Space Chapter HUB MAIN

Additions, Deletions, Corrections

UPDATED 03|08|07

This Page Under Construction by YOU

Space Chapter Exhibits, Dioramas, Models

Setting up the Table Top (& Banners)
Storyboards updated 03|08|2007
Bring Your Own Table
"Gravity Jugs"
Table Top Exhibits
EZ Moonscapes & Marscapes

Setting up the Table Top

Principles of an Effective Display and Outreach Event

  • [1] Don't use an all flat layout! A table loaded with informational items laying flat is very easy to walk past, to ignore, to not even notice! It doesn't matter how mind-expanding your literature may be. If people don't notice it, you're dead.
  • [2] You must catch the passerby's eye. Three ways to add notice-me punch to your table:
    • verticals elements - like vertical flyer or poster stands (see just below), background photos on storyboards, or even a mural
    • 3 dimensional items
    • "handle-me" items
    • eye-arresting color
    • Note: finger food (a bowl of Reeses Pieces or of bite size Mars bars, for example) may stop passersby but in no way guarantees that they will pay attention to anything else. Pay far more attention to the tricks above. Then use food, if you want to, to actually stop the passerby after his/her attention has been caught by everything else.
  • [3] Remain seated only if no one is around. It is much easier to engage someone in conversation if you are standing. It shows that you are not just behind the table because you are being paid to sit there, but because you are enthused about your vision of the future and want to share it.
  • [4] Have something for visitors to sign: this can be a petition, or a sign-up sheet to put one's contact information for future events, information, etc. When someone signs his/her name that flicks a switch in their memory, awareness, and attentiveness. Whether you ever see that person again is immaterial. You are winning commitment, one humble step at a time. Even if they just pay more attention to the next time space is mentioned on the evening news, that's something. You can use these address lists to invite them to a meeting when you have an exiting speaker, or to some other future event. Patience pays only if it is industrious patience!
  • [5] Re-critique your display after every event, as to both content and presentation. (What books, flyers, or brochures could I add? What photos or artwork? What could I do to make my exhibit announce in an instant what this is all about? What kind of eye-catchers could I add? Could I make it easier for people to follow up? etc.) Then prioritize possible improvements priorities as to effect, cost, time and effort. Your display and effectiveness will improve each outreach opportunity. Like everything else in life, you must continually reinvent what you are doing or it will get stale and flat.

Vertical items: office supply stores have Plexiglas stands to hold a flyer upright. They are also called "Clear Frame 8x10 Photo Holders." Two common styles look like this, open to the sides so you can slip in the flyer.


Use large easy to read type, bright inviting colored paper. All you want on here is the basics, things that do not change, so people can see it right away. Resist the temptation to cram these "verticals" with other information that can be put in auxiliary flyers and brochures.

A Banner with the name of your Parent Organization, preferably overhead, is a great idea. You can make temporary banners on a computer, but for durability, a vinyl-coated fabric one is hard to beat. It comes in handy to mark your location at picnics as well. Be prepared to invest a hundred bucks or so, unless you can find a manufacturer who will sponsor you.

Often it is possible to suspend a banner from a ceiling grid, or along a handy back wall. At picnics, bring enough rope and string it up between trees or posts. But many a time you will find yourself in a situation where there is nothing handy from which to hang the banner or large sign. Here is another idea - make a table top stand out of PVC pipe and fittings to hold an identity sign and perhaps dangle a globe, a space station model, a satellite or rocket model, etc. With this cheap, easy to assemble and disassemble, lightweight system, you are ready for any situation.


How to make this Table Top Banner Holder



PLANS for Table Top Exhibits that various Chapters have built

Lavatube Display link corrected 1/12/04

Earth-Mars-Moon "Gravity Bricks"

Lunar Homestead model

Earth-Mars-Moon "Gravity Jugs"

Periscopic Window

M.A.R.S. Hab model & diorama

Color Code: orange: off site link -- yellow: link to another hub page -- blue: on this page

Oregon L5's Lavatube Display link corrected 1|12|04


  • Lunar Reclamation Society's "Moon Manor" Lunar Homestead, built by Peter Kokh
    • Concept equally valid for Mars Application
    • Detailed plans, materials list, and instructions promised
    • Photos 1 | 2 | 3 -- Diagram
    • Original cost over $300, cost to duplicate, a little less
    • weight about 70 lbs - takes two to handle, one to set up
    • Debut at ISDC '98 in Milwaukee
    • "Moon Manor" has been seen by thousands and teaches these lessons:
      • we can build habitats on the Moon (or Mars) using local materials
      • we can protect ourselves from extremes of heat and cold, cosmic rays, ultra violet, solar flares, and meteorites by covering ourselves up with a blanket of moondust which serves the same purpose as the blanket of the atmosphere on Earth
      • we can bring the sunlight and the views down under with us so our underground homes can be very pleasant
      • we can grow plants inside to keep the air fresh and sweet, help pretreat toilet wastes (modular biospherics), and provide pleasant living green foliage and flowers
      • we can connect homes by pressurized streets - space suits not needed in everyday life


    LRS' "Gravity Bricks" - picked up "two at a time" by hundreds -- "Cool!"

    NOTE: 10|12|02 - for those who want to try their own hand(s) at making a set of "gravity bricks" for their chapter or group, we have uploaded a full set of illustrated step by step instructions (including materials list, tools list, and options.)


    NOTE: for an analogous, but cheaper and easier to make yourself set, see "Gravity Jugs" below


    LRS' "Z-Vue" Model - demonstrates periscopic "picture windows" for underground Lunar or Martian Habitats

    • Blueprints, materials list and sources, and instructions promised
    • Measures 24" wide by 28" high and deep - lightweight
      2" styrofoam, mirrors, assorted other parts
    • Meanwhile, this diagram



    Wiscsonsin Mars Society's M.A.R.S. Hab model & diorama & accompanying storyboard


Build & Bring Your Own "Knock Down" Table

The Lunar Reclamation Society's [NSS-Milwaukee] "Moon Manor" Lunar Homestead Exhibit needed its own "legs", rather than an "extra table" which was sometimes hard to come by. So the exhibit crew came up with this simple and stable 1.5" PVC support system which works just fine.

  • Note: as the Exhibit itself was built on top of a 36"x80" hollow core door, no additional "table surface" was needed
  • If you desire a table "top", remember that a hollow core door is both much lighter and much more dimensionally stable than a slab of plywood. Hollow core doors are 80" long (tall) and come 30", 32", and 36" wide.
  • Note: the whole assembly is test assembled, then glued with PVC cement -- except for the leg + end cap + cross piece subassemblies which are friction fit into the upper "T"s without cement so that they can be removed for shipping and storage. The uncemented junctions are noted by red lines. The leg end caps protect carpets and other floors and are ideal for outdoor use. PVC is waterproof.
  • Hint: put some cleaner on a rag to erase the "writing" on the tubes
  • Hint: a hack saw works fine to cut PVC pipe
  • Hint: sand the burrs off the sawn edges first before assembling
  • Hint: once the cement is set (less than 30 seconds) the joint cannot be undone - if you goofed, you'll need to start over with fresh parts





Earth><Mars><Moon "Gravity Jugs"

Make your own set for
Less than $5 and in less than an hour
With no special skills!

The Gravity Brick sets described above are difficult and time-consuming to make, require familiarity with masonry cutting and general workshop skills, and cost $10-15 in materials, some of which require an effort to make.

Full instructions for making your own set and jug information labels you can download and print are now on this website.

from Peter Kokh - September 20, 2002

Letter from Neil Durst, 9|26|02 - I like the jug exhibit idea! I'm going to have my (youngest) daughter make these and see if I can get her Junior High School science teacher interested in a Moon day or event. This idea is physics, space science, and fun put together.



Storyboards updated 03|08|2007 [Artemis Moonbase Storyboard]

Dictionary [Random House]: "a panel or panels on which a sequence of sketches depict the significant changes of action in a film scene" ...

For our purposes, a Storyboard is

"a panel or set of panels that by pictures, sketches, and text informs the visitor to our information table or booth about a Space Mission or Space Development Project"

Options: single, bi-fold, tri-fold panels of foam core board or other light weight material

By including photos, art, sketches, and minimal concise text, the Storyboard aims at giving the visitor the gist of a project or program or development in a leisurely glance (as opposed to reading a more detailed flyer, pamphlet, article, or paper about the subject).

Storyboard Suggestions - those linked are completed workups. Those listed but not yet linked are workups currently in cue and "under construction." Additonal Storyboard theme workups will be added in time. Please feel free to suggest additional storyboard themes

    • sb_spacetours.htm [U.C.] - "The Prospects for Tourism in Space"
    • sb_alphatown.htm [U.C.] - "Possible Evolution of the International Space Station into a Commercial Town in Orbit"
  • MOON Themes
  • MARS Themes
    • sb_marsanaloghabs.htm - "The Mars Analog Research Station Program" - includes instructions to replicate the original storyboard and accompanying diorama produced by Wisconsin Mars Society- updated 11/19/02 photo link added
    • sb_mars_aviation.htm [U.C.] - "The Possibility of Manned Aviation on Mars"
  • ASTEROID Themes
    • sb_asteroidthreat.htm - "The Threat & Promise of Asteroids"
    • sb_europa.htm - "Jupiter's moon Europa and its Ice-capped Ocean"

Storyboard Helpers - anything 3 dimensional to catch the eye of the passerby and draw it to your storyboard is a good idea. Examples:

  • a low detail model of NASA's KittyHawk to draw the eye to a Mars Aviation storyboards
  • a commercial kit model of Lunar Prospector suspended on a monofilament between the wings of a tri-fold storyboard on Ice on the Moon
  • a homemade model of a Mars Hab to draw the eye to the M.A.R.S. Analog Station Storyboard constructed by Wisconsin Mars Society. A low-detail Hab was assembled from two PVC sewer schedule 4" end caps. The hab sits on a diorama of a Utah | Mars landscape (take your pick) to sit at the base of the storyboard. The detail is not meant to be exact. The purpose is only to draw the eye to the storyboard where more exact illustrations will be posted. Pictures taken, will be posted when developed to disk. - posted 11/12|02
  • a collection of "processed on the Moon" materials: metal alloys, glass, fiberglass, ceramics, concrete to illustrate the Resources on the Moon storyboard.

An ambitious Free-Standing Exhibit Setup that will support a pair of changeable storyboards: