Picture of The amazing Plasma Binary Clock, Steampunk style.
A couple of month ago Mr. Longwinters  send me some plasma (NEON) bulbs wit European E-27 windings.
Mr Junophor offered me a big peace of mahagony wood. So I had the basic material for a steampunked binary clock.
The clock is driven by a CControl micro controller and some solid state relais.
A small Basic program reads the internal clock (controlled by a DCF signal), converts the values to binary format and sets the bulbs.
A 5V relay is used to simulate the ticking of a clock.
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: The wood and materials

Picture of The wood and materials
Here are the materials and the parts for mounting the NEON bulbs to the clock.

Step 2: The electronics

Picture of The electronics
The bulbs are controlled by a MC from Conrad Electronics (CControl Basic) a small, easy to use controller which can be programmed in BASIC. The Controller is able to drive 16 IOs and has a special input for a DSF antenna. This antenna is able to receive the time signal from a LW . transmitter located near Frankfurt.
The bulbs are connected to an interface board with solid state relais and the driver IC´s. A ticking sound is simulated by a small 5V relais.
I used this: Solid State Relays  (S102T01 Series) and this driver IC´s: ULN2803A because the MC board is only capable of driving 10mA.
The resistors are for limiting the current.

Step 3: Mounting the sockets

Picture of Mounting the sockets
The bulb sockets are mounted trough holes in the front on two pieces of beach wood.
Please see details below.

Step 4: Mounting the electronics and cabling

Picture of Mounting the electronics and cabling
The cabling to the bulbs was made under need the electronics board. I used special insulated thin wires. The are able to insulate up to 500V. I separated the low power and the high power part completely from each other due to security reasons.

A small 5V power supply gives the power to the electronics.
The small relay simulates the ticking sound.

I used two switches, one for disabling the ticking noise. :-)
and one for switching the bulbs off during night.

During the tests I found that it is better to raise the antenna a bit. The signal is now stronger and the clock syntonization is faster.
longwinters2 years ago
Hey those lamps look very familiar great job putting them to work
Horatius.Steam (author)  longwinters2 years ago
Oh yes! Thank you for sending the lamps to us :-)
Holy! You're on a roll! Just a bit ago this one of yours made Hack-a-Day! Here it is by the way.
Have another "Congratulations"!
Orngrimm2 years ago
Ah... "Illumination"! Wie cool is das denn?
Ich hätte da volldoof wohl einfach "Licht" oder "Beleuchtung" geschrieben...
Aber Illumination ist der Oberhammer. :)
Fantastic!! Your pieces of art are changing the Steampunk world!
Thank you for sharing.
Cheers The Chocolatist
Junophor2 years ago
Very impressive

Really fantastic work
Yours Aeon Junophor