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Bring the Rockhound Excavator back to life

Earth Mover is a side quest in Fallout 76.

Quick walkthrough

The quest starts after claiming the workshop at Mount Blair. Once the excavator is activated, it will collect a wide range of metal scrap for 30 minutes.

Detailed walkthrough

After completing the Claim Workshop quest for the Mount Blair workshop, head down into the Rockhound's control room to access the terminal. Choose the first entry regarding the Rockhound's power source, and this will unlock the ability to craft ignition cores to power up the Rockhound. There is a tinker's workbench in the small hallway behind the control room where the cores can be made under the "Quest Items" section. Each core requires a fixed amount of lead, nuclear waste, and steel. Once four are crafted, place each one into the four reactors around the periphery of the Rockhound. Once all four are placed, return to the control room, and hit the large red button in the center of the console to activate the Rockhound. The giant, lumbering, bucket-wheel excavator will rumble to life, and for the next 30 minutes, will harvest various mineral scrap, which can be collected from the Level 2 locked collection bin at the back of the Rockhound's giant scoop excavator arm, though it will be unlocked for the owner of the workshop.

However, during the 30 minutes the Rockhound is running, several Defend Workshop quests will occur, with a scorchbeast being one possible threat to the lumbering giant. Fortify the Rockhound with various turrets as needed to deal with the random enemies or scorchbeast that attack the Rockhound. The Rockhound is defended by a heavy gun emplacement under the collection arm, which proves valuable dealing with the scorchbeast due to its position under the Rockhound, providing it with cover so it can fire its heavy explosive rounds at the flying enemy while maintaining minimal damage to itself.

Once the 30 minutes elapse, the quest is completed. Collect any remaining minerals the Rockhound recovered before departing the area.

After completing this quest for the first time, it can be repeated as many times as the player characters want since they can craft ignition cores from then on to power the Rockhound for another collection of minerals, but it depends on if they have ownership of the Mount Blair workshop or not.

Quest stages

Quest stages
StageStatusDescriptionLog Entry
? Learn how to activate the giant Excavator
? Find or build ignition cores (#/4)I've discovered an entry in a terminal aboard the Rockhound Excavator describing a part called an Ignition Core. I'll need to find or build four of them at a Tinker Workbench to bring the machine's reactors online.
? Install ignition cores (#/4)I've obtained four Ignition Cores. I should plug them into their respective ports in the Rockhound Excavator's reactors.
? Activate the Rockhound excavatorAll of the Ignition Cores have been installed into the Rockhound Excavator's reactors. I should return to the control room to bring the machine online.
? Keep the Rockhound excavator operational to collect ore (30 minutes)I've activated the Rockhound Excavator. I should be able to collect the ore it's extracting from the ground as long as I repair any damage it sustains while it's in operation.
?Quest finished(Quest completed)The Ignition Cores in the Rockhound Excavator's reactors have been depleted. If I want it to extract more ore from the ground, the Ignition Cores will need to be fully replaced.


  • Prior to patch, when crafting ignition cores it was recommended to drop each one after crafting them to avoid a bug where the game would scrap the previous ignition cores for resources to make the new ignition core.
  • Despite the quest stating to keep the Rockhound operational to collect ore, only component scraps are found inside the collector bin.