I have searched in game vendors, the GTN, and online databases for level 51+ relics. I have found that 51+ relics come from HM FP, Operations, or large amounts of commendations. I don't plan to run HM FP or Operations on my alts and I would rather not grind commendations on my alts. Is there another way to get level 51+ relics?
I'm casual on my alts when it comes to gear. They wear mission rewards, the occasional item from the GTN, crafted gear, or use blue mods in custom gear. It seems like all item slots except relics can be upgraded in this manner beyond level 51. I'm not saying give me free artifact relics, but my alts that have not capped LS/DS V yet are stuck wearing level 43 relics.
Here are my suggestions:
Add level 51-55 BoE relics to the game. This seems reasonable since there are already level 50 BoE relics in the game.
Add craftable level 52/54 relics to the game to match the craftable implants and earpieces.
Add a repeatable daily/weekly/heroic mission that rewards 4-5 options for level 51+ relics.
Change the level 50 craftable Rakata relics from BoP to BoE. These are not end game relics anymore. To keep things fair between the crew skills the other non-end game BoP craftable items could also be changed to BoE.
YES! I can empathize with this. My Commando had hit 55 and was nicely geared. My guild was looking to do a particular Operation, I forget which one. I offered to pitch in. They said that because of my relics alone I fell short of the minimum gear level. At LS IV she was absolutely barred from anything above her level 35'ish relics-- the level 43's increase was so minor as to be negligible. My Sage was an artificer and crafted the Rakata one, and only after it was finished did I find it was BoP and absolutely unavailable to anyone but my Sage herself. The bare minimum grind to get anything whatsoever, as far as relics go, was prohibitive. It would take months, given the time I had available for gameplay. It was 100% impossible for me to catch up.
Unfortunately I'm no longer subscribed to SWTOR for other reasons and I'm not actively playing anymore for the time being. If and when I do return, something like this would be very sorely welcome.