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-   -   My obscure interest: Vacuum Fluorescent Displays (http://www.videokarma.org/showthread.php?t=251119)

mbates14 05-16-2011 09:32 PM

My obscure interest: Vacuum Fluorescent Displays
 
Besides the basic electronics, tubes, and transistors. I have a severe fetish or passion if you will, for VFD displays.

some of my friends always called me the "VFD Master"

Because its a tube, and ive always been attracted to its high contrast, blue-green light emissions that LCDs, LEDs cannot reproduce. i prefer a VFD over anything.

Any and all my hobby electronics projects that require a display, use a VFD.

ive made VFD display drivers, VU meters, spectrum analyzers, clocks, etc...

Think im crazy? I do... lol. :banana:

I have a youtube channel THEtechknight, that i shown some of this nutty stuff on.

If i could make a 1024x768 RGB VFD display that was compatible with computer TFT LVDS data signaling, i would do it in a heartbeat.

AUdubon5425 05-16-2011 10:25 PM

Neat. I have a Casio adding machine (121-L?) that uses blue VFD. Recently went on the blink, but worked great for the first 39 years :)

mbates14 05-16-2011 10:51 PM

Yea, it sucks VFDs are a dying breed. just like the rest of the tube stuff, but hey, thats why im stocking up on the cheap surplus i can get my hands on.

have to have parts for future project somehow.

GeorgeJetson 05-17-2011 02:08 PM

Nixie tube displays are really cool too!

ctc17 05-17-2011 06:56 PM

I always liked them too. Some years back I was making side money fixing the ones that were in the Chrysler K karz. The power diodes and solders would fail. The tubes them self have a fairly good lifespan. Longer that the usable hour life of the average car.
Usually when they fail its something to do with the high voltage supply just like a tv.

I also liked those old LED displays that had the little bubble magnifier over each character.

mbates14 05-17-2011 07:50 PM

yes, the vintage LED displays were cool too. And so were the nixies. But i just cant get the passion "warm fuzzy feeling" with those as i can with VFDs.

and for the digital cluster VFDs, I pulled them from an old GM console, and rebuilt it into my own circuitry for use on a golf cart ;-)

I never did iron out all the bugs and eventually lost interest.

Chad Hauris 05-17-2011 08:27 PM

I have several VFD displays in clock radios where they are very dim...I wonder if they are losing their emission like a CRT?
I always thought it was neat how you could see the very fine filament wire glowing in front of the display if you look closely.

mbates14 05-17-2011 09:24 PM

yes they do. it works EXACTLY like a CRT. if you look on the filaments of a nice fresh VFD, it has a "white" coating, thats the cathode coating that emits the electrons. the barium or whatever it is.

as the VFD wears, it turns darker and darker. When the VFD goes completely dim or dead, youll see the barium coated filament cathodes have almost no white left.

Red Raster 05-18-2011 12:50 PM

Cash display
 
lucky me, got a job to fix a VFD in a Cybex recombrent bike that must be 20 years old. I fixed this stuff in vcrs repairing power supplies and replacing weak
capacitors causing dim displays. Quick money for a recycled tv repairman.:yes:

Ed in Tx 05-19-2011 07:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mbates14 (Post 3003487)
..as the VFD wears, it turns darker and darker. When the VFD goes completely dim or dead, youll see the barium coated filament cathodes have almost no white left.

What's amazing is I have pioneer DT-400 digital timer with a VFD, been plugged in continuously for 32 years, that's over 280,300 hours! Still as bright as it was new best as I can tell. Lights up the kitchen at night, where it's served as a coffee pot timer since new in 1979.

mbates14 05-19-2011 08:35 PM

depends on how hard it drives the filaments.

OvenMaster 05-20-2011 08:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mbates14 (Post 3003487)
yes they do. it works EXACTLY like a CRT. if you look on the filaments of a nice fresh VFD, it has a "white" coating, thats the cathode coating that emits the electrons. the barium or whatever it is.

as the VFD wears, it turns darker and darker. When the VFD goes completely dim or dead, youll see the barium coated filament cathodes have almost no white left.

So this explains why the VFD clock display on my Amana electric range is slowly dimming after 12 years of 24/7 use. :scratch2: It's also brighter at the ends of each segment, darker in the middles. Normal, yes?

One question: what are the incredibly thin glowing red lines that you see going across the face of the VFD? My range clock, my Casio calculator, my old Technics SA-222, my Marantz CD player, my Sony cassette deck, and my Panasonic VCR has them...

RobNor 05-21-2011 04:34 AM

Has VFD,nixie tubes and a beam deflection decade counter clock

http://www.tube-tester.com/sites/nixie/nixie-tubes.htm

Visual 06-30-2011 11:23 AM

HI ,mbates I KNOW YOU AND have some vcr displays,but is so difficult to command dis ting ...

here more vfd`s http://www.vfdsamsung.com/pics-vfdmo...ngAudioVFD.jpghttp://www.vfdsamsung.com/vfddisplaypanel1.htmlhttp://www.hqelektronik.hu/pic/27/2731HQ.JPGhttp://www.hqelektronik.hu/catlist/en/va_sams/7.htmlhttp://img.nobodybuy.com/2010/05/10/...nt-display.jpghttp://www.futaba.com/products/displ...lanerlarge.jpgBi-Planar VFD3-D :yes:Image capability where more information can be displayed by using overlapping anodes and grids. Typical applications are portable entertainment systems.http://www.futaba.com/products/displ...e/coglarge.jpgChip in Glass (CIG) VFD and Chip on GLASS (COG)VFDBy mounting the driver IC on the VFD base plate design flexibility is improved. Picture shows a COG VFD.http://www.futaba.com/products/displ...e/goslarge.jpgGrid on Separator (GOS) VFDBy moving the function of the grid to a separator pillar, freedom of design can be increased.http://www.mikrocontroller.net/topic/189973

mbates14 06-30-2011 02:08 PM

Ya, that would be me. Theres a guy in singapore I have been ordering my VFDs from for projects, but some of the VFDs you have posted are cool.

Its not hard to drive them, just kind of have to understand the technology.


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