Press Release: Introducing the Wndsn Brass Horary Quadrant Telemeter


“We become what we behold. We shape our tools, and thereafter our tools shape us.” 
–Marshall McLuhan

Introducing the latest and most sophisticated instrument in the collection of Wndsn flagship Telemeters; the Wndsn Horary Quadrant Telemeter, released on the occasion of the 2019 vernal equinox in an entirely new – yet historical shape: the quadrant in its iconic, quarter-circle form. The release date, the beginning of the astronomical year, is well-suited for the latest iteration of the Telemeter, with horary lines added to the quadrant side, which by now not only enables the user to measure the sun’s altitude on a given date but in addition, to also take the time and visualize daylight hours over the course of a year. As of publication, the number of uses of the Horary Quadrant Telemeter exceeds 75, with more applications being explored.

Using a Wndsn Horary Quadrant Telemeter to determine latitude (at night with Polaris), calculate declination of the day with the respective arc, and a measurement of the Sun altitude (via backsighting), one can derive at least 18 data points and in fact calculate all of them directly on the device.

Wndsn instruments are no reproductions, nor replicas, they are not cast nor struck; Wndsn instruments are engraved, milled, and cut to the highest precision of both tools and materials with every scale mark optimized for the size of the respective device based on in-house computer-calculated tables from historical and contemporary mathematical formulas.

  • 75 use cases
  • 18 data points from the Sun alone
  • 1000 years of history
  • 240 pages manual
  • 3 mm raw brass
  • 2 inches wide

The Wndsn Horary Quadrant Telemeter is a wallet-size distance and altitude nomograph developed in the Wndsn applied science lab in Berlin and combines thousand years of civil engineering, surveying, navigation, and astronomy in one durable, low tech, high utility instrument that can be brought anywhere, is self-containing, and independent of external, modern technologies. 

The Wndsn Horary Quadrant Telemeter is a naked-eye observational instrument for measuring angles via various inputs and sighting methods. In addition, the Horary Quadrant Telemeter is a graphical, analog computer providing functions to directly process or convert the acquired values. The Horary Quadrant Telemeter allows to measure angular size and compute distance, height or depth of object, slope, altitude, or elevation, it provides an inclinometer as well as scales for the computation of sine, cosine, and tangent for a given angle.

Inspired by the medieval Kamal, a celestial navigation tool that greatly facilitated latitude sailing, as well as nomography, an almost lost art and science invented in the late 19th century to provide engineers with fast graphical calculations of complicated formulas, and adding an important slide rule principle, the Wndsn Horary Quadrant Telemeter combines all three techniques in an easy to use and handy measuring and calculating device. 

Additional elements on the Wndsn Horary Quadrant Telemeter come from the sine quadrant, the main scale of the quadrant contains a shadow square and a sexagesimal scale which can be used for performing various trigonometric calculations and taking basic surveying measurements as well as for observing and calculating the movement of the Sun across the ecliptic, year, and day.

The Wndsn Brass Horary Quadrant Telemeter is handmade and manufactured in the spirit of astronomical instruments of the Renaissance, built by the likes of Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, and Gemma Frisius. The scales are engraved and precision-cut into 3mm raw brass. The Wndsn maker’s mark proudly adorns the device; scientific instructions are engraved and supplemented by a 240-page printed manual which is also available separately and via bookstores. Made in Germany.

The instrument is available at:[1]

Wndsn’s Applied Science Lab, based in Berlin, develops and manufactures that which can’t be improvised; measurement, navigation, and surveying instruments informed by the motto “Ex Mensura, Scientia” — knowledge from measurement.

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