Drafting the Astrolabe 9: The Calendar Ring

Well… That was a bit more intense than I expected. I was expecting that drawing the calendar ring on the back of my astrolabe would be rather involved, but actually doing it took more patience than I expected. This was definitely the hardest part so far. Drawing the offset ring was straight-forward. As described previously computing the […]

Drafting the Astrolabe 8: On Tools

While I’m working on this project, I’m also researching the tools and techniques used by the instrument makers who made these astrolabes. The two period manuals I am working from assume a certain shared level of knowledge, and do not mention tools or engraving techniques, except in passing. I am finding the art of the […]

The Future: Moving the Astrolabe Generator away from Flex

I like Flex, but the tools to use it are not cheap. I can’t afford $250+ for the next version of Flash Builder and from what I’m seeing even Adobe is jumping on the HTML5 bandwagon. If Adobe offered a free, noncommercial version of Flash Builder, I might be convinced to stay with the platform. […]

The Future: Version 3 of the Astrolabe Generator

I spent most of the last weekend coding like crazy. I now have three new optional scales to add to the back of the astrolabe: The Lunar Mansions. A calendar/astrology scale. This is visible inside the shadow squares, center bottom. Two views of the Arcs of the signs: Equal sized and projected(top left shows the […]

Drafting the Astrolabe 7: The Calendar Scale.

The next step in drafting the astrolabe is constructing the calendar scale. Up until now the process of creating scales has been straightforward. The time scale on the front and the altitude and zodiac scales on the back are simple in concept and execution, requiring no math to draw. The calendar scale, on the other […]

Drafting the Astrolabe 6: The Zodiac Scale

OK, yes, that was tedious. But now it is done. I have started work on the back of the astrolabe: The first scale, the zodiac ring, is finished. Drawing this used a combination of geometric construction and fudging with the compass. First, draw the outside edge of the astrolabe (set the compass using the finished […]

Drafting the Astrolabe 5: A Recipe for Fudge(ing)

The next big chore will be creating the major scales for the back of the astrolabe. This will involve drawing one set of rings representing the Zodiac and another set representing the Calendar. Drafting the zodiac is straight-forward, if tedious. The circle needs to divided into 360  one-degree ticks. The process is the same one […]

Drafting the Astrolabe 4: The Front

Back to work on this project: I got several tasks done today. When I am finished drafting my astrolabe, I plan on photocopying it onto card stock, and assembling and laminating it in order to compare it’s accuracy to a computer-generated version. I tested the photocopy process today. First, I printed out the front of […]

Astrolabe Generator: Done For Now

I have just uploaded the last tweak I’m planning on making to version 2 of the Astrolabe Generator. I’ve done a lot of work on it over the last few weeks, and I’m happy with the results. I will still be planning to add more scales and functionality in the future, but it is time […]

Astrolabe Generator Update

I have added new more features to the Astrolabe Generator (http://astrolabeproject.com/build/). There is now a front degree scale option and I have added a new set of limb markings: Alphabetical (based on a 1370 astrolabe shown here).