Lets Make Something banner



Youtube graphic
I have a youtube channel with over 1000 Project Videos!

Hi, Thanks for visiting my website. My name is Will and if you have questions
or would like to
contribute projects or ideas you can contact me Will

The Amazing Spectacular Eclipse Machine

This is a wonderful and quirky project that you can make out of foamboard with just a few other materials like cereal box cardboard, glue and hot glue. I show you how to make it in this video down below. And you can see it in action.

Here is an overview of it.



How it Works:

Do you see the handle on the left? You slowly turn that and the sun will slowly be eclpsed by the moon. The pulleys act as a speed reducer. That way you can smoothly turn the handle and the end result is the eclipse happens slowly.

Here is a look at the back of the machine. The flashlight shines onto the sun. And you can see the moon is connected to our pulley. It will slowly eclipse the light as we turn the handle.

This view might show it clearer for you. In this picture the flashlight is off and you can clearly see the circle cut out that is the sun and the arm that holds the moon.


And the whole secret to this project is the pulley system. It is how we gear down the speed so the moon travels nice and slow.. Let's take a quick look. When you turn the small pulley marked 1. The rubber band turns the larger pulley marked 2. You can see that every full revolution of 1 will not give a full revolution of 2. Pulley 2 revolves at half the speed of 1.

Pulley 3 is glued to pulley 2. So it also turns at half speed. And you can see the rubber band connects from 3 to the next pulley. This next pulley, because it is larger, turns at half the speed of 3.

Let me give you a tip that is really helpful. It is about the sun! We want a bright sun that is only the circular shape. We achieve this with a stack of three sheets like you see here. Let's go left to right. On the left is a sheet of thick cardstock with a sun hole cut in it. In the center is a sheet of plain printer paper. And on the right is a sheet of thick card stock with a sun hole cut in it.

We stack these three sheets together with the printer sheet in the middle of the sandwich and we have a nice glowing sun.

Fun Extra!

You can also do a lunar eclipse where the moon is slowly eclipsed. All you have to do is print up a picture of the moon to the right size of the holes and use that as the center sheet.





Amazon Products Will uses in this video:

X-acto designer series knife #1 blade


Hot glue gun

Will's Favorite Hot Glue Gun

Surebonder PRO2-100 100-Watt High Temperature Industrial Glue Gun, Black





Elmer’s Disappearing Purple Liquid School Glue, 9-Ounces, 1 Count




Foam board

Elmer's Acid-Free Foam Boards, 20 x 30 Inches, 3/16-Inch Thick, Bright White, 2-Count (902015)

If you are looking for high quality, archive quality or you are looking for a backing for photographs you should use an acid free foam board It is more expensive per sheet though.




Elmer's School Glue Sticks 5ct - Disappearing Purple