Tag Archives: DIY Clocks

What time is it? These DIY clocks say it’s Maker time!

It’s the holiday season, and while we surf the web and flock the stores to find the latest and greatest smartwatches, alarms and decorative clocks, some Makers have proven just how amazing handmade timepieces can be. Let’s take a look back at some of our favorite home-brew devices from the last couple of months.

Steampunk VFD Wristwatch


Maker John De Cristofaro devised a rather impressive Steampunk-inspired wristwatch powered by an ATmega88.

DIY Micro Word Clock


Maker Daniel Rojas created his own iteration of Biegert & Funk’s contemporary QLOCKTWO word timepieces using an ATmega328P MCU to power the device.



Maker Moritz Wenzel has developed an Arduino-compatible, software and hardware expandable smartwatch appropriately named Tardis. The ATmega32U4 powered wearable allows Makers to visualize their Arduino projects, as well as connect them with either the watch itself or their smartphone via Bluetooth.

The Clock to End All Clocks


This piece was built to do one thing, display the precise time — no matter the conditions! Maker Brett Oliver’s device is timed off of the DCF77 atomic clock in Mainflingen, Germany, while an ATmega328 interacts with Udo Klein’s new DCF77 library to ensure the incredibly accurate time.

S.M.A.R.T. Clock


Have you ever slept through a crucial meeting, missed a flight or showed up late to an exam due to a faulty alarm? Fear no more as the S.M.A.R.T (Setup for Meetings, Appointments, Reminders, and Tasks) Alarm Clock is here to solve all of your problems! Designed by Adafruit’s Tony DiCola, the Arduino Yún-based (ATmega32U4) DIY gadget provides users with the ability to enjoy a more restful sleep knowing they’ve solved the nightmare of regulating their alarms.

Wake Up and Smell the Bacon!


No, this isn’t a joke. A Maker by the name of llopez2005 has indeed designed an Arduino Uno (ATmega328) based bacon alarm clock for those of us who need an extra incentive to get out of bed in the morning. Apparently, coffee doesn’t work for everyone!

Vacuum Fluorescent Display Clock


Hobbyist electronic shop Akafugu produced a slick vacuum fluorescent display (VFD) clock, powered by an ATmega32U4 and running an Arduino Leonardo bootloader.



Xronos (which originated from the greek word “Χρόνος” which means times) Clock isn’t your typical alarm clock. Powered by an ATmega644P, the device is open-source, hackable and customizable — not to mention is pretty stylish as well!



Designed by Instructables user GodsTale, this DIY open-source smartwatch is driven by an Arduino Pro Mini (ATmega328) running at 3.3V. Aptly named RetroWatch, the wearable is equipped with Bluetooth, a small Adafruit OLED display and a LiPo battery.

Mini 7-Segment Clock


Kevin Rye recently redesigned his already impressive Mini 7-Segment Clock using an SMD version (instead of 28-pin DIP) of the ATmega328 and a custom PCB.

Retro Moden Nixie Clock


There’s really nothing quite like the comforting glow of a Nixie tube. Reboots apparently couldn’t agree more, as this retro modern (and ATmega48 powered) Nixie clock he designed clearly illustrates.

Game of Life Clock


Inspired by John Horton Conway’s Game of Life, this clock is powered by an Arduino Uno (ATmega328) paired with a Chronodot RTC module to assist with accurate time keeping.

Etch-A-Sketch Clock


While Dodgey99 had never used stepper motors or real-time clocks before, that didn’t stop this Maker from creating a really cool Etch-A-Sketch clock, controlled by an ATmega328 based kit.

The Plotclock


Designed by Thingiverse member Joo, the Plotclock writes the time, in hours and minutes, on a white board using a dry wipe pen, before erasing it and starting again. The device is powered by an Arduino Uno (ATmega328), while three servos control and manage the movement of its arms. The rest of the clock is comprised of 3D-printed parts and mechanisms, connected by M3 nuts, bolts and thread tape.

Minimalist LED Clock


Maker Chris Gunawardena pieced together quite the nifty minimalist LED clock powered by an ATtiny84 MCU.



A Maker by the name of N.fletch debuted the ChronosMEGA, a beautifully designed wristwatch based on the ATmega328P. Aside from the AVR MCU, its other key specs include binary time encoding (via 10 Blue 1206 LEDs), a slew of buttons to control time, sleep mode and display, a 32.768kHz external crystal and an 8MHz internal clock source.

BTLE Smartwatch


16-year-old Maker John Wall introduced a new version of hs Arduino-compatible, open-source smartwatch. This device, which is described as a Bluetooth 4.0 fitness-tracking device for Android and iOS with a 1.5-inch color OLED display, is built around the IMUduinoBTLE (ATmega32U4).