Greedy Goblin

Saturday, May 9, 2009

A grinding opportunity

Yes, you're not daydreaming, there is a grinding tip on this site. And it's a kind of grinding that even I do (because I have to): milling.

Milling is the transformation of herbs into pigments. Every scribe mills.

If you check the AH, you will find ridiculous ink prices. That's because no one mills for profit. Scribes mill for themselves and sell inks only when they quickly need money or have inventory problems.

The idea is simple: if you have time and you are scribe (or even better, if you know a scribe who makes his money by grinding), you can mill for profit. You can see all herbs here. From the point of profitability, you can classify herbs as:
  • Icethorn, Lichbloom, Adder's tongue: they give 2-4 azure and 50%*(1-3) Icy pigment. That's 1.5 Ink of the sea and 0.5 Snowfall ink. If you sell the former for 3G, the latter for 20G, you'll get 58G/stack herb. If you can buy them below this, go for it.
  • Deadnettle, Goldclover, Talandra Rose, Tiger lily: they give 2-3 azure and 25%*(1-3) Icy pigment. That's 1.25 Ink of the sea and 0.25 Snowfall ink, so 35G/stack herb. You can usually buy them below 20G/stack
  • Other herbs: they give 2-4 or 2-3 of their respectable pigments, so 1.5-1.25 inks. They also give uncommon pigment what is good for vendoring (or leveling inscription, but most scribes don't know that). Buy them if 1 stack of herbs is cheaper than 5.5 inks.
Important: it's often more profitable to buy Northrend herbs, mill them and buy low-level inks from Jessica. So never buy low level herbs for higher price than you could buy Northrend herbs. Strike that, since you can get Snowfall ink from Northrend herbs, you're better off with more expensive Northrend herbs than cheaper low-level herbs. For example a stack of felweed gives 6 Ethereal ink, Deadnettle gives 5 ink + 1 Snowfall ink. The latter worth 20G. So unless a stack of felweed is 18G cheaper than the Deadnettle, buy the nettle.

You can also trade between inks. If you see no Jadefire ink on the market, buy some from Jessica and put them to the AH. Inks are bought by lazy scribes like me, and non-scribes, who will go to guild scribes with mats. So you can have nice profit here with a bit of grinding.


Anonymous said...

Hunter's ink from mageroyal, swiftthistle, bruiseweed, briarthoran and srtanglekelp can be on a high demand if someone is farming darmoon faire reputation for "the insane" title :)

Kiryn said...

My fiance and I are bashing our heads against the wall because we didn't think of this sooner. We've been running rather low on some of the lower-level inks because the herbs are always expensive, while Tiger Lilies on our server can be seen as low as 10g per stack at times.

I have 400-500 Ink of the Sea on hand at any time, keep complaining that I have too much of that ink and not enough of the lower inks... but I never thought to trade them in! I guess I just wrote it off as "why would I ever want to trade expensive ink for cheap ink?" back when the vendor was first introduced and hence forgot about it. Times have changed....

Thanks for the tip! This should speed up our glyph business considerably.

Anonymous said...

Is there an easy way to mill a bunch of herbs? My wife has an inscriptor and it looks like you have to click on a stack to mill, wait 5 seconds, and repeat.

Is there some way to say "mill me 50 of these..." ??

Beffe said...

This macro will make it a bit easier to mill:

/cast Milling
/use Adder's Tongue
/use Icethorn

You can add as many dif. herbs as you can fit in the 256 char limit. Just make sure you got an even 5 of every herb, then drop it on your hotbar and spam away while watching tv :)

Luiniel said...

My experience on Lightbringer-EU is that you can't sell inks at any price -- I eventually ended up turning them all into glyphs when 3.1 came out

Roy said...


Is there an easy way to mill a bunch of herbs? My wife has an inscriptor and it looks like you have to click on a stack to mill, wait 5 seconds, and repeat.

Is there some way to say "mill me 50 of these..." ??
Sort of. I use Auctioneer, and auctioneer comes with Enchantrix built in. Enchantrix can auto-prospect, auto-disenchant, and auto-mill. You just have to turn on this "experimental" feature that has been around for ages. I use it for my prospecting and disenchanting. basically as soon as the right quantity of stuff hits your bags, a dialog box comes up and says "Do you want to Disenchant [something] x (number) worth (number)G?" and you click "Yes". Its a time saver. No more hitting the action bar and then hunting down the stack.

MyName said...

The /cast, /use macro is a very good timesaver. Not just for grinding herbs, but also for prospecting and disenchanting (like a million of those cheap JC items you made to turn into dust).

The only people who want to buy inks on my server are those that are buying mats and giving them to a glyph maker and those who buy snowfall ink for Darkmoon Card making.

I'm still not sure if it's a good market to get into as I think I would make more money making glyphs (which are broad enough that I can corner a few patterns) rather than getting into a bidding war with the 1-2 people selling a single commodity.

The pigment yield information was *very* helpful BTW as I tried to figure it out experimentally (while making glyphs), and it seems close to what I got but I was missing the exact numbers.