I'll take two, please.
One for me, one for my Granddaughter.
A clockwork model of the solar system has turned up in Lego Ideas*, combining some impressive Technic work with artistic whimsy. The model, by Chris Orchard and Brent Waller, is the result of 15 months of effort and shows the eight planets (sorry Pluto) in a roughly relative size. My latest LEGO Ideas project, a Clockwork …
With the rather limited range of 8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 40 teeth cogs* I wonder how they make the more 'complex' ratios that the solar system throws up.
I hope they don't rely on Lego having to produce some more 'specialist' pieces - the range is too wide now for this old duffer... less is more!
*Maybe there are more these days and I did not include the worm gears.
The video or mock up doesn't show the moon and I suspect that without this predicting solar eclipses (moon in between Earth and the Sun) just won't happen.
Sadly I suspect the lack of the moon will be a major downside in this design - not that I could see how it could easily be done in Lego at that scale.
> The Transit of Venus, on the other hand, is a veritable piece of piss. Merely lean on the fast-forward button.
The planets all appear to be on a single plane (i.e. no orbital inclination) so transits of Venus will be unrealistically frequent. Also the planet sizes and relative distances aren't to scale. :-)
More to the point, the orbital distances are way of scale. Necessarily.
The purpose of the measurement of the timing of the transit of Venus in Capt Cook's time was to discover the absolute scale of the Solar System.
(How Johannes Kepler knew the distance for one of his laws, I have no idea,)
I just went and supported this. I don't buy many Lego sets anymore, but this one is a must.
I see comments here that range from "Lego will make more specialty pieces" to "It's not accurate enough" (paraphrased). Well, given that the pair built an actual version, clearly it can be done with the current range of Lego pieces.
I would guess that to do this properly, Lego would have to produce the balls for the planets and the sun with painted-on detailing. You can't do that with decals. If they have to do that anyway, they *might* introduce a new ball size, but that would involve creating a new mold, and they likely wouldn't do that unless other upcoming sets could make use of similar pieces.
I wonder what the gear count is - looks pretty high, from the video.