2: Researching hull blueprints (you are here)
3: Copying hull blueprints
4: Researching component blueprints
5: Copying component blueprints
What is it:
If you buy a capital ship hull blueprint from an NPC and research it, you can then sell the researched blueprint on contracts for more than you bought it for.
Sell price numbers are gathered by checking contracts for each type of capial ship (not including supercapitals) to see what price reasonably researched blueprints are selling for. The ME/PE numbers for the blueprints being sold are used to find research time, and sell price and research time are used to find monthly profit and ROI.
- Note: Capital ship hull blueprints are a very low volume market, and prices can vary substantially. The data used is a random snapshot of the market which we hope turns out to be somewhat accurate.
Unfortunately, what we're probably seeing in the case of the higher profit blueprints are ones which are sitting on the market because potential buyers look at them and say "nah, not worth it". I think that figures in the 5-12% monthly ROI range are much more realistic. Selling a 2/1 archon for 2500 would be very surprising.
Also, note that at the time of writing profits from building ships are higher than normal. This could mean that increased demand has driven the price of blueprints upward; and if so, then in the long run we would expect them to be lower.
Still, this looks pretty solid.
If you wanted to do this you would buy a ship blueprint from jita (caldari), vittenyn (gallente), amo (minmatar), bhizheba (amarr), or 4c-b7x (ORE), research it, and sell it.
It looks like the way to go would be to research the blueprints to the minimum level you can get away with (e.g. 2/0 for carriers), then undercut other sellers. Spending longer in research in order to sell at a higher price seems to have diminishing returns.
For your convenience, I present you with a material level table showing which material levels cause a reduction in mineral requirements, and how much the reduction is. Note that this is somewhat old, and with higher mineral prices at the time of writing the savings and ME0 mineral price will be somewhat higher. Ignore the color-coding, which is for building purposes.
Which ships to research:
I would recommend starting with any and all carriers. I can tell you from experience that their blueprints tend to move more quickly than other jump-capable capital ships, and that they tend to have solid margins, if not quite so high as we're seeing here.
I would avoid freighter blueprints; although they would sell quickly, the ROI isn't great. Sort of like building the hulls -- enough people do it that the profits are sort of pathetic.
In dreadnaughts, avoid the phoenix. Everything else is fine. Naglfar blueprints might be quirky and slow to sell, but since it's extremely rare to see one on contracts you can set your own price.
With ORE, the orca looks like a very good possiblity. As for the rorqual, the demand for the blueprints is high, but the high cost of the blueprint and longer research time leaves the monthly ROI merely solid. Note also that ORE blueprints can only be purchased for NPC price in NPC nullsec.
The numbers here are higher than I would have expected. This is probably an activity which I will get involved with.
Next, part 3: Copying hull blueprints.