Astrolabe project

Discussion in 'Horological Misc' started by Britannicus, Mar 20, 2017.

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  1. Britannicus

    Britannicus Registered User

    Apr 26, 2016
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    I'm starting to toy with a new project. I've recently found designs for a medieval Astrolabe, which I fancy chancing my hand at making.

    http://www.joh.cam.ac.uk/way-stars-build-your-own-astrolabe

    Not exactly a clock or a Watch, but a fun project to tell the time with. The original design is intended to be printed onto card with an acrylic sheet for the Rete but where's the fun in that ? So I'm going to use it as the base for a genuine Chaucerian model - brass sheets of the right thinckness is a bit pricey for a whim, so I'm thinking of prototyping on aluminium which i can always plate later to look like brass anyway .

    Are there others interested in Ancient and Medieval horology prior to the clock?
     
  2. FDelGreco

    FDelGreco Registered User
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    Aug 28, 2000
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    We like astrolabes so it sounds like a good project.

    I don't think you can plate aluminum, but you can anodize it gold later on. But somehow, I think after you put all the work into it in aluminum, you will tell yourself you should have done it with brass to begin with. I almost always build models before I make an actual item -- usually in cheaper materials and often at full scale -- and when it is over I look at the work that went into the model and tell myself I should have done the final piece right from the start.

    Frank
     
  3. richiec

    richiec Registered User
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    We know what you mean, one of our members just when throuogh a restoration of a tall case clock dial and he can't tell you how many hours he spent making mockups out of cheaper material before making the final but as he said, better to make mistakes on the mockup than on the final product.
     
  4. Britannicus

    Britannicus Registered User

    Apr 26, 2016
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    I'm in the Richie perspective. I Understand FD's comment, and that probably is good advice for those who have some skills in this area - but me I'm a bodger ! first 3 attempts are bound to be a disaster. I'm reminded of the old joke about the rocket scientist who was told he had a one in a thousand chance of success, so he had to rush through the first 999 before he started on the real one :) .

    As for plating Aluminium - never tried it, but my books tell me that a primary Nickel/Zinc Plate followed by Brass will work - but will look into anodizing as an alternative, and then will need lacquering, and this is unlikely to be very cheap.

    Maybe I practice my technique on ally first then shell out on the £50 in brass I will need
     
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