Robert Maxwell wrote:
^ I gotcha, then. I assumed you were just talking about straight-up mining, in which case hollowing the whole thing out would be terribly time consuming.
FWIW, I usually mine in a pattern with central 2X2 corridors, with 1X2 tunnels branching off, leaving two blocks in between each tunnel. That way you can see all the minerals without having to mine out every last damn block.
I'm told the most mathematically efficient way is to do what you described but leave three
blocks between each branch tunnel. Since most veins are 2x2 you'll never miss any by leaving 3 blocks in between.
I suppose, but I think the completist in me would get annoyed at the hidden row.
Ah, but there is no "hidden row." Think about it.
If most veins are 2x2, then having two parallel horizontal shafts with 3 blocks in between is guaranteed to expose the vein in at least one of the shafts.
Granted, there are some veins that consist of only one or two blocks, but I've found those to be relatively rare and probably aren't worth making all your branch shafts one block closer together.
Anyway, on the new world I started, I've done a fair amount of work. Here
is the large vertical mineshaft I dug all the way into the bedrock from my spawn base. (The view is from the bottom, looking up.) Here
is a castle I built last night. Yes, it extends into the clouds...
Images are linked since they're big.
I plan to fancy up the castle, putting windows and so forth in it. It's 6 stories although I probably won't use the top level for anything, given that clouds pass through it.