Introduction: Clockworker Radio

Picture of Clockworker Radio

A couple of month ago I found a x-tal radio called the "MysterySet". Together with a variable capacitor and a Schottky Diode I builded a Steam Punk style Radio.
For the housing I used a glass dome for clocks. And for tuning a lever below the housing.

The receiver is very sensitive and without any batteries ore power I am able to listen up to 10 Stations in the night.


Everett_McKinley (author)2012-04-30

Hi I was wondering what the specifications were on the Schottky Diode and Variable capacitor. (what types and sizes)

many thanks,


the capacitor is 500pF.
The diode is a BAT46.

The coil was wound regarding the following instructions:

I hope that will help.

With kind regards,

H. Steam

Can I use the 270PF capacitor?

Yes it will but you will have to add more turns to the tuning coil.

Thanks so much, this should help me out a lot.

again many thanks,

TravisM18 (author)2015-11-03

This was a basic crystal radio. You can use germanium diodes also.

Ten_Speed (author)2011-09-18

Very nice and attractive radio. I looked at the link that you posted. Can you tell me which one you went with, the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd? What size tube did you use? What are the dimensions of the clock dome that you used? And lastly, where did you put the headphone plug at?

Horatius.Steam (author)Ten_Speed2011-09-19


I used this wooden base:

together with that dome no V:

I cut a wooden ring, that fits between the wooden stand and the base plate and than I cut the ring into two half's.
I drilled two holes for the headphones and two for antenna and earth and glued it between the wooden stand and the base plate.

Hope that will help a bit.


Horatius Steam

boaslad (author)2011-08-27

Nice radio. It's nice to see a "steam punk" device that actually does what it is supposed to do. There are too many useless "props" out there. I also applaud the fact that you resisted the usual temptation to hot glue on extraneous useless bits (gears etc.) Very clean and functional. I love it. It's true punk... not junk. Thanks.

Horatius.Steam (author)boaslad2011-08-27

Thank you, I am trying to build real functioning devices.

More radios to come.....

H. Steam

johnpoole (author)2011-05-27

my 1st project was a crystal, connected it to a "clothes line".. one station.. never looked back, that was 1956.. great project, the globe makes this one..

HisDivineShadow (author)2010-12-04

Would the radio remain funional in the case of a nuclear detonation in space resulting and an Electro Magnetic Pulse?

Yes, but you would probably be to dead to hear it.. that and the transmitters would smoke.

If you like to have a "EMP" prove radio, you have to use tubes. I builded a Tube Radio with a German KC1 Tube (direct heated triode) You will find it on my (German) Homepage.
The circuit is very simple. The circuit uses 2 V of heating voltage and 81V of anode voltage. To prevent the user from being "heated and cooked" by a leakage in the phones, I used a piezo telephone and a stethoscope to isolate the user. ;-) With kind regards, Jochen

Phil B (author)HisDivineShadow2010-12-06

The Schottky diode is a semi-conductor and would probably be damaged in an EMP. But, other things can be used as a detector, including a thin wire for a cat's whisker and a blue razor blade or a galena chrystal. Another question, though, is, "Would any stations survive an EMP in order to send out something to receive?"

Kiernan (author)Phil B2011-01-23

The emergency brodcast system is EMP proofed so you might be able to pick that up

HisDivineShadow (author)Phil B2011-01-18

If only...

FrankenPC (author)2010-09-01

Out of electronics curiosity, why the diode? To rectify the waveform prior to hitting the speaker?

omnibot (author)FrankenPC2010-09-01

It's used as a detector. The detector demodulates the signal by only letting the low frequency part of the signal to pass, ie the sound wave, to the headphones where they are then turned back into sound. Since the dioe can't switch at the speeds needed for radiofrequency.

wobbler (author)omnibot2011-05-10

This isn't how the detector diode works. In AM the RF signal is modulates by making the signal stronger or weaker in synchronisation with the audio signal.

The diode rectifies this radio frequency wave and this then creates an averaged radio frequency wave in the same shape as the original audio, which the headphones then react to.

The diode is not acting as a filter to only let the low frequency part of the signal to pass and in fact needs to actually work at the frequency of the radio wave, if it couldn't switch at these frequencies it wouldn't actually work at all as a detector.

FrankenPC (author)omnibot2010-09-01

So it's acting as a band pass filter?

dscotthep (author)FrankenPC2010-09-02

Not a band pass filter, a rectifier

merseyless (author)dscotthep2010-11-16

i always wondered if a full rectifier would work better

wobbler (author)merseyless2011-05-10

The problem with using a fullwave rectifier would be that you would be doubling the voltage drop across the diodes, as a full wave rectifier has two diodes working at any one time. As it's important with crystal sets to get the lowest voltage drop diode you can (hence the use of the germanium diode), using a full wave rectifier would actually make the output quieter or not heard at all. There would be no gain whatsoever.

Yes, but I followed the original Coil, except the rectifier.
Thank you

Horatius.Steam (author)FrankenPC2010-09-01

Hi, this a radio without a speaker, only headphones and a long antenna outside (10m). But its fun to listen to radio with such an old fashioned device. I also thought about using s x-tal detector. But this was the easiest way and the shottky is very sensitive. Thank you all for your nice replies. JoE

thewizard42 (author)FrankenPC2010-09-01

Im not sure why, but i believe they're now in most crystal radios.

myfcr (author)2010-12-01

awesome steam punk radio

theexternaldisk (author)2010-12-01

looks nice!

Waren-Neutron (author)2010-11-29

nice job Jnen

Waren-Neutron (author)2010-11-29

it is so nice to have

Waren-Neutron (author)2010-11-29

it has a radio wave?

Atulya Verma (author)2010-11-28

amazing u rgrate

Horatius.Steam (author)2010-09-03

you will find the Schematics in this link

Have a nice Weekend,

wobbler (author)2010-09-01

I like this! Fantastic design! It reminds me a bit of the Martian Little Gem crystal set from 1922, one of my favourite crystal set designs and I think incredible for its time:

thewizard42 (author)2010-09-01

Pretty awesome. I might have to try to make one of these in school

omnibot (author)2010-09-01

That is one sweet radiobuild.

canida (author)2010-08-31

Very pretty!

Bongmaster (author)2010-08-31

awesome i'd like to see this as an ible :3

Culturespy (author)2010-08-31

Nice job!

About This Instructable




Bio: I am a home constructor, an inventor and a dreamer. If you ask me who guided me and who inspired me then this people comes ... More »
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