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Coal

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[edit]Coal
Coal.png
Coal
Type

Raw Materials

Durability

N/A

Renewable

Yes

Stackable

Yes (64)

First appearance

Indev 0.31 (January 29, 2010)

Data value

dec: 263 hex: 107 bin: 100000111

Name

coal

[edit]Charcoal
Charcoal.png
Charcoal
Type

Raw Materials

Durability

N/A

Renewable

Yes

Stackable

Yes (64)

First appearance

Beta 1.2

Data value

dec: 2631 hex: 1071 bin: 1000001111

Name

coal


Coal lumps are items harvested from coal ore blocks. They are the fourth most efficient fuel available for furnaces (after lava buckets, coal blocks and blaze rods), being able to smelt eight units per lump of coal. Coal and charcoal are also the only fuels accepted by powered minecarts (providing approximately four minutes of transit each).


Charcoal is an alternative to coal. Burning wood in a furnace creates charcoal, which can be used for most of the same things coal can, except for coal blocks. Charcoal makes it easier for players to survive their first night as it allows them to craft torches much more easily, due to the fact that one piece of coal can burn up to eight blocks of wood into charcoal, which can in turn be used to burn a whole stack of wood.

Aside from coal having the ability to craft blocks, coal and charcoal are functionally identical; except for the fact that they cannot stack together.

Obtaining[edit]

The main difference between coal and charcoal is in the methods of obtaining.

From ore[edit]

The most common method of obtaining regular coal is by breaking a block of coal ore, which drops one coal item, or more if broken with a pickaxe with the Fortune enchantment.

Coal ore can be found at any elevation where there is stone. It is the most abundant ore, and can be found in veins of 5 or more, up to 32. Coal has a 2/3 chance of dropping experience when mined.

Crafting[edit]

Name Ingredients Crafting recipe

Coal

Block of Coal




Grid layout Arrow (small).png Coal9

Block of Coal



Smelting[edit]

Name Ingredients Smelting recipe

Coal

Coal Ore +
Any fuel

Coal Ore Grid layout Furnace Progress.png Coal
Grid layout Fire.png
CoalCharcoalOak WoodOak Wood Planks

Charcoal

Any Wood +
Any fuel

Oak WoodSpruce WoodBirch WoodJungle WoodAcacia WoodDark Oak Wood Grid layout Furnace Progress.png Charcoal
Grid layout Fire.png
CoalCharcoalOak WoodOak Wood Planks

Smelting coal ore is wasteful and usually pointless. The ore could be placed and mined to get at least as much coal, with no fuel needed. Smelting always yields a single unit, but mining with a Fortune-enchanted pickaxe can get more. Coal ore as an item can only be obtained by using a Silk Touch-enchanted pickaxe.

The second recipe makes charcoal a renewable resource. If the player is on a superflat map that doesn't contain ores, wood blocks from NPC Villages can be smelted into charcoal. This allows for the creation of torches, which are otherwise in short supply.

From Wither Skeletons[edit]

A Wither Skeleton may drop a coal lump upon death. This makes regular coal a renewable resource.

Usage[edit]

As a crafting ingredient[edit]

Name Ingredients Crafting recipe

Block of Coal

Coal

Coal Coal Coal Grid layout Arrow (small).png Block of Coal
Coal Coal Coal
Coal Coal Coal

Fire Charge

Blaze Powder +
Gunpowder +
Coal or
Charcoal




Grid layout Arrow (small).png Fire Charge3
Blaze Powder CoalCharcoal

Gunpowder
Grid layout Shapeless.png

Torch

Stick +
Coal or
Charcoal




Grid layout Arrow (small).png Torch4

CoalCharcoal

Stick

As a fuel[edit]

When used in a furnace as a fuel, a coal lump or piece of charcoal lasts 80 seconds (8 operations).

Coal and charcoal are also the only fuels accepted by powered minecarts. They provide approximately four minutes of transit each.

Efficiency[edit]

Wood and wood products can be used for smelting directly. A more efficient (but also more time-consuming) approach is to smelt wood into charcoal, which can be used for smelting. Wood and wood product smelting yields are shown in the table below.

Product Crafted into Crafted into Items smelted
Oak Wood
Wood
1.5
Oak Wood
Wood
Wooden Plank4
4 Planks
Stick8
8 Sticks
4
Oak Wood
Wood
Wooden Plank4
4 Planks
6
Oak Wood
Wood
Wooden Plank4
4 Planks
Oak Wood Slab8
8 Slabs
6

It is fairly efficient to turn one wood block into wood planks, and then use those planks to smelt more wood into charcoal. This process can smelt 6.85 items per wood block.

It is more efficient to turn wood blocks into charcoal, and use those to smelt more wood into charcoal. This can smelt 7 items per wood block.

It is most efficient to use two saplings (which are a free by-product of chopping wood) to smelt a wood block into charcoal, and then use the charcoal for smelting. This process does not waste any wood, and therefore can smelt 8 items per wood block.

Data values[edit]

DV Description

0 Coal

1 Charcoal

Video[edit]

Note: The video does not show a crafting recipe for Blocks of Coal. This was before Blocks of Coal were added in 1.6.


Note: The video states that charcoal looks the same as coal. This was before 1.6, when charcoal's texture was changed.

History[edit]

The older texture in Indev 0.31.
Indev
0.31 (January 29, 2010)  Coal-Indev.png Added coal, which dropped when coal ore was lit on fire.
0.31 (January 31, 2010) Coal may be mined from coal ore blocks, dropping one coal if mined by hand, or three when mined with a pickaxe.[1]
Beta
December 25, 2010 Charcoal is suggested to Notch by @Moleculor as a writing implement.
1.2 Charcoal was added, with the same texture as coal. It was not used as a writing implement.
Official release
 Coal.png Changed the coal texture.
1.4.2 12w36a Coal is now dropped by Wither Skeletons.
1.6.1 13w18a Coal can be crafted to make a Block of Coal.
13w19a Charcoal.png Changed the charcoal texture.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.3.0  Coal.png Added coal.
0.8.0 Coal can be crafted to make a Block of Coal.
0.8.1 Charcoal.png Changed the charcoal texture
Console Edition
TU1 Added coal and charcoal.

Issues[edit]

Issues relating to "Coal" or "Charcoal" are maintained on the issue tracker. Report issues there.

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]