Ice Mining versus Ore Mining in a Retriever

March 6, 2008

Okay, I’m going to attempt to compare Ice Mining versus Ore Mining in a relatively crude and probably inaccurate way. It isn’t the ultimate answer, but like other things I’ve discussed, could be taken into consideration and applied to your own situation. Here is some of the data I’ve assumed:

  • Average ISK per m3 of ore mining is 95. Considering Fiery Kernite is 109 ISK per m3 and Veldspar is 87, let’s just say 95 is a modest amount although probably inaccurate.
  • Also, let’s assume that ice mining completes in 8 minutes. Like before, it is probably inaccurate, but I have a sneaking suspicion that these two are going to be in two completely different ballparks.
  • Lastly, I’m assuming that a block of ice sells for 120,000 ISK each.

With one strip miner, approximately 1000 m3 ore is mined every cycle… or in other words, every 3 minutes. That means in the time of 1 cycle of a ice harvester, there are 2.67 cycles of a strip miner. In terms of ore, there are 2670 m3 of ore by the time there is 1 ice block. That means there is about 253,650 ISK per strip miner in that amount of time compared to the 120,000 ISK ice block… and that is assuming a 100% run time of ice harvesting which is difficult to do. In other words, it is estimated to be more than twice as profitable to mine ore than ice in a Retriever… or the equivalent of mining ores that yield about 45 ISK per m3 (even Omber blows this away).

Now using these crude numbers and data from the Complete Miner’s Guide by Halada, lets test the Mackinaw out. The Mackinaw recieves 4 ice blocks every 317 seconds… or 2 ice blocks per harvester every 5.28 minutes. In this time, a Retriever’s strip miner has 1.76 cycles yielding about 1760 m3 of ore. At the 95 ISK per m3 average, this is about 167,000 ISK compared to the Mackinaw’s 240,000 ISK. However, since the Mackinaw takes about an extra month or two to train, costs around 90 mil, and the cycle was considered perfect; it isn’t very hard to believe that it’s more profitable.

Considering the Covetor’s third strip miner let’s try this again. The Mackinaw yields 480,000 ISK per cycle and in the same time, the Covetor yields 510,629 ISK worth of ore. Considering you can’t get the Mackinaw without the skills to get the Covetor, mining ore is definitely more profitable than ice. It is the equivalent of mining Scordite in a Covetor (89 ISK/m3).

One additional issue to concern is that every 3 mintes you would have to drag ore into a jetcan. Ice mining you can do other things, like help your girlfriend study for an anatomy exam with notecards. I got yelled at a few times during the hauling process though haha.


One Response to “Ice Mining versus Ore Mining in a Retriever”

  1. Flavan said

    This is exactly the kind of thing I want to know – is ice-mining worthwhile? The lack of dragging sounds appealing, even if I don’t have a student for a girlfriend.

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