ENTRY 049: Wet Makers
The nano-manufacture of complex chemical liquids is simpler than comparable nanofabrication methods with solid objects or mixed media from an architectural perspective, provided the materials are available—no blue prints or needed, only a working knowledge of chemistry. “Wet making” thus attracts an artisan audience that works to produce and perfect chemical recipes for the equivalent of 20-year-old single malt scotch whisky, coca-wine, radium paint, and other materials that are unsuitable for large-scale industrial manufacture or cost-prohibitive and difficult to produce among traditional methods.
The most famous wet makers focus on alcohol, as high-quality spirits can easily be derived from adding specific impurities to pure alcohol. Biomorph-friendly habitats throughout the solar system host clubs and wet maker consortiums that work to reproduce the equivalents of old products or invent new ones, experimenting with various flavors, holding contests and even marketing their schematics and selling their products.
The second most-popular industry for wet making are aromatic gels and liquids, used extensively for perfumes, cooking, and deodorants—the latter essential for any biomorph capable of smell when crammed into a torus with hundreds or thousands of other biomorphs. Clean Metabolism augmentations can only go so far, afterall, and most egos don't bother with the cost. Aromatic wet-making generally faces greater restrictions due to the scarcity of complex biological materials often required, and the potential for long-lasting carcinogenic compounds that can build up in contained ecosystems.
Wet making schematics in the public domain cover the majority of basic chemical products—cleaners, acids, toothpaste, basic flavonoids, etc. The limits of the system depend on available chemical stocks, physical constraints, and complexity, though researchers continue to work on makers that can more effectively replicate complex biochemical compounds.
Wet making uses the same equipment as normal makers, though there are specialized equipment and containers that facilitate the process to avoid contamination and contain the resultant liquid. In terms of skills, wet making typically uses Chemistry or Profession: Chemist skills to design the appropriate schematics.
- Varieties of high-proof light rum and vodka are popular products among wet makers in Mars-based habitats, with one of the champions being Erlking Seven. However, Erlking has recently attracted competition in the form of The Jurgen, an uplifted chimpanzee who has begun producing a dark, heavy pseudo-rum based on thick simple-sugar gels. Erlking is willing to do anything to get his hands on The Jurgen’s recipe, but dares not openly come out with a near-identical product. Instead, he will pay the PCs handsomely in fabricated booze to pirate The Jurgen’s maker schematic database and publish it to the mesh.
- Industrial Liquid, Inc. of Luna bases a large part of their business on the production and export of liquids in bulk throughout the system—mainly pure water and alcohol, sometimes liquid oxygen or hydrocarbon compounds. The expansion of wet making is proving a bane to their business, since small-quantity complex liquids they would normally transport can be wet-made locally. Firewall has received intelligence that ILInc. may attempt to sabotage wet-making by introducing a nanovirus into the next shipment of pure alcohol destined for wet makers on Mars—it’s up the PCs to halt it, if they can.