Simple Tool Upgrade needs to be Adjusted

So I get that using a kit on a tool lowers durability by 75%.

But that doesn’t seem like it’s worthwhile, when you think about it.

Testing this in game with the iron pick, using the multiplier 1.5 for harvest amount.

So my iron pick is giving me 6-7 per hit at 1 durability each. So figuring this with the default 300 durability: 1,800 to 2,100 stones

My upgraded iron pick is giving 7 or 9 per hit (as 8 doesn’t seem to be firing), but the durability is 225, which means I’m getting: 1,575 to 2,025

The Simple Tool Upgrade is just completely worthless, going with these numbers. I imagine the base numbers would be 4-5 unaltered and then 5/7 for the altered, but the percentage should still remain the same.

So this, and probably all of the tool upgrades, need to be altered. Either increase the harvest bonus or decrease the durability taken away.

Currently you lose 25% of the durability, but if you change that to 10%:

Durability becomes 270 for the Iron Pick, which means at the low end you are getting 1,890 stones from a full run. On the high end of 9 per hit, you can get as much as 2,430.

So compare them.

Unaltered Iron Pick is 1,800 to 2,100.
Upgraded Iron Pick is 1,890 to 2,430.

It hardly seems game breaking.

Looking at the Advanced Upgrade and the Star Metal Pick, this one is far more worthwhile.

Unaltered Star Metal Pick gets 4,550 to 5,200 stones over 650 hits.
Upgraded Star Metal Pick gets 4,870 to 5,357 stones over 487 hits, assuming the 7 and 8 are buffed to 10 and 11.

Not 100% sure, but i think the upgrade is more for iron/brimstone/obsidian use. In that i mean, that an upgrade kit gives a cleaner hit, thus less stone/salt/raw ash. Again, not 100% sure on that, but i seem to remember there being a difference. But i have never double chekced that lately, as i only do the upgrade kit, and tbh, only start using advanced ones once i hit star metal/acheronian picks.

That’s the thing, I have looked around on Google.

Everyone says it’s more efficient. The wiki says the Simple one adds one extra resource per hit.

But it isn’t efficient at all, because the 25% durability means you have less hits and so you end up with less stone as a result.

I tested this in-game,and consistently was hitting 6-7 with a normal Iron Pick, and 7 or 9 with the upgraded one.

That is not efficient, it actually lessens the efficiency.

If it gives less of the crap material at a node, that could be useful. However, the numbers still could be skewed so that you are actually getting less iron per hit.

Edit: Someone did more testing on this last year.

I just mined the same group of 11 iron nodes 3 times with a upgraded efficiency steel pick and 3 times with a reinforced steel pick in a vanilla single player game. I have 20 points in survival so it was 3 hits on each node. The distribution of iron versus stone was very random but the total units of iron/rock were more consistent so I’m only looking at total units of material instead of focusing on iron.
The steel pick drops from 450 durability to 337.5 when you add the upgraded efficiency mod. The reinforcement bumps it up to 550. Both picks lost exactly 36 durability every run.
The upgraded pick yielded an average 452.33 units of iron/stone per run (446, 459, and 452) or 12.56 units per durabilty point. That gives an expected yield for the full life of the pick at 4239.
The reinforced pick yielded an average 335.67 per run (339, 333, and 335) or 9.32 units per durability point. Expected yield for the life of the pick is 5126.
Later I ran both down to 0 durability and repaired from my toolbar and both cost 15 steel and 8 leather to full repair. The reinforcement is the clear winner. The “efficient” mod is more of a speed upgrade.

So the upgrade gives you more per run so you cart it back to your base faster. But at the cost of more frequent repairs, and fewer resources in the long run.

The durability upgrade gives you the normal amount per run, so you are out gathering longer, but you will about 25% more total resources over the life of the tool.

the efficiency is not only in the strike per strike. It is how much you get in the same amount of time. Here is a table. to see the difference, you have to equalize the time (strikes). So 900 strikes is the best example, as it means with 3 repairs for non upgraded, and 4 repairs with upgrade. With that said, it does cost more iron for the repairs, but you get roughly a 23% increase in stone over the same amount of strikes.

so you are paying iron for saving time. hope that helps.

iron strikes avg per stikes per spawn stone per spawn before repair repair cost repairs total iron total stone
no upgrade 20 300 6.5 5 32.5 1950 15 3 65 5850
upgrade 30 225 8 5 40 1800 15 4 90 7200

Hmm, I guess.

Still, if you hit that 4th repair on the no upgrade, how much would the numbers increase? Because the total stone would jump to 7,800. And the iron cost would only be 80.

I’m guessing the only other number that would change on that row would be the AVG PER one increased from 6.5 to something more.

but that would give you more strikes. Strikes = time. that is where the efficiency is. There is no wrong answer if you want to spend more time getting the same qty. But most people want to save time, even at the cost of more iron. If you use a repair kit, the cost of iron actually is only 18 iron bars difference to gain the 23% more harvest per second.


actually i am off, it is 3 repairs to 2. Using it the first time doesn’t need a repair kit.
So updated numbers with normal repair cost. 25 iron bars. if you use repair kit, it is reduced to 18 bars difference of iron bars for time saved.

iron strikes avg per stikes per spawn stone per spawn before repair repair cost repairs total iron total stone
no upgrade 20 300 6.5 5 32.5 1950 15 2 50 5850
upgrade 30 225 8 5 40 1800 15 3 75 7200
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Now if you want it to be cheaper, then no upgrade is the way to go ( "iron"ically adding a durability kit for more strikes per tool is not the cheapest. The cost of 10 iron bars actually makes it more expensive in iron by about 3 bars).
Cheaper does not equal more efficient. It is only one measure for efficiency. Time and quality (which doesn’t apply for CE tool modding) are the other two. So it really comes down to preference, time v cost.


Nice breakdown, and good call on pointing out the time cost. Of all the activities in the game, swinging a pickaxe is probably the least enjoyable so getting that over with as soon as possible is well worth the cost IMO.


It’s more efficient because you get more per swing. No one cares about the repair costs. Like others pointed out, the thing they are comparing to see which is more efficient is time.

Just setup two pick axes on your bar/radial. When one breaks or is about to break, just switch to the second one and start the first one repairing.

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You have a little less grinding and more time for other things, and that’s great. I’m getting sick and tired of this “chop-chopping” stones and wood very soon.