Upcycled Nixie clock fit for a friend

Building a clock from parts is a right-of-way for makers and often a sensible introduction to the world of electronics. It’s also hard to beat the warm glow of Nixie tubes in a desktop clock, like [Joshua Coleman] discovered while building a Nixie tube clock for a friend.

The original decision to upcycle the chassis from an unrepairable Heathkit function generator came a bit undone after some misaligned cutting, so the front panel was redesigned and 3D printed. This ended up being a fluke, as the redesigned front panel allowed the Nixie tubes to fit into the metal chassis. This effect looks great and it also protects the tubes better from impact damage.

Obtaining clones of the 74141 Nixie driver ICs ended up being easier than expected, and the rest of the electronics quickly came together. The decoders are powered by an Arduino and the IN-4 Nixie tubes are powered by a custom 170 volt DC power supply.

Unfortunately, four of the tubes were damaged during installation, but replacements were readily available online. The beautiful IN-4 Nixie tube is known to break easily, but is priced accordingly on auction sites and relatively easy to find.

The post-break build video should start all aspiring clockmakers from Nixie, but the video description is also full of additional information and links for those who need help getting started.

We’re not short of clock hacks here at Hackaday, so why not check out a few more? This retro-inspired LED clock looks like it’s straight out of a parallel universe, or maybe you’ll notice this beautiful Nixie clock powered by relays.

This post Upcycled Nixie clock fit for a friend

was original published at “https://hackaday.com/2022/04/07/upcycled-nixie-clock-fit-for-a-friend/”