[Update: Stop! Don’t care how it works? Do care to have one? Here is a WorldEdit/MCEdit schematic of the “latest evolution” of the cobblestone generator. It’s smaller, has a reset button, and a very safe way to insert/remove the lava. You’ll need to be familiar with WorldEdit to make use of it.]
Directly after Mojang pistons were released in Minecraft 1.7, I did a blog post showing an automated cobblestone factory. I thought I could do better though. So here it is, my cobblestone factory revisited:
Also, after seeing a few search terms around the concept, you need to mine the cobblestone out of its hutch once it is generated with your favourite pickaxe. There is currently no way for the “vanilla” Minecraft to pop the cobblestone off as a floating block that can be picked up. I’ve seen mods, but have no interest in introducing that kind of dependency for my cobblestone generating needs.
Fundamental differences between my first attempt and this one:
- the cobblestone spawn point is surrounded on 3 sides by lava blocks, maximising the chance over a sequence of spawns that I’ll get fast cobblestone generation.
- The toggle circuit has been pared back to its bare minimum, and set to a much faster rate given the higher change of cobblestone spawn.
- I’ve had to orient the piston facing upwards to allow for 3 lava blocks and one water block to meet.
- To stop the cobblestone from climbing to its full 12 block height, I place an obsidian block at a “farmable” height above the cobblestone. You can farm as high as 6 blocks from where you’re standing, so a practical limit is 7 blocks about your standing level.
- The chosen “blocking obsidian” height allows a degree of wiggle-room for piston mis-fires. If a cobblestone isn’t generated, I can farm one of the other blocks while I wait. A blocking height of 4 seems just fine.
- The rest is decoration or put there to show how its working.
For anyone interested, I show the (very small) circuit in the youtube video.
Once difference between this video and the finalised factory is that I put obsidian behind the cobblestone column area so that farmed cobblestone will always fall towards me as I go. Here’s a picture of it in its final form: