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Wednesday, July 8, 2015 - 22:01


This project is inspired by other projects like:

Note: This project is still a work in progress. There are a lot of details missing, but I will hopefully find time to make a complete write-up. Feel free to contact me for further details, or find inspiration in the above mentioned projects by other talented people.

- Drawing: box.pdf
- Material: 4mm HDF

The enclosure is based on the well-known laser cut boxes. I used the box plugin for Inkscape to create the box, and then added the letters manually afterwards.
One thing to remember is to use a font that is well suited for laser cutting. If you don't, the insides of some of the letters like: O, A and D will fall out after cutting.

- Schematic in eagle format: wordclock.sch_.zip
- Arduino source code: wordclock_src.zip
- Led board and separator drawings: led_holder.pdf
- Led board and separator material: 1.5mm card board

The LED Matrix is based on 96 LEDs in 8 rows x 12 columns.
Each row is activate for a fraction of time making it invisible to the human eye. The schematic for the electronics is attached in Eagle format. It only shows 4 LEDs connected because the rest are connected in the same way.

I placed all components apart from the LEDs on a strip board. The LEDs were mounted in a piece of card board laser cut with holes. The distance between the holes matches the distance between the letters, ensuring that each LED is exactly behind each letter.

The separate the light from an LED from its neighbors, a LED separator is laser cut out of cardboard.

An Arduino is used to drive the LED Matrix.

The enclosure is assembled first apart from the back side. A piece of paper is put between the front side and the LED separator to absorb the light from the LEDs.
The LED separator is assembled and placed on top of the paper and then the LED board.
I placed an anti static bag between the LED board and the rest of the electronics to avoid unwanted short circuits.

Drill a hole in the back side of the box and insert the USB cable for the Arduino through it. Connect all electronics and finally install the back side of the box.