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The Carpenter is a machine added by Forestry. It acts somewhat like a crafting table that needs to be powered by an Engine. It requires water for most recipes, and some other liquids, such as Seed Oil, for a few recipes. It is used for a variety of recipes such as the Basic Circuit Board, Woven Backpacks, and the Apiary.
When connected to BuildCraft waterproof pipes, the Carpenter will waste liquid while the pump is running. Use Liquiducts instead.
In order to place an item in the recipe area, you use a left click. This will not take or consume any resources; it places a "ghost" item. Right-click to remove an item from the recipe area. The required liquid for the recipe must be put into the internal tank, and the required materials must be placed in the two rows of item slots at the bottom of the Carpenter GUI.
In order to automatically refill the Carpenter with materials, connect pipes to the bottom, and the items will be put in the Carpenter's lower inventory. The Carpenter will automatically draw out items from it when needed.