YAWC - Yet Another Word Clock




Introduction: YAWC - Yet Another Word Clock

A word clock is a cool project and on the to do list of every electronics geek. Although building a word clock is now an old idea but I thought I should share my built as every new person who tries a project goes through a unique experience and make new mistakes , find new ways to tackle the problems and finally create something unique. In this way every word clock built is unique in its own way. But due credit should be given to the introducers of an idea


This word clock is based on the built of instructable member drj113 and uses the same electronic circuit designed by him.


My built is different in following ways:

  • The clock face doesn't use a vinyl stencil instead lasercut acrylic is used.
  • It uses a picture frame instead of a custom frame.
  • The partitions are made using foam weather seal .
  • It is rectangular shaped while most traditional word clocks are square shaped .

So let us begin with the show and tell . :)

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Step 1: Materials , Tools & Components


  • A Rectangle Picture Frame
  • A Laser Cut Display Panel which can fit in the frame
  • Paper Tape
  • One Piece of Plywood which can fit in the frame
  • One Piece of Plywood to use as Back of Frame
  • Some screws
  • Velcro
  • Copper Board
  • HCl
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Toner Transfer Paper
  • Window Sealing Rubber Tape


  • Soldering Iron
  • Hammer
  • Screw driver
  • Tweezers
  • Clothes iron


  • Arduino Uno
  • Led Strip
  • Wires
  • Circuit Board Components

Step 2: Preparing the Circuit Board

Using toner transfer method etch the circuit board and drill all the holes add all the components and solder them.

For more details visit https://www.instructables.com/id/The-Wordclock-Grew-Up/step4/Making-the-Controller/

Step 3: Preparing Back Board for Led Placement

Get a thin plastic sheet and Get the front panel laser cut .

Place the front panel in the frame and then place the sheet of plywood behind it.

Use a pencil to trace the letter on the plywood sheet.

This will help you place the Led Lights in the correct place.

See Pictures for more clarification.

Step 4: Adding Diffusers and Side Walls

Cover the back of the Display Panel with paper tape to create light diffusing effect

Add side walls on plywood piece using rubber window sealing tape.

Step 5: Preparing Led Strips and Mounting Them

Prepare Led strips by exposing their terminals.

Mount the Led Strips in place using the self adhesive tape.

Use 3 Leds per strip for small words and 6 Leds per strip for longer words.

Step 6: Wiring

Connect All Leds using a common Ground Wire .

Use a Ribbon Cable to Connect a separate wire for each led strip .

Step 7: Adding Buttons

Drill two holes on the side of the wooden frame .

Mount the buttons in the holes .

Step 8: Connecting Everything

Connect the Ribbon Cable to the circuit Board .

Connect the Buttons to the Circuit Board .

Connect the Coin Cell to the Circuit Board .

Step 9: Prepare Back Board

Paint the Back board and add the hanging strip to it .

Step 10: Add Velcro

Using velcro Attach the back board and enjoy your Word Clock !

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    2 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Great job! Did my own a few months ago (http://tinkerman.cat/wordclock/). I used an addressable matrix of WS2812 pixels to bastly simplify the wiring. The trick is then in the code to lit the right LEDs for a given time.


    Reply 3 years ago

    Thanks for the appreciation ! I looked at your built and its way cooler !