What are good things to put in a mining ship’s low slots? I can think of mining upgrades and damage control and… that’s it. You don’t have enough PG for harvesting equipment, an afterburner, and a 800 mm plate, so trying to armor tank isn’t going to be any good (if expedition frigates had a 70% PG reduction in 800 or below armor plates, it doesn’t matter the Endurance has a base 1100 shield HP and only 400 armor, I’d slap on that armor plate). A warp core stabilizer kills your drones, so probably not. Also many people fit their stuff to be able to hold down Ventures, so a single stab won’t save you from these people anyways. An inertia stabilizer can help with align. Do inertia stabilizers, signal amplifiers, or drone upgrades have any use on a mining ship? I get people will usually just go for mining upgrades, but do these alternatives help at all?
Depends on the ship.
Venture/Prospect/Endurance? Nanofiber/Inertia Stabilizers
Mining Barges? Hull tank.
Exhumers? Power Diagnostics System.
Mining and Exploration Frigates have rather modest yields compared to barges and exhumers, so together with their relatively decent mobility they are most useful for high risk mining operations. Inertia Stabilizers help align time the most, but blows up your signature radius which makes your ship worse at not being scanned down and sigtanking rats. Nanofibers don’t have that downside.
Mining Barges have, with the exception of the Procurer, equal shield and hull HP while having on average better hull than shield resists - 33% omni on hull, vs 27.5% average with a gaping EM hole on shield and not enough mids to compensate with hardeners and shield extenders.
Exhumers get a shield resist bonus and have slot layouts much more geared towards shield tanking, and Power Diagnostic Systems are the only way to increase shield HP through lowslots.
“But my cargo space…”
Oh wait mining ships usually don’t use these much. Usually 80 mm is enough to hold junk from rats a barge can beat if you even wanted to get stuff from wrecks.
About the only thing I can think you’d want cargo space for is if you wanted to bring a depot to refit in case I wanted to MWD+ Cloak to a low sec ice belt and then switch to a mining fit. But low sec is no place for a barge unless you’re in front of a moon. And the cloak trick doesn’t work with a barge, my buddy dueled me and he locked me 7 out of the 8 times but I pulled off the trick in my dragoon just fine. Thanks for the suggestions.
Apart from the already mentioned obvious mining upgrade, or defensive modules like PDS and bulkheads for more EHP, or inertial stabilizer/nanofibers for more agility, there’s more options.
Drone damage amplifier, to boost your main damage system (but I would rarely equip that unless you’re planning to fight).
Warp core stabilizers, which cut your damage in half but might allow you to ignore a scram/point at the wrong moment.
CPU upgrades/powergrid upgrades, if you need that little bit extra to fit your ship.