Orrery – A 3DPrinted Solar System

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Orrery – A 3DPrinted Solar System
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I was scrolling down my Instagram feed this morning when this Orrery image appeared:

Instructables Solar System
Orrery – solar system

That triggered me to search more about this project since the description of the image didn’t say much.

This kind of model, called Orrery, is used since way back to show how our solar system works, however, all the craftsman that build this kind of machines like to hide their knowledge of how to build them.

..Well.. until now..

A guy called Stan Patrick, known in some communities like WidgetWizard has designed an Orrery of our Solar System that can be 3DPrinted:

After discovering what an Orrery is I was surprised to find that a 3d printed version of any size was not common. I would like to mention that Dragonator has a nice 3D printed Orrery on Instructables. There are many finely crafted brass Orrerys available for purchase if you are so inclined to purchase one. I had discovered some very nice wooden Orrerys available as well. What I also discovered is how coveted the information is on how to make one. The craftsman who design these things do not like to share their information, particularly on what gear ratios they use achieve the correct relative planetary orbits around the sun.

This model has a good amount of complexity, and it took more than 100 parts and countless hours of print and patience, Stan started to build this Orrery.

With a quick search on Thingiverse and MyMiniFactory, I wasn’t able to find any model with such detail and complexity. And Stan’s work is one of the motives that I love 3DPrinting. Our capability to design, share and print models of anything. Just to give the opportunity to others to use what you designed to learn more about our universe.

A good plus on this model is that Stan added a motor to turn the planets around, and with the right gears setup, the planets turn around the sun with a speed based on the original scale:

Stan’s work did not go unnoticed when he applied to participate on Instructables Design Now: In Motion Contest, where he won the grand prize on 2017 edition.

This is a great project and should be spread around the world. Where anyone with a 3DPrinter in hand can print this and share the knowledge about our universe to everyone.

If you want to build one of this Orrery, on this link you can find the Instructables tutorial to build it.


If you like this post let me know in the comments below! Share on your social media!

See ya!

2 Comments
  1. Pam Jackson says

    This is super cool

  2. Jared Heifetz says

    Well, this will make a winning science project for my son haha

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