Thursday, June 28, 2012

How to Find the Center of a Circular Object..........

or Why I am Happy I Paid Attention in Math Class When Everyone Told Me I Would Never Use it Real Life.

Have you ever been crafting and needed to find the exact center of a circular object, and eyeballing it just didn't cut it?  For example, when you want to find the circumference of a circular object without trying to finagle an uncooperative tape measure around it.  I have used this little geometry tip a bunch of times, most recently when making a sunburst mirror and a lamp shade.  It's very easy, I promise!

1.  You will need a piece of paper, pencil, a ruler and your circular object.  I am using a lamp shade ring in this example.  If you can draw directly on your object, you can skip the paper and step 2 altogether.

2.  Trace around your circular object.

3.  Draw two lines across your circle using your ruler.  It doesn't really matter where, but very close to the center or edge will make the next steps a little harder.

4.   With your ruler, measure each line between the two points it intersects the circle.  Mark the midpoint of each line.

5.  Using your ruler, draw a perpendicular to each line through the midpoint.  Make sure the line extends through the middle of the circle.  It's easiest to draw a perpendicular line with a clear quilting ruler. 

6.  Tada!  Your perpendicular lines intersect at the exact center of the circle.

Please ask questions if any of the steps are confusing or unclear.

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