Digital clock hack

I've been trying to do more DIY stuff recently, so I figured I would start out with an easy project. Basically, I was wondering if it is possible to modify a standard digital clock so it could display different messages through an lcd display based on the current time. Since most clocks have an alarm feature, I thought this would be pretty easy to do, but then again I could be completely wrong. I know how to solder and such, so I shouldn't have too many technical problems if I get a push in the right direction. Also, I know how to do a bit of coding, and I'm good at adapting so I'm sure I could find out some way to make this work. Any help is much appreciated.

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NachoMahma9 years ago
. I think CameronSS is on the right track. Learn how timers, counters, controllers, &c work, and THEN reverse-engineer your clock.
brickzima (author)  NachoMahma9 years ago
ok sounds good. ill start learning more of that stuff. any suggestions on what to look at first?
. Forrest Mims has a lot of good books and articles.
CameronSS9 years ago
I'm guessing that starting from scratch might be easier than trying to modify an existing clock, although you might end up ripping out the circuit and using it. I microcontroller could probably be used to read the clock board's digital output, and control an alphanumeric LCD. I've never tried anything like this, and I have absolutely no experience with microcontrollers, but I'm guessing that it's possible. Someone like NachoMahma, Randofo, or westfw could probably give you more technical advice.

I hope I didn't lose you- You're new, so I have no idea what your knowledge level is. Probably higher than mine...sigh...another one...
brickzima (author)  CameronSS9 years ago
Well I would definitely enjoy the challenge of making a clock from scratch. And considering I already know how to program a clock (if necessary) that would be a bit easier for me. And no, you didn't lose me. I know exactly what you're talking about, just as of now I have no experience with it so I don't know how to implement it myself.
Sorry...You aren't particularly new--I've only been here a little over a month longer than you have. You just haven't been active.

I can't really give you any more help, as that's about the extent of my knowledge with microcontrollers. You program it, feed it inputs, and it'll give you happy little outputs (similar to shot puts). Mostly, I'm bumping your thread up so it doesn't get lost--I'm curious about this project now.
Do not try to build a grandfather clock from scratch me and my friends tried to do it and it didn't work...
brickzima (author)  guyfrom7up9 years ago
Haha I already have one of those so I don't exactly need to build one. Thanks for the tip off though.