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Saturday 28 December 2013

Training a new alt for Rens

I have started a new alt (the third alt for my second account) which will be my trading alt in Rens to sell the items i manufacture.

Once that is complete i will have alts in each of the main trading hubs (Jita, Dodixie, Amarr, Hek and Rens).

I suspect i will only train this alt as far as it needs to in order to sell items and then revert back to training my Inventor alt - which is currently sitting in Amarr.

Once that is all done i will then be considering whether i should start a third account.

My first account is training a Manufacturer to produce T2 items (and has an alt in Dodixie and Hek).  My second account is training an Inventor (and has an alt in Jita).  Hence, if i want to enjoy other aspects of the Eve economy (such as Planetary Interaction) then i will likely need a third account.

Alternatively, if my manufacturing and/or inventing businesses go well then i may need another account to deploy further alts to these tasks.

Friday 20 December 2013

Status update on my Eve business

At present i have 2 traders: 1 in Dodixie and 1 in Hek.

I have 1 manufacturer in Lonetrek which, helpfully enough, is one jump out of Jita.

and i have 1 inventor in Amarr.

I log on twice a day and spend about 30 to 45 minutes a day logged in.  I focus on slow moving but high profit margin items.

In the first instance i go through my Dodixie, Hek, Jita and Amarr locations to determine what has been sold and therefore what i need to manufacture and buy from Jita to haul to those locations.  I then buy the items from Jita or pick up the prior nights manufactured items and put them in a contract to haul to Dodixie / Hek / Amarr.

A few hours later i log on to update my sell orders and put the hauled items on to sell (i do "rush jobs" which generally are delivered within 3 hours).

The Inventor: has yet to really do anything and i am hoping when i get back from xmas i can start to get this one going.  I have not yet decided whether it is going to invent blueprint copies to allow my manufacturer to capture more of the upside in T2 manufacturing or whether it will invent blueprint copies to sell itself.

The Manufacturer: is making me about 3-6bn ISK profits per month on T1 manufacturing.  In total, spread over sell orders in Jita (posted by my manufacturer itself), in Amarr (sell orders posted by the inventor), in Dodixie and Hek (sell orders posted by the traders there) i have c20bn ISK of sell orders of T1 items manufactured to sell.  Whilst they are low volume sales they are very high margin.

I only manufacture items as they are needed - i.e. if the Trader in Hek runs out of an item to sell then only then will the manufacturer produce the items overnight and have them hauled to the Hek trader the next day as part of the daily haul from Jita to Hek.

Each day i see what needs to be manufactured, buy the raw materials from Jita and make the one jump trip to my manufacturing base and start the manufacturing process.  The next day i haul the finished items 1 jump back to Jita and contract them to my corporation.  My Buyer alt in Jita then picks them up and adds them to the hauling contract to send to the traders in Dodixie or Hek, or my Inventor in Amarr to put on to sell.

The Traders: located in Dodixie and Hek are making about 5bn ISK profit per month between them.  This is what i have been doing from the beginning.  I look to buy items in Jita (from sell orders) and then post them to sell in Dodixie and Hek, trying to make at least 20% profits.  I contract out the hauling to Push Industries and i do "Rush Jobs" every time.  Spending 23 to 30m ISK to haul items in typically 3 hours allows me to post the items to sell that night as opposed to only spending 800k ISK but taking 3 days.

The buyer: is always the current alt with no skills and next to be trained up.  Right now it is waiting its turn from when the Inventor finishes its training.  Not yet decided what it will do.

I have an empty character slot which i suspect will either become a Trader at Rens or takeover the Amarr trading slot once my Inventor leaves to find a permenant home.  I need 2 spare evenings to get it through the starting tutorials etc.

All my alts are in the same corporation - it makes it easier to haul items around (deliveries are made into the corporation delivery and so any of my alts in the delivery base can pick up the items.

And i have rented my first corporation office in Lonetrek as an experiment.  Was meant to store my blueprints to allow my Inventor easy access to them before it went off to Amarr.

So far this month, as of 20 December i have made 11.2bn ISK which suggests that i could make 17.4bn ISK in December - which is unlikely given i will be away for several of the remaining days.  But i can dream.

My total wealth, including my standard 20% provision (reducing the value of my sell orders by 20%) is now over the key 50bn ISK mark.  Not bad, if i may say so.

Sunday 15 December 2013

Plodding on

I am back from a week away from Eve again.

Not much to report.

During my week away, my wealth rose by 2bn ISK - somewhat less than i hoped but still not bad for a full 6 days without updating any orders.

I have done some tidying up.  All items i am selling that make a profit of less than 5m ISK are now put in a folder called "small deals".  I will monitor those items but i am unlikely to sell them going forwards - i want to focus on the greater ISK profit items.

Now in Amarr: Amarr looks like a good place to sell my manufactured items as well as in Jita, Dodixie and Hek.  Hence my manufacturer is now producing the items at full speed and i expect to be having them all hauled to Amarr in the next day.

My next plan is to start the final alt on my second account and place it in Rens to sell my manufactured items as well.  Perhaps this will be in place before the end of the year.

Starting Invention: I also need to look more into Invention.  My invention alt is perhaps as good as trained enough to get me started - but my knowledge is very thin on the ground.

But to start, i will copy one of the blueprints i have just to see how it all works.  I will try to invent a Viator by using a Nereus blueprint copy.  In all, this will likely take me 3 days to get all done.

Renting a Corporation Office: And, to allow me to easily swap blueprints between my manufacturer and my inventor i have decided to rent a Corporation office in Lonetrek for 6m ISK per month (though i suspect this will start to rise given there are very few offices left in this station to rent).

The first thing i noticed is that whilst Invention Slots are not hard to find, Copying slots are very thin on the ground!

Thursday 12 December 2013

Looking into Amarr

At present i have traders in Dodixie and Hek which sell items bought from Jita and sell items which my manufacturer alt is producing out of Lonetrek.

The items my manufacturer producers are slow moving but very high profitability and at present i suspect i am earning 4 to 5bn ISK profits per month just by selling 20 to 30 items in each of Jita, Dodixie and Hek.

Hence, i have decided to send my Invention alt to Amarr to check the place out.  If it proves to be successful i will use the spare alt slot on my second account to put a new alt there to sell manufactured items.

If Amarr is not good then i will check out Rens.

Either way, i expect when i come back from business this week my manufacturer will be in full swing churning out new items to sell into a new trade hub.

Also, when i come back from business i plan to clean out the list of items i am selling to focus on the higher ISK items.

Selling items for 8m ISK that cost 5m ISK to buy was good towards the beginning but now is too low an ISK profit given the time it takes to update these orders.  My limit of 30 to 45 minutes per day is a key constraint at present.

I will most likely keep them in another list titled "small deals".  I dont want to forget where i came from, i just want to make my businesses more efficient.

Saturday 7 December 2013

Making an undock bookmark

This is all about making me less vulnerable when undocking with a cargo of >100m ISK.

A bit of background first:

My manufacturer operates on a produce to sell basis.  I.e. when one of my manufactured items sells out in Jita or Dodixie or Hek my manufacturer at that point will buy the raw materials and manufacture more of the item which is then hauled to the point of sale.

That means that manufacturing time is important and so the time to haul the raw materials from Jita to my place of manufacture (in Lonetrek, one stop out of Jita) is important.

Now, i can contract out to Pushx Industries on a basic hauling fee and they will get almost any amount of volume there for under 1m ISK but it may take up to 3 days.  I could pay c25m ISK for a rush job which will normally take 5 hours - but for one jump (2 minutes of my time) that feels like alot.

So for one jump i often risk it myself - but that means minimising the hauling risks is a priority.

My greatest vulnerability is when i undock and jump to the gate.  That time to re-align and then enter warp gives gankers plenty of time to scan my cargo, make a decision and destroy me.

Part of the solution:

A way of minimising this risk is to cancel alignment which will then allow me to get to warp very fast.

Therefore, the consensus solution is to have a so called saved "insta undock point" several hundred kilometers outside of Jita which is on a straight line from the undocking location.

The idea here is that when i undock (and i am invulnerable for 30 seconds) i can warp to that point which is some 800 kilometers directly ahead of me so that i do not need to spend time aligning.  Therefore, any gankers have next to no time to target, scan and destroy me.

Once at at this "safe" undock point i can align to the gate to jump almost at my leisure.  OK, not "at my leisure" but for sure under less stress.

The method i use:

And so this is how i do it . . . . . . 

The key thing is to fly straight out of Jita - which is easier said than done.  With so much traffic undocking it is easy to be bumped off course.  I dont want that - i want an exactly straight line because i dont want any alignment time.

So, i undock in the largest ship i have (for me, an iteron) and let it fly out about 200 kilometers.  It wont get bumped by smaller ships so has a good chance of flying in a straight line.

If i have been bumped out of the straight line then i re-dock and try again.

At about 200 kilometers i select People & Places [Alt-E], press Add Location (that in itself does not save any bookmark), change the label to my description (i.e. Jita - Undock 200km), change the folder if i need to and then i press Submit.  The pressing Submit saves the location.

I then dock and get into a fast frigate with an afterburner.

Undock that, immediately warp to the saved bookmark - so no time to be bumped and i am on a straightline.

I then just put on the afterburner and fly as far as i want, certainly over 1000 kilometers before i save a new undock bookmark.

From now on, when i undock in my industrial ship with a high value of raw materials i can immediately warp to this saved bookmark without having to align to the warp gate.  At the bookmark i can then align and warp to the gate.

I save this bookmark to my corporation folder so that all of my alts can use it (note, only my alts are in my corporation so i know a spy wont steal it and set up an ambush!).

i do read in places that some people do just let their ship fly all night as they sleep to fly several hundred thousand kilometers out of Jita to save an undock point.

Additional sources:

There are some good youtube videos on this:

A good 10 minute easy watch from Cubehamster on undocking and docking

As an alternative, here is a video that looks at how gankers can counter instant undocking from Ureldor

. . . . . the lesson on that last youtube is to save more than one undock bookmark and make them many hundreds or even thousands of kilometers apart.

Wednesday 4 December 2013

November Update

My best month ever.

As a reminder, i spend 30 to 45 minutes during the weekdays on Eve.

Despite being away from Eve for over half the month my wealth increased by 12.1bn ISK to 42.7bn ISK, which is an average of 404m ISK per day

I was lucky in that another player's blunder earned me 1.5bn ISK - so reversing out this luck i saw an increase in wealth of 10.6bn ISK which is an average of 353m ISK per day.  Still, not bad and still would be my best month ever.

The time constraint of spending 30 to 45 minutes only per day that i am around forces my businesses to focus on high value but low volume strategies.

For those able to devote much more time to Eve, one way of reading this blog is to see how little time is required to generate sufficient ISK to plex your own account.

I have 2 accounts with 5 alts in total.
  • One one account: I have a trader at Dodixie and a trader at Hek which sell items that have been hauled there from Jita; and I have a manufacturer in the Lonetrek region that sells items in Jita and sends items to the traders in Dodixie and Hek to sell.
  • On the other account: I have a buyer in Jita that is is only there to buy items in Jita to send to the traders in Dodixie and Hek; and I also have an alt that is skilling up in Invention.
All my hauling is done by third parties, namely PushX Industries - the time required to haul items from Jita to my traders in Dodixie and Hek would take up too much time.  Better to let these third parties do the hauling (for a fee, of course) whilst i am offline.

I am now buying a Plex a month to finance my second account and from January i will be buying two Plex per month as my Main account will need financing.  I have been fortunate enough that some people have been using the Buddy Programme link to the right >>>> which has financed my Main account to the end of the year.

As ever, i sit with too much surplus ISK which needs to be invested.  Current surplus is 14.2bn ISK – it is dead money.

The main drivers to my improvement in November i suspect were:
  • Firstly, finding more expensive items to sell which, whilst lower margin, make me very high ISK levels of profits.  I.E. if i sell an item for 800m ISK that i bought for 700m ISK it is only 12.5% margin ((800-700)/800) vs my target 20% but is still a good 100m ISK profit before taxes,
  • Secondly, my manufacturer is now selling its items in Dodixie and Hek, as well as Jita - i.e. is now selling in 3 trade hubs instead of 1.

Dodixie trader: Life remains good for this trader.

Items for sale have risen to 16.4bn ISK from the prior months of 11.3bn ISK.  
The addition of items manufactured by my manufacturing alt and the inclusion of more expensive items to sell has boosted the value of the sell orders.

I neglected the station trading side of this alt during November given lack of time, hence buy orders have fallen to 1.3bn ISK from 1.6bn ISK.  At present, updating the station trading orders tends not to happen given my daily time constraints.

The alt is currently using 130 of the 141 trading slots.

This alt pays 0.80% broker fees to post an order and a further 0.90% sales tax on a successful sale.  No longer training.

There are no medium term goals for this alt – i suspect i may move out of station trading and continue to seek higher priced items to move form Jita to Dodixie to sell as selling any additional items my manufacturing alt decides to produce.

Hek trader: Life is speeding up now.  My pre-xmas plan to find new income sources for this trader is coming through.

The manufacturing alt keeps this trader supplied with the high margin items i am manufacturing to sell in Dodixie, Hek and Jita.

Just after the period end i am now expanding into new items to sell which are more expensive and, at Hek at least, could carry very high margins given there is very little competition - we will see.

Following this move i now use 123 of the 129 available sell slots.  
At this rate i will be dropping some of the low margin skillbooks that i am selling.

Pays 0.80% broker fees to post an order and a further 0.90% sales tax on a successful sale.  No longer training.

Manufacturing alt: This alt is gathering momentum.  During the month it made sales of 7bn ISK and profits of 3bn ISK, which compares to the 2.1bn ISK profits last month.  And that does not include items sold in Dodixie and Hek that it manufacturers.  In all, i suspect this alt makes profits of over 4 to 5bn ISK per month once i include the items sold in Dodixie and Hek.

I now have a list of 52 items i focus on to sell, currently selling 27 of them in Jita and 33 in Dodixie and Hek.  The other items that i watch too low a profitability.

It currently has 2.6bn ISK of sell orders and another 1.4bn ISK of items in manufacture compared to 3.4bn at the end of last month.

I now own 44 blueprints worth over 1bn ISK, most of which have already comfortably paid for themselves.

I have moved my manufacturing alt into Lonetrek.  Close to Jita but there are plenty of manufacturing slots available.  The downside is that i can’t update or see my sell orders in Jita from the Lonetrek region given Jita is in a different region.

At the moment, i believe my manufacturing alt makes 100m ISK profits per day = 3.0bn ISK per month - and that is before i include any profits i make selling the items through my traders in Dodixie and Hek.  I very much consider my expansion into Manufacturing as a success so far.  And all this takes is 15 minutes update time a day.

The current near term goals is to look for more highly profitably items to manufacture.

The new account:  I started a new account in September which will cost me a plex a month to maintain, i.e. 600m ISK per month at todays prices.

The first alt I am training up in Research skills so that it can go down the Invention path.  I thought i had trained it up sufficiently to start Invention but reading around the subject has forced me to train up the skills further.  I am hoping to at least make a start in Invention this month.

The second alt is my buyer in Jita – so he buys the items for the traders to sell in Dodixie and Hek.  As ever, the items are hauled there by Pushx Industries.  Once my Invention alt is trained up then i can train this alt up to go down another career path.

To date, neither of the alts in the new account are making, or attempting, to make any ISK.

During December i will be away for a week on business and then no holiday over xmas - hence, i suspect December will not be as good a month as November or indeed October.

Current Wealth:

Expected business purchases in the next 30 days
  • Plex 600,000,000 ISK

I don't count assets I use in the course of my business such as ships, fittings etc nor do I add back any expenses such as skills purchased etc.  The wealth I disclose is made up of items that are ISK or are in the process of being converted to ISK.

* I take a 20% provision against the items I am selling.  Eve calculates wealth by adding up the value of the sell orders hence it is possible to increase your wealth by buying an item for 100m ISK and putting a sell order for 120m ISK (in this case your wealth would increase by 20m ISK).  For me, I want my wealth to be calculated at cost until i finally hold it as ISK.  I know that the value of my sell orders will likely fall over time as I update my orders downwards as competition reduces their prices before my items are sold.  Hence the 20% provision is my best guess as to what cost is or at least the maximum reduction I would need to make to my sell orders as a whole before they are sold.

Sunday 1 December 2013

(Another) big blunder in my favour

again, i have been on the lucky end of a blunder!

When i log on i always take a quick look at he sales i have made.  Today i noted that i had sold the Black Ops skillbook for 595m ISK, which did seem a rather a high amount.

Upon checking the market, my suspicions were confirmed:

I was selling the Black Ops skillbook for 69.9m ISK.

Hence, looking at the above, it would appear that the buyer had meant to put in a buy order for 59,500,001 ISK but instead did not in one too many zeros and hit my sell order (which must have been the lowest at the time) for 595,000,001 ISK.

I suspect it was this way round rather than missing the decimal place given that would have bought my item for 5.95bn ISK!

And just to prove that this happens to us all, this player had been playing since 2007.