To begin crafting your faction must build a port research centre or ship research centre which provides the capacity to unlock either a line of ports (equipment and weapons) or a line of ships. With this research capacity the faction founder can choose an equipment line, ship line or weapon line to unlock. With the line unlocked any player in the faction can begin trying to find recipes within that line, and once found, is revealed and usable by the entire faction.
Ports include both equipment and weapons with equipment lines having 10 increasingly more powerful variants to discover and weapons lines having 40. Both can be a powerful addition to your faction with equipment providing benefits to ships, such as afterburners which can increase their speed, and each weapon line having a unique perk that can help in battle. To begin port crafting first visit a planet homing a faction armoury and deposit your port parts into the armoury's hold. Once that is done, you can open the crafting window and select the option for "craft equipment" or "craft weapon". This will open a recipe window, when you can place parts from the armoury hold into a recipe in an attempt to find a viable outcome. A recipe consists of four different parts, and pressing the add button next to any part will add it to the recipe. Once the recipe as 4 parts, the "craft" button will become active and pressing this will tell you the outcome.
In the same manner as port lines, ship lines can also be unlocked by the faction founder for faction members to attempt to find ship recipes within. Each ship line has a specific purpose, from attack ships with damage increasing equipment to recon ships with extended scanning range. In total there are 30 different ship lines with each ship line containing 5 different marks of ship to discover. To being ship crafting first visit a planet homing a faction shipwright and deposit your ship parts into the shipwright's hold. Once this is done, you can follow the same instructions as port crafting but instead choose the option to "craft ship" initially.
Relying on trade to acquire structure components for building is not always viable, so fabrication can be undertaken by the faction to aid with this or sell the fabricated items for more than their constitute parts. To begin fabrication a faction must first own a factory, within this commodities can be placed and the factory can be instructed to refine the commodities into pure forms. These pure forms can be traded or multiple pure forms can be used together to create structure components. A structure requires several components to build, so this process can be repeated several times to fabricate all the structure components required. Both the components required to build a structure and the commodities required for the pure forms can be found in-game or within the blueprints section of this site, so you always know what to seek next.