Picture of Lamina Nixie Clock
This is my first instructable and I hope you will like it. I have been reading this website for a while now and I decided to publish my project. I am non-native English speaker please excuse my language mistakes.

This project is inspired by a previous instructable from Hellboy and his Lantern Clock. In the meanwhile he came out with the Cyclops which has a kind of similar concept as mine, but God see my heart, I just took the Lantern clock as my starting point. Anyway I would like to thank him for that inspiration.

When I first saw Hellboy's clock, I said I want something like that. So I sat to my desk switched on my computer and started to design. After a while I came up with the final plan.

The rendered 3d image looked quite OK for me.

For the wooden parts I wanted to use wenge wood but I could not get wenge in that size for a reasonable price. So I decided to use the old proven walnut and maple combination.

I realized soon enough that finding a similar brass disks and gears what matching my design is quite impossible so I decided to make them, but I did not know how yet. The turning would kill my little Unimat machine, which set is meant  to make small parts not these big ones, so I just put them on hold for a while until I find a solution and start the rest. And lately, the solution came to me by itself.

List of Materials, tools:

-walnut timber
-maple timber
-acrylic tubes
-circular saw, scroll saw
-drill and router machines
-brass rods, pipes
-threaded rods
-brass sheets
-screws, bolts
-lots of sandpaper
-nixie clock kit
-12v power adaptor
-soldering iron
-safety gloves, eye protection


themadcat2 years ago
Hello! Your project is really grate!
Can i ask you to describe tools and machines you had used during this project please?
Thank you!
zorwick (author)  themadcat2 years ago
Thank you themadcat! :)

I mainly used the Unimat hobby set to complete the clock. You can find all the informations from the set here: http://www.thecooltool.com/index_e.php

I have the Classic set and a lot of extra accessories plus a circular saw set to cut almost everything up to a certain (not too much) thickness. They have the Metal Line set which is much better for any work. I have some parts from that set since I broke some plastic tool from the Classic set.

The machine set has pros and cons of course. I got the Classic set as a gift a few years back so I upgraded that slowly. If I would start from scratch, knowing what I am going to do with machines like those I would go for dedicated machines. Circular saw like what I have or Proxxon circular saw for half price. For turning I would buy an old small engineer turning machine. Even Unimat had it in the past. They are last forever. Also a small and precise bench drill could be handy. All those dedicated machines are strong reliable, just what you need!

The Unimat sometimes is not enough or not that strong as a dedicated machine but there is always a solution to fix problems.
I always need a table router or 3D router or just something special for one little thing. Than the Unimat comes handy and I can build any machine what I want.

I dont promote any brand and I dont really have favorites. I prefer sturdy and precise tools. I really like my Unimat, but I am ok with my "SKILL" super cheap off brand sanding machine, which is strong and noisy and when it breaks I will throw away and buy another one :)

I hope this answers your question :)


Nice job my man. Pure genius I must say. Where did you by that Nixie Clock pcb?

victorvector3 months ago

Fantastic project , and your english language skills are just fine zorwick.

Well done indeed !

So beautiful!!!
diy_bloke7 months ago

Thanks for pointing out the FabLab. I noticed we have one where i live too. might be an option if i need some cutting or printing

diy_bloke7 months ago


niels.vanhooij11 months ago

where did you get the wooden panels with the 5mm thickness.

zorwick (author)  niels.vanhooij11 months ago
Well, for the first clock I have bought them from a model shop through internet, for the next clocks I make them myself, I buy the wood and slice them. See on the pictures!


Thanks for your fast reply :). havent thought about model shops yet. Doh.
bazsa1 year ago

Gratulálok, nagyon szép munka :) El tudnék viselni egy ilyet otthon :)

pepy1 year ago


DGraff7011 year ago

This clock is wonderful! I would love to make one of these as a gift for a friend. Do you have the wood templates on a PDF perhaps?

zorwick (author)  DGraff7011 year ago
Hi, I am making these clocks for sale, therefore unfortunately I could not provide more detailed informations.
Of course if you decide to make your own nixie clock and you have technical questions I am happy to help.

Thank you for understanding!


Darosberg1 year ago

Very nice indeed.

What 3D program did you use for the initial design?

zorwick (author)  Darosberg1 year ago

Thank you Darosberg,

Initially I used pencil and paper, then 3dMax. :)

afoxx1 year ago
I love it! Very nice sir. :)
Advar1 year ago
If you sell these, please sign me up! Awsome job! :)
zorwick (author)  Advar1 year ago
Thank you!

I am making and selling these clocks on woodize.com
At the moment I don't have this type on stock only others, but soon will be.


agent_k822 years ago
Really great Work, amazing. Can you put one for sale?
zorwick (author)  agent_k822 years ago
I sent you a PM regarding your question.
gknauss2 years ago
Just happened across this post. All I can say is "...wow...". Very nice execution, clean and well-formed design that balances out the beauty of those little Nixie tubes. You have quite an artful eye to pull this design off, I wouldn't change a thing. In reading your pdf instructions, you sound like the type of individual that plans things out quite a bit, and checking to make sure that "all-is-well" before moving on to the next step, it shows in your work. You have provided me with plenty of inspiration in using those little Nixie tubes, they almost beg to be used in a project. Thanks for sharing.
zorwick (author)  gknauss2 years ago
Thank you for your very nice compliments! Yes indeed I dont like something to just glue together and it will be ok kind of way to make things :) As a person who first open every machine, toy, tool to see what is inside, I planed all the parts to be manufacturable, openable, replaceable, maybe not always choose the easy way, but there is a way always :) This clock took a while to complete I have modified a lot before I cut the final parts. Since than, I have already made 3 of them for some request and I am making 2 more. I did change a little, not the outside but just a way of how to assemble and fabricate. Thanks again!
cparsley2 years ago
This clock is amazing artwork. I would never attempt to make it myself. How much would it cost to purchase?
asawyer52 years ago
This is awesome - if you ever go into production I'd be willing to pay quite a lot for one of these
Warp Racer2 years ago
Nice craftsmanship Zoltan. If you go ahead with a planned production run, please let me know. :)
longpcb2 years ago
Hi! Your Project is very nice!
I want to make for myself the nixie clock the same you! If you can send to me the pdf document please! Thank you very much! My Email: longpcb@gmail.com
nwitte2 years ago
This if fabulous. I would buy one if I could. Absolutely beautiful in every detail. The tubes of most Nixie clocks are fascinating but usually are set in the most dreary containers. Very well done!
zorwick (author)  nwitte2 years ago
Thank you!
I will keep you updated when it comes to production.

All the best!

diegofenner2 years ago
That's a piece of art! Amazing.
zorwick (author)  diegofenner2 years ago
Thank you!
mamajr962 years ago
Approximately how much did the whole project cost.
jakekusters2 years ago
Is it possible to get the templates for the woodwork?
IronWill3 years ago
This is amazing, well done.

perhaps i've missed it but what is the circuit diagram for this clock? i see the parts but not the way to arrange them.
anim8er3 years ago
A work of art!
zorwick (author)  anim8er3 years ago
Thank you!
Fukkel3 years ago
very very cool !!!
zorwick (author) 3 years ago
I have added a packaging update.
gentry3 years ago
This is great. How long did it take you to make it?
zorwick (author)  gentry3 years ago
It took a lot of time to finish the design, play around with materials and different solutions and so... To finish this first clock, it took around 3 month time, of course I had no time to work on it every day:). To replicate, it would take a 2 weeks, I guess, if I have all the necessary components.
kingbin3 years ago
Very nice design, I love it!
docgates3 years ago
Very beautiful clock, thanks for sharing this project. I'm inspired to see if I can build something similar. It's hard to judge the scale; what size nixie tubes did you use for it?
zorwick (author)  docgates3 years ago
The tubes are around 5,5 cm tall, the diameter 18 mm. I used 50 mm diameter acrylic tubes for the tanks. The clock itself around 32 cm wide, diagonally fit onto an A4 size paper, and 2,5 kilo :)
YAR!N3 years ago
This is really great! Do you have some pattern or something you would share? It would be very useful :)
tgirard3 years ago
Wow.... amazing build. any chance of getting dxfs for cutting out the parts. I'd be on this tomorrow if I had those :)
mochimaster3 years ago
Very, very impressive.

Would look really cool in a living room.
I cannot express how impressed I am. Good work, and one of the better of instructibles I've read. Incredible for the first tutorial in that you've made
zorwick (author)  Dynamic Nerd3 years ago
Thanks! :)
kubulai3 years ago
Very nice!
Russ.R3 years ago
Awesome build & design...I also would be interested in buying one or a kit if made available..

Well Done!
zorwick (author)  Russ.R3 years ago
Thank you, I wil let you know.
cknapp13 years ago
Gotta say, this clock looks amazing! My grandpa and I are considering working on one in the near future, though considering how beautiful this one is, it'll be a hard act to follow.
zorwick (author)  cknapp13 years ago
You will have lot of fun and the end is going to be beautiful. Even a single Nixie tube is stunning!
sway3 years ago
It is stunning. Just really beautiful. Thank you for sharing.
Hammernator3 years ago
Very well done, I liked everything about it. Good work, and hope you have great success at your new project!
I just want to say that this a an awesome looking project and great job man...
halciber3 years ago
Wow, even without the clock features, I love this project for the beautiful wood work. This is a fabulous article, thank you for publishing it.
carfur3 years ago
If I were you I would change the blue LED to a white LED.It would look a lot better and classy.
Why not build one, so we can compare to see if you're right?
Nixie tubes are VERY expensive in my country.I live in Romania and i can't find a direct importer.As soon as I find a cheap way to get a hold on this sistem I will definitely begin working on one of my own.Of course it wont be as awesome as this one because I don't have a CNC to mill the pieces for it.
Sorry I disagree completely, the blue looks excellent and very classy. Great project, I think I shall give it a try.
ksykes3 years ago
Great design and fabrication!
I want one...best Nixie clock I've seen yet!
x4junk3 years ago
Beautiful design zorwick. Execution is also really fine. The challenge in my home: we're lazy about cleaning dust off things and this device would test us further.
Pattymouth3 years ago
Zorwick, good job! Please let me know if you decide to sell these! I want one, too. It's fantastic! Good job!!!!!
randomray3 years ago
Argh , you used a computer and a laser cutter , the shame of it . But seriously I just say that because I do traditional wood work . This is a really nice design kind of a cross between Art Deco , Industrial and steampunk . As for the tools you used , hey it's what you had and knew how to use . Good for you . I bet it was a lot faster too . Thanks for sharing . Really like it !
Txkink3 years ago
That's beautiful work and a well done instructable!
vsams143 years ago
Absolutely love this and really want to build one!

Can we have a price estimate? I do have a budget and if this costs a lot, I will need to save up for it. Also, could someone recommend a good place to get nixie tubes in the states?
tpobrienjr3 years ago
Stuart213 years ago
What a thing of beauty!

P.S. your English is very good too - just found 1 minor - P2, 1st para, expect > except.

zorwick (author)  Stuart213 years ago
Fixed :)

Thanks ;)

zorwick (author) 3 years ago
Thank you for your compliments! I am very happy that you like my project.

I don't want to say...actually I do want to say :) that I am planning to make some more.
I love to sit and watch the numbers when it's dark outside, I definitely think that I need to share this experience :)

Yes, please see if you can make a kit for this and let us know! Perhaps you can partner with the firm that makes the electronics kit.
Pauper3 years ago
Your English is AWESOME and so is this project !!! WELL DONE !! :-{D
zorwick (author)  Pauper3 years ago
:) Thanks!
gafisher3 years ago
Beautifully done! Your finished product is stunning, your 'ible, including the photos and video, is awesome, and your English is very good.
kfi55999823 years ago
I agree with all very, very nice....thanks for sharing. And yes you should consider selling this.....
rms13 years ago
a fine example of design and workmenship to the Nth.
I purchase one in a heartbeat. Great job to ZORWICK
jpf553 years ago
Absolutely stunning, Bravo
radioman6733 years ago
how can i get a kit?
MadCobbler3 years ago
Beautiful! If you would make a kit I would buy one.
RedBinary3 years ago
qorlis3 years ago
I am very impressed at how clean and professional the final product looks. It looks as though it was something that can be purchased in a high end store or as a kit. In fact, if you wanted to sell it as a kit as well as a finished product, you could potentially make a good profit. Something to consider.
ringman573 years ago
Beautiful.... Can you post the schematic, pcb layout and drawing files? Please?
DSPNRG3 years ago
I suggest using something other than "benzol" (i.e. benzene). It is highly toxic. Rubbing alcohol (i.e. isopropyl) should achieve similar results. If you insist on using harsh chemicals, then use toluene at the very worst, but do wear a respirator (a dust mask won't work). You and your future kids will thank you.
arsenaldb103 years ago
That is a great work of art, I'm with the others, I want one.
jeremysale3 years ago
Name your price, brother. Lots of interested parties here.
gersong3 years ago
You have done well, fantastic work.
fantastico seu trabalho. Voce esta de parabens.
juliadee3 years ago
Sign me up - I'll buy one if you produce them. Just beautiful. Great job of building from Hellboy's work.
klillestol3 years ago
Beautiful design. Looks pretty complicated for me but I would certainly consider purchasing one as it looks like one of those things you can really pass down from generation to generation.
dave173 years ago
Wow,really beautiful project!
And your English is great too.
guadi173 years ago
can we purchase one? i would like this for my grandfather
dslocum3 years ago
I'm at a loss for words. REALLY! Great design aesthetic, my friend!

I'll take one if you decide to make these puppies!!!!
zorwick (author)  dslocum3 years ago
Thanks, I will let you know!
hellboy3 years ago
Great job Zorwick.... Looks awesome
zorwick (author)  hellboy3 years ago
Thank you for your inspiration!
Simply AWESOME. Congratulations!
Paperduck3 years ago
Wow. That's beautiful! :O
It's BEAUTIFUL! A lot of work and your effort is well rewarded. Thanks for sharing your project.