Optimal Heavy Industry Production Cycle


Our Heavy Industry branch has been increasing in capacity over the past three months and we’ve reached a point where we now have an established, balanced cycle.

This balance comes from many factors including the amount of compression or ship BPOs we own, ISK velocity coming in from purchases or sales, and time needed to haul or compress materials. Too much or too little of either factor and our porridge is no longer ‘just right’.

Production Cycle

The optimal cycle we have found settles is around 18 days. With every cycle we are consuming around 12-13 B ISK worth of materials in order to keep our BPOs busy.


With the aid of the DRK Industrial Tracker, we can easily see how long it takes to compress, build component parts, and finally build the capital hulls in a easy to read visual timeline. If you produce items and need a solution for tracking materials, quotes, projects, and sales I highly recommend this product.



As the amount of time put into daily trading slowed down towards the 2012 holiday season, I put the direction of the Heavy Industry branch in the hands of Raath (@staticmapper), my partner. The operation started to get its legs in December and the results are apparent.


Carrier Production Using Compression

Jump capable ships have a fairly easy production workflow; common minerals are made into capital components that then get combined into the ship hull. There is no invention process, no reliance on moon reactants, or even a multistage reaction process like Tech3 hull/subsystem production.

The con to the production process is that there is a high barrier of entry and a ISK sink into blueprints. I estimate that I moved around 30 B into BPOs and starter minerals to begin producing the 4 racial carriers.

My first stage is to start up Carrier production, which is coming along nicely. Carrier blueprints have been purchased, researched Tech 1 module blueprints that are mineral compression friendly were bought on contracts, a highsec compression office was rented, and a cyno chain to the production system was mapped out.

The second stage of the  plan is to eventually expand into Dreadnought production, which require a few more Capital Component BPOs. Once I start to sell Carrier hulls and Capital modules, I’ll move more ISK into blueprints for these heavy hitters.

The initial purchase was for a researched set (ME 100/PE 20) of every Carrier Capital Component, 4 Racial Carriers, Fighters, and Capital Module BPOs.

Using the magic of mineral compression, I transported 206,500 m3 of modules and produced 1,608,535 m3 of minerals after the refine process. The modules’ volume was only 12.8% of the expanded mineral size.

Here’s a screenshot of my Industry Dashboard that I built in my Wallet Manager program to help keep track of all the different jobs bring run by different characters in various locations.

This pane helps keeps a nice overview of the manufacturing and research process, which I can bring up on a computer, mobile, or even a tablet device.

Minerals to Alpha Fleet Maelstrom

tl;dr Using mineral compression enables you to haul the minerals needed to built 344 battleships in one Jump Freighter.

Heavy Industry

When I started playing, I knew that I wanted to be a builder; I wanted to become an industrial gear in the alliance war machine providing materials to advance the cause.

At the height of the Northern Collation, the Alpha Maelstrom was king. The ability to deliver bursts of coordinated damage in high lag situations was the method to win battles.

Over the life of the Northern Collation, I built and sold around 344 Maelstrom ships in Cloud Ring, Pure Blind, and Deklein.

You might assume that these were hauled in from Empire or built from nullsec minerals, but that is not the best way to operate. I’ve wrote about mineral compression before, but now I wanted to disclose my building operations with a concrete example now that my Maelstrom production line has been retired.

Side note: TEST officially announced the end of Maelstrom reimbursements yesterday. RIP bucket of rust with solar sails.

344 Battleships

The volume of raw minerals equals around 48,800,000 m3 (140 Jump Freighters or 55 Freighters) of hauling if you were to bring them in uncompressed. Even given perfect jump skills, this would eat up 2.1 B worth of Isotopes using the jump path I took to my production system, effectively killing your profits.

If bringing in the minerals is a Herculean task, what about bringing in the built ships?

Built ships have a better compression ratio. 344 Maelstroms, if hauled in from Empire to Nullsec, comes out to 17,200,000 m3 (49 Jump Freighters or 20 Freighters). Moving built hulls would bring fuel costs down to 764 M, but you can still do better.

1,000 425 Railgun I’s

Taking minerals in empire, compressing them into modules, and refining in nullsec is the best way to transport large quantities. 1,000 425 Railgun I’s equal 10,000 m3 of space yet produces around 1,407,000 m3 when refined (!).

This screenshot shows what you can achieve in a station with a 50% base refine and high refine skills. You could even push the yield to perfect by getting better standings (details and math here) with the station corporation.

Using only 425 Railgun I’s will leave you with a disproportional lack of Tritanium for battleship builds. Other items, such as the Passive Targeter I, can be used to balance out your needs.