Imo both Artificers Armours variants should be unique and consecrated one should have flat -5 aquisition modifier on top of it.
Making AA inherently BQ is a good thing, but there's still a problem of lathe-wrought AA: -5 modifier for 1/2 pen? Hell, yeah.
The effects of the consecration is worth more than -5, I would say.
And making it inherently Best-Craftsmanship was a terrible idea, and more a mistake on part of the writer than anything, since it's essentially +1 AP, but it shaves off any modifiers to the acquisition roll that would come from Good- or Best-Craftsmanship, in this case -30.
That's half the problem with the Artificer Armour.
Yes, the effects are worth more than -5. But just as glass of water is pretty worthless to me right now, it's priceless to someone dying from dehydraition in the middle of Sahara.
Consecrating 100 suits of carapance armour should be pretty hard to aquire because of materiel and effort. On the other hand consecrating artificers amour would be a historical event, from that day over inscribed into that armour history (and/or very surface). For every cardinal (all whoever in the Ecclesiarchy who does that kind of job) it'd be a neat bonus for his/her personal relations departament and a good thing to chim into party talk. Just like giving some AdMech-guy chance to work on some archeotech device.
Can you point me to the paragraph in the book which made AA inherently BQ? Maybe I'm missing something, but in my copy there's non.
By stating it's is good idea I was refering to your post about it (#16 in this thread). Let me rephrase my opinion on that subject:
Assuming that presented in Faith and Coin stats for AA are indeed for BQ Aritificers Armour and, by doing this, forcing PC to buy Artificers Armour always as BQ is good idea because its throws in -30 modifier, sorta caps AP at 10 (as we have alredy discussed in another thread: 11 AP + Hostile Acquisition goodies can result in monstrosities) and keeps players from nerd-move of acquiring lathe-wrought AA at -5 modifier to get it at BQ. As such only technical issue which persist is taking lathe-wrought AA for its pen/2 bonus.