Friday, May 28, 2010

From the ground up: Week 5

Happy Saturday to you all and here's the latest journal entry of the "From the ground up" project where I started a level 1 priest with not a single copper and intend to level them to 80 and amass a large amount of gold without the help of a single person. The only supplies they were given was a set of BoA gear and nothing else. They are starting out with only inscription, herbalism, and their wits with which they must turn a profit.

Here's the run down of my progress thus far.

Level: 80

Current Gold: 3,500

Total gold earned: 39,000
(according to my banker's statistics page)

Inscription skill: 450

Enchanting skill: 450

Required purchases to make: material stokpile, enchant chest - greater stats, enchant weapon - spellpower

Get enchanted
I'm suddenly thinking I should've rolled a human for this project. Rep grinds suck! Especially when they have a high price tag associated with them such as thorium brotherhood. At least when I go to grind out argent dawn the grind will be actually making me some gold instead of costing me a ton of it. But money or not, I never like to grind yet sometimes it's necessary.

My enchanting is over 300 now but I don't have enough skill to make any useful TBC enchants just yet. I don't want to waste several hundred gold on worthless enchants using tons of arcane dust when I can just wait a bit and keep making old world enchants that still give me skill ups. This will be going on until I think it's 325 when the good ones turn green. I'm all about saving money, but relying on green skills to level from is like a stress test that's out of control.

I've noticed something important about my blue competitor: they're not too bright. They'll go in buying cycles, now using 3 different toons to buy me out on, and recycle through the glyph pages and buy out anything that I reposted before raising the price again. So what I'm doing is listing all my glyphs at a normal price then posting another pair of each at my fall back price of 20g. This way when Blue goes to buy me out without looking at the prices again they'll pick up all my expensive glyphs in addition to my 3.5g ones. Working out very well so far. Just goes to show that a little observation can go a long way.

Just sold my first enchanting scroll, it was an unholy weapon enchant which I bought the recipe for 2g. And so it begins! Materials and recipe included I got a 50g profit from that one, not bad.

I'm now farming BRD for the fiery weapon enchant and the last few bits of dark iron residue to get me up to honored. I have a dozen or so stacks of dark iron ore and assorted MC mats that are taking up a ton of extra bag space. So I'm trying to get that taken care of ASAP so I have room to breath, after all enchanting does take up a lot of space. It's especially bad since enchanted scrolls only go in the normal bags and, combined with glyphs, space is once again at a premium. At least while farming I can get a ton of runecloth and vendor goodies by just looting mobs I'll have to kill anyways. It's far easier to just round up a room and aoe it down with holy nova then mind sear or delicately try to dance around them. So I'm only really losing the time it takes to loot a bunch of mobs. Not terrible I guess.

I picked up the lifestealing enchant for 40g which was a bargain considering the hours it takes to get keyed to Scholo and get it to drop. Now if only I could get a supply of shards to make all these old world enchants... sigh. I bought up what little I could and they're now up to 30g each, wow. Such a shame because I have all the mats for another dozen or so different scrolls for another 15 skill ups at least just missing the shards. Grrr frustration sucks.

While locked from instances, I'm back to the isle of QQ dailys to get shattered sun offensive rep up to honored. I'm doing this to get the recipe void shatter which turns a void crystal into 2 large prismatic shards. Considering that the shards are usually in the 10g range with crystals slightly below this can save a ton of gold. Hell it's even it's own niche market. Converting voids into large prismatics is literally a double your money investment even though the income comes a bit slow. But if people start buying up a string of enchanting rods you can safely assume that they'll need a few shards to craft their next runed.

I've got this BRD run down to a science I swear. 2 minutes in, kill, out and reset. Oddly enough the first time I farmed this enchant it took like no time. Now when it's expensive and I HAVE to farm it, this shit seems to be taking forever. Think I've done 12 runs so far? 20? I don't know.

Finally got it! Yeesh that took way too long. Off to strat next.

I really wish I could solo MgT in cloth, but it's just way too painful, boring, and long. So I'll have to tough it out for a few more days of SSO dailys until I hit honored. In the mean time, I'm grinding out argent dawn rep and picking up some much needed shards to level enchanting and make a few scrolls. I got a few fiery and icy weapon enchants made and on AH with no competition which is nice along with major mana/health. Still no world drop recipes found just yet. I'm mostly keeping my out for +4 stats as I doubt I can afford spell/healing power but I'll spend every last penny on them if I could. I'm looking for stats mostly because the sales are far more consistent and will give me a quicker head start in leveling up my enchanting. Once I get up to NR level enchants I'll be making a few hundred 8 stats and exp. spell power to glvoes scrolls since those sell all the time. Those and icewalker I can never keep on the AH they sell so fast so I won't be wasting nearly as much money maxing out my enchanting skill. I think once all is said and done I'll have spent about a thousand gold on skill ups that gave me nothing in return but that.

Only a thousand spent on an entire profession is pretty damned cheap if you think about it. Following the basic guide on wow-professions gives you the fastest path to 450 true, but it's also the most expensive as well. By making the more in demand enchants not only am I getting skill ups but I'm also getting something to sell. So in essence, I'm trading time spent skilling up for a large amount of profit and drastically cut leveling costs. Fair trade to me, after all there's no need to be 450 skill RIGHT NOW since I'm already making money with it RIGHT NOW. After all, a lot of the best selling enchants are from vanilla, heh.

Here's some rough math and scratch paper figures for you. Round numbers are not perfectly round.

enchant bracers - healing power = revered

About 1k rep per run

1 run = 10 minutes

11 total runs needed = 110 minutes = 2 hours of farming = 11 chances at a worthwhile mount

8 shards per run

5 dust per run

2 greater eternal essence per run


88 shards
55 dust
22 essences


A shit load of high priced scrolls.

Since I ran this place a million times on my paladin I know the perfect routes and can dodge nearly every extra mob in there. And while I'm on the way out in the opening room just after the back entrance I spam holy nova all the way out to clear most of the mobs in there for an extra few hundred rep. Sure I could be using the argent insignia and picking up turn in items but the sheer amount of extra looting of junk I'll have to do isn't worth the time just because of the huge amount that'll have to be done.

Partially through my rep grind with the AD and made a few of every old world enchant I can bumping me up to 320 enchanting skill. 5 more points and it's time to move on officially to TBC scrolls. At 325 skill I can start making shield stamina enchants and a few 15 strength to gloves enchants at 340. The strength enchant doesn't sell that often because very few know of it's usefulness. Apparently it's the best glove enchant for an unholy death knight. I haven't done much reading on the math, but I'm guessing it has some sort of a double dipping effect where you get 30ap from the 15 strength (plus scaling bonuses) and your ghoul also gets 15 strength and therefore 30 extra ap as well. Again, not sure on the math and what not, but I believe that's the reasoning. So slow or not, it's zero competition and huge profit margins, my kind of business. So far I've sold a pair of fiery and major health scrolls, 20g profit on the fiery one and 56g profit on the health enchant. Here's to alts!

I'm now 3k towards revered and all I can say is thank god I need all these materials and I can disenchant. I'd forgotten how annoying chain strat runs could be. At least once a day I get to break it up with SSO dailys and the random heroic. But still, dear god is this boring at times. Though I will say, if I wind up walking away with the baron mount, it'll all be completely worth it. No more getting stuck in doors on an elephant for me! So there's a shot at a mount, tons of shards and dust, and yet another twink enchant. After all of this I'll have all the skill ups I need to start acquiring arcane dust. Ahh arcane dust, I'll be needing hundreds of it. Something like 300 total or upwards of 700g worth of it.

It's all going into the previously mentioned enchants which will sell slowly I'd imagine so it's a rather large up front investment when you're playing it as close to the chest as I am. I'm done following the wow-professions guide at this point though and know exactly what to make and when. Minus 3 enchants they're all worth selling, but the others of questionable value just might end up getting sold on a vellumn. This is an entirely different market so I could wind up shooting myself in the foot. But with what I've seen so far, aside from material supply, things are basically the same as horde side but with far less people working the AH. Good thing for me.

Finally rep grinds are done (I think). Argent crusade is now revered, Thorium brotherhood revered, and timber maw honored. All rep enchants are now learned, scrolled, and auctioned. Now begins the expensive and long (expensive) process of TBC skill ups. I need so much dust it's astounding.

Ok TBC and old world enchanting leveling is now done and I'm off to the low level low profit high volume sale enchants of NR. I spent all of the 2k I had earned up from glyphs and crusader enchants on the mats needed but good thing I picked up a ton of dust in my heroic gear grind. I'm now down to 300g, 380 enchanting, and over 1,000g in enchanted scrolls with 400 inks and a ton of glyphs. Time to sit back and wait for the money to come in /knock on wood. Though I'll admit that I "cheated" a little bit with the TB rep. Since there hasn't been a single rep item on AH at all for over a eek I bought 500g worth horde side and sold them to myself alliance side with the help of a friend. I then gave them 500g from my alliance toon as a "tip" so to speak.

I only needed about half of what I spent but jesus I hate rep grinds and this was the last one I needed. I do NOT intend to do this with any other materials at all. Though if I find a wanted enchant scroll on the horde AH I'll likely buy it and drop the same amount of gold on alliance side. Again, no financial help just saving me the wait between now and when one inevitably appears on the alliance AH (regardless of price I'm buying it). This was merely to save myself potentially weeks and weeks of looking for rep items since I can't solo MC on my priest. And after countless BRD and strat runs... screw that!

Blah! I forgot I still have several days worth of dailys left to do for the SSO before my rep grind is done. Dammit all, I really should've rolled a human...

Just logged on and collected the mail and got another thousand in which I of course immediately turned around and spent most of. Refreshed my stock of inks back up to 250 IotS and got me another few enchanting skill ups. I'm in the last bad range of enchanting where I'm having to make very questionable enchant scrolls. By that I mean that I doubt they'll net me a profit and my only other options are green. Granted patience is key to a good AH game, but having to make 500 scrolls for for a few skill ups isn't in the realm of conventional patience, more like a stress test that's out of control.

Took a short break form the rep grind (sort of) and such to finish up the quests in darkshore. I'm now exalted with darnassus and get to ride on my favorite land mount in the game! The swift frostsaber! Dmn this thing looks so cool and it actually fits through doors! It's great! And yes I'm really this excited hehe.

So for now my general plan is to continue with the small time glyph sales until I max out enchanting. From there I'll be splurging on shards and shards only to gather all of the worthwhile enchanting recipes. I'll be making a few of them here and there as I skill up to 450 at which point I can enchant stamina to bracers. After that I'll be selling just a select few enchanting scrolls and all of the old world ones as well. Once I work up a solid 5k or so I'm going to spend it all on a shit load of mats from inks to dust to cosmics. That is where the true AH game will begin.

I'll then deflate the prices with loads of cheap scrolls and glyphs to remove as many of the small sellers and campers as possible. With that many pre crafted glyphs and scrolls and a stokpile of mats should allow me to take over a significant portion of the markets alliance side. This is rather long term because I'm having to spend everything I earn the following day to skill up and restock, but that's how it goes when you start out with zero financial backing. Regardless, I've always been fully confidant in this tactic and expect it to work as it always has. Different servers are different, but people will never change.

I've got a good stokpile of inks now (about 500) and now I'm going to try to maintain that while saving up money. I only need a few more enchanting skill ups before I can get access to a few really good recipes to sell. I'm referring to of course greater speed to cape and POWER STATS(!) to chest. I have a few abyss crystals ready that I've picked up from heroics and DE'ing old gear. I knew that at some point I'd roll enchanting so all of my epic and blue gear that was replaced was banked instead of vendored. I'd have loved to do this with all the greens, but simple space constraints wouldn't allow it and I didn't have the gold at the time to afford more bank spots. But it is what it is. Once I get those two enchant recipes trained and get up to about a thousand gold (so I can sit comfortably) I'll be trashing the glyph market something fierce. Good god I'm too excited at this and that's a bad sign as far as my wow imposed nerdiness is concerned. I mean come on, there comes a certain level of geekdom the moment you install wow heh.

I looked on the AH once again for essence of air and saw only 6 up... for 50g each. I'm sold out of agility scrolls and so are a lot of others. So I decided to try and farm a few. I set myself on the FP and went out to the store so I wouldn't notice the travel time and began to farm. I've got 20 minutes to kill until things reset so I basically decided to see what I could do with that time farming EoA's. Here's my thinking: if I can get 8 EoA's in that time frame that makes 2 agility scrolls, makes 400g, which then turns into 1200g/hour. And any of the other elemental related items drop and sell that's another hundred so tacked on top of that. Granted this type of farming can't be done perpetually as supply would be flooded causing prices to drop (and my ass wouldn't be out in the middle of nowhere). But since there's no competition for a high price fast moving item, it seems worth it now but definitely not on a consistent basis.

20ish minutes later I walked away with 15 essences, 4 elementals, and 3 breaths. I know that the last two tend to sell for a lot time to time so that made me smile. Being one short I of course decided to stick around until I got one more to make a full set of scrolls.

I've also taken to "farming" the auction house itself. By that I'm referring to the classic scan for cheap weapons and armor to DE. I actually managed to pick up 15 cosmics and 30 dust from it, all well below my normal buying price. Several of the weapons that I had purchased were Notched Cobalt War Axe. Making a point to point this out because there's a chance you can make some money of your own with them. They take 10 cobalt bars to craft so if you're lucky enough to find cobalt that cheap go on and make a few to DE into greater cosmics. 75% chance says that on average you'll be making a good profit from it, I know I have.

I just hired some help to get into kara and down Moroes for 160g so I've now got mongoose in my arsenal of expensive enchants that I can do now. Was easy enough and if I wasn't in cloth I'd have been able to solo it easily. One more day of SSO dailys and I'll be honored and get the void shatter recipe. Good thing since the shards are 15g/ea on the AH and voids are plentiful and cheap. Once I get that recipe I'll craft my first pair of goose scrolls. Now I'm off to nagrand to buy some uber cheap BoP greens from Halaa to DE.

Turned my EoF's into a pair of primos and collected a sexy 1500g from my mail tonight, half of which was from the primos. I used that to buy a ton of cosmics crystals and shards. I now have full access to every NR enchant in game. That's right, 450 enchanting baby! Now all I need to round out my collection is +4 stats, SP, and healing power vanilla recipes. Once I have those, the money will really start to flood in and I get finally begin my much anticipated attack on the AH and their campers.

Weee happy dance! I just picked up ench weapon healing power for 60 gold. Sixty... gold! Not sixty thousand, not six thousand, friggin 60 man! That's awesome! I'm awesome! Enchanting is awesome!


Just got done with another toc 25 pug and cleared it again. I swear pugs on this side are sooo much better than horde it's scary. I can't help but wonder just how accurate "recount guessed absorbs" actually is. I mean granted I'm spamming shields on anybody likely to take damage, and they always do minus LJ, but damn. If you combine my healing done and absorbs I'm always well over a million done. Hell on twins I hit another over 3 million absorbed along with about 700k healing, though the fight didn't end till just before the enrage. On every other fight I put out at least 800k absorbs, and as high as 900k on anub. They were smart shields though for that fight. I'd only shield those that were at a couple thousand health, the tanks, and anybody that got hit with penetrating cold. Still I can't help but wonder if I'm that good (combined heals+absorbs put me at the top of healing meters every fight), I doubt it tbh but it's a pleasant thought none the less.

I can say this though, being able to pick out the MT in a crowd against the wall and have a pain suppression ready for the inevitable ice howl enrage comes, throwing a renew, power shield, and PoM while running towards them and following it up with a hasted penance and G heal makes me feel pro. Especially since I saved a tank's life today and last week as well in my two toc 25 raids so far. Hell even pulled that button mashing tank saving bit in 10m last week. Makes me feel like a boss.

You know, I keep telling myself that I should hold off on enchanting and focus on building a stock of inks to attack the glyph market. I keep selling a ton of stuff and reinvesting it into more scrolls. Granted they're selling decently, but I'm constantly dropping back down to nearly nothing as far as hard currency is concerned. But I finally have a full listing of every good enchant I have so I'm thinking I can ease off the massive investing. I'll just let what I have enchants wise sell and use the small amount of back up mats to replace any sales for the time being and let my gold build up a bit. Of course by then I'm sure I'll have found one of the last 2 enchants I need and blow it all on that heh. In any case, the reinvesting is only annoying because I don't get to see the large amount of gold that I could have, but it's still completely necessary. My gut is telling me to hold off on the buying so I'm going to follow my instinct and just buy only the bare bones essentials for a while.

Logging on to check the mail and blam another 2k in my pockets. I spent half of that to refresh my stock and got 2 stacks of crystals for INSANELY cheap. More twink enchants sold for a good 20% profit along with oodles of glyphs. Moving along smooth as silk.

Strangely enough though, if you've been reading lately you'll see that I've had major lag issues in SW. Well when I got on I was still lagging there and nowhere else, horde or alliance side. But after I canceled my glyphs the lag dissapeared as if it was never there... WTF? I don't get it but sure as hell not going to complain. Well it's official. Darnassus is now my banker's new home.

Back up over a thousand gold and am now slowing piling up a ton of inks. I need about another 400 to craft a ton of glyphs and have a bunch left over to lay in wait. Once I do and hold strong at 1k gold the price crashing begins. Mwahahaha!

Remember all the times where I say that I made all of my gold NOT by just getting lucky? The times that I said that it doesn't take luck but only observation and dedication to make a substantial living on the AH? Well. I feel that this project is turning out to be the complete opposite of that. I'm now getting a 500g/day allowance from my glyph competitor which pays for all of the gems and enchants and flask for my priest. They're methodically buying up all my cheap glyphs daily to relist STILL and I just craft and list more and more. At thsi rate I won't even have to crash the glyph market, just cap the sale price at 10g and know that I'll be selling everything I list for a good long time.

Unless they get wise to what I'm doing I can hit the cap on this toon in almost no time and that takes a lot of the fun out of it. After all, it's more fun to conquer than it is to rule. I started this project to conquer the glyph market alliance from the ground up instead of ruling it horde side. This just means that I get to focus on my favorite enchanting market twice over. Looks like I am getting outside help after all in building this empire. Still not sure how I feel about that.

Funny story. Two days after I bought the healing power recipe for a teeny 60g guess what I'm looking at on the AH listed for 3,500g? Yup, another healing power recipe. But wait it gets better, I see TWO of them listed! One for 3500 and one for 3k even. All I can say is timing... I has it! That and the 3k gold that's burning a hole in my pocket is making me really wish they were spell power recipes though. I'm sure one will show up soon enough since people are obviously farming MC as I haven't seen any achievement raids forming in /2 while I've been on. Here's to hoping.

Just got finished selling all of the 8 icy weapon enchant scrolls I made while skilling up almost a week ago. And now I'm buying up mats to make a few more. Come one come all and get your glow on! Lunchmoney needs lunch money!

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I love these stories :)

  2. When it comes to the glyph market, how low do you crash the prices to and for how long on average? Been trying to get rid of a farmer in my market by posting at material costs with over 1k inks in stock, he's still going strong for over 2 weeks even with me buying out the herb supply.

  3. @ Leggo
    I start with 8g sale price cap and will take it down to 5g with a 3.5g threshold. As for how long, I'll keep this up until I cancel less than 30% of my stock for a few days in a row. Could last days, could be a month. Basically the low prices stick for as long as necessary.

  4. After reading your blog I have decided to make some money on the AH as well. I have had regular sales and am trying to stockpile as much as possible but my big question is, how do you know what to craft in order resupply?

    Is there a portion of quick auctions or is it an organization system that lets you know know what to craft when your low/out of a certain glyph.

  5. @ Anon
    I use the addon alotoholic mostly. With it I can mouse over a tool tip and it tells me how many I own across every toon I have, even ones in my guild bank and on AH. I also use a method called stack sizes. That means that, for example, I always carry 5 of every glyph or 2 of every epic gem. So if I see that I don't ahve any bold cardinal rubies I know that I need to craft two more.

  6. How did you set up QA to sell at a max of 8g and a 3.5g threshold without it constantly posting everything at 8g?

  7. @ Leggo
    You check override fallback and set your price there at 8g. Then check Override max price and drop that all the way down to 100%. That means when you post at your fall back it'll only post at your fall back of 8g.

    I have Enable auto fall back checked as well so that I'll always post my glyphs no matter what, keeps the inventory empty and glyphs on the AH to mess with the campers so they see that I'm always posting.

  8. Another good post.
    Keep it up the competition is taking notes =)


  9. This is pure beauty. Your post that is. I love it. Bring it on :)

    The +4 stats never dropped for me nor did I see it on ah for months. One day it was there...1500g. It took one blink to buy it. If the guy that put it there would know I sold hundreds of scrolls ALONE in this market for 3 months now...costing me like ~30g to make and selling the scroll for 215g. It's a treasure.
    The spellpower formula I bought for 9000g but to my surprise, the +22 Intellect from TB rep is selling better and for the same price.

    Other words of wisdom from me : pure win to farm Essence of Air in Silithus. Tested over and over again minimum 40 essences in 1 hour (that's 10 Agility scrolls).

    Looking forward :)