Hive-like LED wall clock offers a colorful and dynamic way to tell the time

Clock designs come in all shapes, sizes, and levels of complexity. On one end, you have ultra-minimalist analog clocks that barely have discernible hands or numbers on their faces. On the opposite end, however, you have not only sophisticated mechanical clocks with all their gears and movements, you also have digital clocks with smart features that go beyond telling the time. Of course, it’s always a matter of balancing functionality and features, and some designs intentionally tip the scales toward one or the other depending on their target audience. This DIY wall clock, for example, caters to those who want a more vibrant and creative way to display the time, though it does require a bit of technical and electronics know-how to make.

Designer: Dawid Karoński

It’s really impressive how far DIY tools have come these days, from desktop 3D printers to small circuit boards that can run complicated programs to control nontrivial devices. And depending on the skills of the one making them, the end result could even look like a professionally made product that came from a factory rather than someone’s garage or home workshop. The Hexaclock, named for its unusual shape for a clock, is one such example, offering a wall clock and smart lamp that can rival the quality and features of well-known smart lighting brands.

The catch is that you have to make one yourself, which may or may not result in a product of equal quality. You’ll need a 3D printer, unsurprisingly, but that is actually the easier part of the process. The more tedious phase requires precisely cutting an LED light strip into specific sizes so that the LEDs actually line up with the hexagon-shaped compartments of the lamp. Even more laborious is connecting these segments together again into a single unit, at least electronically, so that you can control the strip with a program as if it was never cut at all.

All of these details, from the schematics to the software, are made available for free so that anyone with the right tools and knowledge can make their own hive-shaped wall clock. In terms of functionality, the clock offers plenty of customization options, from animated color transitions to dancing patterns. What’s even more impressive is that it supports a light sensor that can dim all LEDs except the ones displaying the clock itself so that the bright lights won’t disturb your sleep at night.