Fabricate ruling?

Rules Questions

I know I should probably ask my GM this, but can you use Fabricate to turn coal into diamonds?

Scientifically speaking, a lump of coal and a diamond are made of the same element, Carbon, but the diamond has been exposed to intense heat and pressure over a period of time.

I'm asking this because diamonds are, according to pathfinder, much more valuable than coal, and take up less volume as well. Given the proper craft check, would the fabricate spell even allow for this level of broken utility?

I think the answer is yes, BUT I don't think you will gain any money. The main way you make money is crafting things like armor. Since you are going from coal to diamonds, there is no crafting cost so you would end up with the same gold value of diamond that you had of coal

I'm not sure if coal and diamonds have an equal gold value scaled to their carbon content, considering that diamonds can be used for spells.

25,000 GP of coal exceeds the volume capacity of the spell... lolz... nice try though. (NO WISH FOR YOU! LOL)

Seriously, I might allow it. But I would do the math (volume of coal cost = diamond value - note, usually coal is delivered by the gross ton in train carts (in modern worlds) at the price of about 1 cent a pound (a hamburger paddy size chunk maybe)).

LOL. For kicks... http://www.aqua-calc.com/calculate/weight-to-volume

Which tells me that a 20th level casting amounting to 200 cu' of coal would be 4750 kg of coal. Or roughly 10450 pounds (5 tons). A Pound of Iron is 1sp. But coal is probably 10x cheaper. So you got a diamond worth 10450/10(iron)=1045/10(for coal)= 104.5GP. If you use cheaper coal, you get cheaper diamonds... and there probably isn't "more expensive" coal anywhere in Golarion.

You're welcome! lolz.

Well I could always make a bunch of small diamonds, then use fabricate to make a single large diamond.

I wouldn't allow it. Like you said it takes intense heat and pressure. I wouldn't let you turn a rock into lava, or water into steam or ice. I wouldn't even let you turn it into hot water.

I mean, really, where does coal come from, is it burnt, charred wood? Can you turn a tree into coal, and then into diamond? Why not just go turn a pile of firewood straight into diamonds?

Trees become calcified and petrified into stone, but you can't just turn a normal tree into a stone table. Does that mean I don't allow sand to be turned into panes of glass (with this spell)...? You don't have to agree with it, but I don't.

If the question is "have i found an infinite money loop" the answer is no.

Pizza Lord wrote:

I wouldn't allow it. Like you said it takes intense heat and pressure. I wouldn't let you turn a rock into lava, or water into steam or ice. I wouldn't even let you turn it into hot water.

I mean, really, where does coal come from, is it burnt, charred wood? Can you turn a tree into coal, and then into diamond? Why not just go turn a pile of firewood straight into diamonds?

Trees become calcified and petrified into stone, but you can't just turn a normal tree into a stone table. Does that mean I don't allow sand to be turned into panes of glass (with this spell)...? You don't have to agree with it, but I don't.

But a pile of Adamantine takes a heck of a lot of heat to make a sword... Your reasoning doesn't make much sense to me. Guess we have different ideas of how a "finished product" gets "finished" with magic.

It falls into the mineral category. You're compressing coal into diamond, so at 20th level, you're compressing 20 cubic ft, of coal into a diamond of equal value. It's going to take way longer than how you've described it, Maouse. In fact, it'd be a lot easier to be a 20th level Alchemist with a Philosopher's Stone Discovery.

BlingerBunny wrote:
It falls into the mineral category. You're compressing coal into diamond, so at 20th level, you're compressing 20 cubic ft, of coal into a diamond of equal value. It's going to take way longer than how you've described it, Maouse. In fact, it'd be a lot easier to be a 20th level Alchemist with a Philosopher's Stone Discovery.

20 cu' at 20th level. Mineral right. So 10x as long/ 10.45gp diamonds... Fabricate Magically Instantly changes raw materials to finished products. Doesn't take any time at all... because... MAGIC.

Of course, since spell components require 10,000 gp worth of diamonds rather than any sort of weight scale, and supply and demand being what it is your fabricate trick puts such a glut in the diamond market that you'll need a dump truck full of diamonds to cast anything....

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Of course, since spell components require 10,000 gp worth of diamonds rather than any sort of weight scale, and supply and demand being what it is your fabricate trick puts such a glut in the diamond market that you'll need a dump truck full of diamonds to cast anything....

And my evil plan to prevent the resurrection of my enemies will be complete! -maniacal laughter-

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Of course, since spell components require 10,000 gp worth of diamonds rather than any sort of weight scale, and supply and demand being what it is your fabricate trick puts such a glut in the diamond market that you'll need a dump truck full of diamonds to cast anything....

Well, at 10.45gp a whack... that is 1000 castings, and 50 tons of coal. In Golarion that's a lot of work...

"Diamonds on Golarion are not made of compressed coal". Boom, done.

Then what are they made of? The souls of the damned? I'll compress those then!

Quote:
But a pile of Adamantine takes a heck of a lot of heat to make a sword... Your reasoning doesn't make much sense to me. Guess we have different ideas of how a "finished product" gets "finished" with magic.

In a manner of speaking. Heating metal makes it easier to mold and shape. That's one of the reasons we do it. (Actually, heating it allow us to mix multiple ingredients to make stronger, more flexible alloys). You could theoretically beat a hunk of metal into shape with enough strength and patience.

I have no problem with fabricate taking a lot of the work and effort out of things, but I wouldn't let a hunk or iron be turned into steel. If you have a pile of weapon-grade adamantine (typically 1/3rd the cost of the weapon) then you can make an adamantine weapon with the spell. It won't have a leather hilt, it won't have gold-inlay, but I would allow it.

I don't allow turning coal to diamonds. I don't even allow you to turn tarnished silver into polished silver with the spell. If you use tarnished silverware to make a statue, you'll have a tarnished silver statue. Then you can polish it.

I hope I didn't upset you. I just asked a question because it seemed plausible. Diamonds and Coal are both made of Carbon. So it would be safe to assume that taking the carbon and reforming it so that all of those carbon atoms are together, is a possibility. You're basically condensing it into a smaller form. But there is the inevitability that you could destroy a market district, making a once valuable gem completely useless, or it's impossible because the product has to be the exact volume of the original material.

That one word; commensurate. How it's defined and perceived, makes and/or breaks the spell.

BTW Commensurate means; equal or similar to something in size, amount, or degree.

Fabricate requires a crafting check when you use it to make "articles requiring a high degree of craftsmanship".

I'd argue that manipulating the material on an atomic level would require an astronomically high degree of craftsmanship, putting the DC well beyond mortal means. (Which is a roundabout way of saying "forget it!")

Wow, a lot of you guys sure don't like how magic works in the game lol

Weirdly, in my games I just allow someone to make Craft (Alchemy) checks to turn one material into another. So much easier for things like turning coal to diamond, or lead into gold.

Casual Viking wrote:
"Diamonds on Golarion are not made of compressed coal". Boom, done.

Just like they aren't made of that in the real world.

Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Being crafting, you would only need 1/3 the diamond value in coal.

So if I have 5,000gp worth of coal, I could transform it into 15,000gp worth of diamonds--provided I made the skill check* (and had a lenient GM of course). That's basically how crafting works.

You could even use craft (jewelry) to further cut those raw diamonds into fine, cut diamonds, tripling their value again.

*:
The real question isn't whether it's legal, it's where your character learned that coal can eventually become diamonds under very specific circumstances (I very much doubt the science behind it is anything even close to common knowledge in a pseudo-medieval era) and what craft skill it would require. We've only been able to create synthetic diamonds for a short time in real life modern day, and it's not simple jewelers who do it.

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The volume limit on coal would be a thing, since you could only transmute 20 cubic feet of coal at a time. (160 cubic feet with a Widen Metamagic rod). That's likely to not be very much coal to diamonds from a gp standpoint.

(Yes, yes, we all know you want to turn 1 gp of coal into 5000 gp of diamonds. Unfortunately, you have to turn 1,667 gp of coal into a 5k gp diamond, under the Craft Rules).

Secondly, you have to identify the skill that does this. In the modern age, it's done by engineering and thermodynamics, requiring very specific machines and pressure. In the old days...they didn't even really know diamonds were carbon.

Then you need to set the DC for doing this. It's likely to be 'impossible' - you still need to know HOW to do it, even if Fabricate does it instantly instead of in Geological time.

Likely, you don't know how to do this non-magically, which means Fabricate can't do it magically for you. If you can convince your DM you know how to build a thousand-atmosphere thermobaric chamber that sustains temperatures of 2000 C perfectly for weeks at a time to make diamonds from purified carbon (and not just rot coal), you might be able to do this.

More then likely, your character has no idea this is even possible without using magic.

==Aelryinth

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A better choice would be to buy raw uncut diamonds for a 1/3 the price of the final diamond, and use fabricate with a gem-cutting skill.

If you're already spending 1/3 the cost, why on earth would you choose to start with coal?

 Owner - D20 Hobbies

BlingerBunny wrote:
I hope I didn't upset you. I just asked a question because it seemed plausible.

Pathfinder worlds don't use real world physics.

If you think you found an infinite money factory in this game, you have not. It is designed to not do so, and has a fairly rigid wealth by level that your GM is expected to follow if he wants the CR system to work properly.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
BlingerBunny wrote:

I know I should probably ask my GM this, but can you use Fabricate to turn coal into diamonds?

Scientifically speaking, a lump of coal and a diamond are made of the same element, Carbon, but the diamond has been exposed to intense heat and pressure over a period of time.

I'm asking this because diamonds are, according to pathfinder, much more valuable than coal, and take up less volume as well. Given the proper craft check, would the fabricate spell even allow for this level of broken utility?

The Fabricate spell is effectively a speed up on Craft skils, not including alchemy or any of the artistic Craft skills llike calligraphy, or painting.

There is no craft skill application which allows you to turn coal into diamonds, so no.

Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
James Risner wrote:
BlingerBunny wrote:
I hope I didn't upset you. I just asked a question because it seemed plausible.
Pathfinder worlds don't use real world physics.

Yes they most certainly do, they just happen to be abstracted via game rules, if at all.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ravingdork wrote:
James Risner wrote:
BlingerBunny wrote:
I hope I didn't upset you. I just asked a question because it seemed plausible.
Pathfinder worlds don't use real world physics.
Yes they most certainly do, they just happen to be abstracted via game rules, if at all.

To be more accurate they use physics save where it gets in the way of game play and the fantasy motif, such as the handwaving of impossibilities like flying horses, dragons, or creatures simply so large they would collapse under their own weight.

While I get what is meant I think saying PF worlds don't use real world physics is not truly correct either or you wouldn't default to falling off a cliff if you jumped off one etc. i.e. gravity does exist even in PF. Magic does take and bend those laws and sometimes does so with a vengeance and problems can arise where those two meet.

As to Fabricate there's a few hoops to jump through first. Even if diamonds come from coal on Golarion (or most other fantasy worlds) is your character even remotely aware of this fact? I totally agree with this comment:

Aelryinth wrote:
Likely, you don't know how to do this non-magically, which means Fabricate can't do it magically for you.

The vast majority of coal becomes other stuff when done by natural geological processes and the portion that becomes diamonds is generally not of gem quality. It's good for putting on a industrial drill or grinder not into a wedding band and I suspect even a top flight gemcutter using modern equipment isn't going to be able to change this fact.

In short I largely agree with Aelryinth.

Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
LazarX wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
James Risner wrote:
BlingerBunny wrote:
I hope I didn't upset you. I just asked a question because it seemed plausible.
Pathfinder worlds don't use real world physics.
Yes they most certainly do, they just happen to be abstracted via game rules, if at all.
To be more accurate they use physics save where it gets in the way of game play and the fantasy motif, such as the handwaving of impossibilities like flying horses, dragons, or creatures simply so large they would collapse under their own weight.

Most of the physics-defying creatures possess the Magical Beast or Dragon or some similar obviously magical creature type. I think you will find that nearly every one of the Animal type creatures easily fall in line with what we know in physics.

The way to print money with Fabricate is to make Mithral armors anyway

Ravingdork wrote:
Most of the physics-defying creatures possess the Magical Beast or Dragon or some similar obviously magical creature type. I think you will find that nearly every one of the Animal type creatures easily fall in line with what we know in physics.

Still their Flight speed is Ex and not Su, thus is not part of their magic. A dragon in an Antimagic field can still fly.

Entryhazard wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
Most of the physics-defying creatures possess the Magical Beast or Dragon or some similar obviously magical creature type. I think you will find that nearly every one of the Animal type creatures easily fall in line with what we know in physics.
Still their Flight speed is Ex and not Su, thus is not part of their magic. A dragon in an Antimagic field can still fly.

If you extend it to animals and vermin, there are a whole bunch of creatures that couldn't exist in real life (due to insect circulatory/respiratory systems not scaling well).

Did only Ravendork and me so far notice that most of a diamonds worth comes from cutting it to shape actually? AND the diamond produced might not be enough quality to allow it to get cut into something sensible anyway.

I'd allow it, but the diamonds produced wouldn't be worth much, not comparing to the cost of materials anyway. How much is 20 cubic feet of coal worth anyway? Without a crafting check in crystal growing (no, craft jewelry just wouldnt do it - you can use it later to try and cut it into shape once the diamond is ready..so another casting probably and still the DC for working with a heavily flawed crystal is catastrophic) you'll just get a lumb of diamond mess, flawed, cracked in every way possible and impure to boot. Likely worth less than the coal used to be true. And read around to see how hard it is to grow artificial diamonds..and they still don't look quite like the real things.

Yep, go ahead and use fabricate to make diamonds. Diamonds worth nothing in practice.

Quote:
Did only Ravendork and me so far notice that most of a diamonds worth comes from cutting it to shape actually? AND the diamond produced might not be enough quality to allow it to get cut into something sensible anyway.

Er, no:

Quote:
A better choice would be to buy raw uncut diamonds for a 1/3 the price of the final diamond, and use fabricate with a gem-cutting skill.

_Ozy_ wrote:
Quote:
Did only Ravendork and me so far notice that most of a diamonds worth comes from cutting it to shape actually? AND the diamond produced might not be enough quality to allow it to get cut into something sensible anyway.

Er, no:

Quote:
A better choice would be to buy raw uncut diamonds for a 1/3 the price of the final diamond, and use fabricate with a gem-cutting skill.

A, my bad then sirrah. Good point there, good point, my perception rolled low there I supose.

Entryhazard wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
Most of the physics-defying creatures possess the Magical Beast or Dragon or some similar obviously magical creature type. I think you will find that nearly every one of the Animal type creatures easily fall in line with what we know in physics.
Still their Flight speed is Ex and not Su, thus is not part of their magic. A dragon in an Antimagic field can still fly.

Any type of flying under pathfinder rules breaks with real world physics.

 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

StDrake wrote:
_Ozy_ wrote:
Quote:
Did only Ravendork and me so far notice that most of a diamonds worth comes from cutting it to shape actually? AND the diamond produced might not be enough quality to allow it to get cut into something sensible anyway.

Er, no:

Quote:
A better choice would be to buy raw uncut diamonds for a 1/3 the price of the final diamond, and use fabricate with a gem-cutting skill.
A, my bad then sirrah. Good point there, good point, my perception rolled low there I supose.

This is actually correct. Raw coal is the raw material for pure carbon.

Pure carbon is the raw material for uncut diamonds.

Uncut diamonds are the raw material for cut diamonds.

So, you need to know the DC check for turning pure carbon into uncut diamonds.

And just so you know, modern diamond making stuff IS good enough to make diamonds that are the equal of natural diamonds, which are often not of pure carbon and have flaws in them. But, of course, better at making just industrial grade diamonds.

Diamonds are actually one of the MOST common precious stones. They should be about 1/10th the market price they are...it's only an artificial monopoloy on them for the past century which has driven the price up as high as they go. There's literally tons of them just sitting around in DeBeiers warehouses, waiting to be sold.

==Aelryinth

LazarX wrote:

The Fabricate spell is effectively a speed up on Craft skils, not including alchemy or any of the artistic Craft skills llike calligraphy, or painting.

There is no craft skill application which allows you to turn coal into diamonds, so no.

You should read the spell before responding imo.

I think ravingdork is totally off on the 5k coal into 15k diamonds.

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
BlingerBunny wrote:

I know I should probably ask my GM this, but can you use Fabricate to turn coal into diamonds?

Scientifically speaking, a lump of coal and a diamond are made of the same element, Carbon, but the diamond has been exposed to intense heat and pressure over a period of time.

I'm asking this because diamonds are, according to pathfinder, much more valuable than coal, and take up less volume as well. Given the proper craft check, would the fabricate spell even allow for this level of broken utility?

Fabricate wrote:
You must make an appropriate Craft check to fabricate articles requiring a high degree of craftsmanship.

So what is the craftmanship of artificial diamonds?

As a GM I would put it around 200. It can be done with the appropriate tools in the RL, so in PF you can do it with an appropriate craft check.

Probably "profession engineer" if we want to use one of the already existing skills. Or Craft alchemy.

Note that you need perfectly pure carbon to make a decent diamond. No coal.
Coal contain a large quantity of impurities, you will don't get anything worthwhile starting with coal.

BlingerBunny wrote:
Well I could always make a bunch of small diamonds, then use fabricate to make a single large diamond.

Fabricate don't glue together existing different items. There is no skill check for that.

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
StDrake wrote:

Did only Ravendork and me so far notice that most of a diamonds worth comes from cutting it to shape actually? AND the diamond produced might not be enough quality to allow it to get cut into something sensible anyway.

Even more than that, it come from advertising.

DeBeers has created and sustained the diamond fad and has maintained production stable to the appropriate level to keep price and profit up.

Diego Rossi wrote:

Fabricate don't glue together existing different items. There is no skill check for that.

Holy moly, you can use fabricate without a skill check

Also it seems to imply there's not skill check to turn smaller diamonds into a bigger one, but there's one for turning coal into diamonds that is probably even more preposterous

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
CWheezy wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:

Fabricate don't glue together existing different items. There is no skill check for that.

Holy moly, you can use fabricate without a skill check
PRD wrote:
You convert material of one sort into a product that is of the same material.

Bigger diamond made gluing together smaller diamonds isn't a product.

You can use make whole on a shattered diamond to repair it if you have all the pieces, but you can't transform several smaller diamonds into a larger one.

Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
CWheezy wrote:

I think ravingdork is totally off on the 5k coal into 15k diamonds.

According to Aelryinth, it seems I missed a step (coal > carbon > diamonds).

That's the only area where I appear to be wrong as far as I can tell.

The craft skill makes it clear that you need to pay 1/3 the cost of materials in order to make the final product. I may have phrased it a little differently, but it generally does mean profit if you don't botch the craft checks (or have a GM that would disallow it altogether).

CWheezy wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:

Fabricate don't glue together existing different items. There is no skill check for that.

Holy moly, you can use fabricate without a skill check

No you can't:

"Fabricate wrote:
You must make an appropriate Craft check to fabricate articles requiring a high degree of craftsmanship.

 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Ravingdork wrote:
CWheezy wrote:

I think ravingdork is totally off on the 5k coal into 15k diamonds.

According to Aelryinth, it seems I missed a step (coal > carbon > diamonds).

That's the only area where I appear to be wrong as far as I can tell.

The craft skill makes it clear that you need to pay 1/3 the cost of materials in order to make the final product. I may have phrased it a little differently, but it generally does mean profit if you don't botch the craft checks (or have a GM that would disallow it altogether).

This is correct. This is the crafting rules.

Yes, we know you WANT to turn 1 cp of coal into 5000 gp of diamonds. That's not how it works. You'd get 3 cp of processed carbon, which would become 9 cp of raw diamond, which nobody would ever bother to cut into cut diamonds worth 27 cp.

POSSIBLY you could do this. But you're going to have to tell us where the other 1666.91 GP of raw materials came from.

==Aelryinth