Sunday, 6 September 2009

Guristas Exploration Boat - The Ishkur

So these past few days I've been passing time exploring in Caldari highsec and lowsec. I use a few ships to do this - a Helios to scan and do radar sites with no rats in them, Deimos for the combat sites that allow (and need) cruiser hulls and an armor-tanked ishkur for smaller plexes that don't.

In the past I used to run the Deimos with 2 scan rigs and a core probe launcher to do it all, but I found it rather slow to use full-time and also without the covops cloak taking it into lowsec and sitting in a safespot while looking for plexes I run the risk of getting caught with a PVE fit.

So, seing that the Ishkur also has a utility high slot, I thought of adapting it to the role, creating a high-dps, high-tank scan capable Assault Frigate. After tinkering in EFT, looking for the right price/performance ratio, I came up with a shield boosted fit:

[Ishkur, Gistii Booster, Neutrons, C-Type AB, Scan]
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Beta Reactor Control: Capacitor Flux I
Damage Control II

Gistii B-Type Small Shield Booster
Pithum C-Type Kinetic Deflection Amplifier
Coreli C-Type 1MN Afterburner

Light Neutron Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Neutron Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Neutron Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Sisters Core Probe Launcher, Sisters Core Scanner Probe I

Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I

Hobgoblin II x10

[Note to self: get the latest EFT, with sized rigs, on personal laptop as well]


  • 225 dps tank vs. Guristas (85% kin, 15% therm split common in exploration)
  • 230 dps output using Null S (for extra range) and Hobgoblin II's; 265 with Federation Antimatter (but then only 1.7 km optimal). Only use Void on static installations you need to destroy.
  • 943-ish m/s speed, thanks to the Coreli C-Type AB
  • 39 Sig Radius
Yes, it's shield tanked, but this allows me to fit a damage mod (rig slots are needed for scan rigs), and is also cheaper than the armor tank solution of equivalent strength. My shield skills are sub-par compared to armor, but I still get the job done OK.

I've been flying it for a few hours now and I can honestly say, for Guristas it's golden. Radars - did 2, no problem, even the one with battleships (yay for small sig radius); breaks combat sites like nobody's business (Now if I could only find a 4/10 or similar to check out)... I did break a sweat in a Guristas Watch site because I mismanaged the triggers and because (I think) of the high number of gun ships present.

All in all it performs admirably, the 2 scan rigs and Sisters equipment allow for pretty damn fast scan times (almost as fast as covops, and although you might need an extra scan or two, it's definitely faster than going back and forth to swap ships).

I like the fact that it's fast and maneuvrable (and awe-inspiring) - I managed to snatch a Radar site from a small gang made up of a Drake, Buzzard and a Tristan. They warped out in a hurry when they saw me coming and didn't loot the site. By the time the Buzzard returned (and decloaked in the gas cloud cause he warped in too close), I had already looted all the cans and had just punched the warp engines.

For radar/arcsal sites I bring codebreaker/analyzer/salvager with me and dock to swap the C-type resistance amplifier or the probe launcher for the required mod.

The whole fit costs about 150mil - reasonable enough to be feasible (sisters launcher and probes I got on LP but are typically worth about 65mil, shield booster was 35mil, ship was 26mil, AB was 10mil, assorted bits and pieces a few more millions), and it also has the capability to flee should things get rough in lowsec, which will happen given the fact that it has no cloak.

Comments are welcome, as always.

In other news, I've been accepted as a member on the Eve Blog Roll (a collection containing various Eve Online related blogs ). Thanks, CrazyKinux, and congratulations to all other newly added participants.

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