Transistor Nixie Clock

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Techrep
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Transistor Nixie Clock

Post by Techrep » Fri Nov 22, 2019 2:09 pm

I purchased one of these ( http://tube-clock.com/ ) about a year ago and recently got around to putting it together. The kit comes very well packaged and it has every component needed to complete the assembly.

I printed a second copy of the manual so that I could check off each and every section of the assembly in precise sequence.

I got as far as the seconds decoder then the frustration started.

Initially it only counted from 8 to 9 and back again. After probing and prodding I managed to get it to count from 0 to 7 but then 8 and 9 stopped working. Sometimes it just stops counting at all.

Clearly this thing isn't very stable and FWIW I've been designing and assembling electronic projects and kits for 30+ years. I use a Pace rework station to do the soldering and consider my skills to be better than average. I've looked at bridged connections, incorrect parts, burned up transistors and diodes. I just can't get this thing to work, reliably or otherwise.

Instead of tossing it into the e-waste pile I'll offer it to the first person that offers me $25.00 for the remainder of the kit, the most valuable of which parts are the nixie tubes and the sockets used to mount them. You pay shipping using the method of your choice. I take PayPal only and will only ship to counus addresses associated with the PayPal address (in other words no forwarding as a gift to an address not connected to the PayPal account).

Regards and 73,
Chris Spacone, KD6OUB

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haklesup
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Re: Transistor Nixie Clock

Post by haklesup » Mon Nov 25, 2019 1:39 pm

What an Irresistible sales pitch, I have to pass though.

Techrep
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Re: Transistor Nixie Clock

Post by Techrep » Tue Nov 26, 2019 9:39 am

Well, like I said the tubes and sockets alone are probably worth that (to somebody that wants them!). I'm no salesman and I don't play one on TV so I guess I have to wear that!

The maddening issue is the leakage current from the diode array that asserts each segment appears to be giving the flipflos fits and in a purely intermittent fashion.

I wish I was smarter / more experienced at sorting this out but I just can't see my way to spending tens of hours on figuring out one driver section only to argue with the remaining five!

-Chris

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haklesup
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Re: Transistor Nixie Clock

Post by haklesup » Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:13 am

OTOH, we can try to debug the circuit here but need more details of the kit. Maybe another logic family for the flip flops and some tweaks to the voltage thresholds will result in less disturbance. Just drop the kit and put the tubes and sockets on ebay as is without explanation, someone might find them eventually, its going to be a tiny market.

Techrep
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Re: Transistor Nixie Clock

Post by Techrep » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:25 pm

Well, here is a manual (http://tube-clock.com/neon_man.pdf) for the clock should you care to dive into it. There aren't any logic families. This is a completely transistorized digital clock consisting of about 1200+ components.

Pretty sure you aren't going to be interested in this particular hairball. One of the most frustrating parts of the project is that the component numbering doesn't exist on the circuit board. That makes following the schematics a challenge.

I think your advice regarding eBay is useful.

-Chris

solKA3O
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Re: Transistor Nixie Clock

Post by solKA3O » Sun Jan 19, 2020 9:35 am

I posted this in the "up for grabs" board too, and then saw the post here. Did you find a home for this thing yet? If not, I'll bite!

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