Fabrication of dial work, compilation of work December 2012 through May 2013 - June 2013,
Buchanan continues with the dial work for the astronomical skeleton
clock. In this section we decided to do a redesign of the orrery dial ring.
We also complete the remaining ten dials. The rest of the dials as well as
the redesign of the orrery are all now monochrome, or black and white.
This close up of the orrery ring artwork shows three dial indications. To
the left are the planetary identifications from the innermost planet of
Mercury to the outermost, Saturn. Next in the middle are each planet's
orbital period in years and then to the right the orbital diameter as
compared to Earth's orbit. Earth's orbit is defined as one Astronomical Unit
(AU). The zodiacal houses are also represented with the slightly eccentric
ring indicating ecliptic.
In this photo all the way to the left are numbers indicating the mass of
each planet in terms of the Earth. The mass of the Earth being 1.000
The redesigned orrery ring has no color, but preserves all of the
information of the old dial. We used the same zodiacal figures as that on
the planisphere dial and so this will add unity between the two. All of the
artwork and mockups for the remaining dials was accomplished in December of
The artwork is then mounted to the curved plastic backing and inserted into
the wooden mockup bezel to check for fit and appearance.
Sun and moon rise and set dial, approx. 3" diameter, and equation kidney cam
dial, approx. 2.5"
Calendar dials. All of these dial rings are about 1.5" or 4cm in diameter,
the last, the leap year indicator a mere 3/4", 2cm.
A full sheet of dial artwork.
This is the full compliment of the mockup dial work ready for shipment to
the Chinese enamellers. The large sector dial is to be made into a pair,
while the small sector dial will be four.
Several photos of the dial makers preparing the copper blanks and first
stages of enameling to prepare the white background.
The clock with the full compliment of dial work. It's hard to tell what is
real and what is painted wood mockups! What you see here is actually 90%
real. The entire movement is fully functional. Only the orrery, tellurian,
dials, bezels and of course all of the behind-the-dial work is yet to be
made. This is a good time to remind the viewer that this clock is not as
large as it seems to covey from the photos. The base is only 20 inches wide.
The completed dials with Bob, his wife Shirly and Mr. Gao.