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I managed to work out an all in one system to get all the fluids in one location to self restore and provide the solid materials. uses little room and needs only one vat of each fluid. here it is with wiring.
can someone do better? ;]
note: the gold fish is important =p I have the three switches there, top one (honey) is 5 seconds cause i noticed that honey had a hard time with the rapid flow rate on the multi player server i am on. The water tank is larger b/c more water seems to be used in the process of creating the solid blocks. i have indicator lights just for fun!
the important part is the faucet. I take advantage of the liquid mechanics that dictate: fluid will not rise around an upward corner. the size of the vats is irrelevant. but you need at least 3 blocks tall between the bottom of the vats and the faucet that way you can stand there to mine and pull the desired material.
in a single player you could actually use one timer for them all, but in a server situation, use the three. and turn them on one at a time. i have them all on there so its easy to see. but servers sometimes have issues with settling the fluids, especially the honey and lava at the same time since they move so slow.
therefore, water in the middle! it flows faster than the rest. if something else is in the middle then the flow will be too slow and the square the block will end up will be too far away for the player "pull" of loose items. then you have a mess to deal with! D=
be very careful when mining. you need to aim well. lest you hit the container brick and let the fluid out and get killed by unexpected lava.
thanks for reading!