This is the second half of a set of guides dealing with making manticores, the most popular stealth bomber in EVE Online. In this guide, we deal with the manufacturing portion of the process, while the first half concerned inventing manticore blueprints.
Manticores were selected as a good tech two ship to make because they are relatively easy to train the skills for, and are a very good way for new players to be selective about whom they fight in PvP. Being able to make and sell them will constantly add ISK to a player's wallet, for his entire time in EVE Online.
Having already obtained manticore blueprints (either by buying them, or via the invention process described in the first part of this guide), your goal is to use them. There are several steps in the process. Many of the steps can be skipped by buying parts off of the market, though this shrinks your profit margins.
The Manticore is one of the most fun PvP ships in EVE Online. And they sell like hotcakes.
Many of the parts can be purchased off the market, but assembling them yourself will mean greater profit. Part of being good at making tech two ships is being able to identify what parts are best purchased, and what you should make yourself.
Step One: Train Skills
The following skills are required for using a manticore blueprint:
- Caldari Starship Engineering I
- Rocket Science I
- Frigate Construction IV
- Science V
- Mechanic V
- Industry V
If you are inventing your own blueprints, you should already have the trained, excepting Frigate Construction IV and Industry V. It is a good idea to train up Production Efficiency to IV, and eventually V. Otherwise, you will lose a lot of profit to waste.
Step Two: Make Or Buy Ingredients
I have grouped the ingredients based on whence they come. For ease of accounting, this portion assumes that a producer has trained Production Efficiency V, and that the blueprint used has a material efficiency of -4.
Tech Two Components:
- x60 Gravimetric Sensor Cluster
- x6 Graviton Reactor Unit
- x30 Magpulse Thruster
- x180 Quantum Microprocessor
- x60 Scalar Capacitor Unit
- x15 Sustained Shield Emitter
- x300 Titanium Diborite Armor Plate
- x201 Isogen
- x6 Megacyte
- x761 Mexallon
- x38 Morphite
- x2 Nocxium
- x1122 Tritanium
- x6 Zydrine
- x30 Construction Blocks
- x1 Kestrel
- x2 R.A.M.- Starship Tech
Any of these materials can be purchased off the market. As with anything, it is better to procure via buy orders or to make things yourself, when possible.
Step Three: Cutting Costs
The most important thing you can do to cut costs is to train Production Efficiency to V. By breaking down the costs of the various parts, you can identify other key ways to increase your profits. At the very least, you should probably invest in the following as a long-term way to cut costs:
- R.A.M.- Starship Tech Blueprint: These are made from basic minerals, and are sold at a relatively high mark up, so you may as well buy and research the blueprint.
- Kestrel Blueprint: This will come in handy for the kestrel hull that is needed, and will also presumably be used with obtaining kestrel blueprint copies for the invention portion of this process, provided that you can find a good place to copy it.
Consider also this graph of costs involved in manticore production:
Each part requires a different blueprint, but improves your profit margins.
It is readily apparent that quantum microprocessors are the main expenditure involved, followed by scalar capacitor units and titanium diborite armor plates. The cost of ingredients may helpfully be understood as follows:
- Quantum Microprocessor: 3.95mil ISK
- Scalar Capacitors: 1.85mil ISK
- Titanium Diborite Armor Plates: 1.41mil ISK
- Everything Else: 2.19mil ISK
- Total: 9.4mil ISK
The blueprint copies produced in the invention portion of this guide cost 2.87mil ISK apiece, meaning that each finished manticore costs at total of about 12.27mil ISK, each. As of this writing, they are selling in Jita for about 15.5mil, each, meaning that there is a profit of 3.23mil ISK per manticore produced. That's all right, but we can do better.
Making Quantum Microprocessors
The best way to cut costs further (aside from using buy orders rather than purchasing from sell orders) is to invest in a quantum microprocessor blueprint. With an original version of this blueprint, you will be able to make your own, and save a good chunk of change.
It is best to purchase one of these blueprints that is already researched, due to the onerous skill requirements that are needed for adding research, but not necessary for just using it. This is not to say that you will not need to train additional skills to make them, they are just not as onerous as research:
- Electronic Engineering III
- Electronics V
Each use of the blueprint requires the following ingredients (with Production Efficiency trained to V and a respectable material efficiency):
- x5 Nanotransistors
- x1 Phenolic Composites
- x12 Titanium Carbide
By my math, that means that each quantum microprocessor that you make will cost about 16,883 ISK, or 5,097 ISK less per unit than the market price. Per manticore produced, that saves you about 917,460 ISK, less the cost of renting production slots. Since that's pure profit and you are likely making several manticores at once, this is probably a wise investment.
If you can make one tech two Caldari ship, you can make them all. The better your skills, the lower your production costs. You can buy other component blueprints and train the skills needed for them, to further increase profits. I hope that was not too complicated for you. If you would like to see a rather more in-depth look at the invention and tech two production process, check out our guides on inventing and manufacturing hulks.