A Quarry can function at any level. Simply placing it against a shaft wall and powering it is all that is required to start the default 9x9 area. The blocks in the frame area will be destroyed.
It is possible to create a landmark-drawn frame as per above ground, but it will be necessary to carve tunnels for all of the landmark beams, otherwise they will not link up.
Using this method it becomes possible to save time and fuel by placing your Quarry right above the gold/diamond levels.
Powering the Quarry
The Quarry, like all other BC consumers has an internal energy storage in which it stores MJ until it can perform an Operation. Because of this the Quarry can be powered by any BC compatible engine. For the Quarry to operate at maximum mining speed it needs 18 MJ/s which translates to 2 internal combustion engines running on fuel (outputing 9 MJ/s each) or 9 electrical engines (these put out 2 MJ/s). If you're powering from an Energy Link using IC2 power it will take 50 EU/t, normally 45 EU/t but due to the 10% power loss on conversion it loses 5 EU/t.
As the Quarry has only 4 sides free to stick engines to (1 is adjacent to the mining area and 1 is the output) opting for electrical engines (these never explode, the fuel ones explode if the quarry stops because of lava/bedrock) means you need to use conductive pipes to fully power the Quarry.
(Note: Peat-fired, Biogas and Electrical engines are not available in tekkit since version 3.0.3 due to the removal of forestry)
Here's an easy compact setup:
Using An Energy Link
Another way to power the quarry which is much more compact is by using an Energy Link connected to a Conductive Teleport Pipe. This will turn energy from, for example, a Geothermal Generator into Buildcraft energy. Then the energy is teleported to the quarry regardless of where it is. This takes away the need for tricky and somewhat dangerous engines while lowering the amount of pipes and wires around your map. Also, if you have teleport pipes for the conductive teleport pipes you should have more to use as regular teleport pipes to teleport all the harvested materials from your quarry to one main processing line. By doing these things to power your quarry, you can change it from a hassling mess of redirecting pipes to an easy 5 piece (conductive teleport and stone pipes, regular teleport and stone pipes, and a quarry) set-up that takes only a few minutes to take down, move, and reset.
Uses In Conversion
The Quarry is instrumental if you would like to create a system that converts blocks into items, and back again, without player intervention. Under this system, blocks that you would like to place into pipes are pushed into the quarry area at a high level, so that the quarry will constantly mine these blocks and place them into Pipes.
If the quarry is close to finishing, or you are in danger of stopping the quarry, place a Builder on top of the Quarry and put sand or gravel in it. The sand will be built and it will fall into the Quarry. The Quarry will mine the sand or gravel, which can be piped, through a filter, back to the Builder. This will ensure that the Quarry will never stop working.
- The landmarks specify an area up to 64x64, giving a maximum possible quarry size of 62x62. An area this large provides a low-maintenance quarry that doesn't need replacing nearly as frequently as the default 9x9 quarry, but be advised that mining from a quarry this large takes more than one hour per layer. Also, a few layers will fill several chests of sand, dirt and cobblestone, depending on the selected region (there is a lot of dirt and sand under water).
- By placing the frame above water, or by placing a water source block on the first layer of the Quarry, any lava encountered will immediately turn into cobblestone or obsidian, avoiding delays. The water will also prevent hostile mob spawning.
- Mining in this fashion requires very little additional interaction from the player and is nearly fully automated, but is considerably less time-efficient than mining manually, and in particular, gathering the ores encrusted in the walls of a cave while exploring it. A good way to take advantage of both cases is to select a relatively small area to dig (the default is good) and to gather any ore visible on the walls of the quarry once it is finished.
- Once placed the quarry will begin to clear all blocks inside the area, so remember not to leave stuff like Engines, Pipes or the Quarry itself inside the area, or it will magicaly disappear!