How to get lead platelets in Pacific Drive

Driving survival game
(Image credit: Ironwood Studios)

Lead platelets are an important resource in Pacific Drive: it's a key ingredient to crafting items that will shield both you and your car from radiation in the early game, and even more crucially later onl, it's used for crafting bigger car batteries that can hold more charge. But finding lead platelets in the exclusion zone can be tricky until you know what to look for.

Early on in Pacific Drive, radiation is one of the deadlier anomalies since it spreads across the ground in wide patches, often covering buildings and containers you need to loot. Your car (if all its doors are attached and closed) will give you some protection from radiation, but once you step out your health will be steadily drained inside radioactive anomalies. Radiation will also begin to damage your car if you're in it long enough. That's why lead platelets are so important to find quickly.

Pacific Drive lead platelets: How to get them

Lead platelets can be found at ARDA research stations throughout the outer zone, mid zone, and deep zone. These stations aren't buildings—they're small outdoor workstations, often spawn far from the roads, and they don't have glowing lights like many of the ARDA structures, so they're one of the hardest locations to spot while driving, especially at night or in bad weather.

You'll know when you've spotted one because they look like keyboards (sort of) stuck onto vertical metal brackets around some electronic equipment:

(Image credit: Ironwood Studios)

Those aren't keyboards, of course, they're lead shielding panels, and each of the five or six brackets can have up to three panels each (though they typically have fewer). Use your scrapper to cut each panel off and pick up the lead platelets that drop. Other than occasionally finding one in random containers, these stations are the best place to find multiple units of lead platelets. Usually each instance of these stations will provide a half-dozen lead platelets, if not more.

These stations are also great for collecting lots of copper wire, electronics, and especially bulbs: they tend to have several lab computers stacked in the center of the station and sodium light stands around the perimeter. Make sure you scrap absolutely everything when you're there gathering lead!

Lead platelets are needed to craft:

  • Lead-plated doors, panels, and bumpers, to protect the car from radiation
  • Lead apron, lead-lined labcoat, and radiation suit to protect you from radiation
  • Lead-acid battery and side battery to increase the car's charge capacity

Pacific Drive lead platelets locations: Tips for finding them quickly

(Image credit: Ironwood Studios)

Like I said, these stations are small and aren't illuminated so they're easy to miss while driving, especially when they're hidden deep in the woods. To help you find these research stations, use your trip planner in the garage to scan junctions and see if "lead shielding" shows up in the lower right corner of the planner screen. Then you'll know to definitely keep an eye out when you visit that junction. 

But the best way to find lead platelets is by researching and crafting a Resource Radar. This device can be unlocked at your fabrication station and mounted on the roof of your car (so you'll need to research and craft a roof rack, too). Once mounted on your roof, you can assign it a hotkey on the ability screen to the left of your steering wheel. While driving you can activate the scanner and it'll display nearby resource locations. Look for one shaped like a shield with a radioactivity symbol in the middle and it'll pinpoint any lead platelet locations in the area.

A car driving

(Image credit: Ironwood Studios)

To craft a Resource Radar you'll need:

  • 6 scrap metal
  • 3 plastic
  • 4 9v battery
  • 1 circuit board

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Christopher Livingston
Senior Editor

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.