TimeFrame - a Time Portal to Put on Your Desk.


TimeFrame - a Time Portal to Put on Your Desk.

Mind-blowing gadgets are rare these days. Very seldom will you stumble across something truly magical that leaves you in a state of confusion and amazement

This project is inspired by water drop levitating installations such as shown by many museums around the world and the “Slow Dance” kickstarter campaign by Jeff Lieberman.


What do you need to build your own?

You can get the kit including all parts here: http://www.cubic-print.com/TimeFrame

Get latest software here: http://www.github.com/cubic-print/timeframe

Step 1:

Preparing the coil

Step 2:

Mount the LEDs in the frame

  1. ​Cut 3 LED stripes with a length of 600 mm each. Only cut the stripe in the position indicated with a scissors symbol on the stripe.

    Connect all 3 rows in parallel. Pay attention the printed polarity on the stripe. Depending on where you cut the stripe “plus” and “minus” might not be on the same side for all 3 rows.

Step 3:

Assemble central wood block

Step 4:

Build the electronics and mount the PCB

Please note that below circuit can not be simulated at the moment. The interrupt implementation is missing in the emulator software. Also Arduino Mini instead of suggested Nano has been used.

Programm the attached INO file or get latest software here: http://www.github.com/cubic-print/timeframe

Do not connect the unit to a computer when the magnetic coil is connected. The current draw and the reversed induced voltage might damage your USB port or computer. Always remove the Arduino from the PCB for programming!

Step 5:

Operation and Dangers

  1. rubber band fixation

Flowers and leaves work best. Please make sure they are dry so that the metal base is not rusting. Feathers also look truly amazing. Not sustainable enough? Paper-Flowers work as well. These can be a bit noisier depending upon material used.

Just use a rubber band to fix the flower on top of the resonator plate. For thin flowers you can also use a magnet to squeeze it in. The included magnets serve two purposes. They enhance the magnetic force and balance the momentum of the whole resonator. The amount and position is greatly influences the noise and amplitude of the movement.

All magnets have a north and south pole. They will better work in one or the other orientation depending on your coil winding direction. Just try were you think they offer more clamping force towards the running resonator plate.

The strongest force you get with the magnets opposite of the coil.

To increase the force even further you can put one magnet dictly on the end of the iron core of the electro magnet and not on the resonator plate. If you want to lower to force you can move the magnets up/down as well. This works especially well if you have only a small flower with low momentum it often makes sense to use less magnets, but move at least one magnet up where the flower is attached. This increases the tip weight and will remove any fast jitter from the movement.


The high frequency flickering within this product may cause an epileptic reaction due to photosensitivity. Most people will not even realize the flickering because it is much faster than average computer monitor. Due to uncertainties regarding the epileptic nature of this product please stop looking into the light when you experience other symptoms like headache, nausea or dizziness. Be especially careful during programming. Anything lower than 50 Hz will look like the strobe lights in a nightclub.


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