Updated Fri, Feb 25, 2011 by Space Junkie
Ship shortages are a big part of EVE Online, and probably the biggest logistical problem that affects individual corporation members while living in dangerous space. The unsafe transport of goods to your null-sec or low-sec port of call, shortage of minerals, and bulk of ship hulls all make things difficult.
Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the mineral and bulk problems. Minerals can be turned into particular kinds of modules and ammunition that occupy significantly less cargo space. These are then refined back into minerals at the destination, and used to build the ship hulls that would otherwise be too large to effectively transport.
This guide covers what is required to make "battlecruiser care packages" that contain everything needed to assemble a battlecruiser within a single, easy to transport giant secure container. In each case there is extra room in the container for ship modules, ammo, and other accoutrements, or other goods needed at your destination.
What Is Mineral Compression?
Battlecruisers are a popular ship class due to the ease that newbies can get into them, and their low price.
Some modules have better compression rates than others, especially for particular sets of minerals. Many are not useful for compression at all because they occupy more space than the raw minerals would. The idea when compressing is to try to have as close to the needed minerals as possible, so as not to waste space carrying unnecessary ingredients.
What Is A Care Package?
A care package is a single giant secure canister that contains everything needed to assemble a particular ship. In the case of battlecruisers, this means compressed minerals and a blueprint copy, with the possible addition of whatever fittings you deem appropriate. The actual package need not include the container, but it is often helpful to have everything partitioned thus prior to being moved, to ensure that the correct amounts of each ingredient are present, or for contracting on the far end.
Due to the not quite exact compression rates, there are often small amounts of minerals left over. These can be retained as a sort of "petty cash" cache of minerals, to be used for inevitable mineral overruns from sub-par blueprint efficiency or refining tax losses.
Decompressing A Care Package
Decompressing and assembling a care package requires perfect or near-perfect refining skills (Scrapmetal Processing IV), perfect manufacturing skills (Production Efficiency V), and access to a refining station that will not tax your mineral refining too much.
The station to be used for refining must have a high enough base refining rate that no minerals will be lost. With regards to player-controlled outposts, a Minmatar Service Outpost is best.
When in doubt about the refining rate, try using your refining character to refine a random module and see what the "unrecoverable" and "we take" columns say. Ignore the total percentile refine rate listing, as that is bugged and does not take into account the Scrapmetal Processing skill. Just look at the minerals listed, and see if you are losing very much. Note that if an outpost is upgraded, or is a conquerable station with an especially high refining rate, then it may be possible to get a 100% efficiency refine rate even without very skills. Taxes are another matter, though, and in conquerable stations they are determined by the controlling corporation.
Because it is impractical to guess at varying skills and taxes, these care packages assume a perfect refine, a 0% tax , and a well-researched blueprint for the purposes of calculation.
In practice, this is possible only if you are a member of a very generous alliance that allows 0% refines (though this is not quite as rare as you might think) or access to an NPC station with whom you have high enough corporation standings (6.67 to that NPC corporation) to not be taxed. Make up any difference with your pool of "petty cash" minerals. As long as your skills are not too lacking and the taxes are not too arduous, things should be all right.