I'm sure this has been asked numerous times, but I'm brand new to all of this and I can barely make sense of it. Say I want to create a longsword that catches fire when used. From what I've looked through, that's the flaming enchantment. According to the cost under the flaming enchantment, I need Craft Magic Arms and Armor, either Fireball, Flame Strike, or Flame Blade, and I need to factor in the cost of a +1 enhancement. According to the magic item creation guide, I would need to factor in the spell level, times the caster level, times 2000 since it's a continuous/on use effect, and since it's a spell effect I need to factor in spell level time 1000. Assuming I use Flame Blade as the spell material, I would need to spend ~46,000 on the effect alone, since the caster level of Flaming is 10 (I think). Is this anywhere near accurate?
The cost for enchanted Weapons and Armor is simple to calculate. It is the cost of a Masterwork Weapon + the Base Cost as seen in Weapon Pricing by Bonus or by fixed cost enchantments like Glamered.
The rules you are referencing are the ones used for crafting custom Wondrous Items and don't apply to magic weapons/armor.
We'll use the example of a +1 Flaming Longsword.
First it costs the basic 15GP of the Longsword. Then you add 300 since it has to be Masterwork to enchant.
The flaming enchantment is a +1 cost, but magic weapons have to be at least +1 enhancement bonus before adding special abilities, so the price is equivalent to +1+1= +2 bonus, which costs 8000 according to the table. This is the "Base Cost" of the enchantment. The cost of spells and such are included into this already, but you still need to be able to cast them.
The total cost of the +1 Flaming Longsword would be 15+300+8000 = 8315GP and it would take 9 days to enchant.. However, if you are the one enchanting it yourself, the enchantment cost is halved, becoming only 4000 instead of 8000. This brings the total cost to 4315 GP but it would still take 9 days to enchant.
The cost of the Masterwork Longsword is not halved, since those are made with the Craft Skill.
The table of weapon pricing by bonus tells you how much a weapon with a certain amount of bonuses will cost. All weapons need to start with a +1 enchantment. Adding a special weapon ability costs an equivalent amount to giving it a higher enchantment level. A +1 weapon with the flaming special ability costs the same as a +2 weapon, 8000 GP plus the base cost of the item. You can usually find these on sale in any large city. If not, you can commission an NPC to make one for you. (Availability subject to GM discretion.)
You can craft it yourself, but that is something best done by full caster classes, like wizards. Crafting requires skill, money and time.
- You must have an item to enchant. This is probably best to buy from your local blacksmith, because you need a whole different skill set, and the rules for mundane crafting suck.
- You have to buy 4000GP worth of magical supplies, half of the base price of the enchantment.
- You absolutely must have the feat Craft Magic Arms and Armor.
- You will spend 8 hours per 1000GP in the base price, 64 hours crafting the weapon. Because you may spend up to 8 hours per day it will take you at least 8 days, but you can do stuff in the evenings.
- When you finish the 8 days, you make a spellcraft check. The DC always 5 + the caster level of the item + penalties for not meeting prerequisites. If you cannot cast flame blade, flame strike, or fireball, you add 5 to the DC of the spellcraft check. For your flaming blade, the DC is 15 + penalties. You may take 10 on this check. If you cannot succeed at the check when taking 10, I suggest you don't craft the item. If you fail the check, your time and money are wasted.
In my opinion, magical crafting feats, are some of the most powerful feats in the game. Magical swords are always useful. However, the spellcraft check means that the feats are intended for full caster classes, with int based casters having an additional advantage. Generally the people making the flaming longswords are not the people swinging the swords.