Activator Rail

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Activator Rail
Texture Update Activator Rail.png
Texture Update Powered Activator Rail.png
Renewable

Yes

Stackable

Yes (64)

Tool

Blast resistance

0.7

Hardness

0.7

Luminant

No

Transparent

Yes

Flammable

No

Catches fire from lava

No

An activator rail is a type of rail that can "activate" certain minecarts.

Occurrence[edit]

Placement[edit]

An activator rail can be used as a rail and as a redstone component.

To place an activator rail, use an activator rail item while pointing at a surface facing the space the activator rail should occupy. An activator rail can be placed on:

An activator rail cannot be attached to the side or bottom of any block, but attempting to make such an attachment may cause the activator rail to attach to the top of a block under the destination space. For example, if a fence is on the ground, attempting to attach an activator rail to the side of the fence causes the activator rail to be attached to the top of the ground next to the fence instead.

When placed, an activator rail configures itself to line up with any adjacent rails (including detector rails, powered rails, and other activator rails), as well as adjacent rails one block up. The behaviors in Java and Bedrock editions diverge in the following ways.

In Java Edition:

If there are two adjacent rails on non-opposite sides, or three or more adjacent rails, or no adjacent rails at all, an activator rail aligns itself in the direction the player is facing. If an existing activator rail is connected to only one other rail or none at all, and a new rail is placed perpendicular to the activator rail, then the activator rail aligns itself in the east-west direction (if it isn't already facing that way). If a rail it would align with is one block up, an activator rail slants upward toward it (with multiple options to slant upward to, an activator rail "prefers" west or south). Other configurations can be created by placing and removing various rails.[needs in-game testing]

In Bedrock Edition:[needs in-game testing]

If there are two adjacent rails on non-opposite sides, or three or more adjacent rails, an activator rail aligns itself in the east-west direction. If there are no adjacent rails, an activator rail aligns itself in the north-south direction (but if a rail is later placed to the east or west, the activator rail re-orients itself in the east-west direction even if it is already connected to another rail to the north or south). If a rail it would align with is one block up, an activator rail slants upward toward it (with multiple options to slant upward to, an activator rail "prefers", in order: west, east, south, and north). Other configurations can be created by placing and removing various rails.

Obtaining[edit]

Loot[edit]

From block loot[edit]

Namespaced IDSourceDrops
Default
blocks/activator_railActivator Rail1 (100%)

From chest loot[edit]

Item Structure Container Quantity Chance
Java Edition
Activator Rail Mineshaft Chest 1–4 27.1%
Bedrock Edition
Activator Rail Mineshaft Chest 1–4 27.1%

Recipes[edit]

From crafting[edit]

Ingredients Crafting recipe
Iron Ingot +
Stick +
Redstone Torch

6

Usage[edit]

Breaking[edit]

Activator rails can be crafted and previously-placed activator rails can be broken with bare hands or any tool, dropping themselves as items.

An activator rail can be broken with any tool, dropping itself as an item, but a pickaxe is fastest. To break an activator rail, mine it:

Block Activator Rail
Hardness 0.7
Tool
Breaking time[note 1]
Default 1.05
Wooden 0.55
Stone 0.3
Iron 0.2
Diamond 0.15
Netherite 0.15
Golden 0.1
  1. Times are for unenchanted tools in seconds. For more information, see Breaking § Speed.

An activator rail also drops as an item when the block beneath it is removed, water or lava flows over it,‌[Java Edition only] or a piston moves it into a space with no floor below it.

Block loot[edit]

Activator Rail drops itself when broken with the correct tool if any is assigned. Refer to the Obtaining section for more info.

Rail[edit]

Activator rails (and other rails) can be used as "roads" for minecarts. A minecart that enters an activator rail's space from either end of the activator rail continues to move, losing only a little velocity (which can then be increased again with powered rails). A minecart that enters an activator rail's space from the side turns east or south (depending on the activator rail's orientation), or in the downward direction for a slanted activator rail.

Redstone component[edit]

Activator rails can be used to affect minecarts that travel over them.

Activation
An activator rail is a redstone mechanism and can be activated by:
An activated activator rail also activates any adjacent activator rails it is connected to, up to eight away from the original activation source. Thus a single activation source can activate up to 17 rails (one original in the middle and eight on either side). An activated activator rail does not activate adjacent rails not connected to it.
Behavior

An activator rail affects minecarts above it with varying effects that occur as soon as any part of the minecart is on the activator rail.

An active activator rail:

  • ejects mobs (including players) from minecarts as if a player had used the sneak control to exit the minecart (by default, one block to the right of the direction the minecart is moving and up to two blocks up, unless blocked)
  • repeatedly activates command block minecarts — a command block minecart executes its command every four game ticks until the command block minecart is no longer on the activator rail
  • disables hopper minecarts — a disabled hopper minecart cannot pick up items it travels through until it is enabled by an inactive activator rail (or until it is broken and re-placed)
  • primes TNT minecarts — primed TNT minecarts explode after four seconds with an explosive power proportional to their speed over the activator rail.

An inactive activator rail enables hopper minecarts — an enabled hopper minecart picks up items it travels through until it is disabled by an active activator rail.

Sounds[edit]

Java Edition:

SoundSubtitleSourceDescriptionNamespaced IDTranslation keyVolumePitchAttenuation distance
Block brokenBlocksBreaking the blockblock.metal.breaksubtitles.block.generic.break1.01.216
None[sound 1]BlocksFalling on the block with fall damageblock.metal.fallNone[sound 1]0.51.2516
Block breakingBlocksMining the blockblock.metal.hitsubtitles.block.generic.hit0.250.7516
Block placedBlocksPlacing the blockblock.metal.placesubtitles.block.generic.place1.01.216
FootstepsBlocksWalking on the blockblock.metal.stepsubtitles.block.generic.footsteps0.151.516

Bedrock Edition: [needs in-game testing]

SoundDescriptionNamespaced IDVolumePitch
?Breaking the blockdig.metal? 1.2
?Falling on the block with fall damagefall.metal? ?
?Mining the blockhit.metal? 0.75
?Jumping from the blockjump.metal? ?
?Falling on the block without fall damageland.metal? ?
?Walking on the blockstep.metal? ?
?Placing the blockuse.metal? 1.2

Data values[edit]

ID[edit]

Java Edition:

NameNamespaced IDTranslation key
Activator Railactivator_rail block.minecraft.activator_rail

Bedrock Edition:

NameNamespaced IDNumeric ID Translation key
Activator Railactivator_rail 126tile.activator_rail.name

Block data[edit]

In Bedrock Edition, an activator rail's block data stores its orientation and activation status:

Bits Values
0x1
0x2
0x4

A three-bit field storing a value from 0 to 5:

  • 0: flat track going north-south
  • 1: flat track going west-east
  • 2: sloped track ascending to the east
  • 3: sloped track ascending to the west
  • 4: sloped track ascending to the north
  • 5: sloped track ascending to the south
0x8 Set if rail is active.

Block states[edit]

Java Edition:

Name Default value Allowed values Description
poweredfalsefalse
true
True if rail is activated.
shapenorth_south east_west
north_south
Specifies the rail's orientation.
ascending_east
ascending_north
ascending_south
ascending_west
A rail that ascends toward the direction noted.
For example, an ascending_west rail is a straight rail that goes upward from the east toward the west.

Bedrock Edition:

Name Default value Allowed values Description
rail_data_bitfalsefalse
true
True if rail is activated.
rail_direction0 0
1
2
3
4
5
The rail is not ascending.
6
7
8
9
A rail ascends.

History[edit]

Information icon.svg
This page would benefit from the addition of isometric renders.
Please remove this notice once you've added suitable isometric renders to the article.
The specific instructions are: May have had gold in their texture upon first introduction; research needed
Java Edition
1.513w02aActivator Rail Revision 1.png Powered Activator Rail Revision 1.png Added activator rails.
13w02bThe crafting recipe of activator rails has now been changed to include sticks and redstone torch. Previously, it required only 6 iron ingots vertically at the end.
13w03aActivated activator rails now disable minecarts with hoppers.
1.7.213w39aActivated activator rails now activate minecarts with command blocks.
1.814w05aActivated activator rails now eject players and mobs from minecarts.
1.915w39aThe dismounting location of activator rails is now predictable. Entities now dismount from vehicles (boats, minecarts, horses) by the right side relative to the motion of the vehicle. If the right side is unavailable, the other potential locations are tested in this order: Right, Left, Back Right, Back Left, Front Right, Front Left, Back, Front.
15w44aActivator rails can now be found in chest minecarts in abandoned mineshafts.
1.1116w32bAll rail types', including activator rails, hitbox heights have now been decreased from a full block to a half block.
1.1317w47aPrior to The Flattening, this block's numeral ID was 157.
1.1418w43aTexture Update Activator Rail.png Texture Update Powered Activator Rail.png The textures of activator rails have now been changed.
19w12bActivator rails can now be placed on glass, ice, glowstone and sea lantern.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.13.0build 1Activator Rail Revision 1.png Powered Activator Rail Revision 1.png Added activator rails.
0.14.0build 1Activator rails can now be found inside minecarts with chests in mineshafts.
Bedrock Edition
1.10.0beta 1.10.0.3Texture Update Activator Rail.png Texture Update Powered Activator Rail.png The textures of activator rails have now been changed.
Legacy Console Edition
TU19CU71.10Patch 11.0.1Activator Rail Revision 1.png Powered Activator Rail Revision 1.png Added activator rails.
TU31CU191.22Patch 3Activated activator rails now eject players and mobs from minecarts.
1.90Texture Update Activator Rail.png Texture Update Powered Activator Rail.png The textures of activator rails have now been changed.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
0.1.0Activator Rail Revision 1.png Powered Activator Rail Revision 1.png Added activator rails.

Issues[edit]

Issues relating to "Activator Rail" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.

See also[edit]