Logistic Storage strategy

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zOldBulldog
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Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:27 pm

Among the many things that I am trying to figure out is the best (or at least a good) way to handle Logistic Storage chests.

For optimizing storage/delivery to the chests I saw a neat little square tileable modules by Negative Root with 3 roboports on each side to recharge the bots and storage chests in the center and remaining space.

But I am a bit stumped with the "bigger picture" issues:

- Is it better to make a central storage array for all of the storage chests, or to place a storage array in a grid across the base? The grid approach has the advantage of "probably" having the resources you need closer when you need them, but it is messier as it has to be fit along your other stuff in the base. The central storage sounds great but for best efficiency it needs to be near the center of your base (prime real estate) and as you expand it could be quite far from your work area.

- If your have central storage, is it worth it to sort from the requester chests into single product passive provider chests? Given the 0.16 splitters, this can be fairly easy although it could be space intensive.

- If you sort the materials from the storage chests, is it worth the effort to feed the belt materials back into the belts? Of course, by this point you'd have a mix of assumptions... your storage would be centralized, near the bus, you'd be filtering, and finally you'd feed the materials to the bus.

Can anybody with extensive experience make recommendations?

ANSWERS:
Summarizing what has been recommended here. Please note that this section is not yet fully baked (I might still be misinterpreting some of the things people are saying).

- Always aim to have as few trash Storage chests as feasible. Proper recycling of materials - as described below - will make it possible.

- At the production mall, replace the chests with Buffer chests. Move the production limits (you might have placed them on the chests initially) to the inserters. This will allow for trash to return to its chests and when those chests feed assemblers the old items will get recycled without consuming further ores.

- Place your "trash" Storage chests near your mall, which should be near the center of your base. This should minimize bot travel distances.

- At your smelters, setup Requester chests (or should they be Buffer chests too?) to empty your trash Storage chests of ores. Be careful to avoid "request loops".

- Setup Requester (Buffer?) chests to dump "trash" materials that you carry on the bus into it, and use a Splitter with the input priority set to ensure that the trash materials are taken first. Be careful to avoid "request loops".

- Setup a construction train stop by the mall. Setup automated unload of trash from the train, and automated load of frequently used materials (a screenshot was posted in the thread that gives some clues as to how to setup this). I suspect a similar thing for a military train might be a good idea too.

- Setup a temporary construction site stop that automatically unloads from your construction train and makes the materials available through the local logistic network (with some roboports of course).

- Direct trash wood somewhere to be burned. I send mine to the steam power plant, but since it only runs as backup during spikes... it does not seem sufficient. I've seen suggestions to use wood for running trains, but for the long run it seems that other fuels are a better choice for trains. So, still need a good idea for how to use wood productively (could always make a small steam power plant that runs constantly even when not needed, but it seems like a waste).
Last edited by zOldBulldog on Sun Apr 22, 2018 12:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by MeduSalem » Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:20 pm

As someone with experience in both belt/bot based storage systems I say forget about storage systems. Use the stuff immediately.

The only part where it makes sense to have some buffer storage is trainstations to hide the travel/loading/unloading latencies.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:27 pm

MeduSalem wrote:As someone with experience in both belt/bot based storage systems I say forget about storage systems. Use the stuff immediately.

The only part where it makes sense to have some buffer storage is trainstations to hide the travel/loading/unloading latencies.
I am using a lot of storage chests already whether I like it or not. I have to, as I often tear down and rebuild, getting the message about not enough storage. So I add a few chests on the spot, but it is very messy. I need something better

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by MeduSalem » Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:32 pm

zOldBulldog wrote:I am using a lot of storage chests already whether I like it or not. I have to, as I often tear down and rebuild, getting the message about not enough storage. So I add a few chests on the spot, but it is very messy. I need something better
Well as it goes for construction/deconstruction it might make sense to have its own storage chest dedicated for each item in something like a shopping mall. I have one of those too, one centralized.

... and also don't forget about limiting the output of your machines so they don't craft like 2400 items of something you won't ever need.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by dood » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:01 pm

I only use storage chests at the mall right next to the build train stop.
The items get pushed into it via active providers so if I go there by train, it instantly refills my items an takes all my trash away.
That way, I can also filter my entire inventory of unneeded stuff by dumping it into the trash wagon of my train or one of the active provider chests.
It gets stored right away and I have all the things in my logistic request list back almost instantaneously.

For anything other than that, I would not recommend you use storage chests at all because those are really only there for construction robots and to store trash in.
Some flavor of provider (it doesn't really matter if it's active or passive without storage) and requester chest is all you need for production lines that don't concern themselves with building solar arrays or deconstructing forests.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:16 pm

Perhaps I need to make clear... This thread IS NOT about using storage intentionally.

It is about the best way to handle storage chests that receive things from my trash slots and from deconstruction actions.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by dood » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:28 pm

Well you build more and then you construct new things which empties the storage but you'll always want it to be as small as possible.
I don't see the issue unless you have no system in place to get rid of intermediates like wood and stone and all that floods your storage which is why you have to keep expanding it.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:36 pm

dood wrote:Well you build more and then you construct new things which empties the storage but you'll always want it to be as small as possible.
I don't see the issue. Unless you have no system in place to get rid of intermediates like wood and stone and all that.
My backup/spike power steam plant has a requester chest for wood and prioritizes burning wood over other fuels.

But no, I don’t have a system to handle what ends up in logistic storage chests. That system is exactly what I want to build and am asking advice for.

Heck, my storage chests even have a bunch of raw ores that need to be put to good use - ahead of anything from the ore deposits.
Last edited by zOldBulldog on Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by dood » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:38 pm

What do you mean exactly, non-wood intermediates?
I handle that by making my mall bot-based. It gets crafted into items.
zOldBulldog wrote:Heck, my storage chests even have a bunch of raw ores that need to be put to good use - ahead of anything from the ore deposits.
Iron ore is used for concrete, copper ore gets requested to one electric furnace to be smelted into plates so over time, it gets filtered out.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by bobucles » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:08 pm

Players who build bot based shopping malls have a small problem where items get requested out of the mall, the mall builds more, and then items go back into storage. Repeat this process a few times and your storage fills up with piles of garbage. That's no good!

Buffer chests and logistic inserter controls make this much easier to handle. With logistic controls you can force inserters to shut down when too many items are in total storage. This keeps your shopping mall from over producing in total. Replace the red chests with buffer chests so you can return items to the shopping mall. Replace blue chests with buffer chests so that you can summon items from storage, while STILL keeping access to them as requester outputs. This is great for sequential recipes like yellow belts => red belts => blue belts but will also work with modules and other things.

Buffer chests will help keep your logistic garbage down and make sure that the shopping mall stays fully stocked. Upgrade your shopping malls today!

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by Serenity » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:28 pm

Try to recycle all raw and intermediate products. Like have a requester or buffer chest that requests all iron or whatever and feeds it back into the system. That way you can have some trash from deconstructing something, but it won't accumulate in some useless storage buffer never to be used again.

The new splitters also help with this. They allow you to prioritize your recycling chests before for example a train station

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by dood » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:34 pm

bobucles wrote:Players who build bot based shopping malls have a small problem where items get requested out of the mall, the mall builds more, and then items go back into storage. Repeat this process a few times and your storage fills up with piles of garbage. That's no good!

Buffer chests and logistic inserter controls make this much easier to handle. With logistic controls you can force inserters to shut down when too many items are in total storage. This keeps your shopping mall from over producing in total. Replace the red chests with buffer chests so you can return items to the shopping mall. Replace blue chests with buffer chests so that you can summon items from storage, while STILL keeping access to them as requester outputs. This is great for sequential recipes like yellow belts => red belts => blue belts but will also work with modules and other things.

Buffer chests will help keep your logistic garbage down and make sure that the shopping mall stays fully stocked. Upgrade your shopping malls today!
You're right, logistic limits on inserters are elementary when dealing with active providers.
Why would you want the items back in the mall if the storage chests are much closer to the dropoff and much closer together in 1 spot though?

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by bobucles » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:40 pm

Why would you want the items back in the mall if the storage chests are much closer to the dropoff and much closer together in 1 spot though?
What if your train station goes to the mall? If the mall has logistic storage limits and excess items don't return to the mall, then your mall will eventually have missing items. Buffer chests return them to be easily accessible.

Buffer chests are also amazing items to support construction projects. The main reason is because logistic bots can carry items into buffer chests. This lets your bots pull double duty because the logi bots are handling the bulk of the distance while cargo bots get their items much closer to target.
Last edited by bobucles on Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:42 pm

Serenity wrote:Try to recycle all raw and intermediate products. Like have a requester or buffer chest that requests all iron or whatever and feeds it back into the system. That way you can have some trash from deconstructing something, but it won't accumulate in some useless storage buffer never to be used again.

The new splitters also help with this. They allow you to prioritize your recycling chests before for example a train station
How would you go about doing this?

It is exactly one of the things I would like to do but can’t decide on the right approach.

One idea I had was to simply set a requester chest and inserter that feeds it into the bus. Another was to have a central location for storage chests, use inserters to pull the contents onto sushi belts, use the splitters to filter out the bus stuff (as you suggest), then dump the remainder into an array of provider chests for recyclyng when needed by logistics or construction bots.

But both options didn’t feel quite right. That is why I made this thread, in the hope that someone would suggest a compact, tried and tested approach.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:47 pm

I just thought of a question that *might* simplify all this:

Is there a way for a requester chest to request materials ONLY from storage chests? Then it would be as simple as having a requester chest and an inserter to return materials to the mall’s passive provider. And something very similar to feed bus and smelter belts?

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by dood » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:48 pm

bobucles wrote:
Why would you want the items back in the mall if the storage chests are much closer to the dropoff and much closer together in 1 spot though?
What if your train station goes to the mall? If the mall has logistic storage limits and excess items don't return to the mall, then your mall will eventually have missing items. Buffer chests return them to be easily accessible.
But you don't need them in the mall. You do what, go to a chest and click on it to pick items up manually?
You have bots! And with active providers, having the mall "miss" all of its end products is kind of the point.
zOldBulldog wrote:I just thought of a question that *might* simplify all this:

Is there a way for a requester chest to request materials ONLY from storage chests? Then it would be as simple as having a requester chest and an inserter to return materials to the mall’s passive provider. And something very similar to feed bus and smelter belts?
Nope.
If your mall uses it, you don't want to also feed it back into the bus or you have yourself a loop.
Try to avoid unloading inverntories full of intermediates into storage.
If you deconstruct something, let the belts run dry first, drop copper plates or gears or whatever on assemblers that use them etc.
It's an easy thing to avoid.

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by Serenity » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:54 pm

It depends on the product.

Belt recycling has been mentioned above. Simply put a buffer chest between the yellow and red belt assembler (and red and blue) and request all excess belt there. Then turn off the output inserter if there is enough in it

Wood and coal I feed into the furnace belt. I simple put a splitter on it. Then output 1-4 chests on a small stretch of belt. And set the splitter to make it the priority (before the splitter priority thing you could simple use sideloading to achieve this or turn off the belt if something is in the chest)

Another version is when you have a product that you want to both recycle but also request. Here you can have an inserter put into a buffer chest with a condition of X < 100 (for example). The buffer chest requests say 5000. Then you also insert from that chest into another chest with a condition of X > 105 (that extra 5 or so is important because of the inserter stack bonus! If you use stack inserters make it greater than 12. If not every time the inserter swings it triggers the first condition). And from that chest back to the belt. That way you have 100 stuff available for bots to bring to you even if there is no excess for the bots to put into the chest.


Maybe it's not the best, but it works for the amount of materials I usually deal with

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by dood » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:12 pm

Serenity wrote:It depends on the product.

Belt recycling has been mentioned above. Simply put a buffer chest between the yellow and red belt assembler (and red and blue) and request all excess belt there. Then turn off the output inserter if there is enough in it
No need for that, in that case you just treat belt like any other intermediate.
Here's how my mall usually ends up, for some visual reference.

Image

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by Serenity » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:21 pm

You have a robo mall. I start with a belt mall and keep that for a very long time

But even in your case you can just put a buffer chest in the corner between belt colors

In any case there are many ways to do things like this :)

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Re: Logistic Storage strategy

Post by zOldBulldog » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:43 pm

OK, I now have ores, plates, steel and bricks going back into the pipeline. I did this with requester chests and a splitter set with input priority for the side coming from the requester chest.

And I have tentatively been convinced that there might be no need to send other materials back to the mall. Instead I am thinking of placing a central logistics storage array, plus maybe a few smaller storage depots at regular distances (in the hope that frequently deconstructed/constructed materials will be closer when I need them). I am not even going to bother to do any sorting.

One last (I hope) question: Is it safe to assume that when materials get requested they will come out of Logistic Storage chests before tapping Passive Provider chests?

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