with the numerous changes that I've made since I first started offering "kits", I thought it was time to update the instructions for those wanting to build the run-dmd clocks on their own.
Frame assembly instructions:
To assemble the frame you will need some or all of the following tools/equipment.
* 2mm allen key
* 2.5mm allen key
* posi screwdriver (aka multi-headed)
* jeweler's size regular screwdriver
* 2mm socket
* 2.5mm socket
* wire cutters
* wire strippers
* 2 pieces of 18awg or 20awg wire (each measuring 14"-15" in length)
* microfiber cloth for cleaning (or a swiffer)
a couple of things before we get started:
note 1: make sure you have a decent sized work space to assemble everything. lay a soft cloth or towel down first to assemble everything to avoid damaging the plastics.
note 2: you will need to be very careful when handling electronics in general but even more so when handling the plastics as it's very easy to build up a static charge. make sure to ground yourself regularly by touching a piece exposed metal. alternatively, you can wear a ESD strap if you have one.
note 3: when tightening the screws, DO NOT over tighten them as you can risk cracking the acrylic panels. tighten up (finger tight) to get everything assembled and then apply another 1/16-1/4 turn to snug them up.
if you've purchased a frame kit from me, the hardware pieces will comprise of the following (otherwise, you will need to source them):
A (6) M4x40mm hex spacers (nylon)
B (8) M3x30mm hex spacers (nylon)
C (4) M3x16mm hex spacers (nylon)
D (6) M4x12mm black oxide button head allen screws
E (6) M4x12mm stainless button head allen screws
F (12) M3x12 stainless flanged allen screws
G (4) M3x8 stainless flanged allen screws
H (4) M3 nuts
J (6) M4 nuts
K (8) M3 washers (nylon)
the photos shown here represent assembly using the green PCB colored DMDs from the AliExpress
peel the protective paper off of the [front] side of the rear acrylic panel so that the small and rectangular holes are positioned on the right side and the hangers are right-side up (with the larger, circular sections positioned at the bottom)
try and handle the acrylic by the edges when removing the protective film (and when handling it in general) to avoid fingerprints. some static will be generated when peeling the film, grounding yourself from the beginning will reduce the dust from gravitating to the acrylic panel
you may also notice some white 'dust' on the acrylic pieces. this is residue from the laser cutting and can be easily dusted off with a soft cloth. I use a microfiber cloth and/or a 3D swiffer. there is no need to rub the plastic hard, as you'll only risk scratching it and building up more static
remember to periodically ground yourself during the assembly process to keep the static down to a minimum.
with the large cut out and the square positioned so that it is in the right side corner, insert (4) of M3x12mm screws (F) into the PCB mounting holes. use the four M3 nuts (H) to hold them in position before screwing the (4) small M3x8mm spacers (C) onto them. the nuts will extend the height of the spacers giving enough clearance for the pc board
note: I find it easier to attach the (6) M4x12mm stainless button head screws (E) and M4 washers (J) now as well as shown here. the nuts not only secure the screws, but also add the necessary height required so that there is enough room for everything to fit between the two acrylic panels
EXP ONE optional step:
if you are planning to install the EXP ONE board to include wireless functionality, you'll want to attach a second set of (4) M3x12mm screws and secure them with (4) M3 nuts before adding the M3x8mm spacers. the EXP ONE board can be mounted in one of two positions, allowing access of the additional menu control buttons from either the top or bottom.
on one set of provided cables, cut off the connectors and strip one end of the wires (exposing about 3/16" to 1/4" of the wire) and twist the exposed strands that came with the LED display panels as shown in the image below. this end will get inserted into power connector on the pc board
secure the cable from the previous step into the power connector and insert the ribbon cable into the 16-pin socket (labeled HUB08 displays) as shown below
EXP ONE optional step:
attach the smaller ribbon cable to the run-dmd and EXP ONE pc boards as shown
secure the run-dmd pc board to the rear acrylic panel using the four short M3x8mm screws (G)
EXP ONE optional step:
secure the EXP ONE board using a second set of short M3x8mm screws and route the excess cable so that it is tucked away neatly
tidy up the excess ribbon cable leading to the EXP ONE board and attach the wireless receiver into the 7-pin connector as shown (note the orientation of the receiver board)
preparing the DMDs. place the DMDs face down on your work surface. (note the orientation of the arrows on the DMDs, this is important)
strip approximately 3/8" to 1/2" from both ends of the two lengths of 14" wire, twist the exposed strands and connect them to the 2 power connectors on the back of the LED displays as shown. make sure that you connect 'ground' to 'ground' ('earth' to 'earth' for you british folk) between the displays and to the ground wire leading from the pc board and then do the same for the live wire connections.
connect the 2nd ribbon cable as shown to join the data connection between the 2 displays. not that the red strip [pin 1] of the ribbon cable is positioned so that it is at the top of the display (with relation to the arrows).
note: I've uncoupled the one connector end, trimmed the excess length and then re-terminated the end so that the ribbon cable is nice and tidy (as shown)
attach the eight long M3x30mm hex spacers (B) onto the outer sets of mounting studs as shown
connect the ribbon cable leading the run-dmd pc board to the right hand DMD, note the orientation of the red stripe on the ribbon cable (as shown in the image below) and tie in the power cable to the displays (making sure to match '+5v' to '+5v' and 'ground' to 'ground')
attach the displays to rear acrylic frame using (4) of the remaining (8) long M3x12mm screws (F) and the M3 backing washers (K). the washers will prevent the stand-offs from getting pulled [into] the holes of the rear frame when tightening the screws.
once you have 4 of the screws holding the LED panels in place and before proceeding any further, now is a good time to test everything to make sure that the clock is functioning. plug in the power cable to turn it on and verify your work up to now.
if everything looks good, unplug the power cable and proceed as follows.
before securing the remaining (4) M3x12mm screws, use the available access room to carefully route the ribbon and power cable so that they are both tucked neatly inside of the frame and the power connector is accessible
note: do not tighten the screws that secure the LED panels to the acrylic completely. the holes were intentionally made a little larger so that you can line the two DMDs up perfectly. once they are lined up, you can gently tighten the screws. do not use excessive force when tightening the screws, otherwise you may risk stripping the nylon stand-offs
I tend to tighten the screws with the entire clock positioned sideways (vertically) so that I can allow gravity to help settle the top panel into position before tightening down the 2 inner screws. I then flip the assembly over 180° and repeat the process to tighten the remaining (2) inner screws before tightening down the (4) outer screws.
once you are done, the two LED panels should line up pretty nicely as shown here
note: if the panels are still not positioned as tight together as you'd like them, simply use a cable tie (or 2) on the stand-offs to [cinch] them together
after attaching the M4 spacers (A) to the exposed screw threads, strip the protective paper from both sides of the front panel and make sure the tinted piece of acrylic is dust free before securing using the (6) black oxide M4x12mm screws (D)
you're finished! turn it on, step back and enjoy your work!