Word Clock Five Minutes At A Time

As this clock’s creator admits, it took far more than five minutes to put together, but it does display the time in five minute increments.

After acquiring five 4-character, 16 segment display modules that were too good to pass up, they were promptly deposited in the parts pile until [JF] was cajoled into building something by a friend. Given that each display’s pins were in parallel, there was a lot of soldering to connect these displays to the clock’s ATMega328P brain. On the back of the clock’s perfboard skeleton, a DS1307 real-time clock and coin cell keep things ticking along smoothly. The case is laser cut out of acrylic with an added red filter to up the contrast of the display, presenting a crisp, crimson glow.

Troubleshooting — as well as procrastination — proved to be the major stumbling block here. Each of the displays required extensive troubleshooting because — like Christmas lights of yore — one bad connection would cause all the other displays to fail. Furthermore, there isn’t any easy way to change the time, so the clock needs to be reprogrammed once in a while

We love word clocks because there are so many ways to configure them and for the oddities. That isn’t to say radial clocks are any less creative.

Continue reading “Word Clock Five Minutes At A Time”

Word Clock Redux

[drj113] wrote back to let us know his latest version of the infamous Word Clock, now in Arduino flavor. You may remember when we originally showed you the Word Clock back in September, while much hasn’t changed, he’s added and modified a few things to make it more user-friendly. Most notably is the use of Arduino instead of PIC, while some commentators will complain this as a waste of an Arduino, it is extending the project towards those who are less technically inclined. Other changes include a new case, dedicated time changing buttons, and blue LEDs (and who doesn’t love blue).

We would also like to give [Alex], one of our commentators, a shout out with is QlockTwo. Same Word Clock concept, but used acrylic, paper sheet, and stickers to produce a much smoother look.

Update: It would appear we’ve made a slight mistake, the original creator of the QlockTwo is actually [Ruud Burger], not [Alex]. Thanks [Ruud] for clearing that up.

Word Clock: Tell The Time With Words


[drj113]  posts his cool word clock. After seeing a similar clock on an industrial design website, he set out to make his own version. He made custom pcbs with the toner-etch method. The front is a solid piece of copper clad board and the light shines through the etched areas. It’s powered by a PIC microcontroller and uses approximately 120 ultra bright LEDs. [drj113] has all of the circuit board diagrams, silkscreens, etch negatives, and code on the intructable so you can build your own.