Introduction: Cylindrical Cyberpunk Clock

Hello everyone!!

Its quarantine everywhere nowhere to go and noting to do..

which means lots of time for doing nothing...Does getting up late and scrolling on social websites,watching movies has become your routine? get off it and try something new ,creative.and make these days interesting..

I had made a similar clock about a few years back,had given it as a present to my cousin.But it didn't had ambience lights and was not so good.I wanted to make it better,but didn't got time to do it.

Actually, I got this idea when i saw a analog weighing scale(those spring loaded machines which have rotating circular disc)

So I thought this is the right time to make it better. In this clock I have added second hand too.But this time am making it for me..

It has three drums which denote hour ,minute and seconds.It has colorful RGB ambience lights controlled by arduino using a potentiometer..

It fits to a desk or a workstation or it can be used as a bed lamp can change its colour to your mood..

So, Let's get started.


As it was quarantine I made use of things which I had.So I would call this as requirements rather than supplies..


  • Cardboard rolls of different diameter(about 10 - 20cm)
  • Sun board or Foam board
  • clock machine
  • white paper
  • OHP Sheet or any other transparent sheet
  • tools,paint,glue,etc...

i"ll mention about the electronics later.

Step 1: Outer Body

outer body is a covering to the clock drums. I made it using cardboard rolls.

Cut the rolls according to the required dimensions.

It was hard for me to cut those rolls.They have a good strength and are hard to cut.So i used hacksaw to cut it. Refer the draft for measurements. Make your own measurements based on cardboard rolls you get.

Then cut the sunboard into circular pieces to fit in cardboard rolls.

Cutting perfect discs on sunboard is not easy.Be patient and cut it slowly.

(Those other discs in the picture are required in further steps)

Glue them to the cardboard rolls and let it dry.

Step 2: OUTER BODY - 2

Now mark 90 deg on both the drums from the center and cut them as shown in picture.

It is the opening through which time is seen.

i have used 3mm sunboard , I prefer 4mm or thicker boards for outer body because when u keep the upper drum over the lower drum it may bend.

The bend may be few millimeters but if it touches the clock dial(drum),it can stop the clock.

Step 3: THE BASE

I made a rectangular obx with the sunboard.

mark the dimensions cut it using a cutter,glue them and hold it in place with masking tape.

let it dry.

Mark the center of the base and make a hole to fit the clock machine

You can make hole with any sharp pointed tool. Fix the clock to the base with a nut provided with it.

Step 4: THE DIAL

Dial itself are the clock's hands i.e, the dial isn't stationary, it rotates and shows time.

but the case is we have 3 dials,hour,minute and second dial

i'll call them as drums as it looks more like a drum than a dial.

the lower disc of each drum connects it to clock whereas the upper disc maintains its shape.

take a clock hand(the needle),shorten its length,you need only the part that joins with the clock.

Make a hole at centre of lower disc and fix the shortened needle with superglue.Make sure that needle is fixed exactly at center.

Step 5: DRUMS

I was thinking about the material for the drums.. and paper was best fit thing for this.Paper is a good diffusive material,and printing numbers is easiest on paper.It could be anything just it should be translucent ,diffuse light and should be printable.

First measure the radius of respective drums and calculate its circumference using C=2*pi*radius.

Make a draft for the drums to be printed,print it on A4 sheet. I have attached pic of the draft ,you can make it according to your drum sizes.

after printing cut them precisely,join one end to the other from backside using a gum tape.

make sure that the diameter of the disc and the paper drum are precisely equal,or else the drum may not fit on the disc properly.

Apply glue on circumference of the drum.

Hour drum is simple to make. just fit the discs into the paper drum.I have joined a disc painted with black colour for the upper side.

The minute drum should be made half transparent and half diffusive.,and the second drum should be transparent.

Make a drum using transparent sheets for minute hand(I have used cardboard to make its disc).join both the drums i.e,the transparent one and the paper one.

You can see that my second drum is made of paper. i had made a transparent drum for it,and when i tested,but the clock didn't run....

Second hand in the machine will have least torque and it can't handle the drum's weight.I didn't had any other transparent sheetwhich was light enough to make the clock run. so i made it using paper. Try not to make it with paper as the light passes through every drum(layer), light diffracts and its intensity gets reduced as light passes through every layer.

Just check if all the drums are made to exact dimensions and check the clearance between drums.

ensure about 2mm clearence between the drums.


Paint the outer body with the color of your choice. I have used acrylic colors . I painted the larger drum green for the PCB type design and colored smaller drum blue to just bring contrast between them. apply 2-3 coats for good finish.

I spray painted the base with matt black finish.

Spray painting is not a easy thing,read the instructions given in paint can. Aplply thin coats every time.

If you apply thicker coats,you see difference between other portions when it dries. portions with thicker coats will have much glossy finish than matt..


I thought of giving cyberpunk electronic look to my clock.

So I made a circuit like design on the outer body. It has noting to function. The design should look like a circuit

I had some damaged and useless components like transistors,resistors,diodes,capacitor,etc..And those IC's are not real. I made them with sunboard and staple pins..

Make any random design that comes to you.Add some wires too..

You can also paint the wiring with gold or silver paint.. it would give a more PCB like look.


Now let's deal with electronics.

Ambience lighting is the best part of this clock,and I thought of many ways to do it.

I used arduino to control RGB lights.


  • An arduino (UNO,MEGA,MINI or any one)
  • RGB Strip lights
  • White strip light.

I didn't had common cathode RGB strip,so I used individual R,G,B strips.

  • NPN transistors (anyone with a collector current of 50-100mA)

I have used bc547transistor.

  • Resistors 1.2k ohm
  • 9-12V power supply.

I ave used 9v 500mA stepdown transformer,connected to a diode bridge and filtered through capacitor.

  • potentiometer, (10k or more).
  • toggle switch, jumper wires,PCB,soldering gun, etc...


Its a simple transistor driver circuit which drives R,G,B lights.the output pins from arduino can drive current of 40mA I checked the current cunsumed by the LED strips that I had.It consumed about 50mA.So we need a transistor to drive LED's from arduino.

Here's how it works

The Base of transistor is driven by arduino through currnt limiting resistor. Max base current for bc547 is 5mA,and the output from arduino is 5V, hence the value of current limiting resistor should be more than 1k ohm.

Collector pin is connected to the load(LED strip).and emitter is connected to ground.

We need 4 transistors transistors to drive R,G,B and W lights.

I made power supply from a 9V stepdown transformer ,connected to a 1A diode bridge and filtered by

25V 470microfarad capacitor.

(I had not included the transistor for white LED in circuit,which I added later on)


I made a structure for LED strips which is placed inside the second drum.

Cut two circles of diameter less than the second drum.

Cut concentric slits on them in which LED strips will sit.,Place the strips in slit and apply superglue.

take a pen refil and fix both the circles to its ends.make a wheel-axle like structure. I have also put a 3watt white led in the top disc.

Fix this structure to outer body(smaller cardboard drum) using superglue.


.Ambience lighting is obtained by varying brightness of R,G,B lights independenty.It is depicted with the above picture.

I have used arduino to vary brightness of LED's.It can also be done without using arduino,but it would be not easy.

Am not a pro in coding.. just did what i knew. plz comment below for any sugestions and mistakes......

A potentiometer is used to control brightness of LED's This is how it works.. arduino reads the poteniometer and converts it into a number between 0-1023

This number is converted to an angle between 0-359 degree.

Brightness of LED's are set based on that particular angle

(varying the brightness of LEDs at different angles produce different colors)

vary the brightness using simple IF conditions..

A toggle switch is used to switch between Ambience mode and White color mode.

when white led is on, potentiometer is inactive,and its brightness can't be varied.

here is the the code.

<p>//pin definitions<br>const int redled=3;
const int greenled=5;
const int blueled=6;
const int whiteled=7;
int pot=A0;
int toggle=4;</p><p>void setup() {
  // setting pin configurations
 pinMode(toggle,INPUT_PULLUP);//enabling pullup resistors</p><p>}</p><p>void loop() {
  // put your main code here, to run repeatedly:
  int potval,deg,potmap;
  if(digitalRead(toggle)==0)//checking toggle switch
  //switching whie led on and RGB LEDs off
  { //controlling RGB LEDs
    deg=map(potval,0,1023,0,359);</p><p>  if(deg>0&°<=60)
  else if(deg>60&°<=120)
  else if(deg>120&°<=180)
  else if(deg>180&°<=240)
  else if(deg>240&°<=300)
  else if(deg>300&°<=360)
  else if(potval==0)


fix the potentiometer and toggle switch to base.

Connect the left leg of pot to 5v pin,middle one to A0 pin, right one to ground.of arduino board.

connect toggle pin to ground and pin 4.

connect R,G,B jumper wires from circuit to 3rd,5th and 6th pin of arduino.

gruond jumper wire to arduino ground pin

( I have not soldered strip LEDs to the pcb in the picture)

connect -ve terminal of LEDs to respective collector pins of transistor,+ve terminal to +9V supply.

connect GND of power supply to GND of PCB.

Glue all the components to base using hot glue gun

close the back cover using screws or just glue it.


Now Join all the parts one by one.

First insert the Hour drum into the clock base,next the minute drum, and then the second drum.

make sure all the drums are aligned correctly and check for clearence between them.

Place the bigger drum ,then place the smaller drum with the LED's carefully.Make sure that LED's don't touch the walls of drum.

Glue the outer body together to the base.

And your clock is ready to show time.Just add a AA cell to the clock and let it run.

But wondering how to check time??

Its not so difficult..

the number at center denotes time.for ex.- in the picture,the time is about 9:56.


Set the time,Test the lights the potentiometer, ambience lighting ,and white light.

Ambience lighting was the best part of this clock.I worked nicely and smoothly.It produced more colors than I expected..

I have attached timelapse of the worked pretty well as I thought..but the second drum was slightly misaligned..I made it correct afterwards.

Then whats left?

Find a place which suits best.....

Please vote me if you like this...

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