If you grew up in the 1970s or early 1980s, there’s a good chance you had one of those mechanical flip alarm clocks by your bedside. I had one – and being an inquisitive child, I fully disassembled it to see how it all worked. Suffice it to say, there were so many tiny pieces, that I never managed to put it back together, and my parents had to buy me a new clock. So knowing just how complex the mechanism is in a flip clock, I can barely believe that there’s someone out there making them by hand.
Ukranian artist Mykola Kolomieyets is just that person. He designed all of the components for the clock and uses CNC machining technology to cut all the parts. He then hand-assembles them to create a functional timepiece. On the surface, these clocks look a bit like their mass-produced predecessors, but they’re so much more special having been built by hand.
Each clock uses a set of spinning mechanical plates to tell the current hour and minutes, and the clock is backlight for nighttime viewing as well. You can choose from a 12 hour or 24 hour version as well. The base model doesn’t include an alarm, so it’s best used in your living room or on a desk, but that’s probably for the best, since this thing makes a rather noticeable “tick” sound every time the hour or minute changes.
There is a more expensive alarm version too, but I’d be afraid that it would keep me up at night. Still, it’s an impressive bit of work if you ask me.
The handmade flip clocks are available over at Mykola’s Etsy shop for $165(USD) without an alarm, and $250 with an alarm, and come in a couple of different finishes. You can check out some of Mykola’s other mechanical clock designs over on his YouTube page.