Thursday, July 12, 2012

July 12th, 2012

Last time I posted an update, I had just finished building the giant half sphere surrounding my base. With that mega project out of the way, I was finally allowed to focus on more fun things to do in Minecraft. That said, I haven't abandoned the idea of finishing the doorways to my base, but I didn't focus my entire attention on it either.

So for the entrances to my base, I completely abandoned the idea of using a piston door to get in or out. Instead, I chose to just have no door at all, and rely on lighting up the area around my base sufficiently that I won't be bothered by mobs. I'm not satisfied with this arch yet however, as the sandstone seems rather bland when looking from the inside of the base.

There is also the small problem of trying to transition from the archway's solid blocks to the glass dome surrounding it. I figured I would add supports to the dome all the way down to the tip of the arch, where it would split and follow the side down to the ground. I wanted to be sure of the material I was using for the arch first though, and after sleeping on it for several days, the sandstone hasn't grown on me. Something has to change, but I have yet to figure out what.

Moving onto the next project, I've elected to connect things to my base more. For awhile now, I've tired of going through the stronghold to get up to my desert (which has seen quite a lot of use as of late). I've been sitting on the idea of making a minecart track move over there, when I remembered the design that I showed off in the teaser. Of course, that design wasn't sufficient for what I wanted to do, so I had to modify it slightly.

As you can see, I have two destinations on the right side of my control panel.

Really, the only modification that I needed to make was hooking the top right button up to the piston. Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid completing the circuit, so I had to rely on another small trick, which was the redstone power length.

A view of the RS-NOR latch used to control the direction
you go from the station.

The redstone wiring might look ugly because it isn't very compact, but it comes with the benefit of no added delay to the circuit. I needed to avoid having both ends of the RS-NOR latch activate at the same time when I pressed either button. By having 4 redstone dust between the connection of both button circuits, I was able to move the RS-NOR latch away far enough so that one side was within range of the each button, but out of range on the other side.

With the three button selector working, I had to dig a new tunnel the the surface of the desert. Luckily, it was not a very long tunnel, as I built it by the corner of the old minecart track.

I'll probably add a small hut here, just to store some chests so that I can
stay in the desert for longer and make the whole operation look cleaner.

Now, the minecart actually does stop down at that midway station, so I needed something there as well. I elected to make another branch mine there, thus connecting a branch mine to my base.

The completed station

The tunnel down to the branch mine

Now, I have to be careful about where I dig. The old minecart track ran along y-level 12, so I raised it up six blocks so that the branch mine would not intercept the minecart track. Basically, there is only one orientation that I can't make branches in, so I'm quite happy with it.

This new mine also comes at a perfect time. I have two more redstone intensive projects that I need to finish: the lighting array in my base and the lighting system for the mob spawner. I can't start either project until I refinish the bottom part of the mob spawner and finalize the terrain in my base (I want to add some height difference to make it look natural, and I may even add a tiny waterfall to my base from the river). Therefore, finishing the mob spawner is the next thing on my list of priorities, and I actually have a plan on how I will do it, thanks to the advice I got from my sister when I talked to her about it.

That's all for now. Signing out!

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