Nixie chessboard Kit

By Tony | June 25, 2012 | Timelord clocks

As a few of you seem interested in buying one of these I’ve decided to go ahead and put together a kit. This will include all the parts required to build the board and pieces in my previous post but please read the following so there is no confusion over exactly what you’re buying:

All case parts, baseboard, piece bases, coil formers etc will be cut and engraved ready to use but will probably need sanding to remove loose material and tidy up visible edges – in the case of the piece bases they will need further sanding to remove machining marks. I actually didn’t bother too much with this, which produced the ‘woodgrain’ effect on some pieces. You’ll need to finish the board top and piece bases with engravers wax, filler or paint for whatever effect and colours you want.

All electronic components, enamelled wire and solder will be included and one square on the main board and one piece base PCB will be ready assembled and tested, giving you a chance to see one piece working before you start and provide something which can be used to test/compare against the other parts you assemble.

All the Brass nuts, bolts and thumb nuts are included though I may replace the dome nuts with thumbnuts. I’ll include enough parts in total to build about 34 piece bases and 66 squares (including the assembled ones), just in case of mistakes. The board doesn’t include feet but I may include them by the time the kits are ready.

The thicker case components will be made fron NOS Tufnol estimated to be from the 1960-70s and is limited in supply. The thinner laminate and PCBs will be supplied by local companies. The electronic components will be purchased from RS or Farnell (Newark) and the brass thumbnuts have to be ordered from the USA. The displays if needed will have to be bought from the usual suppliers (I have enough here for a few boards) and the actual machining of parts will be done by myself so this isn’t going to be an ‘off the shelf’ product and will probably be made to order so I’m not left with unwanted stock.

This is not a project for beginners – it makes extensive use of surface mount components. The circuits are not complicated and are laid out with plenty of space between parts where possible but you will still need to be confident soldering small parts. The main PCB is almost 15×15″ and as only 10-20 will probably ever be made I’ll be machining them myself. They won’t have any solder resist or component legend though the assembled square should be easy to copy and photographic instructions will be supplied for all stages of construction. Expect to spend up to a week of your spare time on it depending on experience and patience.

Postage will be charged at cost – for international orders it won’t be cheap but if you know of a cheaper service or can arrange collection by your own courier I’ll be happy to help arrange it. The total weight including packing materials will be about 4kg (9 pounds).

If you’re still interested after that lot they’ll be listed on the bay of Fleas shortly, I’ll update this post once ready. There will also be one complete set for sale as I’ll have to build one from the kit to prepare the photographs for assembly instructions.