My brother forwarded me the link to your thread and I just wanted to drop in and say a few things.
First off, my hat's off to you for undertaking this. Its gutsy to try to upgrade a relic legitimately (i.e., no botting or gil-buying) in the first place, but to have it publicly tracked deserves a lot of credit. I wish you all the luck possible that you are successful, and I will definitely be checking back in on your progress.
I just recently began putting into place my own little operation to upgrade an Aegis for my PLD. I consider this my ultimate personal goal in the game, above and beyond everything else, so believe me when I say I sympathize with what you're going through. :-)
A few words of advice:
Time. Is. Money. I cannot stress this enough. You need to look at everything you are doing to make money and figure out what gives you the best return for your time. Here is a good example: My THF is only 19, so farming up 12 tree cuttings takes me about an hour and a half. Conversely, I can hit up my favorite farming spot for NPC-sellable drops and walk away with 50-60k an hour, which will allow me to purchase 2+ stacks of cuttings from the AH in the same amount of time it would take me to farm up a single stack on my own. This allows me to maximize my time/money ratio (and I am sponsoring some else's farming efforts, so the economic cycle continues and we both benefit). Look at all the things you are doing and prioritize where you can make the most gil in the least amount of time.
Focus on three main area to make your gil: farming, crafting, and gardening. I may have missed it somewhere along the way, but I don't think anyone on this thread has talked much about the financial benefits of a successful gardening operation, and I cannot stress enough how important this is. The only major time investments required are your initial set-up (purchasing the pots and furnishings, setting up, planting) and the end-result harvesting.
Along the way, you will need to check your pots *religiously* (twice a day is definitely recommended), but once you get in a groove, you can check them very quickly. To give you an idea, I have 160 pots going right now (my main plus 15 mules, 10 pots each) and I can check all 160 pots (twice each) in no more than 15-20 minutes. I have made this part of my daily morning/evening routine, and you *must* be diligent about it, but trust me, the rewards are great, and it can all happen while you are off doing other things.
In terms of crafting, I agree 100% with the poster(s) who said that consumables are a great way to raise some gil. There are some items that people will always need (ninja tools, food, silent oils, prism powders, etc.), so farm the supplies, craft the products, and sell, sell, sell.
I would also suggest picking one or two main crafts to level to 100+ on your mules (Smithing and Clothcraft are great) and make a very concerted effort to HQ some desirable items (Haubergeon +1, etc.) It definitely requires time and money to get going, but again, you can walk away with a nice lump sum of gil if you are able to get it done. You can use some of the money you make from fishing/farming/gardening to invest in leveling your other crafts, then make your main money to purchase ancient currency using the profits from your crafting.
Again, best of luck to you and I'll check in on your progress from time to time. If I work up the intestinal fortitude to create a blog/thread to post my own progress on my Aegis, I'll be sure to let you know. Hope you don't mind if I call it "The Aegis Project". :-)
Also, I'll send you a PM with some great farming spots I have found -- you're on a different server, so we won't be competing, but I want you to be aware of where/what they are to help you generate some fast gil.
Take care dude -- go get that axe!
Ifrit Server -- KnightsoftheRound
Edited, Feb 4th 2008 12:51pm by Fendamir