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The Complete Miner's Guide by Halada

Version 2.2

4.2 The Barge Way

Before we go any further, you must know that the Procurer sucks. The Osprey will outmine it, so the first barge you will go for will be the Retriever.

4.2.1 The Retriever

A big advantage of the retriever is that it uses strip miners, which means a longer cycle (less dragging) and is MUCH cheaper than a battleship.

Skills you will need : Mining Barge 3, Industry 5, Astrogeology 5

I will assume here you trained Mining Barge to level 4 (3% bonus to yield per level) even though you only need level 3 to fly the retriever, as every little bits help. I'll also assume you trained Astrogeology to level 5, since it'll be required for the Covetor! While we're at it, since you're serious about mining, you will also have invested the time in training Mining to level 5 as well.

Let's see what kind of yield a retriever can fetch with 1x MLU (on a sidenote, no mining barge, not even a covetor, can fit more than 1x MLU, no matter what skills you train. As I mentioned, Mining Upgrades 1 will suffice for barges):

540 * 1.25 * 1.25 * 1.12 * 1.05 = 992.25 m3/cycle
Using Omber, this means 992.25 /0.6 = 1653.75 = 1653 units of Omber/cycle (per strip)

Since you're fitted with 2 strip miners, you will be getting 3306 units of Omber per cycle, or 66 120 units of Omber per hour. This is 20.51% less than the Apoc, and 0.36% more than the Domi.

As you can see, the Retriever and the Dominix are pretty much on the same level, while the Apoc has a small but noticeable advantage over the mid-size barge. This is nothing to be too alarmed with, as in a month or so you will be flying a Covetor and thanking yourself you trained yourself to fly barges! For the casual miner though, without any real interest in the profession, an Apoc with the proper use of MLU and Co-Processors will offer a nice mining platform without too much training.

4.2.2 The Covetor

The Covetor is a very, very nice mining ship. Also much cheaper than a battleship (5 times cheaper than the Apoc actually) and fetches an awesome yield. Although the training might seem extensive, it will absolutely be worth it at the end.

Skills you will need : Mining Barge 5, Astrogeology 5 (if not already trained)

Notably because of its 3rd strip miner, the Covetor is nice, nice ­ very nice.

So let's see what kind of yield we will get:

Using Omber, it means 1018.83/0.6 = 1698.05 1698 units of Omber/cycle (per strip)

Since you're fitted with 3 strip miners, you will be getting 5094 units of Omber per cycle, or 101 880 units of Omber per hour. This is a 54.08% increase over the retriever already, and a 27.86% increase over the Apoc.

To sum it up...

Ship MLU Omber/hour Increase in %  
Retriever 1 66,120 0% reference
Dominix 5 65,880 -0.36%  
Apocalypse 3 79,680 20.51%  
Rokh 4 83,664 25.51%  
Covetor 1 101,880 54,08%  

The table shows the number of MLU required since those figures won't be true anymore when you move to 0.0 and need to tank. Mining in 0.0 space will be covered in its own section, however, you must know that these figures assume someone is tanking for you or that you do not need to tank at all.