The Expanded Cargohold route had a couple of advantages.
First, I was pretty sure I could afford to actually use the blueprint. That was, of course, the hitch with the Cargohold Optimization rig blueprint; I would have needed another 400 million ISK just to use it.
Second, there is a pretty active market for Expanded Cargohold IIs. If I made some, I was pretty sure I could sell them.
And, third, Expanded Cargohold research uses the same skills (Minmatar encryption methods, nanite engineering, and molecular engineering) and the same data cores as my work with the Cargohold Optimization rig, so I was at least done investing in skills. I just had to make some copies of the blueprint to get going.
I set to work and on only my third try I got the success message. A tech II blueprint:
Of course, now it was time for me to learn something new.
I had assumed, for no good reason, that “Licensed Production Runs” meant the number of times a blueprint could be submitted for use, and that “Production Limit” was the maximum units that could be produced.
I thought that, with this blueprint, I was good for 100 units. That would have been more than enough, at the current market price, to pay of the research and datacore costs, pay for materials, and leave some profit for me.
My assumption was all wrong. Licensed production runs in fact means the total number of units that blueprint can produce ever. Production limit is a cap on the number you can produce with any given submission at a manufacturing installation.
Of course, I only figured this out after I ran out and purchased the materials to make 100 units. I tried to submit the job for 100 units and got an error… and a sinking feeling.
Yes, I was able to make exactly one Expanded Cargohold II, which at the current market price, did not even cover the cost of the datacores I used up for the research.
So now I am back to copying the Expanded Cargohold blueprint, maxing out the number of runs available per copy this time around. Copying is, as usual, queued up for weeks, so some time around of the end of the month I will be able to try again.
At least I have the materials on hand to make 99 more, should I get a blueprint copy with more licensed production runs next time.