Free plans to help you build a wooden clock. The plans on this site are those of
clocks designed by myself over the last few years. At present there are eight sets
of plans available, and it is intended to add to them as new designs become available.
Each clock design is illustrated with a series of rendered images, and a set of drawings,
drawn to scale and presented as PDF files. The earlier clocks were originally drawn
to scale so that the prints could be attached directly to the timber and a band saw
or scroll saw used to cut around the profiles. Now it is more common to use some
form of CNC machining to produce the gear profiles, so the DXF files for the clocks
are now available and in some cases the 3D model files as well. These enable the
clock builder to not only simplify the construction but also to increase the accuracy.
The original clocks are still available for free but as the new clocks appear I will
make a small charge for the files.
The site has undergone a complete overhaul for its 10th anniversary, to try to get
it cleaned up a bit and make it easier for you to find your way around and for me
to update it more quickly. I hope to be adding new clocks on a more regular basis
now that I have more time to devote to it. There are three projects on the horizon
plus thoughts on an off shoot to the site that opens up the opportunity for me to
work on a wider range of mechanisms that can be equally rewarding for the those who
enjoy this type of project.
I hope you find your visit to the site rewarding and if you have any comments or
suggestions please contact me.
DXF files available
If you require the DXF files for any of the clocks on the site then go to the page
for the clock that you require, where you will find the DXF files listed along with
model files for the newer clocks. The files can be used either to produce Gcode so
that you can machine the profiles on CNC machine or it can be used for your own design
Woodenclock wallpapers to Download
To read the PDF files you will need Adobe Acrobat reader so click on the image below
to install it on your computer.
Free DXF files
If you want to try a sample of the DXF files for a test on your CNC machine then
this small assembly is ideal. It has 2 gears mounted onto a base strip with the centre
positions set so that the gears mesh correctly. The file has some dimensions in dual
metric and imperial formats so as to allow you to check the correct import into your
system. The holes and pins are Ø6 mm but can be drilled out to 1/4” if you are working
The sample is of course free, simply click on the image to download.
This is the most compact clock I have designed with a short pendulum having a period
of oscillation of 1 second, that is a ½ second swing in each direction. This required
an extra set of gears in the train, to achieve the correct ratio for the escapement.
The unit is hung on the wall by a special hanging bracket that allows the clock to
be easily mounted.
The front of the clock has a door to which the dial is fitted, this can be opened
to better view the internal mechanism.
This clock requires that the case be turned on a lathe or machined in 3D, so could
be more difficult to build for those who don’t have the equipment. To help with this
I have included the 3D data in with the drawings and the DXF files.
The clock was designed in metric units but is dimensioned in both metric and imperial.
Click on the image to go to the Clock 9 page.
Clock 11 is the second new clock this month, and has been designed in response to
a number of requests for a simple clock design that could be made by a first time
I have tried to do this here and although the clock is simpler it is still going
to take dedication to see it through.
The design is simpler as it only uses 6 gears, by comparison Clock 1 has 12 gears
and Clock 7 has 14.
A further change to reduce the number of gears was the introduction of a pull cord
that is wound opposite to the weight, so by pulling down on this cord the weight
is lifted back up.
I have also tried to reduce the size at the same time so that the largest parts can
be fitted onto a small router table. I don’t really know what that minimum size is
but the largest piece on this design is 277 mm tall so can be fitted to a piece of
A4 paper, or Letter size paper if you live in the US.
Actually the Dial is slightly too large to fit an A4 sheet so you would need to stick
two off set copies together to do that.
Last year I introduced Projects for gears , which gave you a selection of gears to
use in your own projects, this year it is the turn of mechanisms, There are 6 sizes
of Geneva mechanism. An inverted Geneva mechanism, a couple of rotary to linear convertors
and a couple of Intermittent motion devices.
These are packaged as DXF and PDF files, along with image files and videos to explain
I have put an new clock on the site, it is a completely new design, that will stand
on a fire place or cupboard, without the need for a hanging weight. It is designed
to use a spring to provide the motive force, and has a compact pendulum to swing
within the height of the clock. The clock is small designed to fit onto the smaller
CNC machines and measures 350 mm (14 inches) tall and 190 mm (7.5 inches) wide.
I have just completed building the prototype, you can see the result on the videos
on You Tube shown opposite.
Most of the work has gone into designing and developing the spring drive using a
standard spring from clock suppliers.
The prototype has been built using a variety of materials and techniques to reduce
friction and ensure that the spring has the power to drive the clock.
Another change from the normal is the inclusion instructions on how to to build the
clock, not instructions for making each part, help full instructions for putting
the clock together and getting it ticking
Clock 14 is another compact spring driven wind up mantle clock, unlike Clock 12 this
is not a minimalist design but uses a full gear train to drive the hands and has
a very open construction to show off all of the gears .It is again quite small standing
316 mm or 12.5 inches tall, and dimensioned in both metric and English.
The clock runs for about 20 hours on a single wind, but as with all the spring drives
the accuracy can vary but if its wound every 12 hours it will keep time to within
a couple of minutes over the 12 hour run.
The drawings and CNC files are available for download along with renders of the models
and instruction for building the clock.
The prototype has now been completed and can be seen in the video on Youtube.
In the Summer edition patterns for the wooden gear Clock 11 are published along
with test cutter Rolf Beuttenmuller description and video of his build of the clock.The
patterns have been adapted from the original design of Clock 11 available on this
Clock 11 is probably the simplest of my designs as, it requires less gears to be
cut, but is still a fully functional timepiece and an excellent introduction to the
making of wooden clocks.
The patterns and instructions provided by the magazine are excellent and will be
sufficient to enable you to cut out all of the components to build the clock.
For more background on the original and to get the DXF files if you want to build
this with your CNC router go to the Clock 11 page.
Clock 15 is the first clock design to use the Grasshopper type escapement . Developed
originally by John Harrison as a means of reducing friction in the escapement, it
is a more complex and intricate design that require more accuracy in the making,
but rewards by being quieter and more interesting to watch. I have tried to reduce
the original complexity by removing much of the adjustment used in the original,
so if the plans are followed carefully it should work pretty well ‘out the box’.The
clock is styled after the Art Nouveau period and as such has flowing natural lines
and curves reflecting that of nature.
Clock 16 design is based on the traditional Verge and Foliot escapement with a spring
drive mounted in the bottom gear. The original design was the first mechanical clock
design to be developed in the middle of the 14 th Century.The escapement consists
of two flaps mounted on the vertical Verge shaft that alternatively engage and disengage
with the series of pegs around the periphery of the escape wheel, the speed at which
this happens is controlled by two weights mounted on the horizontal Folio beam. The
larger the weight and the further out it is positioned the slower the Clock will
run.This type of clock design was never very accurate, but it persisted right up
to the 18 th century. The design was eventually superseded by the much more accurate
This is the 3 rd clock to be driven by a spring so like those others it can easily
be positioned anywhere in the home, its is a relatively simple clock to build.
The clock was never really a good time keeper and original sales of the clock where
apparently to Jewellery stores, who used it to attract customers into the store by
displaying it in the shop window. It is a novelty really, but to watch it in operation
is still fascinating.
The Clock is relatively simple to build having only 5 actual gears, the pinions being
replaced by pins set into the the gear sleeves.
There are a lot of pins in this design , I used dowel pins readily available from
engineering supply stores, but there are also headless pins and Brads that can be
This new clock features a drive train composed of non-circular gears, a novel design
that poses some difficulties on the path to finding a working arrangement that will
function as a clock, and give accurate time keeping. The design is the result of
a fairly lengthy trial and error process to firstly devise gear pairings that will
mesh together in the non circular forms, and then to find a series of workable ratios
that would give the correct timing to the clock. The ratios 3:1, 4:1 and 5:1 when
combined together give a total of 60 :1 which is exactly what is required. I also
changed the geometry of the escapement that I usually use, to one that more closely
follows the design of the Graham Dead beat escapement, with pallets that span 8 teeth.
The end result has been a clock that works really well using a 1 kg weight, and can
be adjusted to be accurate to within approximately 2 mins in 24 hours. It will run
for 24 hours if set on the wall with the dial centre 1.6 meters above the floor.
You can view the Detail drawings of the clock and the renders showing in detail the
construction along with the instructions for assembly. The free files are restricted
and are not suitable for actually making the clock with but all the drawings and
renders along with the DXF and DWG files for using with CNC machining can be purchased
from the download page.
When Clock 17 was completed it brought to a close the series of designs using the
spring drive as the source for powering the clock. Clock 18 returns to the weight
driven designs that characterise all the other clocks on the site. It seems appropriate
now to offer all of these clocks together at a reduced price for the bundle so you
can have a greater choice of which one you would like to build.
Click on the picture of a clock to go to its page.