The Final Word on Steam Boiler Efficiency

AlanEsh

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Why would I want a quantum generator, I don't use EU.

Also, how is the Mystcraft age different than finding an oil well, and sending a cart to your base via the nether (and Mystcraft protals), which is how I got the first 2800+ buckets of excess fuel. Note, I use fuel for both MJ and EU production, so I produced a bucket ton more fuel than that. It's actually harder to deal with a mystcraft age for oil than the OW -> Nether -> OW oildropoff method because of the instability (nausea is too common)

But to each their own.
Didn't you know it is ok to pump (virtually) endless lava from the nether, but oh so cheaty to do something similar with Oil?
 

brujon

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Why would I want a quantum generator, I don't use EU.

Also, how is the Mystcraft age different than finding an oil well, and sending a cart to your base via the nether (and Mystcraft protals), which is how I got the first 2800+ buckets of excess fuel. Note, I use fuel for both MJ and EU production, so I produced a bucket ton more fuel than that. It's actually harder to deal with a mystcraft age for oil than the OW -> Nether -> OW oildropoff method because of the instability (nausea is too common)

But to each their own.
Any instability other than Decay can be circumvented with Quantum Suit and force fields. Also, Oil->Fuel generates so much more MJ/EU than Lava that by the time the pump has dried out the area and needs to be moved, it's possible you have so much excess that you don't even need to move the pump immediately. The setup is also much more easier than it is in the Nether, because you don't need to worry about netherrack and lava blocking the path for your frame pump machine, you can just make 4 and send them each in a different cardinal direction and get an absolutely outrageous amount of oil/fuel. Don't need to worry about mobs, and unless you get meteors, don't even need to bother about forcefields. Hell, if all you care about is oil even decay is nothing more than a nuisance, because it won't eat the oil source blocks.
 

DaemosDaen

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Any instability other than Decay can be circumvented with Quantum Suit and force fields. Also, Oil->Fuel generates so much more MJ/EU than Lava that by the time the pump has dried out the area and needs to be moved, it's possible you have so much excess that you don't even need to move the pump immediately. The setup is also much more easier than it is in the Nether, because you don't need to worry about netherrack and lava blocking the path for your frame pump machine, you can just make 4 and send them each in a different cardinal direction and get an absolutely outrageous amount of oil/fuel. Don't need to worry about mobs, and unless you get meteors, don't even need to bother about forcefields. Hell, if all you care about is oil even decay is nothing more than a nuisance, because it won't eat the oil source blocks.
With my experimentation, Blindness and Nausea can not be cured at all, Quantum helm or not. also I've lost several pumping stations due to fast acting decay upon re-visiting I normally find at least 3 colored along with black decay. The worst being that I swear I seen them all the types of decay. This is all on top of all the nausea, explosions (not ones from creepers either), meteors and other nastiness I didn't survive long enough to find out about. (I even went back to check on the system because the oil had stopped, decay ate the chunkloader.... and pump, RSEs, pipes and tracks, I'm fairly sure it got the cart too.) I've deleted all those ages, and am just using oily bees. so much saner, was easier to do than getting the Mystcraft symbols too. Oil costed me 47 emeralds.

So it's not exactly a walk in the park. heh draining the Nether is actually easier once you build a base over lava there.
 
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natnif36

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As above, for liquid pumping, the only instabilities that will effect you are:
WHITE decay. Non of. The other kinds can travel through air.
Meteors. You have these, you abandoned the world. Plain and simple. Will eat anything any anyone within hours, and cannot be avoided, as they have no pattern in their falling. Should only appear if you stack dense ores... Force fields may work....
Random explosions. Haven't much experience with this, but AFAIK, it doesn't have a strong explain strength? Unlike meteors, won't destroy obsidian. However, could potentially explode INSIDE your frame ship, so shields cannot help.

Blindness, nausea, hunger, poisen, burning, all awkward, but can be ignored.
Black/coloured decay will eat the world, however don't effect liquids.
Crumble/erode won't effect you unless you have water on the ship/build with stone.
 

Hydra

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Didn't you know it is ok to pump (virtually) endless lava from the nether, but oh so cheaty to do something similar with Oil?
Oh noes, someone has a different opinion than you!

Pump all you like, I personally don't like these solutions (neither do I pump lava from the Nether) but that's because I actually enjoy securing a nice power-producing setup for myself. If you want to make an oil-age be my guest, I'm not telling you how to play your game.
 

AlanEsh

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Oh noes, someone has a different opinion than you!
Pot meet kettle.

So what's your "nice power-producing setup"? You've sneered at that other guy's oil lakes, time to reveal your dirty secret... ;)

(for the record, I generally use a combination of oil and SC tree farms to run boilers. Solar is been-there-done-that and not as fun for me. Nuclear is next but with the 1.5 changes I am waiting to start on that)
 

Hydra

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So what's your "nice power-producing setup"? You've sneered at that other guy's oil lakes, time to reveal your dirty secret... ;)
Sneer? I just gave my opinion. If you can't handle a discussion what are you doing on a forum?

I use boilers. I have 2 on charcoal, 3 on biofuel (combination of saplings, sugarcane and bees) and 3 on fuel (refined bees). Setting that all up took me a wee bit more time than just creating an oil age and plopping down a pump.
 

AlanEsh

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Oh my goodness, relax Hydra.

Sounds like an interesting power setup. I happen to despise playing with bees, but I think I'll try biofuel with our server's most recent reset.
 

Larroke

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10 Boilers, BioFuel (3), Fuel (3) Logs (3) and 1 floater that's flips between spare charcoal in the system automatically and logs from the main supply.

Deliver charcoal to a chest next to boiler that's connected via concealed furnaces with the other boilers to a router for plank delivery. When the chest is full, have it set a toggle/stickypiston to pull the furnace out of the line (disconnecting it from plank supply) until the chest is empty.

I dislike the concept of oil ages as much as dense ores x20... Yes, you can get almost infinite lava from the nether... but its... "almost" and "from the nether". Its part of the mechanics of the game all the mod developers had access to when they created subsequent mods/features. But I wouldn't go so far as to discount other's play style its just not necessary.
 

immibis

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That's what I told him as well, but apparently he considers any metric that isn't peak temperature fuel consumption not only utterly irrelevant but in fact misleading, for some arcane reason I haven't been able to decipher yet. The argument of "you only use boilers in infinite fuel loops that permanently keeps them at maximum temperature" is not one I'm going to accept, in any case, because it doesn't change anything about the underlying game mechanics or the mathematical results. It merely makes fuel provision trivial. There's no causal relation between the method of fuel provision and the fuel efficiency curve of boilers.
Sudden (but late) epiphany about why this is:
Hydra isn't counting the heat-up fuel as part of the overall fuel consumption.
He's counting it as part of the construction cost.
 

Omicron

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Good point, that might very well be.

Though, since you can pay the heatup cost many times, while you have to pay the material costs for the fuel boxes and boiler blocks only once, I would still remain of a different opinion. It works in the special case of assembling the boiler once in a specific location and then letting it run until the twilight of the world itself, but that's just one case of many. As such you can't really use that model to make an universally applicable statement.

P.S.: I am the 5% :p
 

Hydra

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Good point, that might very well be.

Though, since you can pay the heatup cost many times, while you have to pay the material costs for the fuel boxes and boiler blocks only once, I would still remain of a different opinion. It works in the special case of assembling the boiler once in a specific location and then letting it run until the twilight of the world itself, but that's just one case of many. As such you can't really use that model to make an universally applicable statement.

P.S.: I am the 5% :p

That's actually how pretty much everyone on servers (and according to a recent poll more than 50% of the players play on a server) uses boilers. That was my point in saying that the heatup-phase doesn't matter other than that you need to cope with the increased fuel consumption during that stage.

Typical play is simply this:
- You set up a fuel supply (charcoal/biofuel/oil/whatever) that gives enough fuel / minute to heat a fully heated boiler.
- You look at http://calculator.towerofawesome.org/ to see how much fuel is consumed during heatup
- You store that amount of fuel, then you turn on the boiler
- You leave it running for all eternity

This is how people use boilers on servers (and most of the time in SP too). Since people tend to use infinite fuel sources for these boilers they don't care about the efficiency during heatup, they only care about how many boilers they can run off their current fuel supply. Both are 'efficiency', the first people don't care about, the latter they do. That's all I'm saying. And I'm feeling that, just because I disagree with you on some part, you got a whee little bit defensive.
 

Omicron

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Because your disagreement got a wee bit offensive, mostly ;)

Also, the keyword here is "typical play". That's the sort of blanket generalization I am not willing to make - it's poor form in science. You cannot ignore the minority for the sake of the majority, because a vague majority may not be larger than 50.01% unless measured reliably, and even a measured minority of 5%-10% is statistically significant. Precision in research is important. Different playstyles exist, and people who use these playstyles exist as well, therefore the most ideal model should cover them all.

Plus, I am not telling anyone how to play. This thread specifically avoids being a guide on how to use steam boilers, even though I've been asked repeatedly to make it one. It's a mathematical treatise on how heatup costs impact fuel efficiency, and how to interpretate that data in the context of modded Minecraft's bigger picture. Looking at this data, anyone can come to a conclusion that befits their specific situation. If your takeaway from this is that nothing has changed for you because the playstyle you prefer moves the heatup cost from the operation costs to the construction costs, then that's a valid result. It's not the only valid result, however, as numerous posts in this thread show (not to mention the about two dozen PM conversations I've received).

My beef is with your insistence that it is, not with the fact that you play a certain way.
 
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Hydra

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Because your disagreement got a wee bit offensive, mostly ;)
That was not my intention. But the thing is, you worded the topic title in a rather arrogant manner (just my opinion ;)). "Final word" typically means there's no room for discussion. Well, this is a forum :) And your post leaves a lot of room for discussion. I actually think (and again, this is just my opinion) that for a post claiming to be "the final word" it's rather meager.

Basically what your post is about is people saying that HP boilers are as efficient as LP boilers. Just before that you even mention infinite fuel. You then proceed to prove those people wrong, when all that is happening is that you simply have a definition of "efficient" that differs from a lot of other people. And you basically end with a conclusion that sets stuff into people's minds that's just as 'wrong' as what you're trying to disprove. I mean, do you really think that most people read that wall of text? What you see is a lot of people right after going "ha ha I'll stick to combustion engines". Yeah, well...my guess is that those people didn't really read what you wrote and just wanted to pretend that they did :)

By the way, I was referring to this survey:
https://docs.google.com/a/dovideq.n...1q-mqyez5UwU1vMHWXMKVQasNsJ7PRc/viewanalytics

It's quite new so we'll have to see where it goes but sofar about 70% of the players play on servers. I think it's safe to say it's more than 50.1 percent :) Hardly matters though, even in single player you tend to spend a lot of hours (more than the 5-something it takes to heat up a boiler) so the way of playing is basically the same.

Bottom line: your post is completely valid and spot on in a world where people use finite resources to power a boiler. That's where this kind of efficiency matters. However; in most situations people actually use infinite resources to power a boiler and all they care about is getting craptons of steel and how many boilers their fuel source can support. And that part missing from a post that claims to be "the final word" is making me a sad panda.
 

snooder

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Just my own 2cents here.

It's a mathematical treatise on how heatup costs impact fuel efficiency, and how to interpret that data in the context of modded Minecraft's bigger picture.
The problem I have, and probably Hydra as well, is with the second part of that sentence. You seem to be constructing a model that purposefully crafted to magnify the weaknesses of boilers which ignores the "bigger picture" and the actual ways in which most people play. Sure, you give a slight nod to the fact that your model can be unrealistic for typical use, but you do so by calling the typical usage "infinite fuel", therefore implying that it is an uncommon usage. The data is fine and pretty well done, but your interpretation and analysis of the data is misleading.

Look, you'd probably get few disagreements here if you'd said something more like "As we all know, in a typical setup-and-forget scenario where you balance your fuel input to the fuel consumption at maximum heat and never let the boiler cool off, the HP boiler provides more power/fuel. But interestingly, when you start factoring in the heatup costs, you can get some pretty strange effects due to the incredible fuel inefficiency during heatup." And that may have been what you intended to say, but the it's not the message received.
 
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Runo

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another point to add is while startup efficiency can be important, there are other important facets of the HP boiler, namely energy density and reduced server calculations. space is a MAJOR concern on multiplayer server as many are chunkloader limited, as is adding more calculations for sprawling energy systems. No, that doesnt have anything to do with boiler fuel efficiency, but in terms of a bigger picture as mentioned, these factors are more important to many than the ones you focus on.
 

gattsuru

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You seem to be constructing a model that purposefully crafted to magnify the weaknesses of boilers which ignores the "bigger picture" and the actual ways in which most people play.
How much of that reflects the actual environment, as opposed to what everyone's heard is a good way to do things? Even among LPers and showcase screenshots, which tend to be better-informed than the normal Minecraft populace, there's a lot of situations where the ways people play are very obviously wrong -- there's at least one LPer that uses condensors in his nuclear reactors, and a number of folk have put together 36-HP power plants that simple throw away a good half or more of the energy output.
 

Hydra

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How much of that reflects the actual environment, as opposed to what everyone's heard is a good way to do things? Even among LPers and showcase screenshots, which tend to be better-informed than the normal Minecraft populace, there's a lot of situations where the ways people play are very obviously wrong -- there's at least one LPer that uses condensors in his nuclear reactors, and a number of folk have put together 36-HP power plants that simple throw away a good half or more of the energy output.
I have 8 boilers running 24/7. I only need 1. After a while you just go into overkill mode ;) Oh and we have a community power plant that has 20 :)
 

snooder

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How much of that reflects the actual environment, as opposed to what everyone's heard is a good way to do things? Even among LPers and showcase screenshots, which tend to be better-informed than the normal Minecraft populace, there's a lot of situations where the ways people play are very obviously wrong -- there's at least one LPer that uses condensors in his nuclear reactors, and a number of folk have put together 36-HP power plants that simple throw away a good half or more of the energy output.
I can't speak to the condensors in Nuclear Reactors thing; cause I've never really gotten very far into em. But I'm one of those guys with massive power plants that I only use a small fraction of. And there's a reason for it, it's called future proofing. See, while I may not be using the power NOW, I'll need it in the future. So instead of building small and then having logistics issues later, I planned out a pretty massive boiler complex with slots for 40 36HP boilers. And once you have all that space ready to go with water and fuel pipes in place, you might as well fill it up. I've already run out tank space for the fuel and my refineries are backed up. Voiding a few thousand oily combs isn't really any less wasteful than just letting a few hundred MJ go to waste. And best of all, I don't have to worry about calculating power consumption for any new build I want to try out. Want to build a frame mining well quarry that spans an entire chunk and pump 100MJ to each well? I got the power for that. Want to slap down enough assembly lasers to crash the server? Got the power for that too. It lets me focus on designing and building the projects themselves rather than spending time on the supporting infrastructure.