Wooden Alarm Clock

Introduction: Wooden Alarm Clock

About: I'm a mechanical engineer in the Eindhoven region. In my spare time I like to make random stuff, both usefull and especially useless.

Every day of the last year I woke up in my new home-made bed still proud of my fathers and my achievement. This is until I'm looking at my alarm clock, a piece of plastic with some digital numbers indicating the time. It's about time I rebuild it in the same style as the bed.

Ok, actually this isn't true. After I made my bed I started to get annoyed not having an alarm clock near my bed, so when I was lying in bed I couldn't see what time it was. At that moment I went to the Blokker, a Dutch household shop, and bought the cheapest alarm clock which looked like it was easy for me to rebuild it into a wooden one. I especially didn't want to work on the electronics due to the lack of experience. At home it didn't take long before the clock was disassembled. The circuit board lay near my bed for almost a year. Now, a year later I decided that it was about time for the internals of the clock to get a home.

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Step 1: Materials.

- alarm clock: Philips AJ3112
- wood: I used the same wood as my bed, laminated red meranti. This way the two of them match and I had a spare piece.
- thin double sided tape: For fastening the display protector.

- chisels: Wood working.
- flat wood drills: Wood working.
- 1 mm drill: antenna.
- cordless drill: For the drills.
- saw: I used a hacksaw-blade. With the smaller teeth there is less change of damaging the thin wood.
- hammer: Wood or plastic in order to damage the chisels as little as possible.
- sanding paper: Sanding (of course).
- small screwdrivers: For disassembling the alarm clock.
- miter saw: For cutting the wood the right size.

Step 2: Disassembly of the Original Alarm Clock.

The reason for choosing this clock was the fact that it looked as an easy project for me. I thought I could use most of the original housing so I didn't had to build an entire structure inside the clock.

As can be seen in the pictures, the clock can be divided into three parts, the circuit board, the top in which are most of the buttons, and the rest of the housing. These parts are assembled by three screws, so the disassembly was very easy. In order to keep it simple, the top will be visible in the new clock. By doing this there was no need for designing/rebuilding buttons. The only part which is modified for the new clock is the rest of the housing.

The top can be mounted on the white part of the housing with the circuit board in between. Keeping it like that in the rebuild clock locks the circuit board in place with respect to the buttons. however, the walls of the white part take a lot of space so these are removed. This can be seen in the second picture.

Step 3: Shaping the Wooden Housing.

The woodworking of this project is not the best looking, at least not from the inside. I started by cutting the red meranti wood to the correct size, a square, approximately 8 mm wider than the original clock. In order to fit the clock, a lot of wood should be removed. With not much tools available I used flat wood drills to remove most material. In the back corner also a lot of material was removed from the bottom, this was for the power cord.

The finishing touch of the inside walls I did with chisels in order to get them 'smooth'. The bottom was left untouched. The gap in the front is for the display. I started by drilling a hole. With a hacksaw the correct shape was created. Also a 1 mm hole was drilled in the back for the antenna. A hole for the power cord was created by mistake. During the drilling of the gap for the power cord a piece of the back broke lose, creating a hole for the power cord.

Step 4: Fitting the Clock in the Wood.

After the shaping of the wood the clock could be fitted into the wood. This was much trickier than expected. In order to fit the clock, many wood on the walls needed to be removed. Another problem was the display, which was much to far backwards, making it hard to see the display from an angle, due to the wood. These problems were solved using an dremel with a sanding tool attached.

I never use the volume button, I never use the am/fm switch and I sometimes use the frequency button. In order to sometimes use the frequency button I added a hole on the side where the frequency button is. The rough edged where sanded and now I can edit the frequency using a tool (I can't reach the button). The display protector was attached at the end of the build using double sided tape.

Not the best build ever. But it still looks good and all desired function work.

- Painting the clock
- Gluing the clock to the wood.

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    2 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I like this, but jesus, how long did it take you to drill it out with the hole drill bit? And also, you could use some sugru or some plastic hot glued to the buttons to make them reachable from the outside.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    It actually didn't take that much time. I think I did it in about half an hour. But during that time I also helped a friend of mine with his project. So when I need to take a guess, I guess it took me about 10 minutes.

    About the buttons, like I said I probably don't use them. So that is why I will leave it like this. Before I decided I would make it like this, I was thinking about something as in the shopped picture below, a groove on both side at the height of the buttons.