Introduction: Groundhog Day Alarm Clock

About: My name is Randy and I am a Community Manager in these here parts. In a previous life I had founded and run the Instructables Design Studio (RIP) @ Autodesk's Pier 9 Technology Center. I'm also the author of t…

The Groundhog Day Alarm Clock consists of a Panasonic RC-6025 flip clock modified to play the audio from the movie Groundhog Day when the alarm goes off.

The reason I have created this device is because Groundhog Day (both the day and film) held special meaning for me because I first met my ex-partner-in-crime on February 2nd. This device was built to commemorate the 10th anniversary of our time together. I felt what better way to commemorate it than by recreating a heavily symbolic object from such an iconic movie?

After all, being in a long-term relationship can seem a bit like living the same day over and over and over and over and over -- every time with different consequences. Every morning you wake up with the same sense of existential dread, and simply try to live through the same set of scenarios again. To remind her of the 10 wonderful years of our existential abyss I made her this clock which will awaken her to the same recording every morning. Perhaps not as pleasant of a wake up greeting as the alarm clock underwear I had previously made for her, I nevertheless hoped that she would appreciate the thoughtfulness of the gift.

However, we parted ways shortly thereafter, and now I am the sole owner of this somewhat annoying clock. I'm not particularly sure what to do with it. I guess I could just mail it to Bill Murray. Anyone have his address?

Step 1: Go Get Stuff

You will need:

(x1) Panasonic RC-6025 Alarm Clock
(x1) Adafruit Audio FX Sound Board
(x1) 12V / 50mA replacement bulb
(x1) SPDT 12V relay
(x1) 7805 voltage regulator
(x1) heat sink
(x1) PCB
(x1) Assorted zip ties

(Note that some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This does not change the cost of the item for you. I reinvest whatever proceeds I receive into making new projects. If you would like any suggestions for alternative suppliers, please let me know.)

Step 2: Take Off the Top

Make certain the alarm clock is unplugged before you do anything.

Pull off all of the knobs, and then remove the screws from the underside of the alarm clock to free the top plastic cover.

Remove the screws holding the speaker in place to seperate the top section from the bottom.

Step 3: Free the Electronics

Remove the screws holding the circuit board to the base of the clock and gently set it aside.

Next, remove the screws holding the power transformer in place.

Finally, free the slip clock mechanism by removing the screws from the underside of the case that is holding it in place.

Step 4: Change the Bulb

The bulb inside the alarm clock is meant to last 5-8 years. The clock itself is likely 30 years old at this point. Thus, you will almost certainly need to replace the front bulb.

Cut the wires holding the bulb in place.

Slide shrink tube onto the remaining wires, and then solder a new 12V replacement bulb in place.

If it does not happen to fit snuggly into the blue plastic bulb holder, use a drop of hot glue to keep it in position.

Step 5: Clip the Speaker

Cut the speaker free from the circuit board.

Step 6: Hack the Board

Attach a 6" red wire to the spot on the circuit board conveniently marked with a plus sign.

Attach a 6" black wire to the spot in the circuit board conveniently marked with a minus sign.

Attach a 6" white wire to the leg of the 100 ohm resistor that is closest to the edge of the flip clock board.

Step 7: Put Everything Back in Place

Fasten the flip clock mechanism, transformer, and circuit board back to the clock's plastic base.

Step 8: Program the Board

Plug the Audio FX board into the computer. It should show up like a typical flash drive.

Download the attached audio file and load it onto the Audio FX board by copying it onto the drive.

Make certain the name of the file remains precisely "T01.ogg"


Step 9: Build the Circuit

Attach the heat sink to the 7805 voltage regulator and then put together the circuit as specified in the schematic.

Step 10: Put It Inside

Put the audio FX board and the new circuit board inside the case and fasten everything safely in place with zip ties.

Step 11: Back Together

Put the case back together, fasten it shut, and put all of the knobs back in place.

Step 12: Set the Clock

Turn the dial on the top of the clock to "Auto" and then set the alarm clock to whatever time you wish by turning the dial on the side of the clock.

Plug it in and you are good to go and go and go and go and go and go...

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