Actually digging out the farm cave

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Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Fri Jul 13, 2012 3:41 pm

Ok, so it's been a while that we've been discussing the farm caves, and not much has actually been done other than marking out a location. Sorry about creating another thread, but it's more likely to be seen here than as a comment on the other thread.

I created a kind of top down view of the general shape of the cave in MSpaint (can you see my wonderful skills there), shown below.



The bit at the bottom is a small bay, which is where the entrance to the caves will be, before opening out into the main cave.

This is also where we will begin the digging. I think if we make it 50 blocks left to right, and maybe 40 blocks top to bottom of the picture, that should give us a good starting size for the bay. We can dig down from a spot in the desert where we marked off the location for digging, and then we dig away from the city. So the closest corner will be the entrance (far bottom left of the picture)

When digging, we should dig maybe 3 or 4 blocks high only. From there we can create multiple levels for the digging, to save the trouble of building scaffolding. Don't build it to be an exact square or circle or whatever, just expand from the middle and make it as irregular as possible while going... And I'm just rambling, i'm sure you all know what I mean, as long as we know how to get the place started

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  sret on Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:03 pm

How do we dig to keep a roof? How deep do we dig it? At what levels will the water be?
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:07 pm

Dig to keep a roof???

I'm thinking water at lv 15 or 20 (then varying depths below). We can just dig a flat floor at water level to start with, and worry about water later.

I wasn't thinking very well when I wrote this, and still not, and going to bed now.. Ask questions to clarify, and I'll fix up the post in the morning... I know what I'm talking about Wink

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  sret on Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:54 pm

Well, if we quarry it out we're left with a big hole but we want a roof in the cave
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  3rdi on Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:58 pm

it would probably be easier to quarry it out and put the roof back on after, also with regards to the water, remember to leave some room below the water level to dig the bottom out, it would look a bit pathetic having a massive cave with a small film of water at the bottom

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Arrowave on Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:01 pm

If we quarry it out, there would be less of a need to have sunlight to dissipate the void fog. Also if we quarry down to about level 27 where the void fog starts, the amount of roofing that we would have to do would be very minimal.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  spectrumwars on Fri Jul 13, 2012 10:59 pm

I figured we'd quarry it out, both for ease of building, and because the ultimate cave roof is likely to be higher than the original ground level, to get the properly epic cave size we're going for.

As for actual building methods...scaffolding sucks. Dig down two blocks at a time, removing the stone in layers. Starting with a flat floor, dig 1-block deep pits every 4 blocks in both directions and stick a torch in each. The next two passes of lowering the floor by two blocks each time, leave the torches and the blocks directly under them as lighting pillars. Then between floor-lowering passes, remove the now 3-high pillars and replace torches in 1-deep pits again. This will keep the digging surface well enough lit to avoid spawns, and most of the time while digging, you don't have to worry about torches other than leaving the pillars in place. Every four blocks the floor gets lowered, switch to running a pass of lowering the lighting pillars down rather than the floor surface around them.

Fences around the top of the quarry will keep everything but spiders out, and soon enough the quarry will be deep enough even they don't need to be worried about.

The walls of the dig site are a stickier question. If we make them irregular as we go down, they will need to be kept lit to avoid stuff spawning on the convex surfaces, and those torches will have to be removed later if we want the caves to be dark. Past experience with the Atrium suggests leaving the walls flush and dressed with smoothstone is a viable first step, with the hollowing out into a mostly-concave cave shape to be done later.

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Arrowave on Fri Jul 13, 2012 11:25 pm

we can dig downwards in a cone shape to avoid spawnable surfaces, but not limit our digging too much. Then later we can carve out the sides.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Arrowave on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:02 am

Alright, I don't know how much use this will be, but here it is. The second quick mock-up of the Farm Caves done in MCEdit. It should be noted that it is non irregular for a reason, I wanted to give everyone the sense of size. Also disregard the beaches, for they are much too large in this. It's hard to get the sense of size from pictures, but I guess I could record a little bit of flying around in it if needed.

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  3rdi on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:54 am

I think that looks pretty perfect.

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  spectrumwars on Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:29 am

Arrowave wrote:Alright, I don't know how much use this will be, but here it is. The second quick mock-up of the Farm Caves done in MCEdit. It should be noted that it is non irregular for a reason, I wanted to give everyone the sense of size. Also disregard the beaches, for they are much too large in this. It's hard to get the sense of size from pictures, but I guess I could record a little bit of flying around in it if needed.

Album

Yeah, the beaches on the outside edge of the lake need to be a lot shorter and steeper, but otherwise, that's about perfect.

Digging down in an upward-pointing cone shape, widening the floor as we go, will mostly work, but we'll still get an awful lot of endermen teleporting down from the surface to the sheltered bits under the overhang. I had that problem widening out the cone of the atrium while digging the setbacks. Maybe if we light up a wide enough area around the top opening, we can avoid that problem. But that still leaves the problem of void fog if the setbacks get too wide and the outer edges of the wall get too far from the central shaft of skylight.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:36 am

Ok, theres many reasons I wanted to avoid quarrying out the caves.

First up, just take a look at the size... Go to the spot, and just do a run around the edges, marked by either cobble or dirt towers. It's pretty much the size of the entire city as it is. Now think about how that would work being quarried... It's really not a viable solution.

If we start at the water level, we shape as we go. Unlike The quarry, we're we'll have to dig out a ton, then worry about shaping after. If we quarry down, we'll most likely do excess digging. Can you imagine in the dome if we'd quarried, and then shaped, how that would have worked. And are we even sure the roof will be tall enough for us to need to go above ground??? There are mountains in the area. The cave isn't going to be anywhere near a perfect circle/rectangle, so doing a quarry will give us a different shape to work with, whereas fr underground and working up in layers, we can take the shape that works best

The water, I'm thinking if we just make a flat dirt floor, then below that we dig out a rough, uneven bottom, with many large height variations, we can the replace the floor with water. Yes, this will result in a downwards pull under the surface, but seriously, who's volunteering to place the water from bottom up to avoid this?

Actually, make the dirt floor 1 layer below the water level, so we can flood the floor, and then remove the dirt.

The main aspect is the size. Just get a feel for the monstrosity of what we are planning to do here

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Arrowave on Sat Jul 14, 2012 6:50 am

We wouldn't quarry around the edges, we would start in the center and expand downwards. There would be no extra digging involved and we don't need scaffolding.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  spectrumwars on Sat Jul 14, 2012 9:04 am

The problem with starting at the water level is that it is a LOT easier in the game to dig down than it is to dig up. Digging up pretty much requires scaffolding, which we're trying to avoid.

Even with mountains, the farm caves are supposedly under a desert, which means sand going 5-6 blocks below ground level, so if we even get NEAR the surface with the roof, we'll have cave-ins in spots. Best to just dig the whole thing out.

Unless we have a very clear and easy-to-memorize plan of EXACTLY how we're gonna shape the irregularities of the caves, best to go with a fairly rough approximation and fill in the details later. We have plenty of coal even if it comes to cooking cobble to make enough smoothstone to re-install large sections of wall. Trying to dig out a complex series of curves as we go down is gonna lead to a lot of mix-ups and goofs. A little scaffolding along the walls for purposes of detailing is one thing, but trying to push a roof up 50 blocks over a large area via scaffolding stages is gonna be an extreme pain. Compare and contrast the annoyance of the long-term scaffolding in the central dome with the comparative ease of the Atrium, which was dug down from the surface like a quarry rather than up from the bottom via scaffolding like the dome was.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  sret on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:22 pm

The plan is to quarry the starting bay then dig into the main cave from inside of it when it's done. There's plenty of options for digging out the cave and I'm sure we can decide on a good enough one. It's not that hard to make stairs (or put ladders) to let us get to the top of the cave and dig down. When me and a friend dug out an underground treefarm which was something like 20-30x20-30 and 50 blocks high we dug approximately 10 floors at a time from the bottom and up. The way we did it was to elevate ourselves in the corners using dirt and then dig down until there was no more floor, which we'd slowly remove until we were back in the corners and could move up to 10 new levels. It was a lot of fun even though we suffered the occasional death from falling through holes in the last levels of the floors. In this cave we could simply dig all the way down, one area at a time, or mix it up and perhaps dig the entire top floors out before we work our way down (could help to get a feel of where the edges will be). Like I said; I'm sure we'll figure something out.

Will the water level be as far down to allow the void fog to interrupt? If so, there's no way we can stop it unless we want the whole cave to be a quarry. I feel like void fog could be alright in there to add to the feel of the cave, just like the downwards pull in the water. If we want to see the entire cave at all times I suppose making the water level high enough is a possibility? It would allow for a deep enough bottom aswell. Another option would be to let the island be above water level to make it the void fog-free place from where you can gaze out over the ocean.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  sret on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:24 pm

I suppose we can get started on marking out the digging site as that is pretty much decided? If so I might be able to do that today.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:40 pm

Ok, now I've read everything...

I think I agree with Sret, and we quarry out the smaller bay, shape that, then expand into the main cave from there. Now, talking to you, Sret, I said approx 50*50, but I'm thinking maybe 50*40, to make it less circular in shape. This will be the extremes, so if we quarry maybe 40*30 to start with, that will give us good size.

Water, I'd say either layer 15 or 20. This gives us plenty of space below for varying waterbeds. Void fog I think will contribute greatly, I mean, far render distance is 256 blocks I believe. We won't be able to see all of the caves anyway, so void fog will just add to it. Like a foggy cave, lost in darkness.

I'd love to get on now and get started, but I've got work in 8 hours, and I'm planning on using that time to sleep.

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  sret on Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:08 pm

I noted the 50x40 already. I might get on and mark the edges today so it's ready to get started. Too bad you can't play (darn weekends!) but lemme know when you have the time and I'll try to join you if it isn't between let's say 2 am and 9 am my time (gonna give it a fair try not to screw up my sleep too much!)
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Arrowave on Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:44 pm

This thing is only going to be 70 blocks tall. We could avoid void fog completely if we did enough terraforming. Fog only starts at around y=27 so we have some room to work.
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Sun Jul 15, 2012 5:28 am

It won't be a consistent 70 blocks though... there will be some low hanging bits, and lots of stalactites, and unevenness. the 70 blocks is just the maximum height... and what trouble will a little bit of void fog cause anyway? Most of the cave will be dark, and hidden from render anyway

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  spectrumwars on Sun Jul 15, 2012 7:45 am

Hmmm...maybe instead of the naturalistic shape, we could go for mostly flat walls...just pushed so far back that they are not visible due to darkness for a dozen or so blocks either side of a double row of jackolanterns or glowstone blocks/lamps on the floor of the lake, leading boats from the entry dock to the island. Between the rows of underwater lights is an underwater tunnel 2-3 blocks wide with a single-track cart line (for bringing bulk cargo and carts with animals in them) with a glass-block roof looking up into the lake above. Here and there the rise and fall of the naturalistic lake floor dips low enough to have glass walls as well as ceilings to the tunnel, or high enough to cover even the glass ceiling. The farm island can be reached by either the cart line (for boring practical purposes) or via a boat (for scenic views of the darkness). Immediately around the island itself, of course, the walls are visible, and thus will be naturalistic curves and stalactites and such. Any stalagmites sticking out of the dark parts of the lake will either have to be lit up to prevent monster spawns, or be topped with half-slabs or steps to prevent such spawns. The cart tunnel will end beneath the farming island in either a small station of the usual type, or a simple end-of-the-line one like we use in the mines. Access up to the surface of the farming island would be either by ladder through a "farmer's hut" or a hidden staircase/ramp (mostly for bringing animals in and out). Inside the hut would be supplies for re-dying sheep (I doubt the island will be big enough for all 16 colors to be represented in any serious numbers) as well as general farming gear (hoes, seeds, clippers, etc.).
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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:38 am

I like the idea of a minecart track going the whole way, but I don't like the idea of keeping some of the walls flat. If we're going to do it, we'll do it all properly. everything carved to look natural. We don't want too many lights in the water, and if we do, I'm thinking more randomly placed around, rather than in a direct line

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Sun Jul 15, 2012 10:26 am

Ok, so I've found a spot to start the quarry, and marked it with a small indent in the earth. From flashes I've been seeing when the sand falls, I believe that there is an explored cave below the dig point, so be careful.

I tried to go with stuff to be ready to dig, but died on the way, and lost the items. I'll post the coords when I finish dinner


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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Brendanan on Sun Jul 15, 2012 2:00 pm

-90, 827 is where the quarry is at...

I've had my fun digging for tonight Smile

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Re: Actually digging out the farm cave

Post  Dr. Steel on Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:02 pm

Had some fun with the Technic Pack and nukes..

http://imgur.com/a/u5XHv

Anyway, this is what I think is a good scale. Barely visible on range Far, tho.

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