Introduction: Sundial From Scrap Wood

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How to make a sundial from two pieces of wood found in a trash can

Step 1: Get Wood

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Get a sturdy piece of Plywood. I found mine in a nearby trash can

Step 2: Cut Out a Circle

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Cut a circle out of the wood. Mine is about 8 inches but you can make it any size you want.

Step 3: Glue to Stand

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With another piece of wood, cut it at the angle of your latitude. For example my latitude of my location was 34, so i cut the stand at 34 degrees.To find your latitude just look up Latitude Longitude calculator. (use the latitude part though)

The reason you need your latitude is so it will be parallel to earths axis. If you use any random number, your sundial will be off time.

Step 4: Add Gnomon

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Glue a straight sturdy object to the center of your circle this will be the Gnomon of the sundial

A Gnomon is the piece of a sundial that when the sun hits it, it projects a shadow onto the sundial

Step 5: Add Time Lines

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Now look up and print out a Equitorial Sundial guide. Use this to draw the guide line onto your sundial.

Here is an example of a equatorial sundial guide, Used by permission of The University of Texas McDonald Observatory.

Step 6: Stain

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Stain the Wood

Step 7: Paint

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Retrace the lines and Paint numbers onto your sundial. From left to right go 6,5,4,3,2,1,12,11,10,9,8,7,6 and now your done!

Step 8: Place Sundial

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Place the sundial with the Gnomon facing TRUE north, not magnetic north.

Step 9: How to Use

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If you placed the Gnomon facing true north, when the sun hits the gnomon it will cast a shadow on the numbers on the sundial. The numbers correspond with the time.


aprice27 made it! (author)2015-04-09

I made mine a bit differently

Instead of cutting a stand the degrees of my latitude I cut my gnomon 33 degrees as per my latitude

I used a pencil to draw out the time lines and went over them with a wood burner then stained the wood and glued on the gnomon

This was fun to make! Thanks for the awesome guide!!

craftclarity (author)2014-05-06

Nice! Definitely a post-apocalyptic survival must-have...

Constructed (author)craftclarity2014-05-06

Thank You!

Kkrattiger (author)2014-04-03

Really cool. Thank you for posting this sundial project.

About This Instructable




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