Hey I was thinking of making a vanilla mod pack sort of thing and stumbled across this and thought it was really cool! i'm trying to recreate it but not using any thing too similar and I got stuck on the directing of the minecart when it moves, so i was wondering if either I could borrow you idea with the stairs or if you could help me...
Also I've added things like a minecart inventory so you could add that to yours, or not if you don't want to.
Of course you don't have to do either but it would be nice if you did!
I've seen the stair thing being used to direct entities even before this existed. I think you are fine.
Just paste the schematic near your spawn (best in your spawn) and activate it. Make sure you're running 1.8. If you're running this on Bukkit, check the server.properties folder and set the command blocks allowance for vanilla commands to "-*". Note that when the schematic is activated, it will automatically reset the relative spawn point, hence it is best to place it near your concurrent spawn and also set an exact spawn location for your players.
(Yes I noticed you said see what you CAN do about it, I am just happy you even noticed lol)
The inability to use slopes is not bad as I still can make fun designs, right now I have a one-way train station that when you push a button makes your minecart go super fast(quarts) and then goes to the location, does a slow(wood) turn around so you have time to leave and then it goes back to start.
Creating a special railway vehicle(aka SRV) is no difficult task! Simply pop down any Minecart of your choice (this even includes special minecarts such as TNT carts and spawner carts to make this mod even more compatible with others!) and drop a redstone block onto it. The redstone block will activate the cart and you've got yourself an SRV!
What's even more awesome is that the redstone block is not consumed! It's basically just used to activate these guys.
Once you're done creating a very awesome SRV, you can proceed to create an SRV track! SRVs can still run on normal vanilla Minecraft powered rails, but who'd will still want to use them when they consume your gold bars?! These SRV rails are a lot more cheaper, for sure. Here's how you create them:
Simply have a redstone block or an even cheaper redstone torch at the bottom, with a stair facing the direction you want the cart to go above it, and finally any block at the top! SRVs do need power so the redstone block/torch is extremely important. Basically, every time an SRV is 3 blocks above a redstone block or torch, it is being charged. Every tick (1/20th of a second) above it means that the SRV is able to move 1 second longer! This means that you can store SRVs in a room in which they are rapidly charged so that you don't have to waste as much redstone resources! Usually, uncharged SRVs emit a small amount of redstone particles; when they are charged, they emit a whole lot more. What's more, the amount of power left in an SRV does not determine the speed as the stairs do! This is explained further below...
There is, however, a maximum charge of 30 seconds on each SRV. This means you can't have infinitely propelling carts that move around the world. However, with a higher tier step that you use, the distance traveled can be significantly increased! Lets take a look at stair types:
First, we have the super slow oak stairs (note that all other wood types do not work!) with a speed of 2m/s. These are what I call the 'decelerator' rails as they significantly slow down carts. It is important to slow down carts at curves or near stations or when moving up slopes as they have a tendency to derail when at high speed! I forgot to mention before, but each rail makes it own noise when an SRV is traveling on it! The oak stairs are the noisiest of all and they spew off particles when the SRV chugs along.
Next, we have the better stone brick stairs. These are the quietest rails and travel at the exact same speed as normal minecarts on gold rails (8m/s). Not to mention that these are obviously a lot more cheaper - you don't have to waste your darned useful gold bars anymore! As they move along the rails, they emit a small static electricity noise which is quite addictive, honestly.
Further up more, we have the souped up brick stairs. These guys move along at 12m/s, which is faster than a creative player sprint-flying! They are extremely ideal for transporting players around quickly without them losing out too much on the view! What's more, they're fancy looking and can fit into most builds. SRVs on them emit a higher pitched static electricity noise - not as quiet as the stone brick stairs but quite an improvement compared to the others!
Next, we have the ultra quartz stairs. They provide you with a super speed of 16m/s! Absolutely stunning as it doubles the speed of the normal gold rails! They make a really weird magnetic noise to imitate that of the Maglev trains and screeching winds as you speed along! Not exactly ideal for having these rails and SRVs on them in your base as you'll go nuts with the noise they make!
Furthermore, we have the ULTIMATE SUPER 10000000000000 Purpur stairs. Yes, I know this mod is made for 1.8. But if you install it in the snapshots, you'll see that purpur stairs work as rail bases too! (I coded them in for 1.9). These crazy rails speed at 24m/s! That is THREE TIMES the speed of normal gold rails and the speed of you walking after drinking a speed 25 potion! These rails make a really weird noise as the minecarts speed on them. Nevertheless, they derail really easily at curves and bang into walls at slopes if you don't use decelerators! If you were to go on a ride on these rails, you'll be probably missing out 80% of the view.
Lastly, we have the cobblestone stairs (not in picture). These are more of utility rails than rails to be used to carry you along. They have a really slow speed of 1m/s and unpower (remove all charges) from any SRV that moves above it if there is no redstone block/lit redstone torch beneath them. Once you power it again, the carts chug along slowly along until it reaches the next segment of the rail (i.e. to maglev). With these stairs it is also possible to create trains and the much needed charging stations for SRVs.
In the following video, I have a speed test run on 5 rails! The plain old gold rails, the oak stairs, stone brick stairs, the brick stairs and the maglev stairs! Note that the stone brick stairs wasn't on par with the gold rails as stated above as the cart on the gold rail needs to accelerate for a certain period of time before reaching the max speed! SRVs do not need to accelerate at all! Lets take a look: