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Nixie Tube Mania - A Speedometer and a Chess Set

Douglas DC-3 Hanging in Natioal Air and Space Museum (NASM photo) - RF Cafe

Some things just shouldn't be done, like converting a World War II era Douglas DC-3 airplane's engine from its original twin multi-cylinder radials to jet-engine-powered turboprops; it violates nature's rules. Another example might be installing a Basler BT-67 Turboprop Conversion of DC-3 (Basler photo) - RF Cafedigital speedometer in a vintage pickup truck. I say 'might' because thanks to Luke Miller's ingenuity, his 1953 International pickup truck - indeed the world - now has a proven plan for a GPS-driven, two-digit speedometer featuring a Nixie tube numerical display. A two-part article on the EE Times website provides the theory of operation and the details for constructing the Nixie tube speedometer. Why GPS-driven, you might ask? It was evidently simpler - and more impressive - to do so than to tap into the truck's speedometer cable and implement a sensor. An added benefit is portability. This looks like a Kickstarter opportunity for commercial productization if there ever was one.

1953 International Pickup Truck with Nixie Tube Speedometer (EE Times photo) - RF Cafe Nixie Tube, GPS-Driven, 2-Digit Speedometer (EE Times photo) - RF CafeNixie Tube Speedometer in 1953 International Pickup Truck (EE Times photo) - RF Cafe

2-Digit, GPS-Driven, Nixie Tube Speedometer, by Luke Miller

In other Nixie tube news, the Nixie Chessboard DIY kit is now available for sale just in time for Christmas! The price is $399, a mere pittance of a sum when you consider it includes 32 Nixie tubes and all the required parts, even the 12V power supply. Unfortunately, if you want give it as a gift, you'll have to wrap a promise for delivery in 2014 because its popularity has caused a stock depletion.

Nixie Tube Chess Set - RF CafeNixie Tube Chess Set Components - RF Cafe



Posted December 18, 2013

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Kirt Blattenberger - RF Cafe Webmaster

Copyright: 1996 - 2024


    Kirt Blattenberger,


RF Cafe began life in 1996 as "RF Tools" in an AOL screen name web space totaling 2 MB. Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The World Wide Web (Internet) was largely an unknown entity at the time and bandwidth was a scarce commodity. Dial-up modems blazed along at 14.4 kbps while tying up your telephone line, and a nice lady's voice announced "You've Got Mail" when a new message arrived...

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