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Guide to Mechanic

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Getting Equipped

A good mechanic is nothing without being fully-equipped, so be sure to have at least

  • A full toolbelt, or a toolbox if you're a schmuck
  • Insulated Gloves
  • A device analyzer - the one in your PDA works fine
  • Some welding protection
  • A gadget bag for picking up and putting down parts

You can get extras of most of these from various parts of the station, but you should start with a toolbelt and something to weld with. Device Analyzers can be a bit rarer but there are several in the workshop and can be manufactured with sufficient research and materials. Your PDA has an application that turns it into a device analyzer so the value of taking a device analyzer is based on how you intend to use it.

Knowing Your Workplace


It can feel a bit difficult to keep track of everything in your work, but be sure you know exactly what each of the machines does.

  • Reverse Engine - takes the things you scan and lets you print them out as blueprints. Requires a console connection to make blueprints, but can research on its own just fine.
  • Blueprint Printer - makes paper and nanopaper blueprints. Load it with a paper pack or just with individual sheets. Like the protolathe, it has no UI of its own, so you have to use it from the Reverse Engine.
  • General Fabricator - takes an item blueprint and lets you build whatever was on it either a limited or unlimited number of times depending on type of paper the blueprints were printed on.
  • Flatpack Fabricator - works the same as the general fabricator, but only takes machine designs and spits out flatpacks. Flatpacks are like crates, except you open them with a crowbar to get instructions to assemble the machine inside.
  • Protolathe - lets you make machine components, among other things. You won't use this much unless you remind miners you exist and need their ores too.
  • Circuit Imprinter - lets you print out circuits for machines. Very useful, if you can keep it stocked with acid.


Plastic is one of the mechanic's best friend. However is it a bit tricky to get more than the one that spawns in your office. To get more you need 2 things: Plasteelium and Polyacid. Here are the steps to make plastic.

  • 1. Get plasteelium. (Bug the botanist.)
  • 2. Grind them with an universal grinder. (You will need 20 units minimum, which is 5 plasteelium clumps)
  • 3. Add polyacid. (Add sulphuric acid + potassium + chlorine)

There you go! Easy as pie. Unfortunately you need a competent botanist and maybe a competent chemist.

If the botanists are incompetent and the chemist just suicided there is an alternative way. Find plastic flaps that guard the entrance to many departments or areas and disassemble them for quick and plentiful plastic. This is limited and opens an easy path for other players to enter restricted areas so don't get caught. It's best to rely on botanists unless you have no other choice. This includes making your own hydroponics tray. The most basic requirements for a successful plasteelium farm are:

  • Hydroponics Tray
  • Bucket
  • Wirecutters
  • Plasteelium seeds (make a seed extractor)
  • All-in-One Universal Grinder

These can be attained from an autolathe, circuit imprinter and hardest of all, botany itself. Alternatively just borrow a tray and supplies from Hydroponics if there's no botanist there to grow for you. Also, botany MAY make some plasteelium for you if you give them a nice, upgraded chem dispenser!

Creating Designs


There's no real comprehensive list of what the device analyzer can and cannot scan. Keep trying out everything and see what works. You should be able to recreate most of the machines and computers on the station with a little effort, but items are a whole lot more convoluted. Once you've got some designs scanned, you can use your device analyzer or PDA on the Reverse Engine in your workshop to load the scanned designs onto it, where the Reverse Engine can then research them. If you're not using your PDA, you also have the option of loading single chosen designs onto the machine, by clicking your analyzer and toggling modes.

Research and Printing

Once you've got something scanned, load it onto the Reverse Engine to begin researching. You need to start the queue or a specific design, and you can then wait for it to move from the queue to the list of researched designs. How long a design takes is based on its origin tech levels, and the Reverse Engine's components. Once you've got it researched, you can print paper or nanopaper blueprints of the design using a nearby Blueprint Printer. Paper blueprints have limited uses based on the quality of the printer's components. Nanopaper blueprints are a little costlier, but let you make a design an infinite number of times. Loading two paper blueprints of the same design will add their uses together on the machine, while adding a nanopaper blueprint of a limited-use design will make it unlimited-use. Both are destroyed when loaded into a machine, so know which one you want to use and where you want it to go before you start printing away. If you need to refill the printer, use the paperpacks or paper bins in the workshop.

Making the Product

Research blueprints aren't much use on their own, so load one into the appropriate nearby machine to start making something out of it. Machine blueprints go in the Flatpack Fabricator, and item blueprints go in the General Fabricator. Once you've loaded the design into the machine, it'll let you queue or build the design a number of times based on the type of blueprint used. There's not much to this, other than loading your materials into the fabricators and watching them go.

Putting the A in Mechanic

As a mechanic your responsibilities are limited to your own initiative, the Chief Engineer and Research Director don't even acknowledge your existence don't ask much of you, and the crew's impression is that you're merely a walking toolbox. However, there are a few guidelines with regards to doing your job effectively.

  • Scan yourself a chem dispenser and ChemMaster 3000, so you can produce all the acid you need for the circuit imprinter, in addition to any medications for emergency purposes. Medbay and Chemistry are prey to Xenomorph infestations, Traitor bombs, and revolutionary brainwashing, you don't necessarily need to make pills for every leper running to your door, but if there are doctors and their station is overrun they can use the Mechanic's Workshop. In addition, one of the more frequent requests by the crew are personal chem dispensers so it helps to have one ready to unwrench and send out.
  • Scan a health analyzer, advanced trauma kit, advanced burn kit, emergency defibrillator, and Health Scanner HUD as the start of the round, nanoprint them, and put the blueprints in your General Fabricator. When Research provides, scanning and printing blueprints for the cyborg analyzer for the General Fabricator isn't a bad idea either.
  • Scan and build an autolathe with your blueprints and the flatpack fabricator. Alternatively, take the board from tech storage next door.
  • Medbay would appreciate it if you upgraded their cryo tubes, and cloning pods. Also, they would enjoy having a second cloner as well!
  • Building a chem dispenser for Botany and the Bar are also a good idea, the Bartender can make one-sip murder drinks Doctor's Delight and the Botanists can make Unstable Mutagen until they develop their carnivorous, glowing deathnettle kudzu walking mushrooms.
  • If you feel an obligation to go the extra mile, build an autolathe in the Engineering Lobby and hack it so that the Engineers can get RCDs and compressed matter cartridges.

Now you can pat yourself on the back and have the confidence to say you did a job well done and that your job isn't unimportant, unlike those mechanics who spend their days filling the workshop with arcade machines, Booze-O-Mats, ShadyCigs, and Soda Machines.

Guides of /vg/station 13
New Player Guides
General Help - The Basics - Rules - A Crash Course In Roleplaying - Guide to Construction - Guide to Combat - Terminology - Shortcuts - Troubleshooting
Service Guides
Guide to Cargo Orders - Guide to Food and Drinks - Guide to Hydroponics - Guide to Beekeeping - Guide to Xenobotany - Guide to Vox Hydroponics - Guide to Cash Registers
Medical Guides
Guide to Medicine - Guide to Surgery/Autopsy - Guide to Chemistry - Guide to Virology - Guide to Genetics - Guide to Cloning
Scientific Research Guides
Guide to Research and Development - Guide to Robotics - Guide to Toxins - Guide to Telescience - Guide to Mechanic - Guide to Xenobiology - Guide To Xenoarchaeology
Engineer Guides
Guide to Engineering - Guide to Wiring - Guide to Construction - Guide to Advanced Construction - Guide to Singularity Engine - Guide to Atmospherics - Guide to Solars - Guide to Antimatter Engine (AME) - Guide to Thermoelectric Generator (TEG) - Guide to Supermatter Engine (SME) - Guide to R-UST - Guide to Space Pods - Guide to Telecommunications - Guide to Hacking - Guide to Assemblies
Security and Command Guides
Space Law - Standard Operating Procedure - Guide to Security - Guide to Forensics - Guide to Command - Chain of Command - Guide to Silicon Laws
Antagonist Guides
Guide to Traitor - Guide to Nuclear Operations - Guide to Revolution - Guide to Xenomorph - Guide to Cult of Nar-Sie - Guide to AI Malfunction - Illicit Access - Random Events
Misc Guides
Guide to Hypothermia - Makeshift weapons - Guide to Ghetto Chemistry - Races - Creatures - Guide to Paperwork - List of Pastebins specific to /vg/station - Reading Material - NTSL (Nanotrasen Scripting Language)
Admin and Coder Guides
Guide to Admin Tools - Understanding SS13 Code - Guide to Git CLI - SS13 for Experienced Programmers - Guide to Spriting - Guide to Mapping - Guide to GitHub/Merging Upstream Changes - Getting Your Pull Accepted - DM/BYOND: Undocumented Stuff