"Fable" 3D Printed Clock




Posted in Technology3D-Printing

Introduction: "Fable" 3D Printed Clock

About: Gilbert13 is the creative partnership of Angela and Mark Gilbert. We are a UK based product design studio involved in a diverse range of projects ranging from furniture to 3D printing and interested in educa...
This is our design "Fable", a 3D printed mantle clock that displays time whilst depicting a tranquil and fairytale like scene.   The classically shaped domed cage frames the rotating tree which moves with every second gently swaying the swing as time passes by and the hour and minute hands rotate with the correct time passing through the viewing circles at the front. 
Designed by Angela and Mark Gilbert, the product developed from an interest in the beautifully crafted antiquities, curiosities and oddities from days gone by which have survived the passage of time. We wanted to translate the charm and character found in these products into a contemporary piece, which had merit as a sculptural and desirable art piece as well as a useful product capable of communicating data in a beautiful and inspiring way.

The cage and body of the clock have been created using Solidworks to ensure all the components fitted together how we wanted as well as having all the right clearances. The tree on the other hand was created using a Haptic Arm and the 3D modeling program Freeform. The Haptic arm makes modeling an organic form like the tree more intuitive and natural, like a sculptor would create an object in a material like clay or plasticine. Freeform allows you to model "virtual clay" adding and carving the form as you go. The Haptic Arm applies force feedback as you feel the surfaces your modeling so you can touch, pull and tweak the clay into the exact shape you want.  The whole clock has then been 3D printed by Shapeways in 5 parts through the Selective laser sintering (SLS) process and then assembled around a high quality clock mechanism.

See a video of Fable in action,

For more information see our website: www.gilbert13.co.uk



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    i´m looking for something like that for a while all 3D picture is very nice?

    This is a beautiful and clever use of 3D printing. I love the swing!

    I would BUY one of these, but dont' have the skills or tools to make one. Any chance you will be selling these??

    1 reply

    he's selling them: http://www.gilbert13.co.uk/shop.html

    How does it work? I'd be very interested in seeing the actual 'clock' parts, as well as a timelapse of its function over a day..

    Quality Mark and Angela.


    I want one that is fantastic are you planning to sell these

    I would definitely buy something like this. On a side note. What is the type of pen you're using in picture number 4? I've been searching around but can't find any info without the name.

    1 reply

    Thanks for the kind comments,
    The "pen thingy" is a phantom desktop haptic arm by sensable.
    Unfortunately its not mine but I get to borrow it now and them when I need it.
    It's a great bit of kit when you need to model something like the this tree.


    Beautiful - it looks like it's made out of sugar.

    Absolutely gorgeous! I have never seen a clock like this - it's wonderful.