Courier build

Posted By: DBond

Courier build - 04/15/19 01:31 PM

Lately I've been giving more attention to my Courier. It's one of my favorite ships to fly, but other ships have been getting the engineering love.

My goals for this build

-- Very fast. I want boost speed of 800 or close to it

-- Good shields. At least 600 mj if possible. Resistances are important, but I'm finding it hard to get it all

-- Armed. I want to use it for bounty hunting. It is immense fun to fly a super-fast ship in a RES

It's a tricky build. In order to get those sorts of speeds, Enhanced Performance Thrusters are required. When combined with Dirty Drives the optimal mass is reduced significantly. That in turn makes it hard to use the weapons, modules and utilities I need to meet requirements 2 and 3, shields and weapons. Ain't no free lunch as they say.

Here's Velocity as she sits now


It's fast, but without weapons. At G4 Dirty Drags, optimal mass is 81t. To get the most speed out of it I need to keep combat weight below that. Class 2 weapons weigh 4t apiece. G5 lightweight would reduce weight of the weapons by 90%, so drop from 12t to 1.2t for three. That's workable if I can shed weight elsewhere. I can unlock Lori Jameson and shed some weight off the Life support but that won't even be half a ton. The other thing I can do is go another class lower on the power plant. It's 3A now, I could go 2A and save an additional 1.2t (exactly matching the added weight from three G5 lightweight weapons), but it would require overcharging to at least G3, which means more heat. I can live with it if can be kept to around 35% heat.

The other issue that presents is using lightweight mods on weapons costs integrity, and the opportunity cost in the mods not chosen. No overcharge, no efficient. So the weapons would be plain Jane and sorta weak as a result. I have yet to decide which types of weapons I will use. Three beams would be nice, but without efficient modification they are less appealing.

Here is the same ship but with the engineering taken to higher levels

Velocity Mock Up

DPS is just 37.5. Not going to kill much, but can get my shots in for claims anyway. But this meets the speed goal, and the shield megajoules goal at 600+. Thermal resist is quite low. But honestly with 800+ boost it won't get hit much right?

Power Plant was switched to 2A to save weight. Lightweight was done to the Life Support. Shields and booster were done to G5. Eventually I can G5 heavy duty the bulkheads, though that doesn't add up to much. This is a ship where if the shields fall, you're mostly dead.

Any thoughts from the folks here? If you're bored, build your ideal fast battle Courier at Coriolis and post it. Might give me some new ideas.
Posted By: WingNuts01

Re: Courier build - 04/15/19 05:05 PM

Mosquito build here https://s.orbis.zone/2sgz . Love the view. Just not enough DSPS for me. Guess I'm too jaded by MR Skittles ability to remove opposition.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/15/19 05:24 PM

Thanks Wingy, interesting to see your build, thanks for posting it.

Your Courier hits so much harder. Those weapons combine to weigh 13t and I can't do anything like that if high speed is my goal. Comparing the builds at least makes me think I am on the right track.

Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/15/19 06:57 PM

Got a tip at the Frontier forum to switch the Drags to Drive Distributors. That increases optimal mass by 10% and means it will boost about 50 m/s faster. That's awesome! I have the mats and will make that switch tonight.
Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: Courier build - 04/15/19 09:20 PM

Imperial ships are so sexy, good luck with your build! I hope it flies as good as it looks!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/15/19 11:34 PM

I agree with that! And the inverse is true as well. Fed ships be fugly.

This Courier is going to be wicked fast. By the time I am done it should boost to about 850 and four-pip cruise at 620. It's a dangerous ship to fly. Not only are the shields vulnerable to thermal weapons, there is virtually no hull at all. Even if I G5 heavy-duty the bulkheads, I'll have about 200 integrity. That's like stock Dolphin integrity. In combat it's a liability perhaps, but against NPCs I am not expecting too much trouble. As long as I don't fall asleep at the wheel I can just skedaddle if things are going badly. No, I think it's dangerous because I stand a much higher chance of smashing in to something at really high speed. I think that's the real danger in this ship I am building. Especially asteroids and other ships in a RES.

I can see it already. Take some hits, shields drop a little. Boost to go off and recharge them and wham! straight in to an asteroid and to the rebuy screen. This vision is maybe a little too clear haha smile

This ship is a 10m build so rebuy is nothing. But I have only four rebuys in Elite and wish to keep it right there. Tempting fate, I am.

But it's really fast and that's a lot of fun.

Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: Courier build - 04/16/19 12:01 AM

My days of playing Eve have insulated me from feeling ship loss - ships are disposable, esp with the rebuy.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/16/19 12:32 AM

That's probably a better way to go about it smile

If I ever clear my account, or get a second one, neither of which I anticipate, I think I would play it ironman. In PvE of course. Actually, I haven't flown in Open since I came back a month ago. I'm getting off course.

My four rebuys were three early ones, as I was learning the game, and two of them in the Eagle, which I loved to fly, but just couldn't survive in properly. The fourth one was in a T-9 last Spring soon after buying it. This was before Void Opals and I thought I could get to Trade Elite faster with one of those pigs. I can't recall the details, but I posted here about it and my conclusion was I chose the one course of action that could lead to my destruction. I still blamed the ship and sold it after one week.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/16/19 11:52 AM

Flew back to Deciat last night and changed the thrusters to drive distributors, which sent me well over 800 m/s boost. Four-pip cruise is 600. That's unarmed though.

I had an overcharged 2A power plant in storage, so made that swap and added thermal spread to it. Lightweighted the life support after unlocking Lori Jameson and made a few other small mass-saving upgrades. It's getting there. This ship cruises faster than any of my other ships boost smile
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/17/19 06:58 PM

Velocity continues to move forward. Little things here and there, but a ways to go yet, especially as I have so few mats needed to complete G5 mods. In the interim, I can live vicariously through the folks replying to my thread at Frontier forum. These Couriers are amazing with a capital Z! smile

Seriously, these builds have opened my eyes. The Courier isn't popular here, just Wingy and I have one? But check 'em out


Lots of very impressive builds, and as I said in that thread, I'm glad I started it and saw what's possible, because I wouldn't have come anywhere near these builds if I had been left to my own devices. An amazing ship she is.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/20/19 11:43 AM

This project continues apace.

Velocity Mid-build

Look at that speed smile They say 861 m/s boost is theoretical maximum, so not too far off that. However, it will only get heavier and I will lose some of it.

I was very concerned about the thermal resist being so low using a Reinforced 2A shield. I reasoned that the weapons I most need to be concerned about are laser variants, as they have no shot speed, or infinite shot speed, whatever. But I reckon these are the weapons most likely to ht my ultra-fast whip. Explosive and kinetic were good, but thermal was very low. So I put that generator in the boneyard and bought another 2A, and put Thermal Resist on it. That goes a long way toward fixing that issue, and as a bonus, Thermal Resist engineering give a healthy boost to integrity, which is quite useful I think.

Before it's done I will sort out the shield boosters, and get my resists up across the board through Resistance Augmented with the goal of hitting 60% for all three. May not quite get there, but should be close. So in the main, I swapped pure mj for resistances, but I think that's the right choice here. Probably drop the wake scanner too.

The 2A power plant was swapped out for a 3A from the boneyard. Once everything is done and I see the final power needs, I can finalize this.

Weapons are not sorted. I can't make up my mind. I had two G5 lightweight gimballed C2 multicannons in the boneyard, one with autoloader and one with nothing. Put those in the wingtip hardpoints. The original plan was to go with two incendiary MCs for shields, and one corrosive MC in the center hardpoint. That hardpoint still sits empty because I want to try something a bit more exotic in the center spot. The plan is to put a fixed frag cannon there. Lightweight for certain. Oversized? What experimental? Would you believe I have never used a frag cannon before? Seems like fun. I don't have the right engineer unlocked yet (more rares uggg!) but will get around to that shortly.

If I do though I would have no corrosive, unless I put it on the frag, or on one of the outboard MCs. Weapon mod possibilities are pulling me in too many directions. Suggestions welcome.

Hull integrity is a joke. I am going to install some 1D HRPs, which is going to kill some of that speed. But I can't fly it in combat with 161 integrity and poor armor hardness. These will go in the empty/cargo slots. Bulkheads will be G5 HD, and this will all add up to around 400 or so. Low, but better than it is now!

There is still a ways to go. Few things are fully engineered, thrusters included. So more speed can be squeezed out of them. Just gotta get the mats.

If you look at the builds in the thread I linked to above, it's clear all have some sort of design hole. In order to get a theoretical maximum speed ship, you're going to trade jump range or something else. My build will trade speed. If I can keep 4-pip cruise over 600 and boost over 800 I will be happy. It will retain the good jump. It two-pips at 570, which matches the fastest boost speed of any of my other ships (FDL). But shields, firepower, speed and integrity will all be less than possible. A bit of an all-rounder.

This is the most interesting build I've done. Looking forward to flying it in combat duel

Posted By: WingNuts01

Re: Courier build - 04/20/19 06:08 PM

Something like this; https://s.orbis.zone/2u7o . Put the Frag on the centerline and MC on wing tips. Synth reloads (standard) for 15% boost to the Frag. That'll increase Frag DPS by 22.2 totaling 169.7 for a grand total DPS of 195.7. Oh and your still at 834.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/20/19 06:17 PM

Thanks Wingnuts. The way you did it I have no thermal attack. Will it struggle against well-shielded ships?

Frags are fun right? You seem to like 'em smile

Thing is I want to choose right first time so I don't waste any engineering mats and effort.
Posted By: WingNuts01

Re: Courier build - 04/20/19 11:37 PM

Frags is what I use to take down shields. Come to think everything else as well.

Experimentation is necessary I'm afraid. You need to find out what works for your attack style and tolerance. When I tried mine it took a long time to make kills, which is why I favor Mr Skittles build. Frags come with a magazine of 3 for each gun. I volley all three in each pass. Reload and repeat if target is still in range (300-600m). You'll be scooting by pretty darn quickly. So, perhaps energy is the way for your build?

Good luck with it though!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/21/19 01:11 AM

Originally I thought I would go with beams. But then I thought about how I want to fly this ship, using it's insane speed, and how beams, or any lasers would have poor synergy due to the early falloff. In order to keep hitting those insane speeds I have to lightweight the weapons, so no long range or similar mods. Short effective range combined with high closing speeds seemed a poor choice. So that got me thinking kinetic, since falloff is 1800m I think, with range of 4 km. I felt like it would be better suited to the build for that reason. I wish I had some lightweight beams to try out. It's enough mat gathering doing this build already.

Plus, using kinetic weapons has far less power and distributor draw. Can't use efficient for lasers (to keep power and distributor low) because of mass and keep the high speed. Lower heat, more pip flexibility, and the knock on effect of having more for the rest of the ship like boosters or lower power plant requirement.

If frags are effective against shields it will be OK. Most of the builds I've seen using frags choose Oversized, and you did too Wingy. That means about +4 DPS which is more, but not that much really. But probably the best considering the other choices. Experimental effects are not too costly mats wise, but ya gotta fly to the #%&*$# engineer base. If not for that I could easily experiment. Fixed frags yield an additional 30 DPS which is significant, but the slow shot speed and this ship's high speed make me think I need to go gimballed. I have to unlock the G5 frag dude first anyway. I'm going to log in and work on it some more, maybe get the rares I need to unlock him while I am at it. I need to do the armor, HRPs, shield boosters and the final hardpoint before I will fight with it.

How many 3-shot mags before you need to make more?
Posted By: WingNuts01

Re: Courier build - 04/21/19 07:21 PM

Frags; total ammo is 180 That'll give 60 volleys'. Keep in mind you need to fire 600m - 300m. Any farther and skittles will disperse too far and many will miss.

Have you given thought to Canon or Rail Gun. Lite weight oversized mounted on the centerline could work.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/21/19 08:08 PM

Yes, considered both of those weapons. Rails are appealing, but they pull more power and to mount them I'd need to either make the 2A PP hotter with another level of overcharge or go back to 3A which kills my speed. Plus there are no gimballed rails right? Cannon might be a good option, but I've just spent my lightweight mats again smile

I spent some more time on this ship today and it's come a long way. I still lack the mats to get everything done. But it now sports decent integrity, shield strength and resistances while keeping above the 600/800 speed thresholds I am gunning for.

It has the G5 lightweight frag cannon now. I flew it in combat and it handles just like I want it to. It's amazingly fast and agile. I have corrosive and incendiary on the two multis, and oversized on the frag. I was killing ships, but I don't like it's one v one ability. If I use it's high speed, it's hard to do much damage. If I turn it in to a knife fight, the shields won't stand up too long. The frags have to be fired in tight like Wingy just mentioned so if using the high speed it's just snapshots, not sitting there pounding the target with repeated volleys. And that high speed carries you away to turn around and come back, giving the target a little time to recharge, slowing it all down.

However, in any RES other than haz or in a CZ it's going to be really good. Insane acceleration and high end means I can be gone in a blink, or close the target at will and dictate terms. Having allied NPCs means slashing attacks are viable. Don't have to kill it all by myself, which is when this build seems weak.

I still have to sort/finish the boosters, ran out of mats. And the PD is just G3. Resistances are much better and more balanced than before I re-did the shields from Reinforced to Thermal Resist. Resistances will be around 60% when the boosters are done. Not sure that's the best I can get.

I still have an unused C3 optional (HRP, MRP, Guardian module?), and an unused utility (chaff? another booster?). I need to shed mass to add mass at this point.

Here's the build at this stage. Just awesome to fly in Elite. Fantastic cockpit, great view, insane speed and excellent agility. In the Frontier forum thread, most players that replied with builds had opted to make their ship as fast as it could be, around or at the 861 limit. But that meant sacrifices elsewhere, either in integrity, shields, jump range or lack of a scoop. My Courier trades some of that speed to get 34 jump while having pretty good shields and integrity and still having a scoop.

Velocity Late Build

Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 12:28 PM

Distinct lack of oohs and ahhs smile

Somebody turn the lights out or something around here?
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 03:04 PM

My combat style is face tank incoming fire and melt ‘em with 6 beams. Any comments I’d make would be talkin out my ass regarding the speed racer you’re building. It does look like you’ve mostly sorted it out except the weapons. Don’t know how you’re going to get around the “time on target” issue I can foresee. Lasers for shields and torps or missiles for hull?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 03:20 PM

I was just fishin' for comments.Forum dried up.

It's a crazy sort of build that makes me smile when I fly it. It has issues yes, but everyone should try a ship that goes as fast as this one does.

More than any other ship I have, this one is at the edge, meaning any change, even a small one, has a knock-on effect throughout the build. Power, mass, heat, distributor draw, speed and more are all affected and have to be accounted for as there is little margin.

It's like a knife in a gunfight, but as I've always said, I love fast ships.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 04:14 PM

If you plan on using it as a boom n zoomer, the issue I see is “time on target” as I said above. Death by a thousand cuts is how I see you killing ships. Small ones should be no issue; it’s the bigger, tankier ones that I can see causing you issues.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 04:35 PM

I agree and acknowledged same

" I was killing ships, but I don't like it's one v one ability. If I use it's high speed, it's hard to do much damage. If I turn it in to a knife fight, the shields won't stand up too long. The frags have to be fired in tight like Wingy just mentioned so if using the high speed it's just snapshots, not sitting there pounding the target with repeated volleys. And that high speed carries you away to turn around and come back, giving the target a little time to recharge, slowing it all down.

However, in any RES other than haz or in a CZ it's going to be really good. Insane acceleration and high end means I can be gone in a blink, or close the target at will and dictate terms. Having allied NPCs means slashing attacks are viable. Don't have to kill it all by myself, which is when this build seems weak."

It's great when there are allies about, but not one v one against good shields.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 05:22 PM

Agree that it’ll be fantastic in a Res. Ping the bad guy once or twice in a slash and then move on to the next. Rinse n repeat ad nausem. A perfect niche for it.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 05:57 PM

Yes indeed. We should go hunting in a thunder Vette -- lightning Courier team.

I'll be there mostly to zip around smile

I want to fly this ship with a friend who then exclaims how fast it is haha.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 06:15 PM

It’d almost be like my own SLF, except faster and beefier! Better yet, get James in his vette, Wingy with Mr. Skittles, and you and I. All would look upon us and despair!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 06:26 PM

I'm game.

It’d almost be like my own SLF

If your SLF ignored orders and didn't help much smile
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 06:39 PM

Since I’m so miserly with money and xp, I’d only hire a harmless pilot. That would probably do exactly that til he ranked up. yep
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 08:28 PM

Originally Posted by Bohemond
I’d only hire a harmless pilot.

I qualify smile

Maybe we can hit up a RES or CNB Thursday night if anyone's up for it and doesn't mind me not helping much.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 08:45 PM

Alas, I’m workin 2 jobs a day M-Thurs this week then goin up the Adirondacks for the weekend.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 08:51 PM

Enjoy the crisp air.

I bought Out of the Park Baseball 20 last night and my Fightin' Phils started 4-0. Gotta keep the hot streak going.

When you're back and working one-a-days let me know if you want to hit some bounties.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/22/19 08:55 PM

Hell yeah! It’d be next week, but I’ll hit you up and we’ll spank some baddies.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/29/19 02:47 PM

I built this ship to be just what I wanted. It's very fast, has good jump, a decent scoop, good shields and integrity, runs cool enough.

But the weapons are a problem. I made a mistake going for frags. I should have tried them first, before engineering them. Frags are fun, and can be very effective. But that's a weapon for close-range slugfests, not for a slasher. If I had known how spread the shot is I would have gone for something else. My mistake.

So I still need a solution. I'm thinking of moving the corrosive MC to the center hardpoint and putting efficient thermal vent beams in the wings.

This does three things

-- Increases my actual DPS. It's easy to look at the Coriolis numbers with a frag cannon and say ooh, lookee at all that DPS! But only some shots are going to hit with all submunitions and even then the frequency with which you are firing with frags is something less than every second biggrin

-- Adds 7t to the build. This chops off 80 m/s of speed.

-- Reduces effective range. My idea for this ship was to fight it at full speed. I've done this now and it's awesome as I knew it would be. So maybe I can be content with 'having done it'. Changing to efficient beams means the effective range is drastically lowered over an all-kinetic build. So I would have to change the way I fight it, making it more conventional and losing some of what I was gunning for at the outset. At this stage I have to say fair enough and change tack. This armament would allow continual fire for as long as I hold the trigger. But of course that means less slashing and more saddling up.

This configuration also fits in the current power profile. I will finish the PD and change the experimental to Super Conduits to support the beams.

The trump card is it is still blazing fast and very agile. Just not as much as before. So attaining and maintaining advantageous positioning is easy. But it increases vulnerability, and the protection is good, but not capable of taking too much sustained fire. Against NPCs this isn't really much of an issue, but something to consider anyway.

Has anyone used cannons in their builds? These have no falloff and are fully effective to 3.5 km if I understand it correctly. Can't put corrosive on them though.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/29/19 04:09 PM

Have you given any thought to PA’s? The main downside is their shot speed which can be compensated by modding them for long range. Makes it easier to hit due to the velocity buff. I run them sometimes on my Krait. Power draw and mass may be an issue on your speed racer, though.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/29/19 04:30 PM

I have yes, but have never used them. Power fits and mass can be lightweighted, so they are viable.

I can't afford to engineer for trials. Can only run it through Coriolis and see what's what.

Rails are another option.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 04/29/19 05:17 PM

Both rails and PA’s have thermal issues, I’ve found.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 04/29/19 06:00 PM

Indeed, but thermal vent beams should correct that easy enough.

I think I'll go with the corrosive MC/dual thermal vent beams option for now. It's tried and true, works in the build, and no heat or power issues.

Eventually I might look for other configs, but for now I think that'll do.

Honestly, I can't be fussed to worked it all out any longer. I just want to be done and shoot stuff with it.

Here's what it will look like with the weapons change

Velocity Final?

The fairly low resists are concerning, and could be improved but only with some compromise elsewhere. Not too worried at the mo. I dropped the fuel tank one size to get the speed back up, but that's a mighty small tank.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/01/19 01:46 PM

I flew it for a couple of hours in a high RES yesterday and it's just awesome. Firepower is now good enough. Speed and agility are excellent. Protection is sufficient. NPCs are no worry, it's collision that is my biggest threat, and I had a few of those.

But fighting in this ship is fantastic, most fun I've had in combat in a long time. The responsiveness is great. You don't spend much time flying backwards in this thing. I commented at the Frontier boards that killing ships in the FDL feels like business. In the Courier it feels like art smile

The main motivation behind this project was to make the slog to combat Elite fun. I will be flying a lot of combat in my quest to reach triple Elite. Doing it in a death machine would have been more effective, but less fun. Many ships explode after shooting at them for 5 or 10 seconds in the FDL. The Courier doesn't have that issue haha. The beams can be fired all day and give me good, effective shield stripping ability. The corrosive multicannon is there just to fire a burst and keep the beams getting a bonus.

Range isn't as much of an issue as I feared. Sure, the beams aren't doing a whole lot of damage at 2.5km or whatever. But they can get the tags in so I get credit. The absolute performance superiority I enjoy over every NPC ship means that I can gain control position in a blink, or evade/escape at the press of a button.

Switching out two lightweight weapons for efficient thermal vent beams added a net 7 tons of mass. This reduced speed by nearly 80 m/s, which was then halved with the smaller fuel tank, so it's 575/780 now. Still blazingly fast, but short of my stated target. No worries. Actually it makes it a little easier in dockside ops. Ultra-fast ships have err, excellent throttle response and the fine adjustments to throttle position are tricky, so a little less speed isn't a total loss.

Yesterday I finished the power distributor, one of the weaknesses of the Courier. G5 charge enhanced with super conduits now. I don't have the proto whizbangs needed to complete G5 on the beams yet. So they are still G4 point 6 or so. Still, I can fire almost forever, but the capacitor will drain if I stand on it.

I'm enjoying this ship so much I wanted to buy a paint job, but they are all sh!t. Would love the ability to paint it myself.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/01/19 04:08 PM

Good to hear you’re enjoying the build and got the weps sorted out. As an aside, are you seeing any of the reported bugs or issues with the new patch?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/01/19 04:28 PM

Yes I am, especially the module priorities one. I know now to check it first, but this one has the potential to ruin your day.

I lifted off from the pad on one hop, and because my landing gear and hardpoints are on the same four-way switch, I accidentally deployed hardpoints while raising my gear and shields went offline. I very gingerly made my exit expecting to be rammed. It happened again after relogging in a RES. This one's dangerous.

I am not having the performance issues some are reporting, nor log-in troubles.

I have however had some trouble when clicking continue, and it takes me straight to Open, skipping the 'choose mode' screen. This made for some tense moments when I was repeatedly relogging at Jameson's Cobra and Dav's yesterday.

Which other ones am I forgetting?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/11/19 05:57 PM

Originally Posted by Bohemond
Maybe something like this?

Bo's Build

Heat spikes would prolly be an issue firing.

Nice looking Courier. I don't know how well the Imperial Hammers would work as I have yet to use them (or even qualify to buy them). Like you said heat could be a problem. But if so, perhaps a single Hammer in the center and something else on the outboard hardpoints? Hammers produce nearly triple the heat of standard rails right? Would have to build it to see I suppose.The TTD on that build concerns me, but maybe with Hammers it's fine since you fire them selectively?

The shields are outrageous! Those are some super shields for such a small ship. Far more of everything than my Courier.

I took your build and ran it through my head, and came up with this alternative. In order to do what I did I had to make a small sacrifice to shielding (more on that in a mo) and dump the chaff. What I was looking to do was retain your weapons choices, optional choices and at the same time lower the mass so it was much faster. Mass dropped from 101t to 77t. Smaller fuel tank too, which is what I am using, but I can swap it out for travel.

Here's what I came up with. Might have been better if I were not at work smile


As you can see it's considerably faster. Speed went from 404/549 to 521/707. Of course you may not want it to be faster.

I changed the sensors. I know you and Wingy like the A's, and that's cool, but I was looking to cut weight and that seemed a good spot. 7 km scan range versus 11 km scan range, but much lighter. Going full G5 long-range puts it over 8km at the cost of about 3 m/s. In practice I find you get more effective range than what Coriolis says. I'm using D's with a little long range and find it's plenty. YMMV.

And the shields. Swapped to 3A. At first glance you see the mj is sharply reduced. But the resistances of this build actually make it more effective against explosive and kinetic, though thermal is worse (but equal to what I am rocking). Recharge is much faster. The main benefit is it's half the weight of the Prismatics. Pure mj though is the best defense against collision damage. But my Courier is 551 mj and I hit your Vette doing 660 m/s, cartwheeled over and over and lost half a ring biggrin I'm using a 2A in mine.

Armor was changed to G5 heavy duty/deep plate on the lightweight alloy, and as you can see it's actually better and a little lighter.

All of this mass reduction gives it a nice boost to jump range, and allows the Enhanced Performance Thrusters for the extra smash. It would run a little cooler too as it's only G3 overcharged on the PP, but maybe the EP thrusters negate the thermal drop. Alternative build requires 1.7 MW less power. Perhaps the newfound speed and jump would allow you to swap the Guardian FSDB for another MRP/HRP or Guardian shield booster or SCB or whatever.

You didn't ask my opinion Bo, but I like doing this and discussing it so hope you don't mind and I hope to hear your thoughts. I've flown my Courier alot now and the bottom line for me is that as amazing as the shields are on your build, they are more than you'll need in PvE. So I traded a little of their capability for much more speed and jump. Integrity's a little better too. I feel like chaff isn't needed at these speeds, and with this agility against the NPCs, but that's a matter of opinion.

My Courier for comparison


Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/11/19 07:22 PM

I knew I could count on you fine tune my build. cheers
The original we just one I slapped together. Used mostly my “go to” mods to see if I could get a shield tank, Impy Hammer iCourier to work. Thinking about some more, 3 Hammers would most likely fry my ship after a salvo or 3. Only one way to find out...

How did I not even know about Enhanced Per Thrusters???? Learn something new every day
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/11/19 07:38 PM

Haha, you can buy them from Felicity, Palin or Martuuk. But as you can see, even with the extra 10% OM from Drive Distributors you need to keep it below 86t to really benefit.

You may not be keen on a new build, but if you ever get around to it that would be fun bounty hunting in dual Couriers. If we can convince Wingy to take his out of drydock that's three!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/11/19 10:31 PM

My sensors do not use long range as I mistakenly said. They are G5 lightweight of course. My Python, Krait and FDL use long range Ds. And usually just G1 or G2 to get a little extra. Typical emission range as shown on Coriolis is about 60% of what I'd call effective range. My Courier's sensors are shown as 4.6 km, but hold scans to 8 km, with a few cooler ships maybe dropping before that.

As I see it, A sensors are really good for two things. They are better at resolving those cool ships. And they are very useful when you want to target specific ships, such as power play, massacre missions or if you are being highly selective while bounty hunting. For me though 8 km is more than enough, especially in the typical places I fight, RES sites and CZs. There are always a bunch of ships well within range. For my ships I'd rather trade that range for lower power, heat and mass.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/11/19 10:38 PM

I’m on right now equipping an iCourier. We’ll see what I can come up with
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/11/19 10:51 PM

Nice! Looking forward to seeing what you put together. This is when having a shed load of mats comes in handy eh? smile
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 02:05 AM

So, 2 Hammers cook my ship on 1 salvo sigh Kinda figured as much. At Jameson now reconfiguring. Made the grand tour of engineers, so all that is done. Just need to find a usable weapons load out.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 02:48 AM

This is it as she stands currently. Heat issues reduced.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 03:32 AM

Sweet shields thumbsup

Weapons were the most difficult thing for me to settle on. In the end I compromised by going for full-weight beams. I wanted a more exotic solution in the center hardpoint, and tried the frags, which was a mistake. The lightweight corrosive multicannon helps keep mass down, is low draw, and the corrosive bonus plays well with the beams. I can stay and fight for a long time since I just fire the odd burst with the MC to keep the bonus ticking and ammo lasts a long time. The beams on their own don't drain the capacitor. If I fire all three it would eventually. So the DPS is 'true' because it can be continuously fired for a long time. Damage per minute or something would be more useful than DPS with Elite weapons when evaluating a build I think.

If I could add corrosive to a cannon I would have tried that too. That range is really nice, with no falloff.

When you're ready to fight with it let me know. We'll do some bounty hunting.

Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 03:38 AM

Back at Deciat. Had to swap enhanced thrusters for regular 3A for the optimal mass boost. Switched from drag drives to drive distributor also.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 03:45 AM

Yeah, with 21t of boosters you're going to struggle to hit OM with the EPs even with Drive Distributors. So at 100t combat weight the 3As are probably better. Cooler and less draw I think as well.

If I could make one suggestion it's to use heavy duty on your bulkheads. Since lightweight alloy weighs nothing, there is zero drawback to HD'ing them. Your shields are strong, but a little integrity to fall back on is good, especially as the armor hardness is so low.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 03:56 AM

Yup, the HD booster is killing my mass. I’m loath to dump is as it’s a huge buff to the shield.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 04:14 AM

That's why this is such an interesting build. In some of my ships I feel as though I can just keep piling stuff on it and there's always room. Python, Krait, Conda...

But in the Courier it's like what ship designers have faced forever. How to balance speed, protection and firepower. If you go all in in one or two of those, the third is going to suffer. Difficult to get the balance. I started off with ultra-high speed as my goal. But as I built it I realized I needed more of the other stuff. At one point I was cruising at 620 and boosting to 830, but that had to come down as I sorted the weapons and protection. In the end I think I managed a really nice compromise build that really suits me. But it still leans toward speed no doubt. I feel like that and the high agility are it's best defense.

Those Bi-Weaves are really nice though. Your mj is double mine, and you'd be really well protected against collision. And that was my biggest concern with this ship, since I have no intention of PvP with it. NPCs can be tough, but they aren't that much of a threat really. But high speed collision was something I thought could do me in. And if I do die in this ship that will be part of what happened. My results so far have been interesting, and not necessarily what I had expected.

My ship with 551 mj is surprisingly good at bouncing off other ships at very high speed and shrugging it off. So much so that it shocked me a little when I had my first high speed crash. But as the collisions piled up I started to see that the damage I take seems to be tied to the speed of the ship that I collide with. The speed I am going seems to not matter. If the other ship is going very fast it can take out my shields. It's odd, but something to be aware of, and I'd be curious if anyone sees the same. Luckily, very few NPCs are going all that fast in a RES or a CZ.

Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 04:26 AM

I might be willing to go down to say 750-800 on the shields. The only other issue is heat. I at 46% at rest. Scooping is an exercise in frustration.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 01:01 PM

Is that heat that it shows in game? Or on Coriolis? Because I find the resting heat thing on Coriolis isn't accurate. My Krait for example rests at 27%, but the build shows 46% on Coriolis.

Not a whole lot of ways I can see to drop heat. Your build shows Drag Drives, but you changed that to Drive Distributors right? That cuts some heat. Maybe swap Monstered to Thermal Spread on the PP?

I don't really understand how heat works. I read once that the PP doesn't actually produce heat, but is a sum of the all the power it needs to produce to run all the whizbangs. If that's true (and I don't know if it is), perhaps just dropping the power requirement will drop the heat. For example if you were to start swapping some E boosters in, that alone could make a big difference (and net a lot of speed)

My Courier rests around 30%.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 01:07 PM

The 46% is in game. It’s not all that much of an issue, just when scooping. I can live with it. I HAVE gotten real close to running outta fuel a few times. Small tank and plasma slugs on the Hammer, it doesn’t last long. I just need to be aware of it. I gotta say, it IS a lot of fun zipping around pecking at people instead of brute force smashing and face tanking in the Vette. Kudos to you for nudging me to try it!

And the view from the pit is awesome!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 01:22 PM

Thanks for wanting to try it! Seriously. Not many seem to favor small ship combat. Most prefer to carry a big stick, which is very effective, but a bit dull to me. Zipping around and getting your tags in is a lot of fun like you said. If you start to shed some mass, and can get back to the EP thrusters you'll have a lot more zip.

I was thinking about it last night. The slower you are, the more protection you'll need. If a Courier is no faster than say a Krait, it needs that high level of protection. But as you shed mass and gain speed, you still have high defense, it's just shifted from mj to speed and agility. Both are effective, but one is a lot more fun smile

Speaking of which, before you change it too much (not that you need to) would you mind posting your pitch/roll/yaw numbers? I'd like to see how the numbers compare with the different builds.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 01:30 PM

That's her as she sits now. Took off the hd booster and swapped it for an unengineered AO to shed some mass.
54.66/129.45/23.01 rates
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 01:39 PM

E boosters weigh just a half ton, but you know that smile

Did that change net any heat drop at all?

My pitch/roll/yaw numbers for comparison. Thanks for posting yours


The lower mass with EPs makes a significant difference to handling.

And the build again, for convenience


Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 01:56 PM

Let's try 'em out later today. Dual Couriers gonna own that instance biggrin
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 02:00 PM

Any heat difference was negligible. I’m down with dual iCourier mayhem, assuming she who must be a
obeyed has no plans for me. Time?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 02:07 PM

Yeah, Mother's Day, I can dig it. My son goes back to his moms at 11, and it's raining so the yard work I planned is on hold. Hey, that leaves me free to shoot Eagles.

I don't know, maybe 2 PM eastern? Or whenever you're free from your duties. I left my boat in Exioce last night.
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 02:10 PM

2 works for me.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/12/19 05:19 PM

Hopping in now. Gotta get some manganese. This Courier is 90% manganese I reckon.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Courier build - 05/13/19 12:28 PM

Good stuff yesterday Bo, that was fun. The Couriers did well. The black looks good on it.

But if I ever see Andrew Knox again, he's gonna pay biggrin
Posted By: Bohemond

Re: Courier build - 05/13/19 12:38 PM

I agree! Yup, Andrew is on the kill list now. Only we are allowed to ram to death, not him!
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