Silk touch is one of the more desirable enchantments in Minecraft. The ability to get the exact block you are breaking rather than a component of the block, or even losing the block entirely, can be liberating. It allows you to obtain more blocks than you otherwise could have. Despite its many uses, the silk touch does come with a few detriments. This guide will show you how to get silk touch as well as why everyone loves the silk touch enchantment in Minecraft.
There are a few different ways to get your hands on a silk touch enchantment. You could try to roll the dice in an enchantment table and find it through luck with a level 30 enchantment; like most other enchantments you could find it through chest loot or fishing; finally, you can get it through trading with a librarian villager.
Trading is the most reliable way to obtain what you are looking for, so we’ll focus on that option.
In order for this method to work, you will need to locate a fresh villager. “Fresh” meaning a villager that has not locked their profession yet. You can tell if a villager is locked in by checking their trade inventory. If they have level 2 unlocked they will never change their profession or refresh their trade inventory. Typically most villagers that generate in villages will be compatible with this method as long as you have not traded with them.
You may have to destroy any extra job site blocks that are nearby in order for this to function correctly. Also, you will need to obtain a lectern. If a village has a librarian, you can find a lectern that has been generated in the librarian’s house. Otherwise, you can craft one yourself with a bookshelf and 4 wooden slabs. You can use any wooden slab for this recipe.
After you have your lectern ready, locate a villager that you can keep isolated. I surrounded mine with fences to keep him from wandering away.
Check the librarian’s trade inventory to see what he offers. You only need his level 1 trade for this method.
Since my librarian is not offering the book I am looking for, you can break the lectern and replace it to refresh the librarian’s inventory. You will see some storm clouds around the villager, indicating anger, but this is due to losing his profession. This value resets once the villager is reassigned to his profession.
Breaking the lectern and replacing it will refresh the librarian’s inventory. Do not be tempted by the enchanted books that they may offer in the level 2 trades, once you trade with this villager their profession will become locked and you cannot refresh their inventory anymore. Keep breaking and replacing the lectern until you get the book you are looking for.
As you can see, the librarian is now offering silk touch after a few refreshes of inventory. This will be a nearly infinite source of this enchanted book (as long as you can supply the emeralds and books). If the trade becomes locked out, either trade with other items or wait a few days for the librarian’s stock to replenish.
If you are struggling to obtain enough emeralds to supply your enchanting demands, look around for other villages and try to trade simple materials for emeralds. Leatherworkers will buy leather for emeralds, farmers will buy crops for emeralds, fletchers will buy sticks for emeralds, etc. Use whatever villager trade that is most convenient for you.
Once you have enough emeralds, craft a book with 3 pieces of paper and a piece of leather.
With your book ready and your emeralds gathered, you can trade with the librarian for your enchanted book.
With your book obtained, you can enchant any tool you want with an anvil. To make an anvil you will need 31 total iron ingots. Make 3 blocks of iron with 27 iron ingots, then place 3 iron blocks at the top row of your crafting table, and place 4 iron ingots in an upside-down “T” shape.
Place your anvil down and set your preferred tool in the leftmost slot of the anvil and the enchanted book in the rightmost slot of the anvil to enchant your tool.
That is all you need to guarantee to obtain a silk touch for your items in Minecraft.
There are many benefits to the silk touch in Minecraft. It will obtain the exact block that you are breaking, for example, if you use a silk touch tool to break grass blocks, instead of getting dirt blocks you will obtain grass blocks.
This can be helpful if you want to move grass underground, or anywhere for that matter. Silk touch is also beneficial for breaking blocks that you normally cannot get back. Breaking glass with a non-silk touch tool will remove the glass from existence. However, if you use a silk touch tool you can obtain the glass back. As you can see below, it does not need to be a specific tool, you can use any silk touch enchanted item you want.
Here is a list of every block you can obtain the actual block instead of its components or nothing at all.
While silk touch is a useful enchantment, it does conflict with the fortune enchantment, making it not exactly a universally desirable enchantment. Since fortune will greatly increase the number of coal, diamonds, emeralds, and others that you can obtain, it is best to have a fortune pickaxe as well as a silk touch pickaxe.
Silk touch will not be able to obtain monster spawners. You cannot legitimately obtain a monster spawner in Minecraft survival mode. There does seem to be a bug where you can obtain a monster spawner if a creeper blows up the spawner itself. This item accomplishes nothing other than a decorative piece/trophy.
It would be best to put the silk touch enchantment on a diamond or better pickaxe as many unobtainable items require the pickaxe to get in the first place. There is not much reason to get another tool with silk touch, except for perhaps a shovel for breaking efficiency. You can still get most shovelable items with a pickaxe regardless, but not vice versa.
Congratulations, you now know how to get one of the quintessential enchantments available in Minecraft. Silk touch has many uses, but also comes with a few detriments of its own. Think about what will fit your needs best. Utilizing silk touch allows a whole new dimension of creative applications, as well as simply saving you resources with items like glass or campfires. Make use of silk touch as you see fit.