I've seen tons of Nixie clocks and projects, but typically, the enclosures leave something to be desired. Max Pierson, however, produced this fantastic vertical clock that combines rustic wood with the retro tubes.
Max points out that he is typically a fan of kits. There's no point in reinventing the wheel if it isn't needed. However, in this case, he agrees with me on the final result of most of them. He decided he wanted his Nixie clock to have very compact electronics and look like something that had been mass produced and used for quite some time.
To achieve his goal he had to etch his own custom PCB for most of the electronics so that they would fit snugly inside the aged box he purchased on eBay. His custom PCB was basically an alternative form factor for an open-source Arduino compatable nixie tube controller called Arduinix. He downloaded the code and schematic from their site and re-worked it a bit for his needs. Adding a basic arduino and a real-time clock module to the mix gave him all the necessary components.
A tight fit.
Some basic carpentry skills brought everything together in an intelligently designed enclosure system. I'm particularly fond of how he hinged the rear portion of the clock for easy access to all the internals. On his site you'll find plenty of pictures of the process, including his home-etched PCB. Max was quite happy with how it turned out and I'd have to agree with him. This is quite a beautiful piece of work.
— Caleb Kraft, Chief Community Editor, EE Times
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