Atrons have been flying off the shelves so far. I've been popping them up on contract as singles, three and five packs, priced at 1 million per fit Atron. I even got a 1 million ISK tip for one of my 5 packs, so it looks like customers are happy. A full Jump Freighter load per week is just about perfect and so I started my next production run. With my current skills it takes just over 7 days to make 128 Atrons resulting in a nice weekly routine. I've also been able to cut costs substantially by acquiring modules for the fit via buy orders in Jita. So to break even on my next batch, after accounting for all costs, I would only need to sell the contracts for ~600,000 ISK. I was dithering over whether I should drop the cost of my contracts to account for this, however I don't want to scare other contractors out of the market and cause supply problems. With this in mind, I also don't put them them all up at once. I'm purposefully spinning out supply, so that other contractors also get a chance to sell and so that they don't simply get bought out and re-listed. I'm not really sure how well this is working but it seems like a sensible plan. I'll keep my eye on it.
The project itself has been interesting. I've enjoyed working out the logistics required for manufacturing in EVE. When I played Rift, the crafting system was extremely basic. You didn't even need items to be in your inventory, they could be sitting in your bank. As long as you had the materials, which could conveniently be sourced from an auction house within the crafting area, you could simply "press button, receive bacon". Not very engaging. However in EVE, working out all the steps and figuring out how to connect the dots in the most efficient way is quite satisfying. It has been a good learning experience and I have a lot of sympathy for contract maker and industry folk now. The amount of clicking is frankly ridiculous. There really need to be some ways to fit multiple and rename multiple ships implemented and some sort of template system for manufacturing jobs.
It was also a lot of fun moving my Jump Freighter around for the first time. I feel like my trusty Viator might start gathering dust, though I guess it is still handy for quick shopping trips to nearby trade hubs. I made my first Jump Freighter round trip on Monday, in order to get my first batch of Atrons into Sendaya, and have since completed a bunch of alliance courier contracts over the past week. The first few jumps were quite nerve racking and I did have one minor bump off the Sendaya station. My heart leapt into my mouth as I watched my Anshar drift helplessly at 500m/s away. Fortunately I was still within docking range by the time the session timer ticked down and docked up safely. Some minor adjustments to cyno position were made and I haven't bumped since. Having the Jump Freighter has also given me quite a "free" feeling. It is like learning to drive and getting your first car. It grans a certain feeling of independence and freedom. The knowledge that I can shift all my bits and bobs through the EVE universe if we redeploy again is liberating. Now I just need to figure out how to rescue some of the ships I have randomly strewn about null sec space.
Looking onward, I want to expand more into manufacturing. As such, I've started up a pure Industry and manufacturing alt. Whether this will lead to a high sec POS for research and invention or not I don't know at this time. If I wan't to try out T2 production, I have a suspicion that it will require me to do my own invention to get the T2 BPCs. However, until I get to that point some expansion of my T1 manufacturing seems in order. Managing an alt with 10 slots working T1 items is a nice short term goal to set and should provide some more income on the side to start investing into other projects. I have a few ideas in mind, which I will undoubtedly write about soon. For example, I've been brainstorming ideas on jobs for new players to earn some ISK outside of the more standard options that we have available. I'm a bit out of touch with how new players can make ISK in low sec. Some conversation has been has on comms on what veteran players would be willing to pay new players to do for them. One example that was brought up was scouting wormhole chains for routes out to key high sec locations and then selling the bookmarks. I know that I'd be willing to buy some of these for a quick route to Jita. I have a few ideas of my own, though I think some experimentation is in order before I get into the details.