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Topic: Common Tangent Construction

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Subject:   RE: Common Tangent Construction
Author: Mathman
Date: May 10 2006
On May 10 2006, Tup wrote:
> I don't know as accuracy has anything to do with geometric
> constructions*.

*The physical drawings are effected by
> accuracy of the tools - but they are only models of ideal lines of
> infinite length (and 0 width),
exact lengths and so on.

You are reiterating whatI was pointing out.  The trivial case when the circles
are the same size is a rectangle.  The problem I had was with the point P being
physically far beyond reach for circles almost the same size.  The misconception
I had was that my alternative solution [not posted, and rather difficult to
describe [certainly no advantage it seems] would get around that fact.  The
problem was that it sent too far in the opposite sense, the point ofintersection
required being most difficult to determine, and eventually as impossible as the

I am determined to spend a little more time on this, but am rather busy at
present, being retired and all.  Household chores multiply exponentially, and
hobbies become almost businesslike in production.  IF I do come upon some
suitable solution I'll pass it along.
presently, I'm content that Alan came up wit ha rather nice solution using
softwaqre, but even then, there is a limit in the fact that his difference
circle would become inordinately small as the circles became closer in size.  It
is still an excellent point pro *suitable* and intelligent use of software
...but could also be done readily with compasses and ruler. :)


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