Disenchanting for Profit

Disenchanting for Profit

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When someone asks how to make more gold in WoW, there are generally two responses: do dailies and sell gathered mats on the AH. While these are good answers, they require you to take time to actually do dailies or gather stuff. But casual players want something they can do without putting much time in. It turns out many casual players can use their existing professions to make money.

This guide focuses on using a crafting profession with enchanting, but you can just buy already crafted items from the AH and sell the enchanting stuff you get out of them. On some realms the crafted items will be cheaper than the materials, but sometimes the materials are cheaper.

Requirements:

Category: Auction House moneymaking
Technique: Moving product to more profitable form (buy low sell high).

The general idea here is to buy crafting mats to craft items that disenchant well. It turns out that many enchanting mats are in pretty high demand. Naturally, they tend to sell faster and for more than other crafting materials. So the strategy is to find items we can DE cheap.

Definition: An item disenchants well when it disenchants into more value than the value of the base materials to create that item.

So how do we figure out if an item disenchants well?

Look at an item you can craft. Add up the value of the materials required to make the item. Then, look at what the item disenchants into and calculate their value.

It is best shown with an example. The Stoneguard Band from Jewelcrafting (390) crafted with 2 Eternal Earth is a well known item that disenchants well.

I. Calculating crafting materials value
This one is pretty easy. The Stoneguard Band requires 2 Eternal Earth. On my server these go for around 6.5g each. Thus, the cost to make this item is 2x6.5g = 13g.

II. Calculating disenchant value
This one is a little harder because disenchanting involves some chance. We can use that chance to calculate the value. Wowhead tells us that the Stoneguard Band disenchants into:

On any disenchant, you will get one of these outcomes. In each of these outcomes, there is an equal chance of each sub-outcome. That is, if the game chooses the first outcome (75%), you have an equal chance of getting 2, 3, 4, or 5 Infinite Dust. So we can rewrite these chances by combining the sub-outcomes with the outcomes:
The 75% is split 4 ways and the 22% chance is split 2 ways.

Now we simply multiply the value of each outcome by its chance.

0.1875 * 2 *  4.5g = 1.6875g
0.1875 * 3 *  4.5g = 2.53125g
0.1875 * 4 *  4.5g = 3.375g
0.1875 * 5 *  4.5g = 4.21875g
0.11   * 1 * 10.0g = 1.1g
0.11   * 2 * 10.0g = 2.2g
0.03   * 1 *  9.0g = 0.27g
Total: 15.3825 or 15g 38s 25c

III. Compare I vs II
The first step gave us a cost of 13g per Stoneguard Band. The second step gave us a sell value of 15g 38s 25c. We just subtract the first from the second to get our profit, and hope it's a big number.

15.3825g - 13g = 2.3825g
Profit: 2g 38s 25c

This doesn't seem like much at first but what if we made 100 Stoneguard Bands. That's 238g with only 20 minutes of work, and some of that is just waiting for your character to craft the items.

This is one of the more popular items to disenchant, but there are other items that disenchant well. There are even some Azeroth crafted items that disenchant well. Some old enchanting mats still sell well for twinks that like to use icy, fiery, or crusader. Even high levels might desire these enchants if they have a set of gear just for looks.

The beauty of this method is that enchanting materials don't cost anything to list on the AH. Even if you make way too many, you have nothing to lose by listing all of them on one day (except some time).

The Enchantrix addon will tell you the disenchanted value of an item, but only after you have done enough auction scans to get the prices of the materials. You can have it do the math for you if you try to avoid math at all costs. On the other hand, some people love to crunch numbers and find interesting things (like ways to make profit).

IV. List of Items that Disenchant Well
Stoneguard Band
Nerubian Leggaurds
The Sharp Cookie - Sold by Coreiel in Nagrand

Note that the ability to make money is based on your own realm's prices. Do not immediately ignore a suggested item if it doesn't work on your realm. It is up to you to do the research before spending your gold.