Join 3,512 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Stars in my backyard
December 5, 2010 12:11 PM   Subscribe

How is it possible for an individual to build a planetarium? In most cases it is impossible. One must first truly love the beauty of the night sky and be willing to share that love with others. Wisconsin Man Builds Planetarium in His Backyard.

The modern day planetarium is a high tech wonder portraying the night sky in all it’s glory. Almost every large city has a planetarium museum. These museums are wonderful places for all ages to learn about our awesome universe. Ironically, the only clear view of the night sky most of us have nowadays is from the inside of a planetarium. This is a place where the night sky is replicated in all it’s glory and where city lights or cloud cover cannot obscure it. In fact it is cloud cover that led me on a 10 year journey to build the world’s largest mechanical globe planetarium. In my backyard.
posted by fixedgear (20 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Awesome. If I'm ever near Wisconsin ...
posted by tilde at 12:22 PM on December 5, 2010


This is so amazing. I am about 2 hrs. away, I will have to go up there to see it.
posted by greasy_skillet at 12:29 PM on December 5, 2010


Frank Kovac, papermill worker. Eise Eisenga, wool carder.
posted by ouke at 12:29 PM on December 5, 2010 [1 favorite]


That's amazing. Sounds like it'd be wonderful to see in person. I live in Minnesota, so...

The requested URL /Map.htm was not found on this server.

Crap!
posted by jiawen at 12:33 PM on December 5, 2010


Eisinga built his planetarium on the ceiling of his living room.
It's truly a sight to behold the wooden pegs on the wheels. And to see the pendulum within the bed alcove.
posted by joost de vries at 1:28 PM on December 5, 2010


In the north woods of Wisconsin,

In the north woods of Wisconsin, don't most backyards already have a pretty kickass planetarium?
posted by Sys Rq at 5:51 PM on December 5, 2010 [4 favorites]


I checked on Google Maps to see how far up north in Wisconsin this was, and saw that Monico, Wisconsin, is flanked by Neptune, Mars, and Venus Lake.

Mere coincidence, or fated by the stars?
posted by SomeTrickPony at 7:32 PM on December 5, 2010 [3 favorites]


Now that planetariums have become digital multi-media edutainment facilities, shouldn't there be some surplus mechanical planetarium equipment somewhere? I really want one. The middle school in my childhood small town had a mini planetarium. That would be perfect...
posted by JoanArkham at 6:10 AM on December 6, 2010


Sys Rq: the trees get in the way.
posted by madcaptenor at 7:54 AM on December 6, 2010


My son would be so freaking jealous. We'll have to make do with viewing the stars over the ocean instead.
posted by Jodio at 7:54 AM on December 6, 2010


Well if you were like me you were wondering what this looked liked from the inside. I found a video interview that's pretty decent and it also lets you peak inside of this guys head.
posted by zephyr_words at 8:32 AM on December 6, 2010


Oh never mind, that's linked in the sidebar of the CBS article of this post, didn't even see it haha.
posted by zephyr_words at 8:33 AM on December 6, 2010


In the north woods of Wisconsin, don't most backyards already have a pretty kickass planetarium?

Having been to the north woods of Wisconsin, I can assure you that the built in planetarium is indeed spectacular. Sadly, however, for about a third of the year it can also be used as deep freeze, so indoor options are undoubtedly very welcome.
posted by quin at 9:14 AM on December 6, 2010


How is it possible for an individual to build a planetarium? In most cases it is impossible.

WTF? It's as difficult as buying a planetarium projector from any of a number of tech toy catalogs.

In no way does this detract from the cool thing this guy has built, but seriously, fixedgear - hyperbolize much?
posted by IAmBroom at 1:27 PM on December 6, 2010


IAmBroom: did you bother to click through? It's ok, I accept your apology.
posted by fixedgear at 1:54 PM on December 6, 2010


fixedgear: I clicked through. Your statement is hyperbole. Here, let me look that big word up for you: "Hyperbole is a figure of speech that uses an exaggerated or extravagant statement to create a strong emotional response."

It is not impossible in most cases for people to build a planetorium. Did you bother to read my post? It's OK; your retraction is assumed.
posted by IAmBroom at 3:29 PM on December 6, 2010


In the interests of stopping this back and forth before it gets stupid, let's agree that yes, it is certainly possible for the average person to have a planetarium like experience with off the shelf parts available anywhere.

But let's also agree that this is something significantly more impressive, and no, it's not something that even your advanced hobbyist is likely to try constructing.

Maybe not "impossible" but "improbable" by a long shot.
posted by quin at 3:41 PM on December 6, 2010 [1 favorite]


Broom: They are his words, from his web site. Not mine.

But if you seriously thinks that pointing, clicking and ordering a made in China projector and then plugging it in is the same as building a planetarium in your backyard I'm afraid I can't help you.
posted by fixedgear at 3:45 PM on December 6, 2010


They are his words, from his web site. Not mine.

Pretty lame defense. You copied them.

But if you seriously thinks that pointing, clicking and ordering a made in China projector and then plugging it in is the same as building a planetarium in your backyard I'm afraid I can't help you.

I never said it was the same thing, fixedgear. You're still having problems parsing basic English, aren't you?
posted by IAmBroom at 8:29 PM on December 6, 2010


It's pretty amazing what enthusiasts build in their backyards these days. I've seen telescope rigs that rival some "professional" telescopes from 15, 20 years ago.
posted by Dearastronomer at 10:14 AM on December 18, 2010


« Older Upper, Dennis. “The Unsuccessful Self-Treatment of...  |  Short Film: A New Flavor... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments