Well, It had to happen.
I first published my WordClock project in September 2009. It was a Microchip PIC based clock, using a PIC16F877A microprocessor. In the last year and a half, I have been constantly improving it, and have adapted it to the Arduino, and even designed an updated controller board for it.
Well, It got better. I have discovered how to cut Vinyl stencils, and have been experimenting with Perspex, so I thought it was time to share what I have been playing with.
The beauty of using cut vinyl as a stencil, is that you can create a clock that is up to 45cm x 45cm (or larger if you have the vinyl). My previous PCB based stencils were limited to 150mm x 150mm.
As with all of my clock designs, this is completely open. I encourage everybody to make one either using the details from this site. It is much simpler than it looks.
If you want, I can provide parts, complete kits, or even complete clocks from my web site at http://www.dougswordclock.com.
This clock uses an updated Arduino controller PCB. It has a DS1302 RTC onboard, to ensure that the timing is accurate, and an automatic dimming function kicks in between 7pm, and 7am, so you can still sleep if the clock is installed in your bedroom.
It is powered from a 12V DC, 400mA power supply. I have considered battery power, but LED clocks don't run for very long on batteries, so that is not an ecologically sensible idea. My old clocks used to run from an AC source, but i moved to DC when I implemented the RTC chip.
I hope you enjoy building one of these clocks, and that it inspires your own projects. My Epilog Challenge thoughts:
I have entered this project into the Epilog Challenge - The things I could do with a laser cutter.... wow.... I could cut intricate shapes that would allow me to morph this project into a full flowing - 3D - word clock, that has a clock face that has depth, real depth, with curves.... It could be a combination of shape and texture that I see with the Dali style melting clock (http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-Make-a-Dali-Style-Melting-Clock/)
, and using a laser cutter, I could make the intricate baffles necessary to make that real as a word clock.
Megs will never see me again - I will have to simply live in my garage! :-)