Vanilla Minecraft makes complex machines and complex inventory sorting much harder. One of the more laborious tasks is smelting large amounts of ore. There is a way around this, but it takes some work. You can create an Auto Smelter in Minecraft that handles both the smelting and sorting of ores of all kinds. Having a line of these Auto Smelting machines for each ore type can make your metal production much faster. You can also use it to produce a stream of charcoal for fueling other efforts.
It starts with a few hoppers, a few chests, and a furnace. You will need a total of three chests and three hoppers for each furnace in the basic design. You can also double up the chests to get more storage space, although you have to be careful about not getting ore and fuel mixed up. The basic premise is that one chest feeds the furnaces with fuel, while other chests feed in raw ore.
To get the hoppers you will need, you can make them with five iron ingots in a v-shaped pattern, similar to that of the bucket recipe. The chests and furnace can be made with basic wood and stone respectively.
You can also use switches and Redstone signals to turn the machines on or off. Using a signal to tell the hopper to turn on when the chests are full is a good idea. Players looking to smelt as much ore as they can in one go can help a lot with having burst production. If you’re really creative, you could integrate a Redstone-controlled item sorting system. This is pretty simple to do if you know what you want to accomplish.
Follow these instructions below to build the typical Auto Smelter in Minecraft:
- Place down a chest on the bottom Z-level of your build site. (This will be the chest in which the smelted/cooked items will be put)
- Attach a hopper to the chest.
- Place the furnace on top of the bottom hopper.
- Place one hopper on the top and 1 hopper on the side (left, right, front, or back) of the furnace. (The top one will insert the items into the furnace, which get smelted/cooked; The hopper on any side-face inputs burnable fuels into the furnace)
- Place a chest on top of each hopper attached to the furnace.
If you’re having trouble placing blocks, here are a few tricks. For one thing, place the furnace down and then break the level of blocks underneath it. This gives you 1 Z-level worth of space to work with, while keeping the layout the same. Also, crouch down when placing hoppers to make they attach properly.