Funded! This project was successfully funded on July 17, 2013.

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A clock that hides a treasured book within. Built to make the magic of stories a little more real for the reader in your life.

Stretch Goal - Namesake Upgrade

If the Kickstarter batch of The Midnight Clock sells out, each backer will have the option of having their clock etched with a dedication to the recipient at no additional cost. See Update #4 for more. Or, by popular demand, you can add $11 per clock for the upgrade even if it doesn't sell out. Because I'm a big softie. :)

Press & Awards

LA Times - Books | Kickstarter Project of the Day, June 18 | Kickstarter Staff Pick

The Midnight Clock

Fiction is filled with hidden doorways, destinations, and treasures - think of Tolkien's secret door to Durin, Rawling's platform 9 3/4, or Lewis's wardrobe - but we rarely find them in real life. The Midnight Clock changes that. A riddle on its body instructs the curious observer on how to open its novel locking mechanism, revealing the adventure that awaits in the hidden book of your choosing.

The first Midnight Clock was a birthday gift I made at for my son born earlier this year. It was designed to help engender the sense of wonder, adventure, and efficacy I hope he finds in life. I'm sharing it here on the chance that it can do the same for someone special to you.

How It Works

The Midnight Clock features a patent-pending locking mechanism integrated into the movement and face of the clock itself.
The Midnight Clock features a patent-pending locking mechanism integrated into the movement and face of the clock itself.

On its face, the Midnight Clock is a fully-functional 24-hour clock with tick marks on every hour and symbols representing approximate sunrise, midday, sunset, and midnight. But the inquisitive will find that its riddle acts as a guide to removing the keys associated with each symbol in a certain order - and one at a certain time - allowing it to be opened to reveal a hidden compartment and almost any book you wish to keep there.

How It's Made

The Midnight Clock was prototyped (above) at TechShop Pittsburgh, and thanks to a previous successful Kickstarter project (the Backcountry Boiler - worth checking out if you like camping and hiking!) I founded a small design studio that will be performing the bulk of the manufacturing in-house. The outsourced manufacturing of the customized movement components will be performed by a well-established domestic company.

Specifications

Befitting its inspiration, The Midnight Clock is built with an emphasis on quality, user health and sustainability.

  • Movement: 24 hour high-torque quartz, German made, with custom shaft
  • Body & Works: Laser cut, cabinet-grade baltic birch or bamboo plywoods. Both FSC certified for sustainable production
  • Glass: Shatter-proof, gallery-grade acrylic
  • Fasteners: Brass and stainless steel
  • Adhesive: Low-VOC and Greenguard certified for contributing to good indoor air quality
  • Ink: Low-VOC, non-toxic acrylic
  • Finish: Low-VOC, non-toxic
  • Lubricant: Talcum powder
  • Dimensions: 23.5" x 10" x 2.625"
  • Maximum Book Size: 8.5" x 5.5" x 2"

Production Schedule

See the latest progress report.

I'm using the open-source GanttProject project management software to plan production of The Midnight Clock so you can see up-to-date reports based on my progress and projections. Initially, it assumes most tasks will take 1.5 to 2x longer than expected.

Lifetime Warranty

If any part of the works are damaged during the life of the clock, replacements will be available for just the cost of shipping. Repairs to the body or face of the clock will also be made for just the cost of shipping.

More

Special thanks to my lovely wife Leslie and brilliant son Oliver for appearing in the video as well as my discerning friend Mat Thorne of Sevenbay Design for his help with the photographs and video. 

Designed in Pittsburgh. Made in the USA.

Patent pending.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Unexpected obstacles are possible with any project, but I've done what I can to make them less likely with The Midnight Clock. The manufacturing methods used to prototype the clock are the same that will be used in production - they'll just be streamlined to speed things up. Most of the manufacturing will be in-house so I can directly monitor quality, and those tasks that are outsourced will be performed by well-established vendors. We also have backup vendors and manufacturing options should any of the first-line choices fall through.

FAQ

  • Sure! Just add the corresponding amount to your pledge total and we'll know to send that many.

    Last updated:
  • No. I thought it would be more fun for you to chose a book that was particularly special to you to put in the clock. In addition to the video, the clock will come with instructions on how to do that.

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  • The hour hand of a 24 hour clock makes just one rotation a day - allowing each position on the face to be connected to a unique time of day. It's what makes this The Midnight Clock instead of The Noon and Midnight Clock. :)

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  • Yes! Just one - if the Kickstarter batch of The Midnight Clock sells out, backers will be able to have their clock etched with the name of the clock's recipient for no additional charge. See Update 4 for more details.

    Last updated:
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  • Pledge $1 or more
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    61 backers

    Pure Love: Simply show your support for a (hopefully) clever clock. Be listed among the project's backers and get priority updates on where it goes with Kickstater and beyond.

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    Early Bird Birch: A Midnight Clock in bright baltic birch made just for the earliest adopters. It's good to be first. Free US shipping.

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    246 backers Limited (254 left of 500)

    Birch: The Midnight Clock in bright baltic birch (will retail for $105). Free US shipping.

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    100 backers All gone!

    Early Bird Bamboo: The Midnight Clock in amber bamboo made just for the earliest adopters. It's good to be first. Free US shipping.

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    196 backers Limited (304 left of 500)

    Bamboo: The Midnight Clock in amber bamboo (will retail for $125). Free US shipping.

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    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    Make Your Own Hardwood: The Midnight Clock in the solid domestic hardwood of your choice. Those who can travel to Pittsburgh are also welcome to join Devin for the day to see how The Midnight Clock is made and participate in the construction of their very own. Pickup or free shipping anywhere.

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Funding period

- (30 days)