beam compass meaning

  "beam compass" in a sentence
  • noun
      An instrument consisting of a beam and adjustable legs, for drawing extra-large circles

  • [Architecture]

    An instrument used to draw large circles or arcs of circles for full-sized working drawings; has a long horizontal bar on which two movable heads slide to and fro, one of which carries a pencil, and the other a sharp-pointed pin or tracer, the distance between them determining the radius of the circle.

    beam compass


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  1. The figure at left, for example, was drawn before the advent of computers and hence required the use of a beam compass.
  2. While beam compass use was critically dependent on the skill of the user, his machine produced more regular divisions by virtue of its design.
  3. Prior to the availability of computers, stereographic projections with great circles often involved drawing large-radius arcs that required use of a beam compass.
  4. These beam compass techniques were used into the 19th century, as the dividing engines that followed did not scale up to the largest instruments being constructed.
  5. Finding a beam compass today might be fairly difficult, since it is much easier to draw curves having a large radius of curvature ( in two or three dimensions ) with help from a computer.

Related Words

  1. beam bottom meaning
  2. beam box meaning
  3. beam brick meaning
  4. beam casing meaning
  5. beam ceiling meaning
  6. beam crossover meaning
  7. beam current meaning
  8. beam cutoff meaning
  9. beam cutoff angle meaning
  10. beam deflector meaning
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