After belatedly calming down his student after uttering his faux pas, Ves proceeded to prepare for one of the most advanced fabrication sessions he had ever started in his life.
The difficulty surrounding this fabrication run exceeded the time where he initially fabricated the first production copies of the Blackbeak and the Crystal Lord. It exceeded the frantic, time-constrained rush jobs of putting together functional competition mechs within a matter of hours or days.
If Ves had to quantify the difference, then he'd estimate the difficulty of fabricating his new gadgets at six times the difficulty of fabricating his first Crystal Lord!
It sounded ridiculous to say that a full-scale mech was much easier to make than a couple of tiny electronic doodads, but the scale made a big difference. Ves trained a lot with handling big machinery and huge components that weighed several tons. He hadn't trained as much with piecing together fine, miniscule components that all needed to be assembled into place with razor-thin precision.
He recently forced Ketis to become accustomed with working with small-scale machinery by hand to make up for her shortfall, but Ves suffered from the same problem.
Of course, Ketis only needed to craft together some cheap miniature mechs with no practical value.
Ves on the other hand planned to create batteries and gadgets with an estimated market value of at least several billion bright credits!
He could still botch the fabrication of his improved high-powered gadgets because he could always raid the Shield of Hispania's inventory for replacement materials. Even if he failed ten times in a row, all he would suffer was another rebuke from Major Verle or Lieutenant Commander Soapstone.
As for the ultracompact batteries? Ves killed his way out of the Mancroft Independent Harbor to secure up to a billion credits worth of exotics to secure the three key materials! Once he processed them, they became virtually impossible to recover without advanced lab equipment.
It was a good thing he obtained enough batches of materials to leave him with an extra opportunity.
He had three tries to fabricate an ultracompact battery. At a minimum, he needed to succeed at least two times, but his future plans would go a lot smoother if he had a spare.
"What I'm about to craft is some of the most advanced piece of tech in the entire combined fleet. I don't think there is anything on our vessels, including the FTL drives, that matches the complexity of what I'm about to make. The only exception to this rule is the Parallax Star, the custom lancer mech of our useless expert pilot.
"So that's why I can't understand those design schematics." Ketis muttered while looking at Ves like he was a god. "Is it alright for me to stay here? I'm not disturbing you, am I?"
"That's not the case. In fact, it's the opposite. I trust you to watch my back." And he meant that, literally. "I'd like to you unsheathe your sword and be ready to chop up any intruders. What I'm about to make is so delicate that I can't afford to be distracted by ANY disturbance. I want you to be the person who insures I can work uninterrupted for hours on end."
"How long do I have to stand guard?"
"Not too long, Ketis. Twelve hours, maybe."
"Sounds doable. I've been through worse training exercises."
She did as instructed. With both of her hands resting on her greatsword, she looked ready to snap to her feet and attack anything that intruded upon them. Nobody should enter. Ves already reserved the entire enclosure and warned Chief Haine to not let anybody pass through the solid barriers that Ves ordered the mech technicians to erect.
The fabrication job he was about to run was so sensitive and critical that Ves not only reserved the best 3D printer on the Shield of Hispania, he also fabricated a custom set of precision gear.
The standard-issue precision tools that Ketis used to put together her miniatures failed to satisfy him. They left too much room for error, and their vaunted precision only counted for so much.
That was why he pulled the blueprints from the ship's database and spent some time in the workshop to fabricate them one by one, making sure that each of them were perfect.
That he went through all of this effort just to prepare for the main fabrication run illustrated the immense challenge of what he intended to create.
He also timed the occasion right. The fleet had recently transitioned into FTL and several hours passed by without incident. If everything went as planned, it took at least two days to reach the destination star system.
Practically the only measure that Ves hadn't utilized was to make full use of his Spirituality.
He thought about it, but lacked the confidence to employ it correctly on a tiny gadget as opposed to a full-sized mech. The X-Factor worked by enhancing some kind of intangible quality of mechs whenever a mech pilot interfaced with them. Without this man-machine connection, what was the point of the X-Factor?
Therefore, Ves did not think it would be appropriate to instill an image in his gadgets. At best, it did nothing substantial, but at worst it screwed up its workings in unpredictable ways. He should have experimented with such outcomes beforehand, but he lacked the time to do so.
Still, while he considering employing his Spirituality in an active way to be too risky, there shouldn't be too many risks if he employed them passively. Merely affixing a faint notion of reliability or some other attribute that reinforced their workings might have a tiny influence in their effectiveness.Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.
Ves presumed that this might be the way to go with employing his Spirituality on non-mech machines, but he needed to experiment with it later to be sure.
"I've already pushed so many priorities to 'later', so adding one more item on my to-do list won't hurt."
The more he saw the galaxy, the more he saw that mech designers needed protection. Besides hiring bodyguards, their best means of protecting themselves was to leverage their considerable engineering abilities to design and fabricate their own personal gear.
Why enter a gun store to purchase a shiny new weapon when mech designers possessed more than enough skills to make their own?
Why hire armorers to fashion custom sets of armor when mech designers could easily fabricate a suit of armor themselves?
Certainly, a mech designer wouldn't be able to match genuine gunsmiths and armorers in their degree of specialization and mastery in the craft.
If a mech designer wanted the best, they hired an expert.
Yet if they wanted something they could entrust their lives to, they crafted it themselves.
There was enough overlap between their professions that mech designers only needed to study some supplementary textbooks in order to become adequate enough in fashioning personal equipment for themselves and their closest confidants.
"Do you really think anyone will be stupid enough to interrupt you?" Ketis suddenly asked. "Back at the Jaded Sword, no one messes with Mayra when she's closing up to complete a sensitive project."
"It's just a precaution." He waved his hand in a casual manner, belying the amount of care he truly put on this issue. "After seeing how stupid pirates can be at Mancroft, I don't dare to underestimate anyone's lack of common sense. Even if my fellow Vandals are better than that, in a project like this it's prudent to pull out all the stops."
What he couldn't mention to Ketis was that he did not employ her to guard against his fellow Vandals. Chief Haine should have been smart enough to prevent anyone from coming close, let alone intrude in his workplace.
Ves suppressed the impulse to glance at his back. In truth, he wanted to guard against the entity stalking behind his back. According to his other senses, Ves vaguely estimated that Acolyte Villis had already taken a few steps back.
Since Ves was about to embark on realizing his gadget designs, it was too dangerous for her to observe his work directly. She possessed just enough knowledge to understand the profoundness hidden within.
"Stand closer to me. You can follow my actions more closely then. Just don't get in my way if I move."
Once everything fell into place exactly the way he wanted it, Ves began his fabrication run.
Because he intended to fashion a series of small, handheld devices and parts, he still needed to become accustomed to working at this scale. Rather than start with the batteries which he really couldn't afford to mess up, he instead began to fashion his revised versions of his stealth detector and the signal jammer.
The stealth detector came first. Ves derived the tech for this device from the central database some time ago, and since then he spent a few hours brushing up on the literature and blueprints.
In simple terms, the device transmitted a bunch of unusual waves and vibrations and hoped at least one of them echoed back, preferably something invisible. Regular stealth tech countered many different detection methods, but it was impossible for it to counteract every possible method.
Therefore, what Ves had built was just a fancy radar-like device. Most of the complexity involving the stealth detector came from the delicate sensor arrays that needed lots of shielding and the sheer amount of power running through its circuits. Besides that, the design really wasn't complicated at all.
Ves worked quickly. Within two hours, he worked briskly and with confidence. It didn't take too much time to piece the device together because it was small and made out of very few parts. The biggest issue he encountered was that he still needed to become accustomed to his new tools.
The device hardly different from his old stealth detector. He deliberately kept its cheap, makeshift appearance the same in order to camouflage its actual worth.
Ves took out his old stealth detector and placed it side by side to his new one.
"They look exactly the same." Ketis pointed out the obvious.
"That's only their outward appearance. Their insides are completely different."
He took out the standard-issue battery from his old gadget and placed it into his new one. Ves still stuck to the same socket standard so that Ves could make use of both his ultracompact batteries or his regular batteries if needed.
Once he slotted in the battery, he turned on the device. The stealth detector booted up normally and its internal diagnostics found very few issues that he needed to take note of. It worked!
After carefully checking over its performance, Ves shut it off and returned the standard battery back to his old device. He placed them aside and began to work on his next gadget.
Fabricating the signal jammer turned out to be a lot more complicated than his previous gadget. He outright failed in fabricating some of the most delicate parts. Even then, he also botched the assembly a few times, breaking a couple of critical parts.
Fortunately, Ves brought some spare materials along so he fabricated some new parts to make up for his failures. He'd rather fail now than later when he finally tackled the ultracompact batteries.
Besides these potentially devastating snags, the signal jammer came out fairly well at the end. Though its quality hadn't exactly met his standards, once he activated it and ran through some tests, he became satisfied that every function at least performed somewhat according to his expectations.
The important point was that the gadget came out in working condition and that he made a fair number of mistakes that he definitely wouldn't be repeating for his next and most important job.
He took an hour-long break to regain his energy and his spirits. He spent the time productively by explaining some of the methods he made use of today.
Once an hour had passed, Ves retrieved a secure alloy cube. Contained within were his three key materials. All this time, he never once touched its contents, afraid that he would ruin them somehow.
No longer. This was the time he put one billion credits worth of exotics to good use.
"Watch closely, Ketis. I'm going to show you how to create a tiny component that's worth as much as a dozen mechs!"