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I'm playing Factorio Sea Block mode which includes a bunch of Angel's and Bob's mods. One of them allows you to upgrade your bots up to mk4.

Problem is, I already have more than a thousand of both logistic and construction bots flying around. I need to collect them so I can upgrade them, preferably without running to each and every roboport and setting an inserter with a chest near it.

Is there a way to force bots to gather in roboport of my choice? If not, is there simpler way to collect them?

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I know that you can put inserter on roboport which should take excess robot out to store them.

You can use the same logic on filter inserters to take only older robots out of the network as soon as they dock. Make sure that all roboports are covered. You can even fill logistic chests so your robots will carry them to wherever you manufacture the upgraded robots.

I don't believe there is a good way to force robots to dock. Short of turning off all your logistic chests which would be a nightmare in a megabase.

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I'm not familiar with what might be available with Angel's and Bob's, but this is what comes to mind from vanilla.

The laborious but complete option would be to do a rolling shutdown of your logistics network: starting from one edge, remove roboports, and then put them back but making sure the old network and the new network never touch, and the new network contains no old robots.

Assuming you don't want to do that:

(As Vyndicu's answer already mentioned, but for completeness:) For any given roboport, you can use filter inserters to extract specific types of robots. This can be used to collect the stragglers automatically in the long run, but requires you to make a change at every roboport whenever you get a new upgrade.

You can encourage robots to stop in particular roboports by creating a very large jobs which will be finished in the vicinity. The best procedure I have thought of is:

  1. Set up inserters to extract robots from the area(s) where you keep your storage chests, and an unused area nearby.
  2. In the unused area, make many requester chests with large requests of something you have stockpiled (e.g. stone or coal you mined before building on top of the deposit). Your logistic robots will do this job, and then park themselves in the nearest roboports.
  3. Order deconstruction of those requester chests. Your construction robots will do this job, and then park themselves in the nearest roboports.
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There is a mod designed exactly for that: https://mods.factorio.com/mods/Peppe/botReplacer

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My preferred method is to have a blueprint for a "robocatcher and load balancer." Something like what's shown below. I copy 1-2 instances of this in each independent logistic network I build. It doesn't matter that much where you put it, but placing it around a high-traffic path is best, since you'll tend to get more robots landing there. There's still no magic trick I know of to summon all your robots with the exception of some meticulous deconstruction regimen, but this method tends to be pretty effective at catching robots over time.

Set filter inserters for each type of robot you want to catch, and if you wire it to the roboport, you can set conditions like "only pull a logistic robot off the roboport if Y > 100, i.e. available_logistic_bots > some minimum threshold you'd like to maintain for the network.

I also set requester chests and inserter arms feeding in for each type of robot that I want to maintain on the network, with similar logic conditions on the inserter arm like enable if X < 10, i.e. if the number of available logistic robots drops below 10, add more.

Combine this with inserter arm hand-overs between adjacent logistic networks in a some type of chain linking back to where you make your bots and now you've got a self balancing system for supplying your entire base and automatically scaling up your robot supply as your base grows (scaling down is harder, but why would you ever do that?).

This works a bit better with just Vanilla bots, since roboports don't have output signals specific to the different types of Angel's bots, but it still works with Bob's or Angel's bots.

enter image description here

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