Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Creating a MyHeritage "Sun Chart"

Creating a MyHeritage "Sun Chart" (see ) is relatively easy to do if you have an existing MyHeritage account and a MyHeritage family tree on the website.

From the "Family tree" tab dropdown menu on MyHeritage, select the "Print charts and books" item:

The "Sun chart" option is in the list on the left side of the "Print Charts and Books" page.

I clicked on the "Sun chart" option and saw (on the same page) the "Customize the chart" options:

I typed "Isaac Seaver" and then  selected Isaac Seaver (1823-1901), my second great-grandfather,  with his second wife, Lucretia Townsend Smith (there is a dropdown menu on the right for a person with more than one spouse), for the chart.

I selected 5 generations for the chart - that would include me and my siblings and first cousins.

After clicking on the orange "Preview chart" button at the bottom left of the screen above, I waited for a short time for the chart to be created.  Here is the first view of the chart - it's for the central persons:

There is a zoom bar at the top of the chart - I zoomed out to get a full view of the chart.  Here is the top half of the chart:

The bottom half of the chart (with some overlap with the above screen):

I wanted to save this chart as a PDF, so I clicked on the orange "Generate chart (PDF)" button on the upper right of the screen above.  The program started generating the chart:

The screen above says:

"Generating chart...
Generating a PDF may take a while.
We'll email it to you when ready."

It didn't take long.  They sent an email with a link to the PDF file, which I opened and then downloaded to my computer file folder for Isaac Seaver.  The 5 generation file, which was about 5,900 pixels on each side, was only 691 kb in size.  I opened the PDF from the file folder, and the 100% size was about 82 inches on each side (almost 7 feet).

I then tried an 8 generation chart for Norman Seaver (1734-1787), my 5th great-grandfather, and it took awhile longer to create, and the chart has 525 persons, is a little larger (11,000 pixels per side) and 981 kb in size, and measured 156 inches (13 feet!) on each side.

When I tried a 10 generation chart for Robert Seaver (1608-1683), my 10th great-grandfather, it took over 30 minutes before I cut it off.  8 or 9 generatinos may be the practical limit.

From the generated Sun Chart, you can see that I have not uploaded photographs of many of my cousins to MyHeritage.  I need to do that before I get this chart printed.

This process is very easy to perform.  I love the chart - in full scale it is readable.  The five generation chart is almost 7 feet square, so it would fill up a wall in a home.  That's really the largest size you want to display in a home - the 8 generation chart would require a 13 foot square wall.


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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Gilad Japhet said...

Thanks for testing our Sun Charts, Randy.

Please note that the charts can be printed on much smaller paper size, far below 100%.
For example, my own chart (appearing as an example in the MyHeritage blog post) includes 8 generations and 323 people, and it printed really well on 1 meter x 1 meter
(39.4 inches on each dimension) without requiring 7 feet sq. or more.
It is currently hanging in my office. These are very compact charts and they do not require large walls.

Anne Young said...

This new product was enough to tempt me to sign up for MyHeritage. Really easy to sign up, upload tree and produce charts. I printed a chart of the descendants of my eighth great grandfather onto A0 paper - so really manageable. The font is quite legible. A chart of the descendants of my husband's 3rd great grandfather is also interesting but gets quite crowded as there are several generations with many children :( I have written briefly about my first forays into sun charting at