About this project
WHAT IS THIS PROJECT?
This aim of this Kickstarter campaign is to launch the next design in my "Steampunk Nixie Clock" series, The Steampunk Nixie MKII.
Blending elements of fantasy, science fiction, Steampunk aesthetic, and 1950's technology, the Steampunk Nixie Clock MKII is the second clock in my series, following up on the success of the first clock's Kickstarter campaign. The Steampunk Nixie Clock MKII is a high quality time piece that represents my desire to produce visually interesting pieces that are both familiar and fantastical. This campaign is based on pre-orders for approximately 10 clocks.
The Steampunk Nixie Series is an ongoing project to develop a signature line of clocks. Aiming for the middle ground between minimalist DIY nixie clocks and the inaccessible boutique clocks that cost thousands, The Steampunk Nixie series aims for both high quality and affordability.
AND WHO AM I?
My name is Kyle Miller and I'm an artist based out of a small town on an island in the Pacific Northwest of Canada. I specialize in fantasy woodworking, blending elements of science-fiction, traditional joinery, folk art, and industrial design. My work has been seen on The Today Show, The Billboard Music Awards, and Playstation Magazine. I've designed custom pieces for Grammy-winning artists T-Pain and Snoop Dogg, and I've previously run a successful Kickstarter campaign, the Steampunk Nixie Clock.
You can hear me discuss Nixie tube technology and the Kickstarter campaign on CBC Radio here: Kyle Miller On CBC Radio.
WHAT ARE THE FUNCTIONS OF THE CLOCK?
Nixie tubes utilize stacked filament numerals that create a very real sense of depth as the numbers change. The tubes are controlled by a custom circuit board that is fully programmable through a sub-menu system. No programming knowledge or assembly are required. A detailed list of many of the clock's capabilities is found below....
- The clock is controlled by 4 buttons, located on the rear of the unit.
- The clock can be easily programmed for time (Hours/Minutes/Seconds) as well as the date (MM/DD/YY).
- The sequence of how the date is displayed can be changed.
- Can be switched between 12 Hour and 24 Hour modes.
- Date can be programmed to scroll across the clock every minute.
- Super-capacitor backup retains time during <2hr power outage.
- Night mode: clock can be dimmed during night hours hours.
- Programmable alarm (beep only) and snooze function.
- Tube Saver Functions: Clock can be programmed to shut off tubes during work-hours & weekends to extend nixie tube life.
- Tube Jumble: A rapid scrolling effect to additionally extend tube life.
- The clock has 3 separate RGB LED's installed, which are fully configurable. This provides for over 700 colour variants.
- Stores all feature preferences in on-board memory.
- Tubes are functionally silent during operation.
- Low-heat. Will not overheat during normal operation.
- Features an optional GPS Module input for auto-time sync. These GPS Modules are included in Elite Bundle tiers & up.
HOW ABOUT THE CLOCK QUALITY?
I select all my wood personally, from rough stock, and process it no differently than I would material for a piece of fine furniture. I only build with hardwoods, which allows for a much more durable and luxurious end product. I don't stain or dye any wood, focusing instead on natural colours and tones. All hardwoods are hand selected by me for overall quality. Trust me, I drive the guys at the wood store nuts going through their stacks. I look for colour, for appropriateness of grain, for consistency, stability, and general "feel".
All of the hardware utilized is a combination of brass, steel, plastic, and chrome/copper finishes. The nixie components are provided by a small electronics firm with whom I have a long standing relationship. All clock components are tested before they are shipped to me, after I receive them, during production of the individual units, and then once again before shipping to ensure full functionally and live tubes.
SO WHAT DO YOU GET IN THE BOX?
The Steampunk Nixie Clock MKII Package includes the following:
- (1) Handmade Steampunk Nixie clock
- (1) AC Adaptor For Your Country (CAN/US, EU, UK, AUS, NZ)
- (1) Digital Instructions: Printer Friendly & Phone/Tablet Versions.
- Any stipulated extra rewards, either via Stretch Goal or other stated reason, will of course also be included.
AND HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
The price for the base package is $449. A limited number of Early Backer units are available at $399. GPS Modules are available for an additional charge of $75, but are included at higher tiers.
The price for Elite Bundle in Black Walnut is $649, with the Purpleheart edition priced at $699. Elite Bundles include GPS Modules, Limited Edition Branding & Serial #'s, as well as other perks.
Custom Clocks, in both the Steampunk Nixie MKI & MKII series are also available in limited quantities.
HOW ARE THE CLOCKS SHIPPED?
All shipping is done via CanadaPost/USPS/EMS. All packages are shipped via Express methods (about a week for delivery, across the entire world), insured to the full value of each order, and come equipped with tracking and automatic email updates. Shipping via this method ensures the most coverage for all parties, quickest delivery, and all around best experience for you as a backer.
WHAT DID I LEARN FROM THE FIRST CAMPAIGN?
- That efficiency is key. The last campaign saw nearly 30 clocks shipped to 7 different countries around the world. Due to proper pacing and efficiency of production, every single unit was shipped on time and hit the Estimated Delivery projection. I'm immensely proud of this. A lot of campaigns run late on production, I don't ever plan on being one of them.
- That proper shipping methods and packaging are undoubtably worth it. Every shipping box is re-enforced with solid wood posts in the corners to maintain structural integrity, and each package is wrapped in bubble wrap so as not to mark or scuff any surfaces. Every clock arrived safely, and fully functioning.
FUNDRAISING BREAKDOWN DISCLOSURE
The approximate budget breakdown of the Kickstarter funding goal is as follows:
- 5% - The Bits: Non-Clock Rewards
- 10% - The Tax Man: Kickstarter & Payment Fees
- 15% - The Mail Man: Shipping Cost & Packaging Supplies
- 30% - The Sweat: Straight Up Man Hours
- 40% - The Parts: Wood, Electrical, Tubes, Etc.
TESTIMONIALS & SPECIAL THANKS
A Few Words From Previous Campaign Backers:
"My clock from TGTstudios is a great piece of artwork and fine craftsmanship...the clock is truly a unique piece and one that will be cherished into the next generation." -Kevin
"We are very pleased with our TGT Studios Nixie steampunk clock. As well as exhibiting a high degree of detail and finish, the clock is amazing to watch in action. It certainly is a great conversation piece!" -John
"I went for the "Regular Backer - Steampunk Nixie Tube Clock with an additional GPS Module and absolutely love it. It does have a mesmerizing effect on visitors where they just sit and stare at it doing it's thing, but that's as close to negative as I'm going to get. Excellent product, communication and project management. Looking forward to seeing what Kyle comes up with in the future. Thank you for a smooth and professional Kickstarter." -Steve
And Some Special Thanks:
I'd like to thank all the backers who supported my work during the first campaign. I'm immensely proud of each of the clocks that shipped and I'm so glad that you supported me and that you enjoy your rewards.
I'd like to thank my wife for her constant support. She helped throughout the last campaign, watching our little girl while I worked late hours in the shop sanding and packaging, and she put up with me smelling like burnt drill bits and sawdust.
Risks and challenges
There are essentially no risks for this project. I've just run a successful campaign and I am more prepared than ever for a followup.
I have a history of work with high profile clients that showcase both my craftsmanship and ability to complete projects. If you buy a clock, you're getting a clock, and it will be a high quality piece of art.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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