Personal Projects


Machined in my workshop from solid brass & to my own design, this is an unusual suspended orrery. The six inner planets orbit the illuminated centre sun at their relative speeds, powered by a silent electric motor. The exposed gear train rotates the counterbalanced arms, while bevelled brass gears rotate steel drive shafts, giving relative motion to the moons orbiting Earth, Jupiter and Saturn. The spheres are of a variety of materials, some painted and varnished, while others are orbs of metal or Murano glass from Venice. The Earth globe is of etched Murano clear, and rests in a carrier at 23 degrees giving us our seasons.

(RMS Titanic Slideshow)

A bit of an obvious choice admittedly, but despite all the cliches, I do find a certain elegance to the ‘Olympic’ class liners. It also provides me with a tiny reminder not to take anything for granted! At 46,328 tons gross, yes it became the largest ship, but was really only a stage in the evolution of ocean liners, where each new design superseded the previous one in a contest of superiority. While some claim that it was never surpassed, particularly the lavish interiors, Titanic itself would never have become so famous were it not for the tragic maiden voyage. It may not have survived for more than a few years anyway because of the possibility of attack during the First World War. The ever growing study culture & fascination with the ill fated liner ha`s provided a wealth of reference material, with the most valuable of these being a modellers website called ‘Rivet Counter’ which lists an unbelievable 500 modifications to the basic Academy/Minicraft 1:350 scale kit, in a quest for historical accuracy.

(pic of Orrery)