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Detector Rail

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Detector Rail
Detector Rail.png
Powered Detector 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

A detector rail is a block that can transport minecarts and can be used as a switchable redstone power source.

Obtaining[edit]

A detector rail can be obtained by crafting, or by breaking a previously-placed detector rail.

Loot[edit]

From block loot[edit]

Detector rails can be broken fairly easily by hand, but can be broken faster by using a pickaxe.

Namespaced IDSourceDrops
Default
blocks/detector_railDetector Rail1 (100%)

From chest loot[edit]

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

Recipes[edit]

From crafting[edit]

Ingredients Crafting recipe
Iron Ingot +
Stone Pressure Plate +
Redstone Dust

6

Usage[edit]

Info[edit]

A detector rail can be used as a rail that can detect when minecarts are on it or how full container minecarts on it are.

To place a detector rail, use the Place Block control on the face of a block adjacent to the destination space.

A detector rail can be attached to:

A detector rail cannot be attached to the side or bottom of any block, but attempting to make such an attachment may cause the detector 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 a detector rail to the side of the fence causes the detector rail to be attached to the top of the ground next to the fence instead.

When placed, a detector rail configures itself to line up with any adjacent rails (including activator rails, powered rails, and other detector rails), as well as adjacent rails one block up. If there are two adjacent rails on non-opposite sides, or three or more adjacent rails, a detector rail lines up in the east-west direction. If there are no adjacent rails, a detector rail lines up in the north-south direction (but if a rail is later placed to the east or west, the detector 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 line up with is one block up, a detector rail slants upward toward it (with multiple options to slant upward to, a detector rail "prefers", in order: west, east, south, and north). Other configurations can be created by placing and removing various rails.

Mobs avoid walking across a detector rail (or other rails), but can be pushed onto them.

Breaking[edit]

To remove a detector rail, mine it. Detector rails can be broken fairly easily by hand, but can be broken faster by using a pickaxe.

Block Detector 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 Haste § Instant mining.

An detector 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]

Namespaced IDSourceDrops
Default
blocks/detector_railDetector Rail1 (100%)

Rail[edit]

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

Redstone component[edit]

Example for signal strength of a full minecart (27 stacks) and a half-full one (14 stacks)

A detector rail activates when any minecart is on it (even if only a portion of the minecart is on it), and deactivates when no minecarts are on it. The length of the signal is always a multiple of 10 redstone ticks (although lag or unloading/reloading a chunk might affect this). While active, a detector rail:

Comparators give a signal for a minecart with chest or a minecart with hopper

If the minecart on the detector rail is a minecart with chest or minecart with hopper, an adjacent redstone comparator facing away from the detector rail outputs a power level proportional to the container's fullness, possibly power level 0. For any other type of minecart (including a regular minecart with a mob riding it) the comparator's output is zero.

A comparator can read the contents of a minecart with hopper or with chest on a detector rail through a solid opaque block, as it can with other container blocks.

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
Detector Raildetector_rail block.minecraft.detector_rail

Bedrock Edition:

NameNamespaced IDNumeric ID Translation key
Detector Raildetector_rail 28tile.detector_rail.name

Block data[edit]

In Bedrock Edition, a detector 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.

Video[edit]

History[edit]

Java Edition Beta
1.5Detector Rail Revision 1.png Added detector rails.
Java Edition
1.513w10aPowered Detector Rail Revision 1.png A texture for active detector rails has now been added.
1.915w44aDetector rails can now be found in chest minecarts in abandoned mineshafts.
1.1116w32bAll rail types' 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 28.
1.1418w43aDetector Rail.png Powered Detector Rail.png The textures of detector rails have now been changed.
19w12bDetector rails can now be placed on glass, ice, glowstone and sea lantern.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.13.0build 1Detector Rail Revision 1.png Powered Detector Rail Revision 1.png Added detector rails.
0.14.0build 1Detector rails can now be found inside minecart with chests in mineshafts.
Bedrock Edition
1.10.0beta 1.10.0.3Detector Rail.png Powered Detector Rail.png The textures of detector rails have now been changed.
Legacy Console Edition
TU1CU11.0Patch 11.0.1Detector Rail Revision 1.png Powered Detector Rail Revision 1.png Added detector rails.
1.90Detector Rail.png Powered Detector Rail.png The textures of detector rails have now been changed.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
0.1.0Detector Rail Revision 1.png Powered Detector Rail Revision 1.png Added detector rails.

Issues[edit]

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

See also[edit]