention in a later post. Reverse Engineering, well, I’ve not touched it yet.

These activities can only be performed on a Blueprint Original (BPO). Once you have a Blueprint Copy (BPC) the only thing you can do is manufacture from it.

The maximum time a job can run for is 30 days (Unless a single run would take more than that.)

Copying

This is as simple as it sounds. Install the job, get back the BPO and a number of copies with the same ME and PL.

  • Put a Blueprint Original in your hangar (or a corp hangar)
  • Right click on it, and select copy.
  • Select an installation to put it in
  • Pick the number of runs you want on each copy
  • Pick the number of copies you want.
  • get a quote
  • Install the job.

Blueprint copies are of severely limited utility. Most of the time, you’ll just manufacture directly from a BPO. You’ll use BPCs for invention (so many BPCs. So very many), where you want to give other people the ability to use your BPOs, without handing them over. When you want to sell them to people who are just starting out, and who don’t have the funds for buying a researched BPO.

Material Efficiency

  • Put a Blueprint Original in your hangar (or a corp hangar)
  • Right click on it, and select Material Research.
  • Select an installation to put it in
  • Enter the number of levels you wish to increase the ME by
  • get a quote
  • Install the job.

Material Efficiency research is important. Most blueprints have between 5 and 10% waste what’s controlled by this figure. However, ‘as high as possible’ isn’t the way to look at this. A general rule of thumb is: Each time you double the ME level, you halve the waste. It’s not quite true (The waste is multiplied by \frac{1}{1+me} ) but it’s close enough. This only applies to the ‘Base’ materials for a blueprint, not the ‘Extra’ materials. Research blueprints to the point there you’re not losing a lot of isk with every run. Don’t chase perfect, because it’s not worth it. You may find high ME levels sell better, even when they’re massively above the perfect value (Rigs are easy to get perfect. I’ve seen people selling them at 10 times the perfect level)

The biggest problem with ME research, is finding somewhere to do it. Most High-sec slots are booked solid a month in advance. Your options are: Wait (High opportunity cost) Put up a POS to do it (Expensive, and requires standings) Hire someone to do it (Check the sell orders forum) and finally, nip into lowsec and install the job there (Riskier. You could get exploded and lose the blueprint)

Consider the last one seriously. Low-sec isn’t to be feared. Taken with caution, sure, but not feared.

Finally: This adds to the ME level.

Productivity Level

  • Put a Blueprint Original in your hangar (or a corp hangar)
  • Right click on it, and select Time Efficiency Research.
  • Select an installation to put it in
  • Enter the number of levels you wish to increase the PL by
  • get a quote
  • Install the job.

Productivity research cuts down on the time wastage when you’re making something. It saves you a little ISK, by reducing the rental fees, but otherwise, there’s no direct boost to your profit. What you get is a better isk/hr, by producing more in the same time.

As with ME research, we’re talking diminishing returns. I’d suggest taking the vast majority of blueprints past PE 5 or 10 is a mistake.

As with ME research, this adds to the PL level, rather than setting it.

PE research facilities are generally fairly empty across Highsec, so finding somewhere to install the job is simple.

Notes

In general, T1 blueprints have no material requirements for these kinds of research. Just to make life difficult, there are a few exceptions, such as the Prototype Cloaking Device. When you’re doing the research on one of these blueprints, just ensure you have the appropriate materials, found by doing a show info on the blueprint, in the hangar where the research is taking place.

If you want to know where the profit balance points are for a blueprint, take a look at the blueprint in the calculator under tools on this site. I wrote it to make my life easier, so you may as well use it too.

Skills

There are a few skills which it’s useful to have when you’re doing research. Levels are less important than for Manufacturing. Train as desired. Science 4 is required to unlock Metallurgy.

  • Science: 5% reduction in blueprint copying time, per level.
  • Laboratory Operation: 1 additional Job per level.
  • Advanced Laboratory Operations: 1 additional Job per level (needs Lab Ops 5)
  • Metallurgy: 5% reduction to ME research time, per level.
  • Research: 5% reduction in PL research time, per level.

Manufacturing 101

The basics of manufacturing in EVE are pretty simple at their core: Get a blueprint, get some minerals/components, put in a manufacturing job, deliver it when it completes.

But as with most things in EVE, there are little twiddly bits to take into account, various bits of maths it’s helpful to know.

This post is for T1 manufacturing. Later posts will cover the T2 process.

What this post isn’t going to cover is identifying what to make. That’s a whole post all to itself. short version: Make what people will use. Sell it close to where they’ll use it. Make sure it’s profitable before you start.

Rule One

Run the numbers before you buy anything. Blueprints, materials, whatever. Make sure it’s actually profitable to make, before you go and buy the blueprint. Don’t assume that Drakes are worth making (they aren’t, and haven’t been for a fairly long time) just because a lot of people fly them. For running the numbers, a blueprint calculator is your friend. But double check the numbers, just to be safe.

Skills

T1 manufacturing is fairly light on required skills:

  • Production Efficiency

This skill is used to reduce the waste of materials when you make things. Without it, you’re going to be needing around about 20% more materials than someone with it at 5. So as you can see, it can have a fairly major effect on your profitability. I’d recommend getting it to at least 4 before starting, with getting it to 5 in the near future. You can make ISK without it at 5, but you’ll be losing profit. A serious manufacturer will have it at 5. The only reason not to, is because you’re busy skilling up more slots, and can make more profit getting another slot, than reducing your waste. Go for 5 before Mass production 5, certainly.

  • Industry

Time is money. Reducing the time taken to make something, as long as it’s already profitable, increases your profit over a given time frame. Industry cuts down on the time it takes to make things. You’ll need it at at least 3 to get Production Efficiency and Mass production. 5 is good to get, but it’s not immediately vital.

  • Mass Production

You won’t get rich making one thing at a time. Mass production adds extra lines for manufacturing, which increases your potential profits. 5 is good.

  • Advanced Mass Production

As above, adding more lines. You’ll need Mass production 5 to get this. Taking it to 4 is generally as far as most people take it, before training alts.

For basic T1 Manufacturing, that’s about it. You might want to consider Supply Chain Management, so you don’t need to visit the station you’re actually manufacturing at (as long as the minerals and blueprints are there), but it’s far from needed.

Rule Two

The minerals you mine are not free. If you can only make a profit manufacturing something, by using the minerals you mine, you’re subsidising someone else with your minerals. You could have just sold them, and made more money.

Materials

Acquiring materials is simple. You go to the market and you buy them, before shipping them (either yourself or by a freight company like Red Frog Freight.  When working out if something is worth making, always look at the sell cost of your materials. Use buy orders to get them, if you want to, but price everything as if you were buying from buy orders. (Assuming that the prices are reasonable. Some materials aren’t sold for reasonable prices. But for T1 manufacturing, this can be ignored)

If you can’t make a profit on something using this guideline, look at making something else. There are many items in EVE, so don’t get too tied up in the “I make X” mindset.

Blueprints

Blueprints come in 2 types. Blueprint Originals (BPO) and Blueprint Copies (BPC). They’re pretty much the same except for the following differences:

  • Only BPOs can be researched. This includes making BPC from them.
  • BPCs have a limited number of production runs on them.
  • BPOs are bought from NPCs on the Market, or from PCs via contract.
  • BPCs are only available from contracts, or being found on NPC wrecks.

BPOs have two attributes which can be changed. BPCs have the same attributes, but they can’t be changed.

  • Material Efficiency (ME)

This governs how much inherent waste the BPO/C has. For most, this starts at 10%, and is multiplied by 1/1+ME, So ME 1 halves the waste. ME 3 takes it to a quarter, and so on. Some blueprints have a ‘Perfect ME’ which is meaningful (no waste) and achievable in a reasonable time. Many don’t, with their ‘perfect’ value taking years to attain, and saving a single Tritanium. 5 is reasonable. Use a blueprint calculator to see where it is worth taking it. A blueprint that is used for thousands of runs is worth researching more (or buying pre-researched).

  • Production Level (PL. Also known as PE, just to confuse matters)

This governs the time waste a BPO/C. Again, the time waste is divided, leading to diminishing returns. 5 is good target.

You want a researched Blueprint, at least on ME. Unfortunately, most slots for that research are backed up for weeks in highsec. when you’re starting out, sometimes buying researched BPC isn’t a bad idea, as long as you take them into account with your calculations, as they’re used up. BPOs, on the other hand, are assets, which don’t detract from your net worth, so can be mostly ignored in the manufacturing calculations.

Finding somewhere to make things

On the industry window, in the installations tab, you’ll find lists of places with manufacturing slots. If you can’t find any which are available, try changing region. The Forge, for example, generally doesn’t have many empty slots, and the ones it does have tend to be more expensive. Move to a different region, and you’ll find it far easier to get started.

Actually making something

  1. Get all the materials you need together with a blueprint, in your hangar (not a container in your hangar, not your ship), in a station with a free slot available.
  2. right click the blueprint, and select ‘manufacture’
  3. click the ‘choose installation’ button.
  4. Choose a slot on an installation. Pick one that’s free, as it will not auto shuffle you to an available one. You can pick one that’s in use, but your job will be delayed in starting. Hit Ok.
  5. Fill in the number of runs you want to manufacture.
  6. Hit OK.
  7. You’ll be presented with a manufacturing quote. have a quick look over it to make sure everything looks right.
  8. Hit ok.
  9. Go do something fun for the duration of the job, then return to that station.
  10. Bring up the science and industry window (alt+s if you’re not remapped it. or from the neocom). hit ‘get jobs’. Select your job. hit the ‘deliver job’ button that’s shown up in the bottom right of the window.
  11. The results of your job will now be in your hangar.

Rule Three

Until it’s sold, there’s no profit. Pick an appropriate market for your goods.This may be Jita. It may be a mission runner’s hub. Jita generally has smaller margins, and needs more baby sitting of orders; but it has high market velocity. Other places can take a lot longer to sell things, but for higher prices. People are lazy. They’ll pay a bit more if they can get everything they want in one place.

Notes

Consider using the Bulk Trade mailing list. It’s not as good as selling things yourself, but better than dumping to buy orders. There’s also the RvB bulk trade list which is similar.

Production Efficiency only affects materials in a blueprint’s Basic materials, and extra materials which are also in the basic materials. ME waste only affects basic materials.

Ship Fitting for Beginners – Part 1 – Tanking

There have been many words written on how to fit ships in EVE Online, but not so many written by me. So here are mine.

I’m not going to tell you ‘This is how you fit a ship.’ No-one can tell you that. There are no rules to follow which will give you a good ship. EVE is like that, which is one of the major selling points for me; no ‘right way’. But there are guidelines which can lead you to fit your ships in a ‘not bad’ way. There are many more bad ways to fit a ship, than there are good ways. And so, here are my guidelines; you’ll find some of them in the Rules of EVE page.

Tanking

Tanking refers to how you deal with damage coming at your ship. Almost all ships need a form of tank. The only one I can bring to mind that doesn’t, is a ship fitted for a suicide gank in highsec. Don’t think about combining them. There are very few places where this makes sense. Mixing your tank cripples your ship.

Here’s where it gets complex. You have a number of choices to make. First, pick one of the following.

  • Shield Tank: For ships with: A bonus to shield tanking, like shield resists or boosting. And for ships with more mid slots than low slots. Generally the fastest of the lot
  • Armour Tank: For ships with: A bonus to armour tanking, like armour resists or boosting. And for ships with more low slots than mid slots. More hit points, but slower than shield tanked ships
  • Hull Tank: Real men Hull tank. Or people who don’t have a choice. This probably isn’t you. Combat ships do not hull tank unless piloted by morons.

Next, pick from one of the following:

  • Active tanking : For people in PvE, and possibly frigate PvP. Other classes generally won’t last long enough for the repairs to make a difference.
  • Buffer Tanking : This can be used with all tank types. The idea is to increase the raw hit points you have using  shield extenders and armour plating, and to increase your resists to make those hit points worth more, using modules such as Adaptive Invulnerability Fields, and Energized Adaptive Nano Membranes. This is standard for PvP. In PvE, you’ll end up paying a lot for repairs, or refitting after missions with a repper.
  • Passive Tanking : This only applies to Shield Tanks. It is similar to a Buffer tank, but also covers increasing your shield regeneration rate. Great in PvE. Not so worth it in PvP

There are also other minor forms of tanking, which take more skill to use. I’m not covering them here.

  • Speed tanking: Travelling fast enough, close enough, at the right angles to make you hard to hit.
  • Signature tanking: Being so small that you’re hard to hit.

Now, most ships are easy to pick which to use. Take the Punisher, for example. It has more low slots than mid slots. And it has a bonus to armour resists. Other ships are a trifle harder. Some can be tanked either way. Spend time with a Fitting tool, such as EFT, Eve HQ or pyfa They will save you time and isk. Battleclinic isn’t a bad idea. Just bear in mind that bad fits end up there.

Understanding the Market

I’ve seen a few people who’ve had a fundamental misunderstanding of how EVE’s market works. While it’s been explained to them, I’m going to explain it here, so I can direct people more efficiently.
There’s even a picture, which I’ll be referencing in the explanation.

The most important thing in the market, is to understand that you’re not buying and selling directly from other players. You deal with the Market. So do they. Unless it’s the trade window (avoid avoid avoid, it’ll likely be a scam), or a contract, you’ll be dealing with the market. Not another player.

The main misunderstanding I’ve seen is, someone sees a market like the above. They click on a specific order (lets say the 125,999.87 isk sell order), and select buy. They then have the buy window pop up, with that as the price. They hit ok, and have now acquired a shiny new Executioner. Their wallet is 125,999.87 isk lighter as well. However, the order they clicked on still has 100 units on it.

What’s happened is they’ve actually bought from the cheapest order on the market. And the player selling it is 125,999.87(-tax) richer.

When a player places a sell order, with a duration, what they’re saying is: ‘Sell this for at least this much’. People who put in a higher price will just give you extra isk
When a player places a buy order, with a duration, what they’re saying is: ‘Buy for no more than this much’. People who put in a lower will just sell it to you cheaper.

The highest buy order always wins.
The lowest Sell order always wins.
In the events of ties, it’s the order modified the longest time ago.

If you put in an order, with a duration, which overlaps the price of the other kind of order, you get the worst deal.

If a buy order:
You will buy at the price you say, from all the sell orders with lower prices, then the remainder will be a regular buy order, where people can sell to you for cheaper

If a sell order:
You will sell at the price of the your sell order to any buy orders with higher prices, then then the remainder will be a regular sell order, where people can buy from you for more.

Just keep all this in mind. Double check the prices you’re doing stuff at.