This time I will show you how to make a beautiful small Word Clock. On this type of clock, the current time is displayed in the form of words, instead of numbers as in the classic clock.
The construction of such a device is usually complex in the part of making a suitable box with partitions for each individual LED, and the clock face that should be made with a special printer or Laser cutter. In this case, the construction is completely simplified by using an 8 by 8 matrix driven by the MAX7219 chip, and the clock face is printed with a laser printer on a plain sheet of paper. Also, instead of this small matrix, we can place a larger one with dimensions of 6 by 6 cm. I used this type of matrix where the driver board is much larger than the matrix, so I removed the board from the matrix and set it aside.
The code is the work of Marco Colli and the curiosity is that he is also the creator of all the libraries needed for this project. The code, as well as the libraries, can be downloaded from its GitHub: https://github.com/MajicDesigns.
As I mentioned before, the device is extremely simple to make, and you can make it in less than half an hour without a box.
It consists of only a few components:
- Arduino nano microcontroller
- 8 by 8 matrix module with MAX7219 driver
- DS3231 realtime clock module
- and one Button
By the way, I used the box from one of my previous projects, so I used the button from the rotating encoder.
Immediately after switching on, we can read the exact time in word form. Let me emphasize that the tolerance, in this case, is a maximum of +/- 5 minutes of real time which is a consequence of the small number of LEDs, in fact, they are letters, but that is the price of the simplicity of construction. However, we have the option to read the exact time in the form of large numbers and this is achieved with a short click of the button.
Rather than change the clock time for the Summer Time period, a long press of the switch will set up an automatic +1 hour offset when displaying the current time. Summer Time offset is reset to 0 by another long press.
To set up the time:
- Double click the switch
- Then click to progress the hours
- Double click to stop editing hours and edit minutes
- Then click to progress the minutes
- Double click to exit editing and set the new time
Finally, the radio is mounted in a suitable box made of PVC and coated with self-adhesive wallpaper.