Final result

I feel obligated to show what the fuss was all about:
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Way more work than the outcome justifies but much has been learned in
the process.
BTW this is the only one of my dials that is pure metal.
Now I can move onto other things...
Michael Koblic,
Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
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Very nice, and just in time for the winter haze which obscures the sun up there for six months, eh?
The etched numbers are quite classy and worthy of the time, IMHO.
Got a portable sundial, complete with compass, that people can take with them? For survivors of 12/21/2012.
-- That's the thing about needs. Sometimes, when you get them met, you don't need them anymore. -- Michael Patrick King
Reply to
Larry Jaques
It can be done. It would have to be some sort of inclining effort in addition to the compass which ramps up the cost. Some of mine can be adjusted with a bit of effort. I made only one outright adjustable:
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The problem is that not many people are interested in the high end stuff.
Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
Thank you. For some reason this one seems to generate emotions.
Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
(Ooh, noo! He said "try and")
Yeah, I can imagine they'd be picked up as an unusual item, more for their fun value than their function.
The unwashed and I bought our Casio "sundials" at Walmart for $26, complete with dual time functions, countdown mode, stopwatch mode, light, 5-year battery, and waterproof to 50M.
-- The problem with borrowing money from China is that thirty minutes later, you feel broke again. --Steve Bridges as Obama
Reply to
Larry Jaques
Don't know if you guys remember it or not, but Rob H. had one several years ago that was very nice (item 422):
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or specifically:
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It would take a bit of work though deciphering the glyphs and converting them to English :)
Reply to
Leon Fisk
Man, some idiot took a wire wheel to that deburring tool/countersink and took the edges right off it. Maroons!
By the time you got done deciphering the glyphs, you'd know Chinese. Why convert after that?
-- The problem with borrowing money from China is that thirty minutes later, you feel broke again. --Steve Bridges as Obama
Reply to
Larry Jaques
That is an interesting one. Presumably Chinese although I cannot rule out Japanese. They are two equatorial dials I suspect for Southern and Northern (on the right ) hemisphere - however, the markings seem different on each.
Knowledge of kanji (about elementary school grade 4 here) is one thing but being able to read them when they are "handwritten" is another. Then there is the issue of how time units were defined. For instance on the Northern hemisphere dial numbers are clearly discernible, however there are also two other scales: The outermost one I cannot make head or tail of. The innermost one shows e.g. character for noon marking a period extending half an hour outside the 12 o'clock. Each of these periods has an "up" and "down" (or "top" and "bottom") segment (sounds like baseball?).
Both dials are adjustable for latitude but I do not see numbers on the respective scales and I wonder if the characters there are name places corresponding to the correct latitudes (this is often seen on European dials).
The compass also has several scales - the cardinal points are marked on the middle scale but what the others do is a mystery to me. Also: I cannot find a way to correct for declination. I suspect there is one because: 1) Declination has been known since well before Columbus and 2) The cardinal points are accompanied by a character for "correct" or "true", so I suspect there is a way of distinguishing them from the magnetic directions.
It would be fun to see this close up.
Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
Try searching on "chinese inclining sundial". I have an Antiques book with this same (as Rob's) sundial pictured in it. This link explains it some:
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Items 7 and 9 are similar. Also see "Chinese Sundials" here:
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Another website that may help:
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I'm sure there's more info/images out there, but this should keep you distracted for awhile :)
Reply to
Leon Fisk
Right. Thanks. I forgot about the Greenwich site and that it has the two versions shown. The markings are a bit different. The other two web sites are also interesting although some of the description is word for word taken from Greenwich. Most of my questions remain unanswered.
1) Why are the bagua trigrams sometimes different (I have seen the "south" trigram used for "north-west")? 2) Wherefore declination? 3) Why have a North and South hemisphere dial on the same instrument in a country that is entirely north of Equator (unless one is supposed to turn the thing 180 degrees and use the other dial for some other purpose than just simple time-telling)? 4) The nature of the markings on the latitude adjustment - one web site agrees with my guess that these are place names, the other suggests these are calendar references somehow related to latitude (???)
The instrument itself is quite simple and of limited utility as it can only be used 6 months in a year. However, the cultural connotations are fascinating and probably more involved than I am prepared to spend time on. At least for now :-)
Just to prove that I have been to that Greenwich site before here is one I made which was inspired by D8644:
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Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
I like that one. Those that look like this:
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and this, which is really more of a calendar:
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are the type/style I find interesting or pleasing. Would enjoy studying them up close, in person. This one would also be fun to peruse for a bit and might even be affordable:
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I found some info, directions for making one of those here:
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For some unknown reason I find these little ring-sized pendants nifty too (and expensive...):
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I'll look in my Antiques book, but I don't remember it having much to say about the sundial in question. I did find this little snippet:
"This wooden equatorial sundial, a traditional Chinese form, uses a copper pin as a gnomon and a brass strut to incline the plate. A compass provides north / south alignment. Unlike western versions of this sundial, which list cities at each latitude for the proper inclination of the plate, Chinese dials refer to the local chhi' or calendar system used in regions of different latitudes."
from this page:
http://64.107.216.64/research/collections/reflections/index.shtml If I find anything else of interest I'll let you know.
Reply to
Leon Fisk
Cool.
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love this one. The silver brother costs $175, while this is $88.
-- Most powerful is he who has himself in his own power. -- Seneca
Reply to
Larry Jaques
Yes, I like that one too, but would probably get the large version. If you splurge on one I would like to hear about how well it works :)
Reply to
Leon Fisk
Pendants "work"?
-- The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man. -- George Bernard Shaw
Reply to
Larry Jaques
That type of equatorial dial works all year round. Unusual gnomon - a strip of light rather than a shadow, I think. There is a similar one in Vancouver.
Actually that is a huge ring dial working on the same principle as this:
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Usually these dials adjust the position of the aperture according to season to show time. With a stone monolith it would be tricky so the spot of light falls on the appropriate date of the analemma at midday. Like you say, a calendar, somewhat over-engineered :-)
I like these a lot. Their main benefit is that they need not be lined up by compass. If you get the latitude and day of the year right the spot falls on the hour scale and the dial is automatically in a correct position. I want to make one of these but it is an engineering nightmare (for a mutt like myself).
I think it is meant to be a version of the universal ring dial like the one above but lacks some essential features that would make it work as such: There is no adjustable pinhole on the gnomon that I can see.
Word for word from the other web site you linked to.
If you want to study some really cool ones these are it:
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Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
The following link (which I posted before) has pdf files that you can print out and then scissor, glue, make a very similar, if not same model. I only gave the pdf files a quick glance but that was my impression. I would go ahead, print out and make the paper one. Then study the paper model, parts and decide how to best reproduce it in metal. You could use the paper pieces as a pattern and prick punch the degree markings through the paper. Then finish the markings with a cold chisel. The first one may not look so pretty, but it would give you a warm fuzzy feeling and the next one would be better after you have stumbled around some... Even thin wood or plastic should work I think. I've seen your creations and I'm sure you could make one this way.
Yes, those are really nice and way out of my price range. Sure would be fun to futz around with them for awhile though :)
Probably old news, but have you seen/tried these programs for calculating sundials?
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I've been playing around with "ALEMMA" (seems to run on Linux via WINE okay), seriously thinking about building one out in the yard. Use patio stones, bricks and such. Would be pretty neat to have out in the yard for daydreaming and such...
I looked in my book and find my memory was wrong. It wasn't the dual version in it, just a single side that inclined like we've already pointed out to each other. No useful info other than the date and maker.
Reply to
Leon Fisk
[...]
Actually the markings are the least of the problems. The three adjustable rings and a gnomon with an adjustable pin-hole worry me far more. If I get around to it I might make one that has fixed parts to start with.
[...]
I use Blateyron's "Shadows" but I only have the free version. I have not felt the need for the Pro-version so far. Thanks for the link though, I should see how these programs stack up against the Shadows.
It's one of those things one would like to see close up and have a Chinese speaker standing by.
Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic
Hmm... The rings are stationary, only pinned best I can tell. Look closely at this one from the wikipedia site:
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and folded/flat:
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The inner ring simply swivels inside the outer ring 90 deg (so it can be stored/carried flat). The hanging part looks like a wire that simply fits in a groove going around the circumference of the outermost ring. The degree markings look standard (really 0 to 90, quarter circle). The gnomon or bar is pinned at the 90 deg mark on the outer ring and allowed to swivel or spin around to whatever position need be.
So it looks to me like you need two rings that fit together. Outer most ring needs to be put on the lathe and a groove made around its circumference to hold a wire for hanging (latitude adjustment). Drill a small hole through the outer and inner rings opposite each other. Maybe use a punch (crude but should work) to deform one of the rings over the pin location to secure said pin. At 90 deg away from this pin the gnome needs to be secured to the outer most ring. The image shows rivets were used and opposite sides of the ring so that the inner most circle can be swiveled flat to store.
I think some careful measurements from the similar pdf model's gnome-slider area could be used to get the month settings transfered. Might be able to use the flat image from wikipedia for this also.
Did I miss something else other than to add the markings?
Yes, that would be really cool. I've spent way too much money through the years buying stuff to fuddle around with due to curiosity and wanting to learn something...
Reply to
Leon Fisk
Here is 45 of them:
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You still have to have a good fit (particularly if one is to reproduce the folding option) and more importantly good alignment. The attachment points of the gnomon alone are difficult enough.
Still, I am looking forward to seeing your version. I hope you post the pictures. I shall stick to the simple stuff.
Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
Reply to
mkoblic

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