My Nixie Addiction

My Nixie Addiction


The Discovery

Like many things, I discovered Nixie Tubes when I was looking for something else though I cannot remember what I was originally searching for! I have been involved in electronics since the late seventies, in recent years I have done bits and pieces with the Raspberry Pi and Arduino platforms which has re-kindled my interest and ultimately led me to discover the Nixie Tube. After much research I took the plunge and decided to build a Nixie Clock which now sits proudly on the mantelpiece and provides many hours (24 in each day!) of entertainment.
clock #1

The first one

The building process was an absolute joy and the completed project is amazing. I managed to convince my wife Jo that this was really cool stuff (it didn’t take long) and she has built her own clocks and is currently working on one with over 1500 components! I find the tubes totally captivating and I love the mix of original vintage technology with todays microprocessor driven timekeeping with all the possibilities that it provides.
THe Addiction Continues

“I can stop any time”

Well, it would seem that I cant actually do that. My head is full of ideas for future projects as well as thoughts on development of existing projects. I seem unable to limit the number of concurrent projects though I can often find excuses like ‘I’m waiting for a board for that one’ and ‘I need to sort out the right wood for that housing’ – both of which are extrmely helpful, often used and of course fully justified.

Tube collecting (Hording)

“Cant resist a bargain”

I appear to be collcting Nixie Tubes ‘just in case’. During the last few years I have noticed an increasing interest in them and I have also noticed the price of tubes rise accordingly. Consequently I have taken it upon myself to collect tubes that interest me as and when I see them available. I have a particular lust for Mullard Nixies, especially those with the horizontal fine wire anode so I try to grab these any time I see them available, both New Old Stock (NOS) and pre-loved – I have become moderately adept at removing tubes from existing equipment. I now have enough and absoutely positiively do not need to buy any more nixie tubes ever again (at this time).