Possibly a total flub on my part, and I need to FOIC, but I think we should have NPC's available that we could hand a piece of armor over to, and they'd give us a quote on repairs, and if paid, fix the gear. There could be different ones per sector, who charge increasingly more for their services, since they're presumably more skilled at fixing it.
I also think it'd be neat if there was tiering breakpoints to repair the armor. So for example, a NPC who could repair armor very inexpensively does a poor job at doing it, and can only work with the simplest materials, say, leather and plastics.
The next NPC up the chain can work with ballistic fibers and various heavier armors, to a medium skill.
Finally, you could have a top end armorer NPC who charges out the wazoo, but can work with the most high-tech and expensive armors on the market, and repair them to near factory-new.
Reasons I think there should be coded NPC's added to support this service:
-The equipment to do it yourself costs a literal fortune.
-Using GM time to fill puppets to do essentially menial labor seems like a major waste of GM time.
-NPC's are able to do this on demand, around the clock, and during off-peak hours when players who offer the service might not be available.
-NPC's should either be poor at repairing the armor, or have costs ranging from a bit more to a lot more than what a player might charge. We still want to encourage players to take up this trade.
-A NPC being able to repair armor quite well might partially defeat the point of armor degrading over time, however, I'd argue that the entire point of armor degradation is to have upkeep costs associated with owning and maintaining expensive protective gear.
Finally, this might already be a thing and I'm totally ignorant to it, but if it is, I think that there needs to be some kind of SICAD or other advertising added to highlight that there are NPC's out there who can repair your armor for you.