Author Topic: Fighter factories vs shipyards  (Read 916 times)

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Offline skoormit

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Re: Fighter factories vs shipyards
« Reply #15 on: June 11, 2022, 05:05:28 PM »
Is the retooling cost significant at all?

I think the bigger cost here is the time you are going to spent retooling for a different class of fighter. And since fighters are usually made on demand, is better to not have to wait months or a year for the retooling to complete. Especially when running with full tech values. By the time you are being able to finish them all they may already be outdated.

See earlier in this thread:

At first, the retooling time seems like the biggest downside.
But I'm not sure it's actually all that significant.
Retooling a 20-slip, 1kt yard for a design change involving a single component on a fighter can't take that long, can it?
Even if it's the most expensive component on the ship.
Heck, even a major redesign is probably never going to take a month.

Offline nakorkren (OP)

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Re: Fighter factories vs shipyards
« Reply #16 on: June 11, 2022, 06:00:27 PM »
For reference, for my 1000-ton, 21 slipway yard to retool to an earlier fighter model (different engine, different armor, different sensor and FC, but same railgun) takes less than two weeks and costs about 2x the cost of a single fighter.

That shipyard produces a 400-ton (4 shot railgun) fighter per slipway every 3 months. Put differently, 21 fighters X 3mo/12 mo = 84 fighters per year from the yard.

I have 221 fighter factories, and it takes me 9 days to produce that same 400-ton fighter, meaning I can build about 40 per year.  Those 221 fighter factories cost me 11M workers, and I'd need twice as many fighter factories to build as many fighters per year as my shipyard, so the math discussed in the thread pretty much tracks.
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Online nuclearslurpee

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Re: Fighter factories vs shipyards
« Reply #17 on: June 11, 2022, 07:02:54 PM »
The retooling cost in VB6 was 0.5x build cost plus 0.25x build cost per slipway. I cannot find a more recent source for C#, but from observation and testing I believe that the "build cost" is actually the cost to refit from the current class to the new class. This means that if you want to retool a 20x1000 ton shipyard to a fighter class with, say, 90 BP refit cost from the old class (cost of Steve's Viper Mk III plus a 20% premium - assessing the "worst-case" of almost no overlap between two very different classes), your total retooling cost is 90*(0.5+0.25*20) = 495 BP. Assuming a total BP per annum of 12,000 as in the OP, that's about a fifteen-day refit period, maybe 20 depending on your construction increment. 2-3 weeks out of the year isn't a terrible cost, although it is still advisable to keep a healthy reserve of planetary factories for on-demand build orders.

This does depend somewhat on your fighter doctrine, if you use 250-ton fighters the build costs and thus refit, etc. are about half as much as if you use 500-ton fighters, for example. Plus doctrinal differences about engine power modifiers, weapon types, and so on can make a big difference.

But basically it seems the evidence in thread suggests that a mix of fighter-scale shipyards and planetary factories is the ideal approach, the shipyards for efficient mass production and the factories for flexibility and building limited-run craft such as specialized scout craft. Maybe 2-4 shipyards instead of one monolithic complex is ideal if you use a few different main classes - missile bomber, railgun interceptor, small scouts, and so on.

Another consideration I haven't seen mentioned is broader economics, as at some point there is no point in a bigger shipyard (or more factories) if you can't afford to keep building fighters, for example a gallicite crisis is a common enough problem. However I'm not sure how that really impacts the discussion here if at all.

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Fighter factories vs shipyards
« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2022, 04:46:25 AM »
There are a few other things to consider as well... I tend to spread my fighter factories out on many worlds so I can slowly build up fighter construction locally. I don't produce all fighters in just one location, for this fighter factories are preferable because you will not likely have many factories on every world.

That is why having a mix of factories and yards make sense to me.

In my opinion the first yard should probably also employ allot more than 250k workers, more like 1.25-2.5m workers. The Yard is also housing all the designers, tooling and maintenance workers. The additional slipways should employ much less workers. This would make factories a bit more attractive as well on the lower end.

Offline TallTroll

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Re: Fighter factories vs shipyards
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2022, 02:23:59 PM »
"Fighter yards" could also be retooled to build FACs if it became necessary, and switched back to fighters, then FACs and so on and so forth as often as was necessary (although doing that often would get pretty expensive, but it is at least possible), whereas fighter factories can only ever build fighters. Fighter yards can also be used to refit older fighters, subject to the restrictions on refits, which may not be super useful sometimes (given the likely rate of fighter attrition in major wars, using all methods possible to build more fighters is probably best, and then finding uses for older fighters such as going after softer targets like civilian or damaged ships, or being sent to secondary postings to free up your best equipment for the hardest tasks), but during peacetime, it might allow you to beef up stocks of "new" fighters more cheaply, and eventually build stocks of fighters with worthwhile amounts of training