Propeller Clock

Posted on Feb 7, 2014

This is one of the most neat projects to build using a PIC. The design of the clock is mainly a clone of Bob Blick `s propeller clock, along with a few modifications of mine. I used a PIC16F84A microcontroller. I`d have to admit that the programming end of things was more difficult than building the clock itself in the beginning. I originally buil

Propeller Clock
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t over five homemade programmers with various software available over the internet, all of which failed to program the PIC. I finally gave up and bought a kit programmer that was not very good either but after fiddling with the software, I managed to program a PIC successfully. One major modification of Bob Blick`s design is providing power to the spinning assembly. The original design took the power off the spinning armature of a DC motor and converted it to striaght DC for the clock. I have tried this modification on two motors and the results were not very satisfactory; either it resulted the motor rattling a little or it did not work efficiently. I also learned that the original design had a. 047F (FARAD) capacitor for memory and I did not have a such capacitor on hand, so I decided to make some modifications. Instead, I put a rubber plate above an unmodified DC motor for insulation and a washer on top. The metal case of the motor is connected to ground, and the washer was connected to 5V. The spinning board obtains the 5V through a sliding contact to the washer, and ground through the spinning center of the motor that is also part of the grounded body. This modification worked very well, but there was the problem of providing a display reference point for the clock. The original design obtains the reference point from one of the terminals on the armature. I put a small notch on the outer end of the washer and put a...

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