Warm lamp clock for geeks for every taste

Published on July 11, 2015

Warm lamp clock for geeks for every taste


    After completing my mega auto irrigation system project , I began to get temporarily insane. I mean, I started a mechanical watch project. In order to be as original as possible, I decided to carefully study all the existing designs of amateur watches, starting the search with tube copies.
    I am pleased to share this review with you, too, so you will find a lot of warm tube and vintage videos as a roll.

    I prepared a video review of the entourage clock in the background of the entourage clock:


    It is prudent to start the review with gas discharge indicators. In foreign literature, they are also called Nixie tubes.
    Inside the indicator filled with neon there is a common anode and a dozen cathodes from wires, each curved in the form of the desired number or symbol.

    When a voltage of 200 V is applied between the anode and the desired digit, a glow discharge occurs and the digit begins to glow.

    These indicators can be divided into two large groups - with an indication through the side of the cylinder and from the end.
    Indicators such as IN-1, IN-2, IN-12 and others provide an indication through the dome of the cylinder, allowing you to create interesting watch designs:

    Nuvitron watches on the IN-12 a la Fallout

    Another vintage watch in a very interesting design

    And this is just lovely. Steampunk style clock with gear pistons and steam


    In turn, IN-8, IN-14, IN-18 and many others, including foreign ones, provide indication through the lateral surface of the cylinder. Such indicators look great sticking out of the stand without any support.

    The largest domestic Incas - IN-18 - have a digit height of 40mm! Their price on ebay is $ 200-250 for a set of 6 pieces

    And here the author made a watch on the IN-18 with a homemade battle.

    And this is a watch on indicators from Dalibor Farny similar to Z568 produced by the GDR, with a digit height of 50mm. The price of the latter rises to 400 bucks apiece. How much are these piece copies - scary to think.

    But there are indicators STILL cooler. For example, CD-47s have a 135mm digit height! One hundred thirty five! The total height of the indicator is 200mm.

    Nearby is the Z568 for comparison.
    The hours in operation look simply incomparable. On ebay such bulbs are even problematic to find. And the price of 900 euros per bulb is very sad.


    Want a cool watch?
    It’s quite problematic to place 4 indicators in a wristwatch of a usual size, although in principle there are a lot of such projects, therefore watches with two indicators are also popular, which consistently display first hours then minutes. At the same time, to save battery, the indication turns on for a short time after holding the watch by hand.

    Too lazy to charge the batteries? No question, we install a couple of solar panels and voila. To maintain a small size, you have to abandon another indicator and show everything with one tube, but you can safely leave this watch in the sun and not worry about the charge.

    By the way, did you know that Steve Wozniak has such a watch? They are produced by David Forbes under the brand name Cathodecorner. By the way, they sell for $ 495 plus shipping. A good gift for a lover of such exotic. As you can see, this watch also has only two indicators, but they have an integrated accelerometer that responds to a characteristic gesture - turning your hand to watch the clock. Stylish and concise.

    And here is Steve Wozniak himself, talking about this watch


    To control such indicators, there are specialized microcircuits K155ID1, K133ID1 and SN74141. But microchips are not hard.
    Maybe take neon?

    Yes, first we divide the frequency of the mains by 50, having formed second pulses, we send this signal to the divider by 60, simultaneously generating a signal for the new digit of seconds, from this divider we form the minutes, and then the hours. Nothing complicated at all. Absolutely.
    Here there is a scheme of the device.

    Neonki do not like? There are decatrons.
    Decatron is such a gas-discharge decad-counting device on which various counting circuits can be built. The 60s decatrons were used to build electronic computers, and in the 70s they were already supplanted by transistor circuits.


    In amateur watches, they love to set decatrons simply for beauty, since the device, despite the rather low cost, is still scarce. Usually it is used simply as a decorative twist, the so-called decatron spinner.

    Yes, this is an amateur decatron watch. The author specially selected the components and technologies of 1959 during the development of the device. Here there is a description and charts.


    As a relay fety fan, I could not get around the clock on the mechanics with relay-counting logic

    Just listen how melodiously it clicks ... A kind of old pendulum clock. The circuitry is just as simple - relay triggers and decade-counting logic.

    By the way, the next of my future watches (I’ve talked about insanity, so there are actually a few watches) will work on the basis of step seekers and a significant size of relues:


    Among the lovers there were also those who are not indifferent to this type of device:

    Here, the author took two 10-position finders for minutes in order to count units and tens of minutes. And he took the watch finder like mine - mine for 25 positions, so that for the countdown of 24 positions, he will quite cope. The author subsequently altered this watch to a secondary one, without having to use second discharges.

    The most interesting thing is that such watches were also produced in series. Here is the proof (Caution! The video contains a bare Jukebox [automatic player])


    In such a hot summer season, something cold and refreshing will not hurt. Therefore, it would be foolish to skip the vacuum fluorescent indicators (VFD).
    There is no longer a vintage lamp, so the molding is much more modern.
    Here you have nice seven-segment color-illuminated:

    But a watch of considerable size on the IV-26 point indicators

    Yes, here again we have an abundance of domestic indicators. This time IVshki.

    With vacuum indicators, it has become a fashion to put many discharges in one cylinder.
    For example, here's a nice watch on the IV-18


    Vacuum indicators, by the way, despite the advantages of LED and LCD indicators in many areas of technology, are very much produced. True, the main scope of their use is the display of music centers and car radios. Alas.

    Finally, we will see my most favorite, but the fewest for the time being watches, by the way the most lamp of all.
    Watches on cathode ray tubes.


    Various round tube display themes

    And here’s the Christmas watch, with Santa Claus rolling around the screen.


    You can even use a ready-made oscilloscope, although without damping the beam, the picture is a bit dirty


    The tubes from the oscilloscope are good in that they already have an electrostatic system for deflecting the beam. In the case of television tubes, in addition to the tube itself, you also need to find a native deflecting system, which then still needs to be configured. And then just apply the potential difference to the deflecting electrodes and you're done.

    Hope you enjoyed this tube heat post. Leave interesting watch designs in the comments that I accidentally or not really missed, and I went to celebrate my anniversary. Good luck