ISD Build Times?

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ISD Build Times?

Postby Norade » 2008-07-15 11:56pm

I did a quick search here and on google and couldn't find anything on how long a single ISD takes to build. I was hoping that somebody around here might be able to help me out.

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Postby Darth Raptor » 2008-07-16 12:15am

"Time to build" is kind of a nonsensical concept outside of strategy games. It all depends on the local facilities, available resources and a bajillion political and economic factors, not the ship itself.

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Postby Norade » 2008-07-16 12:33am

Even so a basic average could be given, or the time from a single shipyard, or a quote on any known build times would be nice.

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Postby evillejedi » 2008-07-16 12:44am

If you have the facilities to prefab most of the ship components in an assembly line and have everything on hand like kuat does you should have everything available to just build the ship like a snap-model kit, engines, reactors, gunnery assemblies even large portions of the superstructure that have critical system routing should be easy to manufacture in droid cookie cutter factories.

with this in mind it is not unreasonable to believe that kuat, CEC or fondor could squeeze out an ISD hull in under 3 weeks, though I would think that fitting, appointing the vessel and testing it would take a while longer (given how labor intensive the empire is) Once you have a self-powered vessel with all of the big parts in you need to move it out of the bulk construction dock to make room for the next hull. (and this secondary fitting would probably help explain the unfinished look of a lot of the DE ships)

and even if a yard like kuat had only 100 slips, at this rate you would only be able to build near the smallest estimate for the imperial ISD complement in 20 years. 25000 ISDs /20 years /52 weeks = 24 ISDs per week, so you either have 1 week construction time with 25 slips or ratio from there.

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Postby Darth Raptor » 2008-07-16 12:51am

You'd be hard-pressed to come up with a "basic average" because you can essentially build as slow as you want, and there's sure to be a vast gulf between the ISD's original production run and what the Remnant (due to economic issues) or the New Republic (due to politics) would demonstrate. I believe Thrawn's shipyards were taking months to crank them out, and the NR sabotage set him back months more, but I don't have a copy of Dark Force Rising on hand.

And besides, that's Thrawn (and Zahn).

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Postby Darth Ruinus » 2008-07-16 01:03am

I think based purely on "How fast can we churn these things out" and baring any political opposition and stuff like that, this calc is a good way to do it I think.

Take that number and divide it by a six month time period (182.5 days) and it equals out to... 20,345,584.32 ISDs per day. Or, if we really want to get nitpicky, 847,732.68 ISDs an hour, 14,128.878 ISDs a minute, or a whopping 235.4813 ISDs per second.


Not very ridiculous considering this is the galaxy where factories produce droids at 1 droid per second, the difference is huge between a ship and a droid obviously, but the shipyards are huge too.

But its probably wrong anyways, as I think there are EU instances of ships taking a while to build, but I am not sure.
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Postby Master of Ossus » 2008-07-16 01:24am

IIRC, BFC had them discussing things like this. The NR's Fifth Fleet didn't take that long to commission and construct.
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Postby Venator » 2008-07-16 01:40am

The main site mentions robots that assemble skyscrapers in seconds using something like ST replicators - if one assumes that there's no difference in construction, you could expect industrial bases to churn out ISDs every few minutes or less :shock:.

Of course, that kind of thing isn't reflected anywhere else in the EU, to my knowledge.

Most likely, building starships is much more complicated, which isn't surprising given the need for reactors, high-power systems, hyperdrives, and the like, which could be too complex (or dangerous) for that kind of fabrication.

For conventional construction, but on the SW industrial scale, a few weeks sounds reasonable.

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Postby Fingolfin_Noldor » 2008-07-16 03:38am

Mon Cals cruisers take 6mths to construct, and given that Mon Cals tended to customize their vessels, it's possible a larger ISD, which is just mass produced, would take less.
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Postby Darth Hoth » 2008-07-16 05:18am

Darth Raptor wrote:You'd be hard-pressed to come up with a "basic average" because you can essentially build as slow as you want, and there's sure to be a vast gulf between the ISD's original production run and what the Remnant (due to economic issues) or the New Republic (due to politics) would demonstrate. I believe Thrawn's shipyards were taking months to crank them out, and the NR sabotage set him back months more, but I don't have a copy of Dark Force Rising on hand.

And besides, that's Thrawn (and Zahn).


I recall The Last Command as mentioning construction times in the months; regrettably I could not find the quote, so that is purely by memory. I did, however, find the tidbit that refitting the ISD Judicator before and after the Nkllon raid together amounted to in excess of one million man-hours, for whatever that is worth, coming from Zahn and Gilad "The Executor bankrupted the Empire" Pellaeon. My apologies for not quoting, but my edition is a translation.
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Postby Dark Primus » 2008-07-16 03:05pm

Six months and one year is what I have seen in the EU novels for various types of star destroyers.
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Postby Illuminatus Primus » 2008-07-16 03:30pm

Short answer: it depends, but probably the Empire at its height could put one out in a month or so if it really wanted to; there's insufficient data for a meaningful (well-supported, reasonable, and rational) answer.

Long answer: The EU answers on their face are ridiculous, without resorting to having to concoct personal excuses to justify their absurdity (NR incompetence, poor labor standards and manufacturing capability, etc.). The Death Star II was 60% completed in six months, using off-the-shelf ad hoc, in situ manufacturing equipment and techniques and with the assistance of normal civilian contractors (Xizor Transport Systems); this is with no built-up, sophisticated, or permanent infrastructure (contrast with the shipyard complexes of Kuat, Fondor, Rothana, Corellia, etc.) and is equivalent to the construction of hundreds of millions of Star Destroyers every month at a single site. Furthermore, initial estimates point to the fact the Executor was constructed from start to finish in a few months.
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Postby TC Pilot » 2008-07-16 06:18pm

Aren't the Kuat, Fondor, etc. shipyards privately owned? I imagine private contractors would take longer to build something for the Empire than the Imperial Navy would on a comparatively more high-priority project like the Death Stars.

There was hardly a pressing need under Palpatine to churn out Star Destroyers, and companies like KDY and Sienar have other concerns to invest resources in. By the time the Empire really needed to replace lost ships, they had also lost most of those construction facilities anyway, and are still tied to recruitment and training of personnel.
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Postby Isolder74 » 2008-07-16 06:47pm

TC Pilot wrote:Aren't the Kuat, Fondor, etc. shipyards privately owned? I imagine private contractors would take longer to build something for the Empire than the Imperial Navy would on a comparatively more high-priority project like the Death Stars.

There was hardly a pressing need under Palpatine to churn out Star Destroyers, and companies like KDY and Sienar have other concerns to invest resources in. By the time the Empire really needed to replace lost ships, they had also lost most of those construction facilities anyway, and are still tied to recruitment and training of personnel.


Like every contractor, a private contractor would get penalties for not completing a project in the desired amount of time. Also the more ISD's one facility can produce the more profits for that location then their rivals. It is in a shipbuilder's best interest to put togather a new ship as fast as they can manage.
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Postby Timotheus » 2008-07-16 06:49pm

My guess is that ships take months, somewhere between 3 and 6 for each ISD.

The real production value comes in when you figure that various resources around the Empire allow for the simultaneous construction for several thousand ISD sized ships at once. So that would be how you have a logical build time and yet still possess a massive fleet.

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Postby TC Pilot » 2008-07-16 07:01pm

Isolder74 wrote:Like every contractor, a private contractor would get penalties for not completing a project in the desired amount of time.


Certainly there would be construction quotas to meet, so why bother putting any more effort into it than that? The Empire had no reason during most of the time Kuat was under Imperial control to have the shipyards operate at maximum possible output.

Also the more ISD's one facility can produce the more profits for that location then their rivals. It is in a shipbuilder's best interest to put togather a new ship as fast as they can manage.


Would the Imperial Navy suddenly start buying more Star Destroyers then? And how much are the potential profits of constructing more Star Destroyers at faster rates offset by the compared losses suffered by diverting manpower and resources away from civilian markets or continued research or engineering?
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Postby Isolder74 » 2008-07-16 07:34pm

TC Pilot wrote:
Isolder74 wrote:Like every contractor, a private contractor would get penalties for not completing a project in the desired amount of time.


Certainly there would be construction quotas to meet, so why bother putting any more effort into it than that? The Empire had no reason during most of the time Kuat was under Imperial control to have the shipyards operate at maximum possible output.

Also the more ISD's one facility can produce the more profits for that location then their rivals. It is in a shipbuilder's best interest to put togather a new ship as fast as they can manage.


Would the Imperial Navy suddenly start buying more Star Destroyers then? And how much are the potential profits of constructing more Star Destroyers at faster rates offset by the compared losses suffered by diverting manpower and resources away from civilian markets or continued research or engineering?


The USA hands out bonuses for finishing early why wouldn't the Empire?
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Postby TC Pilot » 2008-07-16 09:01pm

Dunno. Their standard operating proceedure seems to be to send Lord Vader to "motivate" anyone who falls behind schedule. What's the opposite of sending Vader?
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Postby Illuminatus Primus » 2008-07-16 09:12pm

Standard operating procedure? Are you expecting me to believe you honestly believe every project under the Imperial State that fell behind schedule was ameliorated by Vader's intimidation and death-threats?
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Postby Pablo Sanchez » 2008-07-16 09:34pm

Saying that EU stuff is useless for estimating production rates is an understatement. We're talking about the sources that claimed the Empire used Wookie slaves for most of the construction!

Illuminatus Primus wrote:this is with no built-up, sophisticated, or permanent infrastructure (contrast with the shipyard complexes of Kuat, Fondor, Rothana, Corellia, etc.) and is equivalent to the construction of hundreds of millions of Star Destroyers every month at a single site. Furthermore, initial estimates point to the fact the Executor was constructed from start to finish in a few months.


It's obvious that mass is pretty much no issue at all to SW construction methods, so the fabrication of basic elements like the hull, superstructure, and the housings for reactor, engines, and guns are probably completed very rapidly. Most man-hours are probably spent on installing more complex components and machinery--the engine, electronics, life support, and so on and so forth. We know that the Empire was able to assemble 60% of the gross superstructure of the DSII and bring it to an operational state, but on the other hand we don't have solid figures as to how close it was to entirely complete. Just as an example, the DSII had no integral shielding, minimal maneuvering capacity, and no surface defenses.

It's possible that this accounts for some of the difference in construction time between getting the DSI (something like 19 years) to 100% and getting the DSII to 60% (six months). Star Wars technology might be capable of building really immense structures in a very short amount of time, but their fabrication could be unable to produce complex systems like electronics and this takes the bulk of the man-hours that goes into commissioning a ship or battlestation. Just as speculation, though.

A few months would appear to be reasonable for an ISD.
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Postby NRS Guardian » 2008-07-16 10:28pm

Pablo Sanchez wrote: Just as an example, the DSII had no integral shielding, minimal maneuvering capacity, and no surface defenses.

If you look at the scene in ROTJ when the Millennium Falcon and co. fly across the surface of the DSII before entering the shaft to the reactor turbolaser bolts and the the turrets firing them are clearly visible on the suface of the DSII. So unless you're referring to surface defenses other than turbolasers the DSII did possess surface mounted defensive weaponry (at least over the completed surface anyways).
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Postby Fingolfin_Noldor » 2008-07-16 10:33pm

Well, the New Republic was said during the Yuuzhan Vong War to have replaced all its initial losses in.. 1-2 years? I guess if you push the ship builders hard, they will just employ tonnes of droids to do the job.
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Postby Illuminatus Primus » 2008-07-16 11:12pm

Pablo Sanchez wrote:Saying that EU stuff is useless for estimating production rates is an understatement. We're talking about the sources that claimed the Empire used Wookie slaves for most of the construction!


To be fair, Death Star seems to indicate slave and convict labor was primarily in the form of forced technical services and expertise. Those Wookiee slaves weren't antebellum South-style slave laborers, but more like the enslaved Greeks of Classical Rome. They were enslaved Wookiee engineers and what have you.

Pablo Sanchez wrote:It's obvious that mass is pretty much no issue at all to SW construction methods, so the fabrication of basic elements like the hull, superstructure, and the housings for reactor, engines, and guns are probably completed very rapidly. Most man-hours are probably spent on installing more complex components and machinery--the engine, electronics, life support, and so on and so forth. We know that the Empire was able to assemble 60% of the gross superstructure of the DSII and bring it to an operational state, but on the other hand we don't have solid figures as to how close it was to entirely complete. Just as an example, the DSII had no integral shielding, minimal maneuvering capacity, and no surface defenses.


This is a very good point. Although, the shield apparatus on the sanctuary moon arguably was of a similar level of capability or sophistication as the final integral shielding. The surface defenses (at least low altitude point-defense) were partially operational. The fact that the novelizations shows the Death Star was rotating to fire on Endor as a last act of retribution after the death of Palpatine and the impending destruction of the craft suggests they had enough maneuvering capability to rotate in relatively quick order, and such feats of angular momentum on something like the Death Star II are nothing to sneeze at.

Pablo Sanchez wrote:It's possible that this accounts for some of the difference in construction time between getting the DSI (something like 19 years) to 100% and getting the DSII to 60% (six months). Star Wars technology might be capable of building really immense structures in a very short amount of time, but their fabrication could be unable to produce complex systems like electronics and this takes the bulk of the man-hours that goes into commissioning a ship or battlestation. Just as speculation, though.

A few months would appear to be reasonable for an ISD.


The effective time of the Death Star I construction was around two years, despite it being 180 times less voluminous (and presumably just as less massive and construction-intensive). However, the Death Star I was plagued with repeated construction mishaps, labor difficulties, and redesigns (possibly there were also considerable issues with adapting the initial Great Weapon design built to Confederate specifications and with their proprietary techniques to the strategic aims and means of the Empire); it was also constructed without the consent of the Imperial Senate (which still dominated law making and the power of the purse at this stage of the Empire's despotate, making funding and supporting the endeavor much more difficult). The reason why the Death Star was placed on hiatus for nearly 17 (effective net) years is unknown, but presumably the nascent Empire had its hands full with the Great Purge and various restructuring and institutionalizing of its new regime, to say nothing of the considerable effort in postwar subjugation and reconstruction, and of course, the aforementioned concerns around adapting the Confederate project to Imperial concerns and to reverse engineering and redesigning much of it.
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Postby TC Pilot » 2008-07-16 11:53pm

Illuminatus Primus wrote:Standard operating procedure? Are you expecting me to believe you honestly believe every project under the Imperial State that fell behind schedule was ameliorated by Vader's intimidation and death-threats?


Short answer...no.
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Postby Pablo Sanchez » 2008-07-17 12:01am

NRS Guardian wrote:If you look at the scene in ROTJ when the Millennium Falcon and co. fly across the surface of the DSII before entering the shaft to the reactor turbolaser bolts and the the turrets firing them are clearly visible on the suface of the DSII. So unless you're referring to surface defenses other than turbolasers the DSII did possess surface mounted defensive weaponry (at least over the completed surface anyways).


I thought I remembered something like that, but given that it was desultory and ineffective (I don't think it actually succeeded in killing anyone on camera) I wrote it off. It was probably minimally functional.
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