This is my model of the Soviet Venus lander Venera. Four of them were sent, and because of the harsh atmosphere and conditions on Venus none lasted for any longer than 1 hour 30 minutes.
There's really not that much to say about this. It was a pretty quick build, so this isn't long.
For the disk part, I used one of the very first Lego cog gears. They were not Technic, and they obviously do not make them any more.
For the topmost part, it should be a little bigger in diameter. But since there are spiral grooves there on the real thing, those old style turntables worked best in displaying the grooves.
The whole thing is pretty much built on an axle. Three different tires were used. The arm with the soil tester on the bottom I made using arm joints from the first Lego people, whatever they're called.
Sorry, Cameron. I should have made it clearer. In the late 70's and early 80's the Soviet Union sent some unmanned landers to Venus. They were the only landers sent there, due to the EXTREMELY harsh environment. The first one only lasted about 20 minutes, I think. They were able to send pictures back though. For some good photos of the surface of Venus, go here: http://pages.preferred.com/%7Etedstryk/venerab.html