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Virgin Mary Projector

The Virgin Mary Projector is essentially a miniature low-power projector built into a tube. This project was inspired by various sightings of Jesus and the Virgin Mary in New Jersey in the early 1990s. Why wait for a sighting when you can create one yourself in the safety of your own home?

Project date: ~1993

This project was inspired by various sightings of Jesus and the Virgin Mary in New Jersey in the early 1990s. Why wait for a sighting when you can create one yourself in the safety of your own home?

It consists of the following parts:

  • (1) 11" piece of 2" diameter PVC tubing, painted flat black
  • (5) Joiners for 1 1/4" PVC tubing, one painted flat black
  • (1) 35mm slide of the object to project, cut to fit 2" diameter PVC tubing
  • (1) 2" (50mm) DCX (double convex) lens, with a focal length about 100mm. This serves to project the image
  • (1) 2" (50mm) PCX (plano convex) lens, with a focal length about 50mm. This serves to gather the light from the flashlight and help beam it forward
  • (1) flashlight mirror and bulb
I purchased the PVC and flashlight from a hardware store. The lenses were obtained from Edmund Optics (it was Edmund Scientific at the time) from what is now apparently their Anchor Optics division. Even though they are "experimental", the lenses are excellent.

Here is a photo of the parts laid out on the floor

The photo doesn't show two of the PVC joiners, which are glued into the tube at a distance which will place the slide at the DCX lens focal length once assembled.

Here are the DCX lens and the PVC joiner which is painted black and goes in the front of the projector

Here is the 35mm slide, the PCX lens, and the joiner which holds them in place inside the tube:

The 35mm slide is a photo of a Pieta statue, with black magic marker applied directly to the slide, to mask out the area surrounding the head.

Here is a detail of the slide, backlit for clarity:

The light source is simply the front end of a cheap flash light, disassembled. Wires have been soldered to the lamp and case so that it can be hooked up to a power source:

Here are views of the front and back ends of the tube, empty except for the joiners permanently placed into the tube:

(front, blackened)

(rear)

When assembled, the flash light can be powered in order to project an image. With the flashlight bulb, the image isn't very bright, so a darkened room is required.

But it does cast a fairly eerie image - here is a photo of an actual projection:

[Needed: a schematic describing the assembled tube]

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