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This is a really easy project for anyone to tackle. All it takes is about an hour of your time and some patience. You can pick up your own DIY clock kit from the Maker Shed. The kit is available with red or blue LED’s. Lets jump right in.

What you get:

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Everything you need is included in the kit. You even get some extra LED’s in case you make a mistake or break one during the build. I needed an extra!

Tools you need:

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All you need is a bit of tape and some needle nose pliers. The instructions also say to have a small screwdriver for inserting the LED’s, but I found using the needle nose pliers a lot easier to use.

Step 1: Attach the jumper wires

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Tape down the (5) un-insulated wires to the panel. That’s it!

Step 2: Add the (5) insulated wires

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The next step is to add the (5) insulated wires. They are color coded to match the printing on the panel that is supplied with the kit. Simple.

Step 3: Add some LED’s

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Start out by adding the LED’s in groups (junctions), according to the color sections of the board. Make sure you get the polarity right, I messed one up, and it was a pain in the neck to locate. The (+) lead on the LED is longer and should be inserted next to the triangles printed on the board.

Step 4: More, and more, and more LED’s

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Keep adding the LED’s in the color groupings. There are 24 total junctions! Twist together each junction according to the directions. Don’t forget to include the matching color from the power supply. You can add the power supply wires anywhere, just as long as it is in the same color section. It can get a bit monotonous, but the end results are worth it.

Step 5: Program

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There is an easy way to verify all the connections. It is as simple as holding down the button on the power cord and clicking it 24 times to make sure each pair of lights comes on. I had one set that was not working, I eventually found that 1 LED was inserted wrong. We all make mistakes. Now all I have to do is make a cool case for it. Any suggestions?

The LED clock kit is available from the Maker SHED.

Marc de Vinck

I’m currently working full time as the Dexter F. Baker Professor of Practice in Creativity in the Masters of Engineering in Technical Entrepreneurship Program at Lehigh University. I’m also an avid product designer, kit maker, author, father, tinkerer, and member of the MAKE Technical Advisory board.


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