Enchanting: A Beginner’s Guide

So you want to be an Enchanter?

Maybe you’re excited by the idea of making your weapons glow, getting enchantments cheaper or earning tons of money on those high level enchantments. A word of caution – don’t enter into this lightly. You will be broke most of the time. Many guides say that Enchanters make good money once they get the high-end enchantments. This may be true, but don’t forget that you’ll have to acquire the materials for those enchantments. How many level 65+ blue items will you be able to get your hands on for the Large Prismatic Shards? You can use up to 15 of those on one enchantment. So unless you are in a raiding guild that is willing to feed you the items for disenchanting, be aware that gathering materials may always be a challenge for you.

If this is your first WoW character, seriously consider another profession. It’s hard enough to make money in WoW, but Enchanters are high maintenance. If you have other characters to funnel their undesirable items to you, it will be easier in the long run. Your other characters can also help by providing ingredients you’ll need later on (leather for enchanted leather, etc).

Companion Skills

I know most guides recommend that you take up Tailoring as a complimentary craft for Enchanting. To me this seems like a match made in the poor house. With this combination, not only will you get no money leveling Enchanting (and no money selling the green items you loot, because you disenchanted them), but you’ll also have no money from Tailoring because you’ll be disenchanting all of those items as well. Where are you going to get all the cash to pay for this??

Well I’m going to go out on a limb and tell you to take up a gathering profession as your second craft. Why? Because you can use the earnings from that to defray the cost of Enchanting. I personally took Mining because even the lowest level ore sells for around one gold silver a stack on my server. I think Herbalism would also be a viable choice since many high-end herbs can sell for 1g each. Whichever one you choose, this should go a long way towards paying for Enchanting. I was able to fully fund my Enchanting by doing this, so consider it an alternative to a second crafting profession. Now if you already have plenty of cash and want to take the fast-track to Master Enchanter, by all means use Tailoring as an easy way to acquire disenchantables. I’m not going to deny that it’s a good powerleveling combination, I just want to lay out another option for those who aren’t flush with cash.

So you’ve decided to plunge ahead… first you’ll need to find an Apprentice Enchanting trainer. Any major city should have one of these, just ask a guard to mark it on your mini-map. The Enchanting Trainer will give you two skills to start: Enchanting and Disenchanting. Resist the urge to enchant for now. Hopefully you’ve made a point to collect some things to disenchant, so let’s do that first. Disenchanting will only give you skill points in the beginning stages, so milk that as long as you can. Try to have at least 2 dozen items saved for this, you should be able to hit 30 or higher by disenchanting alone. I’ve heard from other budding enchanters that you can get as high as 40 through disenchanting, but I can confirm that it’s viable to at least 30. Trust me, these are the cheapest skill points you will ever get!!

Next you’ll need to make your first rod. Rods are required for Enchanting (similar to the Forge for Blacksmiths) and are made by Enchanters themselves. You should be able to purchase the copper rod from a Trade vendor. As soon as you hit 20 skill, try to make the rod so you can get a point for it. Hopefully you have the Strange Dust and Lesser Magic Essence from all the disenchanting you’ve done. If not, Tilli Thistlefuzz (located in the “Thistlefuzz Arcanery” near the Gryphons) will sometimes have these items in stock. You can also try Thaddeus Web in the Undercity or Kithas in Orgrimmar if you’re Horde.

Now that you’re unable to get skill points for disenchanting, you’ll have to move on to Enchanting. Here’s where the money sink starts to kick in, at this point you’ll have to either give away your enchantments, or enchant your own items repeatedly in order to skill up. What you want to do is minimize this as much as possible by using as few materials as possible. Generally this means you’ll focus on recipes that only require dust as the reagent. The first two recipes from your trainer should fit the bill, Bracer: Minor Health and Chest: Minor Health. If you disenchanted all the way to 30 skill you should have plenty of materials to reach 45-50 skill points.

Buy WoW Gold Cheap

As mentioned above, there are two tactics that enchanters use at this phase to execute enchantments. One: give enchants away to low level players or Two: enchant your own items over and over. First, let me make it clear that no one will pay for enchantments at this level. Let me repeat no one will pay. Low level players don’t have extra money for luxuries like this. In fact, even if you hang out in a newbie zone and offer them for free, sometimes you’ll still have difficulty attracting other players. I’ve seen it happen, either they don’t want the guilt of taking advantage of you, or the small boost in stats just isn’t worth five minutes of their time. Just be prepared for this if you choose to advertise your services.

Upon reaching 45 skill, you’ll get your first “Oil” recipe. These are relatively new items that were added to the game in the 1.9 patch. The various oils enable you to make temporary enchantment buffs for players to apply to their weapons. Since this recipe only uses Strange Dust and vendor-bought components, try making a few and posting them on the Auction House. I really can’t say what the market for them is since I leveled my enchanter prior to this patch, but I’ve sold the higher level oils so it seems reasonable that the lower ones would sell also. Look at it this way, you aren’t going to make money selling enchantments so what have you got to lose? The reagents will end up down the drain anyway. When you achieve higher levels of Enchanting, these oil recipes will be truly valuable to other players, so make a point to purchase the recipes even if you personally don’t use them.

Once a recipe turns green in your crafting window, it’s time to stop using it for skill points. The odds are so low now for a skill point that you are mostly just wasting your materials. You’ll want to focus on yellow or orange recipes for skilling up. Orange is a guaranteed point and yellow is a most likely point. You should probably weigh the cost of materials for orange vs yellow recipes and decide which of them is a better use of your available resources.

Make sure you visit your trainer every 10-20 points to see if he/she has any new recipes for you. You can also try buying recipes from the Auction House. You probably don’t want to spend too much at this stage, but there are two recipes that you might want to grab. First is Bracer: Minor Strength, it’s a dust only recipe that will be very nice for gaining skill points into the early 100s. The second recipe you should consider is Weapon: Minor Beastslayer because it is the first enchantment that players will actually pay for. I personally milked this one quite a bit, even after I skilled past it and I’ll talk more about this later. If you have trouble getting past 110 without using obscene amounts of materials, try picking up Cloak: Minor Agility as well. It only uses 1 Lesser Astral Essence and should get you to the next wave of dust only recipes. You can actually buy it from a vendor too, her name is Dalria and you can find her in the town of Astranaar in Ashenvale (Horde can purchase it from Kulwia in the Stonetalon Mountains).

Once you hit 100 you’ll need to make your next rod, the Runed Silver Rod. At this point you can’t buy the rod from a vendor, you’ll need to find one on the Auction House or make friends with a Blacksmith. From here on out you’ll need to acquire rods and other special materials from the Auction House or by farming them yourself, so be prepared for that.

By this time you should be crossing over into the next tier of enchantments. In order to acquire these materials you’ll need to disenchant a higher level of items. In general, green armor will disenchant into dust with occasional essence and rarely shards. Green weapons disenchant into essences with occasional dust and rarely shards. Blue items of any kind will always disenchant into a shard. The level of the item is directly related to the reagents you can expect to get most of the time, but there can be a little bit of crossover as you move from one range to another. Here’s a handy chart:

Item Level Reagents Given Reagents Given Recipe Level
1-10 Strange Dust / Lesser Magic Essence Small Glimmering Shard 1-60
11-15 Strange Dust / Greater Magic Essence Small Glimmering Shard 70-100
16-20 Strange Dust / Lesser Astral Essence Small Glimmering Shard 105-130
21-25 Soul Dust / Greater Astral Essence Large Glimmering Shard 130-155
26-30 Soul Dust / Lesser Mystic Essence Small Glowing Shard 155-175
31-35 Vision Dust / Greater Mystic Essence Large Glowing Shard 175-200
36-40 Vision Dust / Lesser Nether Essence Small Radiant Shard 205-225
41-45 Dream Dust / Greater Nether Essence Large Radiant Shard 230-250
46-50 Dream Dust / Lesser Eternal Essence Small Brilliant Shard 250-275
51-56 Illusion Dust / Greater Eternal Essence Large Brilliant Shard 270-300
57-64 Arcane Dust / Lesser Planar Essence Small Prismatic Shard 300-310
64-70 Arcane Dust / Greater Planar Essence Large Prismatic Shard 310-375

The “Recipe Level” noted above indicates which recipes use the specified reagent. This can be helpful when determining what enchantments are appropriate for various item levels. Let’s say you want to enchant a new chest piece for a lower level toon you have. In the interest of fair play, you want to give something level appropriate. With this chart you can see that a level 22 toon should be given enchantments in the 135-155 range. This can also be handy when buyers are asking your advice on what enchantments to get and have a limited amount of money to spend.

Money!

So you’re slogging through the 100s and wondering how to make cash now. Well, I have a suggestion for you here, assuming you bought that Minor Beastslayer recipe I recommended earlier. Through much trial and error I found a way to make my enchanter some money in the middle stages of skilling up. This involves buying weapons on the Auction House, enchanting them and reselling for price of the enchant+weapon. This mostly works on level 15-30 weapons, not terribly well on armor. You’re welcome to experiment if you like, but I found that armor usually did not sell the first time and required multiple repostings. My favorite item was the dagger — and here’s why. The largest number of classes can use them and they are the most popular weapon type, therefore you have the largest pool of buyers. I tried swords (the second most popular) but I had almost as much trouble with those as I did with armor. So let’s stick with daggers to be safe.

Now, what you want to do is buy daggers with desirable stats for at or below the average price. If you’re not sure what stats are desirable, stick with Agility, “of the Monkey”, “of Power”, maybe “of the Bear”… the type that melee folks would prefer. As far as determining the average price, that’s where a mod like Auctioneer would be pretty much required. It scans the Auction House for you and compiles pricing information on the items that are listed. From this you can get a good idea what items sell for. So you buy daggers, enchant them and relist at a fair price for the enchanted version. What to charge for your enchantments? I’m going to cover that later on…

For now let’s say you know what to charge for the dagger and the enchantment. How do you know which enchantment to use? This is where the handy chart above comes in. If you are selling the Pearl Handled Dagger (a popular one), which is a level 18 dagger, the appropriate enchantment for it is in the 80-100 range. Guess what? The Minor Beastslayer enchantment is level 90, so that’s the one you should give it. Daggers in the 25-30 range get Lesser Striking, 26-30 daggers get Lesser Beastslayer. I don’t recommend going too much higher than this on the Auction House. Once players reach level 30+ they are going to want a bit more selection in their enchantments and you probably won’t get many takers on the prefab deals. Also, the price of the weapons get pretty high and I’m sure you don’t want a dud on your hands.

How do I know what to charge for my enchantment?

Again, Auctioneer will help you with that. In your Crafting window each recipe has the reagents listed, with Auctioneer you can hover over each reagent, check the going price for that item, then add them all up for your price. At higher levels it’s reasonable to charge a 10% service fee to cover your time and expertise, but I wouldn’t be presumptuous until you actually make it to that stage of the crafting game (350+ skill level). The only exception to this rule would be if you happen to have a rare old-world enchant, feel free to charge a service fee for them. It’s reasonable to make money by selling recipes that most post-BC enchanters are unlikely to have.

Ok, so you’ve made it to 150 skill (and level 20) and you are ready to be an Artisan Enchanter. For Alliance, you’ll need to seek out Kitta Firewind at the Tower of Azora in Elwynn Forest. Horde players need to locate Hargath in the Stonetalon Mountains. For the next tier of recipes after 225 skill (level 35 required), Alliance players can visit Gimble Thistlefuzz in Ironforge and Horde players can train with Godan in Orgrimmar. To progress higher than 300 you must have the Burning Crusade expansion and access to Outland as all the 300+ trainers are located there.

At that point you should be able to start selling enchantments to other players. We already talked about how to price your enchantments above (cost + 10%) but we haven’t really talked about which items can be enchanted. Here is a list of the items you can enchant:

You Can Enchant You Cannot Enchant
Cloaks Helms
Chestpieces Shoulders
Bracers Belts
Gloves Pants
Boots Necklaces & Trinkets
Melee Weapons Ranged Weapons
Rings (Self Only) Rings (Other Players)

How does this Enchanting work?

You can enchant items in one of two ways. The first you should already know, you take an item that is “Bind on Equip” and you can enchant it directly within your inventory. People can send you items through the mail, and you can mail them back COD. This is a great way to enchant items for your other characters, as well as the Auction House fodder we already covered. The other method is for items that players already have equipped. Since they cannot give them to you, this will be done through the “Not to be Traded” slot in the Trade window. They place the item in the non-trade slot, and you apply the enchantment. This is also the point where they should pay you if you are charging a fee. You can see at the top of the window any money they are exchanging for the enchantment. Make sure you wait for them to hit Trade first, if you don’t they can modify the coin amount before they hit their Trade button.

Running out of room!

Enchanting is one of the few professions that has special crafting bags available, so take advantage of this. They range from 16 slots to 24, and while the prices on the larger ones are a bit high, they can be worth the extra money. You end up getting more space for the money than you do with traditional bags, since there are no bags with more than 18 slots for general usage. You can also use these bags in your bank slots, so it may be worthwhile to get two: one for the bank and one to carry around.

The DE dilemma

‘DE’ being short for disenchanting, by the way. So basically this comes down to “sell it” or “DE it”? It can be painful to disenchant perfectly nice items, especially if you actually need some cash and are not making tons of money selling your enchantments. Not all of us are slick, used-car salesmen types who enjoy barraging nice folks with marketing chatter. So the question of what to sell and what to DE can be important, especially in the 40s and 50s when green items are worth a decent amount of gold. Here’s another situation when Auctioneer can be your friend. It has a companion mod called Enchantrix. Enchantrix tells you what your item will disenchant into. It’s not 100% reliable since the data it uses is submitted by users (including you), but it’s at least in the ballpark.

Let’s say you go to Scholomance and you win a blue Bind on Equip item. Enchantrix would tell you that this item will DE into a Large Brilliant Shard, which runs about 5 gold on your server. The Auctioneer mod will also tell you that the item itself sells for 20-25g. Obviously you’re better off selling that item. Perhaps you also won a few green items, maybe “of the Whale” or some other marginally valuable armor. The Auctioneer/Enchantrix combo will tell you that the armor sells for 2.5 gold and gives Illusion Dust as the reagent. So in this case you might go for the Illusion Dust since the cash value isn’t great anyway.

Another thing to keep in mind is that disenchanting is not something you can easily do for others. Unlike enchanting itself or lockpicking for rogues, you cannot disenchant others’ items in the ‘Not to be traded’ window. There is no way for you to disenchant someone else’s bound items, only your own. The only way that you can disenchant for someone else is if they provide you with non-soulbound items such as ‘Bind on Equip’ auction fodder. Some enchanters have started providing this service, but it’s up to each crafter’s discretion to decide if they are willing to flood the market with cheap mats by doing so.

I hope this guide has been useful to you. May your next blue item DE into a Void Crystal!

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