Deluxe mining base- some tips

Hi all. Most of you know me. Most of you also know that I like mining. It’s what I do. I thought I’d share some of my tips on creating a mining base. Feel free to incorporate any you like, and discard any you don’t. This is just a FYI kind of thing… So here goes:

First of all, I like easy access to my mining base, although access that is discreet. I don’t want just anyone popping into my base. So here’s one of my favorites:

Doesn’t look like much right? Nothing untoward here, just a rest stop and a few shops. But take a look at the door on the left:

Underneath the door, there’s a working elevator shaft. No indication it’s there from the surface, and the base itself is to far down to be seen from the surface. If you can’t see the light area, the elevator is of no use to you! You can’t select an area of darkness as a destination.(I removed the door simply to show the elevator shaft. The elevator works just fine with the door in place.)
So now we get to the base entrance:

This first area has one purpose; I can place a portal down in complete safety. Anyone who can see the portal can teleport to it, but unless you’re me or an admin, you won’t get through the iron door or trapdoor. And yes, the entire base is protected by signs.

The next part of the base is its power plant. 1.6 added the ability to remove stone backwall so long as the area above, and one block on the side is open to the air. If you think about that for a minute, that means you can have fully powered solar panels as far down as the lowest block of sand under an ocean. And I do:

I can have 24 fully powered solar panels during the day and, because of the lights, all the solar panels produce 1/8 power 24/7. That means even at night I get the equivalent of three solar panels at full power. All of it is backed by 16 steam generators.

The next part is something I’ve been working on and perfecting for some time. A mining base needs organization. Here’s how I go about it:



Look at the last image above. It shows a closer view of one of the case groups. The items that have nothing underneath thm in the case indicate that I have less than one full stack of that item (the worms are an example). Items that have the same item underneath them (ie. The pinecones) indicate that I have at least one stack, but less than two stacks of the item. And items that have a chest under them (the sticks) indicate that I have more than two stacks.

This organization helps me a lot with efficiency. If I get to where I have more than one stack of iron ore, for example, it’s time to have a BH craft some ingots. Fruit becomes compost, ingots and sticks become tools, etc. I can tell at a glance what my other BHs should be doing.

The lower left corner of the base has another elevator that takes the BHs down to the mining area. It too is protected by an iron door, so nobody can get access to the base from below:

The lower right part of the base has a water generator, and something else that Blockheads veterans will recognize:

That column of water, with the ladder running beside it is what we of the old school used to call a watervator. You don’t see them much anymore. They kind of disappeared with the advent of the elevator. But here’s the premise:

That column goes all the way to the bottom of the mine, and the wooden blocks you see at 24 block intervals are wooden doors that allow you to enter the column. The BH steps in, ‘drops’ an item, and that item then floats to the top of the column, where it can be retrieved by one of the Bahs in the base. Old school it may be, but it still allows you to transport items UPWARD, without a BH having to go along. The door intervals are non-random; they compliment my style of strip mining.

That’s it for now, though I’ll be happy to answer any questions. Hope you got something out of this, and thanks for reading.

  • Joe U.

There are some great ideas in there. I never would have thought that was your mining base, and that is a way of organizing I’ve never seen and it is very smart way of going upon it. I Ike how you still use the water elevator too, you really don’t see it much.

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Very nice base Joe. I remember doing a watervator on one of my first SP worlds. Then elevators came along and they weren’t quite as useful!

I never knew you could place doors over elevator shafts! That’s just opened up a whole new possibility for me. Thanks

That is really cool! Is there anything else you know about elevators?

I don’t KNOW this, but here’s an interesting insight: every time I’ve laid an elevator shaft being VERY careful to place that shafts sequentially, without skipping a block, that elevator has never had a problem with power. I can’t say it’s a cause and effect thing, it’s just something I’ve noticed.

One other thing I meant to add in the OP is that the ladder running alongside the watervator is important. Without the ladder there, if you tell a BH to scale the shaft, the BH will enter the watervator and swim upwards, to the point where it will drown. I guess it considers it the fastest route. With the ladder in place however, the BH will use the ladder.

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The effort you put into this indicates that you have probably been using (or intent to use) that base for a long time. Isn’t that mine exhausted pretty quick? How far from the base do you travel to the left and right on your mining trips?

Hi Joe! I am so glad you put up this guide. I learned a lot from it!

I will borrow your item organization tip–need it so badly in my home base!

Also, the watervator is an amazing new thing for me that I want to use. I am building a skyway among floating islands and sometimes I run out of coffee that I have to go to my “diving board” (just a spot where I could take off my jetpack and then freefall to a block of steaming water below, which still takes some time til he plunges there) to get some more at my house. I could use elevators for this, but my BH still has to leave work just to get that coffee. With your watervator (placing campfires where water might turn to ice) I can just let my coffeemaker BH in the house send up those cups of energy to keep the work going!

So thanks so much for this guide!

Thanks everyone. Ronnie, you bring up an interesting question, and I’m glad you asked. I left the elements of the mine itself out of the OP because I was concentrating on the mining base. Take a look:

As you can see, I started at the bottom, down near lava. I’m sure I don’t have to tell most of you that the best mining is in the lower third of the subterrainian area. Those rectangles are actually 23 by 7 blocks, with oil lamps every 8 blocks along the passage:

The size of the rectangle allows me to see every block, and find every ore. Also, I can reclaim the oil lamps and replace them with torches when an area has been mined out, and still have sufficient lighting.

Also, since each rectangle is 8 blocks high, having doors every 24 blocks on the watervator means that there’s a door every three vertical blocks. So no matter what level I approach the watervator from, I only ever have to go one level up or down to find a door.

As to how far left or right I intend to make the strip mine?

That’s what the rail system’s for. :slight_smile:

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woooooowww thisis extremely organized! i use display cabinets as well for my stuff but golly you have some
kind of a system thats awesome

Very very very good mining system! A lot of useful tips for us. I want to build a big city on Skeeves empire, without using anything at all from any of my other worlds, single player or server world. So these ideas will really help me accomplish this. I especially like the part about using the solar panels so low down. And the watervator. And the hidden elevator. And the . . . . Okay, I just love all of it, it’s great!

Edit: I didn’t mention my most favorite part of your post, because I wasn’t sure I understood it correctly, but I just went and tried it out - it’s terrific!!! I can now remove stone backwall!!! Thank you soooo much!!!

I kept trying to remove it, because I had read that it was possible in the new update. But since I was trying to remove it the wrong way, it never worked. I eventually gave up. But now I can. :smiley:

This will be extremely helpful in making the spawn area on my public cloud worlds look better. And so many other uses. Like the solar panels far under ground . . . . Thanks again! :smiley:

I am always thinking about how to build secret bases underground, and I think your idea is the best I have ever come across!
Hidden elevator, watervator and the great organisation - this is the best way to just disappear from the map for a while…

Love the guide haven’t though of an item elevator, only made a fish elevator lol…

Step by step for removing backwall please? I just tried, no avail.