A functioning walkie talkie hacked into an old carriage clock as a household intercom.
Since I built a little workbench in the garage and started tinkering, my fiancée has complained about me not hearing when she calls for me, and suggested we got some walkie talkies. Being a small boy at heart I loved the idea of walkie talkies and had an old carriage clock shell given to me by a colleague who was ripping the mechanisms out of them.
Using a £30 pair of simple walkie talkies from Toys’R’us, I pulled it apart to see if I could rehouse one with my own switches. Most of the contacts were fairly simple to understand, I removed the microphone and speaker to mount to the box with longer wires. The front buttons had fiddly surface contacts which were covered by a conductive surface when the button is pushed. After locating the button contacts for the power and talk buttons, I wired them both to a rotary momentary switch which is mounted to the front of the clock.
To use the walkie talkie, rotary switch is turned left to turn it on/off and right to open a voice channel. I also incorporated a 5v DC power supply to power the unit, so the device doesn’t eat through batteries at an alarming rate. All that was left to finish the intercom box was a £3 clock movement from ebay and a little wood polish.