Thursday, September 9th, 2010

image of lunar lander cockpit

I can no longer fight my space-geek urges. I have to show you this amazing model of the Apollo lunar lander, assembled by Vincent Meens, a guy with way too much free time on his hands. That model is one-hundred percent scratch built! That means he didn’t assemble parts from a kit. It began life as a drawing, flat sheets of plastic and various tubes and wires. He cut the plastic up according to his own drawings, glued the pieces together, sanded and painted them, and shazam! Shapeless plastic was transformed into a scale model. I drool with geek pleasure at the sight of such an example of ingenuity, patience and skill.

You can find more photos and a painstakingly detailed description of how he did it on a series of web pages devoted to his multi-year project to reproduce a model of the LM-5, the Apollo lander that Armstrong and Aldrin landed on the moon in 1969. Holy crap, was it really that long ago?

On a related note, my brother Pete tipped me off to a series of videos from Discovery channel chronicling the development of the manned space program. I know that’s a sexist way to say it, but it’s what they called it back in the day and it’s technically accurate, dammit. The series, When We Left Earth, starts with the gathering of the first seven astronauts and in eight episodes moves all the way up through the shuttle program.

Although it’s a great program, my biggest complaint is that it doesn’t have enough time to tell the story. Every episode feels like it’s on fast-forward. I kept wanting to shout “Slow the hell down!” at the narrator, Gary Sinese. Still, a bang-up program nonetheless.

The best part of watching any video from the Discovery Channel is still, and always will be, singing along to “I Love The Whole World.”

A lunar-licious treat for space geeks! | 11:20 am CDT
Category: hobby, play, space geekery
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