Oil collection - train or pipe?

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thirstyhirsty14
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Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by thirstyhirsty14 »

I'm not that new to Factorio but in terms of playtime I am (watched a heck of a lot of Arumba before I started playing the game). I have a pretty successful factory going on, main bus layout, lots of iron and copper, but the one thing that seems to be holding me back is oil:
- Blue science is slow, because battery production is slow, because sulfur production is slow, because it doesn't have enough petroleum gas
- Advanced circuit production, and production of everything that requires advanced circuits (which is pretty much everything in late-game), is slow, because plastic production is slow, because there isn't enough petroleum gas
- I can't even think about making lubricant for anything because of a lack of crude
Etc. etc.

The problem is not that I have too much heavy or light that I'm not converting. It was before, then I suddenly realised I had thousands of it stored up in my tanks, but as soon as I started converting it into petroleum gas it drained away and the crude oil supply cannot keep up with it. I desperately need petroleum gas, but just can't wrangle enough of it.
I started with a pretty poor oil spawn, there hasn't even been much in the desert to the north of my forest-y spawn, and I'm fully tapping everything in a 2/3 minute car journey radius. I'm hesitant to drive for miles to try and pipe more oil, if I'm honest I really can't be bothered to destroy the HUGE alien bases that form a perimeter when I try and go further.

So I guess my question is, should I invest in trains (this is only my 4th start and I haven't even touched trains in any of them yet) to carry crude oil barrels, or continue to pipe it? Which is more efficient and will get my oil here faster from longer distances?
Any help would be much appreciated; I'm currently very limited in what I can do with such a small crude oil supply.

In the meantime, I'm still loving the whole concept and the way the game plays, it's like nothing I've ever played. Thanks!
- thirstyhirsty14

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by ssilk »

Use productivity modules. They enable enable, top get more out of less. :)

And the length; Rules of thumb:
- With just some oil pumps, the about maximum distance with underground belts is about 1000 tiles. I never did that.
- With more than 500 tiles distance a train is generally a good idea.
- Up to about 500 tiles you can transport also with a belt: Place two basic belts (one in each direction). Make sure, you have a mechanism (circuit network), which sends only an empty barrel, if a full is comming in (ask, if you need help with that). Otherwise you will block the whole belt with empty barrels, that is expensive!
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DaveMcW
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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by DaveMcW »

Pipe.

You can stretch underground pipes over 4000 tiles for any reasonable amount of oil. If you have an unreasonable amount of oil, you can stick some small pumps in the middle.

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MeduSalem
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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by MeduSalem »

I'd also say stick to underground pipes and eventually use pumps every now and then if the flow becomes a trickle.

I know that laying pipes over a long distance is a tedious work, but once you've done it you will never tear it down anymore and it doesn't require any further management anymore and it is easily expanded to the next oilfield.

At least at the current state transporting oil with barrels and/or train is just too much fiddling around and not worth the trouble in my opinion.

And I know from experience because I completely rely on oil/solid fuel to power my steam power plants. So I'm burning tremendous amounts of the stuff just to attract biters for fun.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Klonan »

Transporting via barrels is a far more efficient, effective and more useful way than pipes.

1. Trains are cool
2. Pipe laying is tedious
3. If you want to send oil elsewhere, you just make a new station instead of laying miles of new pipe
4. If you need more oil, same as above
5. Pipes are easy to run over, and vulnerable.
6. You can easily check how well your production is doing with a train.
7. If something goes wrong witb production you can just catch the train as it's heading there

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by dee- »

Did we mention water? Draining a thousands tile long pipe is... "Load Savegame"

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by thirstyhirsty14 »

Thanks to everyone who has replied thus far.

I honestly had no idea pumps even existed (except of course offshore pumps to pump water) that you could make the oil flow run better; that may be the issue.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by thirstyhirsty14 »

dee- wrote:Did we mention water? Draining a thousands tile long pipe is... "Load Savegame"
What do you mean about water?

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Klonan »

thirstyhirsty14 wrote:
dee- wrote:Did we mention water? Draining a thousands tile long pipe is... "Load Savegame"
What do you mean about water?
If you accidently hookup water to your 10000000 long oil pipe... you're going to have a bad time. Crude barrels prevent that, and keep your oil clean and ready to use.


Crude barrels can be transported by logistic bots too, useful for a variety of application.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Lupoviridae »

Klonan wrote:
thirstyhirsty14 wrote:
dee- wrote:Did we mention water? Draining a thousands tile long pipe is... "Load Savegame"
What do you mean about water?
If you accidently hookup water to your 10000000 long oil pipe... you're going to have a bad time. Crude barrels prevent that, and keep your oil clean and ready to use.


Crude barrels can be transported by logistic bots too, useful for a variety of application.
If you do that, can you not just put a small pump feeding into a tank to pull all the water out of the line?

Also @OP, pumps likely will not help you in your case, they only come in handy if you're making a REALLY long line.

See this post:
https://forums.factorio.com/forum/vie ... f=5&t=6066

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Xterminator »

Personally I prefer I train for anything farther away than a few stacks of pipe would cover. I find laying that many pipes to be very tedious and annoying. I mean if you find oil like 1 stack of underground pipes length away then pipe might be best way to go. Much longer and I would suggest a train.

Also putting speed modules or productivity modules in each oil well that is running Los can help a ton. You would be surprised how much that helps. Just make sure you have the power to support that.. Hehe :p

One last resort is to 'cheat'... There is a command (I forget it, but will try to find it) to set oil wells you target to have nearly infinite supply. I would use this as a last resort though.
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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Finndibaenn »

OP, are you using pipes or underground pipes ? throughput decreases much faster with pipes

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Cougarific »

I was facing this same dilemma just this weekend - spent about an hour getting a rail line started, realized how much work was ahead: Pumps->Factories for barreling; Full Barrels->storage chests; Barrels from storage->onto train; Train->unload barrels into chests; chests->Factories for unbarreling; empty barrels->storage; storage->train; train->empty barrel storage at pumps.

Got about an hour in, said Screw This! Reloaded a save and ran pipeline instead. Took 5 minutes.

Side note: I also think the oil production stuff is the coolest-looking stuff in the game. Once I had my pipeline in place (alternating stretches of above- and underground pipes), plunked down some storage tanks and my first thought was "Wow- that looks totally badass." :lol:

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by MeduSalem »

Cougarific wrote:I was facing this same dilemma just this weekend - spent about an hour getting a rail line started, realized how much work was ahead: Pumps->Factories for barreling; Full Barrels->storage chests; Barrels from storage->onto train; Train->unload barrels into chests; chests->Factories for unbarreling; empty barrels->storage; storage->train; train->empty barrel storage at pumps.

Got about an hour in, said Screw This! Reloaded a save and ran pipeline instead. Took 5 minutes.
Exactly as I wrote earlier. Just sums it up.

If there wouldn't be the annoying (un)loading of barrels as intermediate step and instead directly tank wagons I might be convinced to use trains. But as long as the barrels are the only alternative method of transportation... the pipelines remain far superior in my opinion.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Klonan »

Really I don't see how a simple oil station something like this is so difficult.
Station
Its super easy to set up additional routes and input sources rather than trailing a new pipeline to every new pump-jack you throw down.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by dee- »

Indeed. And if you're superlazy you plant a assembly machine that builds barrels from a steel-filled chest.

Or build the nicer variant of the train arriving with a batch of empty barrels, which get unloaded by smart inserters while from the other side inderters load the full barrels at the same time.
Edit: which your screenshot actually shows :) That's quite nice and cute.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Cougarific »

Also, I saw a mod available that provides Oil Cars for trains so you don't have to barrel. I'm probably gonna grab that.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by Zourin »

Normally I will use pipe for short-distance applications, but for longer distances, I'll favor a train that services my refineries. I'm always looking for reasons to use more trains, although I find that it's too late in the game for me to care by the time I've cleaned out several biters' nests, I'm already towards the later end of things.

It's just how I prefer to do things. Nothing wrong with absurdly long trans-continental pipes that wouldn't be a problem with trains. You don't want biters gnawing on either.

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by katyal »

Cougarific wrote:Also, I saw a mod available that provides Oil Cars for trains so you don't have to barrel. I'm probably gonna grab that.
100% this, I love my oil cars looks so cool when a train pulls into a station and the storage tanks fill up!!!

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Re: Oil collection - train or pipe?

Post by thirstyhirsty14 »

Thanks to everyone. I think the problem im having is that the oil deposits i am drilling are (for some reason) realllyy poor quality :(

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