It's really awesome, cheap and easy, no arduino or soldering needed! I used a Mickey Mouse alarm clock from Disneyland. It was old and rusty, just collecting dust on my shelf. You can use any alarm clock with this configuration, or buy one.
- An alarm clock (ebay, amazon). I used 4" one
- Tint film (ebay, amazon). You don't have to buy the most expensive one, the 5$ one will do the trick
- LED Strip or LED fairy lights
- A Mirror that fits your clock. If you're using a 4" clock, a 10 cm mirror should fit.
- USB Cable (optional)
- A screwdriver
- A drill
- A cloth
- Exacto knife / box cutter
TOTAL COST: ~20$ (Clock included)
Step 1: Dissecting Mickey
Remove all screws from the back panel. Notice you might find one inside the battery slot. Then remove the legs and the bells with your pliers.
I removed the alarm switch and the DC motor that causes the clock to ring, because the alarm function will not be useable. The distance between the hands to the mechanism will be bigger when we add the mirror (which is thicker than the Mickey printing). The clock can be used, but the hand which controls on the hour in which the alarm goes on cannot be fitted. Oh yeah, and I accidentally broke that little piece of metal that rings the bell.
Pull the inner circuit board to reveal the clock hands and the Mickey printing. Remove the hands and set aside.
Peel the printing and discard.
You will notice a white ring and a round piece of glass, keep them. We will need the glass for the second step.
Step 2: Coating the Glass With Tint
Clean the glass with soap then dry.
Cut the tint film using the scissors. It doesn't need to be way bigger than the glass. Soak a fresh cloth with water, then apply it on the glass, so it's evenly wet. You can also spray the surface with water instead.
Peel the plastic layer from the film, and spray it as well. Then apply it onto the glass. Remove any bubbles and excess water using a credit card. Be careful not to scratch it. Place a flat plate with some weight above.
After half an hour, remove any bubbles you may have left. Wait for additional half an hour, then trim the film's edges using an exacto knife or a box cutter.
Step 3: Coiling the LED's
I used some cheap LED fairy lights as the light source. It's great because you can coil it around the white ring. Also it's cheap and easy to work with.
It receives 3 AA batteries as input, which is roughly equal to 4.5V. That's awesome, because we can replace the battery pack with a less clumsy USB cable (which has about the same voltage).
I placed an LED every 4 cm, but you're free to place it however you'd like.
Cut the battery pack. Feed the USB cable through the back panel (where the switch should have been), and tie a knot. Strip both the USB cable and the wires from the LED's, then wrap them together. Insulate using some electrical tape.
Alternatively, you can solder them. But where's the fun in that?
Step 4: Piercing the Mirror
We need to make a small hole in the mirror. Don't peel off the protective film yet.
Drilling through glass mirrors can be tricky. If you're not familiar with, use a plastic mirror like I did.
In order to find the central point, mark 4 parallel lines, as the diagram above shows. Then, draw 2 diagonal lines where the lines intersect. The central point is where the 2 diagonal lines intersect.
Drill using an appropriate-sized drill bit at the central point (I used a 7mm drill bit).
Step 5: Putting It All Together
Place the tinted glass. Then, place the white ring.
Attach the mirror to the front of the circuit board (where Mickey used to be). Place the hands back in place.
Return the circuit board to it's original place. Tighten the screws, and reposition the back panel. Make sure no cables are escaping through the casing so you won't get arrested (ehm Ahmed Muhammad).
Step 6: Fire It Up
That's pretty much it!
Plug it in and set the time.
Be proud and have a cookie.