Cruising to mine

8th August 2008 – 3.29 pm

I had read somewhere previously about finding ores rarer than normally found in a system existing in deadspace whilst on missions, and had found some omber of my own recently. In that instance, I took my Caracal home to Jita, dusted off my mining Bantam frigate and went back to mine it. Jettisoning the ore in to a can, which I also believe is standard procedure, I returned home again after having mined my lot to get my Badger, with its larger cargo space, to pick up the ore in the can.

I also found out some time ago that activating the warp drive uses a portion of the capacitor's charge, but it was only when I took the Bantam out to mine that I realised the amount of capacitor used is proportional to the jump distance. When trying to jump 49 AU the Bantam's feeble capacitor couldn't manage it, and I had to jump as far as the maximum charge would allow, wait for the capacitor to recharge during warp, then jump again the rest of the distance once the warp drive disengaged a portion of the way to my destination.

On top of that, another finding made by reading other journals is that asteroid fields can be patrolled by rats. My Bantam is unarmed, because the two hardpoints it has are occupied by Miners, necessary to extract the ore, which would make it a sitting duck against any opponent. Using one of the hardpoints for a weapon would obviously cut my yield in half.

The speed of mining is also quite slow, only having two miners running at one time. I looked in to other ships to see if there are any available that have more turret hardpoints, needed for a mining laser, and found nothing particularly interesting. Most ships available to me have only two turret hardpoints.

So it all came together when I realised that I needed to be armed, couldn't do better than two miners on a ship, and wanted to be able to warp to any reasonable location without having to stop for breath half-way, that I had the very ship right under my nose: my Caracal. I could replace the salvager module and one of the launchers for two miners, with the Caracal having two turret hardpoints, leaving me three launchers for defence. I could also fit a survey scanner, to find the asteroids richest in minerals, and still have shield enhancers and other lower-level modules fitted. If I find a mission deadspace pocket with some interesting asteroids I don't even need to head back to Jita to pick up my mining frigate, instead simply returning to where I am currently stationed for mission purposes. There I can install the mining configuration on the Caracal before going back to the deadspace pocket to start mining.

The drawback is in not getting the mining yield bonus that the Bantam offers, which is significant. Yet the bonus is negated if I need to fit a weapon in place of one of the miners on the Bantam, compared to fitting two miners and having weapons in additional slots. The Caracal even has a larger cargo hold than the Bantam, allowing for more time to leave the miners at work before needing to transfer the ore to the can.

I put this idea in to use today, and I'm glad I did as I was attacked three times during my brief mining period. The rats were minor irritations at best, particularly with three assault launchers at the ready. The Bantam would have had to run. Instead, my Caracal didn't even move to reduce the rats to wrecks, and that's when I had my second good idea of the day. I still needed to bring my Badger out to pick up the ore from the can, but when I did so I took out the useless miner from the turret hardpoint and fitted a salvage module instead. When I reached the deadspace pocket I transferred the mined ore in to the Badger's hold, then salvaged from the wrecks my Caracal had left. Nothing went to waste!

My mining was a little slower, because of the lack of yield bonus from the ship type, but I was safe. There may be a better ship in which to mine like this, but until I dedicate some time to mining proper I doubt there is any economic benefit in spending a few million ISK to get one.

  1. 3 Responses to “Cruising to mine”

  2. If you have the spare isk, the Osprey is a much better option for a mining Cruiser.

    By Winged Nazgul on Aug 9, 2008

  3. You're right, the Osprey looks like the cruiser version of the Bantam frigate, having the same mining yield bonus. With its three turret hardpoints and an extra hardpoint left for a launcher it seems like a good option for mining whilst having a little necessary firepower.

    Getting one would lose the convenience of not having to jump several hops back to base to switch ships, only to have to do that again to get the Badger and again to get back to the mission running cruiser, but the significantly increased yield would probably make the time up easily. Three miners instead of two, all producing +80% more ore per pass would be quick!

    I'll be giving this a try. Now I just need to think of a name for the Osprey.

    By pjharvey on Aug 10, 2008

  4. Don't forget its drone bay for even more added firepower or mining effectiveness.

    By Winged Nazgul on Aug 10, 2008

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