I have been playing minecraft for several years and I have always had a way of mining that I thought was most efficient. I have had discussions with friends who think that creating new tunnels every two blocks is more efficient than creating them every three blocks. I decided to put some numbers to the test to see how efficient and effective my method was in reality.
I typically mine in a 2×1 tunnel at y=11, and make a new tunnel every 4th block off the main line (That makes 3 in between each line). I mine at this level because it is the most prolific place to find diamonds and it avoids most lava that sits at level 11 as well. Additionally all the other resources are found here in abundance so it provides the most usable material per pick use. For this test I used efficiency 4, unbreaking 3 pick. I found a relatively solid area with few caves, caverns and mineshafts to get more accurate results.
Below this article you will see the average number of resources mined in a series of test I conducted. The tests clearly show that you will find more gold, diamond, and iron ore mining every three blocks as opposed to every two when starting a new tunnel. The results showed much more coal and redstone in the tunnels 3 apart and this is most likely because I can find more of these with the increased search area. Remember that a tunnel every 2 blocks still catches what a tunnel every 3 blocks catches but it covers less overall ground if it was more efficient we would see higher numbers of ore.
I recorded some additional information as well. It appears that a typical pick of this stature will take approximately 1.5 hours to break. For maximum efficiency players should dig a 500 block long tunnel. This will roughly fill your inventory to full and take about 15min’s. *This is assuming that you fortune all possible materials. Place your items in a chest on that side of the tunnel and create a parallel tunnel to your starting tunnel that is 500 blocks back. This tunnel will stop you from going past 500 blocks and makes it easier to mine in sections. Once your items are safe dig back to the original tunnel 500 blocks. When you reach it you should have or almost have level 30 so spend this experience on whatever before continuing to mine. These steps make a very efficient mining method for material, time spent moving it, and experience gained.
Tunnel every 3 blocks:
|coal ore||coal ore||220||278||240||738|
|Redstone ore||Redstone ore||412.7||252||347||1011.7|
|Lapis ore||Lapis ore||4||14||12||30|
|Iron ore||Iron ore||113||115||95||323|
|Gold ore||Gold ore||42||17||15||74|
|Diamond ore||Diamond ore||19||42||7||68|
Tunnel every 2 blocks:
Comparing the two tunnels:
In the Percentage Increase it shows how much more was mined from a 3×1 tunnel, the only thing that didn’t generate an increase was flint, which is a byproduct of gravel.
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