Skip to content
All prices in US$ - All orders receive free delivery, worldwide - Click here to learn more
All prices in US$ - All orders receive free delivery, worldwide - Touch here to learn more
Beautiful VFD Clock Gives New Life to Old Tubes

Beautiful VFD Clock Gives New Life to Old Tubes

from hackster.io

While LEDs have more or less taken over the indicator lighting game, other more now-exotic indicators were once used to output numbers and symbols.

Although Nixie tubes are fairly common in new vintage-style builds, this four-digit clock instead uses beautifully bluish-white VFD tubes to tell the time.



Per the build’s photo log, the tubes in question are “very rare DT-1704A” units, which have neither a grid or segment supports. This design produces a simple and unique appearance, but also means that multiplexing is out of the question.

Driving the four tubes therefore required a total of 28 2N3904 transistors and a Mega Pro Embed with an ample number of GPIO pins. A custom power supply setup is used to produce 27V for the tube segments, 1.3V for the filaments, and 6V for the Arduino board.

The time is set via a GPS unit, and when powered up it displays noon + the time zone offset before being synchronized. The wide array of connections needed to control the clock are laid out on perfboard, with wires organized in a way that will make maintenance easier.

All of this circuitry takes up a bit more room than a normal clock, meaning to a bit of a redesign during the build process, and a sizable enclosure when done.

Finally - to keep up to date with interesting news, offers and new products - interact with us on facebookinstagram, and twitter.

 

Previous article Bill Sideris' Ljinux Puts "a Linux Written in Python" Onto Your Raspberry Pi Pico's RP2040

Leave a comment

Comments must be approved before appearing

* Required fields