Tell the Time with this Arduino Powered Laser Clock!

This build is so clever, it should have a degree. Utilizing ultraviolet LEDs and a glow in the dark surface, this “laser clock” (the use of laser is a bit vague, but it looks amazing, regardless) is constructed from 3D printed parts and has an Arduino inside it. Developed by YouTuber Tucker Shannon, the effect here is so stunning that we just had to take a closer look at it.

As you can see, an arm scrawls the time across a screen, which in normal light soon fades; however, at night time, it looks amazing. There’s a nice steampunk aspect to the 3D printed arm, too, which is controlled by two 9g servos behind the scenes. While an accomplished, technical build, the clock’s exterior resembles something far simpler.

Inside the 3D printed case, you’ll find an Arduino Uno and real-time clock (RTC) module providing the time. A push button is mounted on top, while rubber feet stop the clock from slipping (no doubt useful when you have an arm powering up and writing the time once a minute!).

If you don’t want to sit through the video, the details of this build have been painstakingly recorded on Tucker Shannon’s Imgur page, where you’ll find a step-by-step account, starting with a diagram, fritzing diagram, a link to the 3D printing instructions on Thingiverse, close-up soldering, and a final demonstration.

We know you’ll agree this is a stunning build, with so many potential alternatives. Perhaps a version built into an old wooden clock? A shiny laser clock that fully embraces futurism? With a bill of materials coming in at under $10, it’s going to be tough to resist making your own Arduino-powered laser clock!


Christian Cawley

Christian Cawley spends a lot of time with Raspberry Pis and scours the web looking for interesting DIY electronics projects and news for ElectroMaker. He's currently trying to show his 7 year old son how to get to grips with Scratch, but so far to no avail.


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