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1  Projects / ArduiNIX / Re: Cathode pin issue? on: July 27, 2013, 01:07:37 PM
VICTORY!  I received and installed the new driver chips (along with their sockets - thanks Bradley) and I'm back in business!

Thank you so much guys.

Let's just say I'll be doing the rest of the work on a static bag.  Tongue
2  Projects / ArduiNIX / Re: Cathode pin issue? on: July 02, 2013, 01:53:19 PM
Neither.  This ArduiNIX was assembled by Bradley and the chips are simply placed, with the legs folded under.

I checked the voltages on the pins again (they were fine before) and now they do seem off. 

I'll order a new pair and see if that helps.

Thanks for your input, nonentity!
3  Projects / ArduiNIX / Re: Cathode pin issue? on: June 05, 2013, 09:56:05 AM
Well, I've made no progress.  It's disheartening, to say the least.  I was trying to get this clock done as a present for my partner, but it's now two months overdue and all I have to show for it is a mess of wires and bulbs.

Would someone who's got a working ArudiNIX out there take a few minutes and see if your pins read like mine do?
4  Projects / ArduiNIX / Re: Cathode pin issue? on: May 18, 2013, 03:55:08 PM
Thanks for your reply, Risen. 

Unfortunately, I'm not making any progress.  The Arudino's pins are AOK, and if I connect a tube, I get multiple digits firing at once.

I took the "1 Nixie Tube" code from the main site and modified it to fire a single digit.  I connected my probe and.....  I get odd, random voltages again, which would make sense given how a tube reacts when connected.
5  Projects / ArduiNIX / Cathode pin issue? on: May 10, 2013, 10:16:42 AM
Hey everyone!  I'm hoping for a little help, as I'm completely stuck.

I can't seem to get the ArudiNIX board working correctly.  I've tried many different sketches and wiring layouts, but no luck. 

I decided to strip down to basics to try to troubleshoot.  Here's what I know...

  • I am using a 9V, 650mA center-positive AC adapter.  It looks identical to the one sold on the site.
  • If I check voltage from the test point to ground, I get a nice steady 180V.
  • The chips seem to be working perfectly - they read 4.7V on the appropriate pins when I run a sketch that cycles through the numbers.

However, if I upload the following sketch (which just sends a zero to both outputs), I get some really weird readings on the cathode pins.

  Turns on an LED on for one second, then off for one second, repeatedly.
  This example code is in the public domain.
 // SN74141 (1)
int ledPin_0_a = 2;               
int ledPin_0_b = 3;
int ledPin_0_c = 4;
int ledPin_0_d = 5;
// SN74141 (2)
int ledPin_1_a = 6;               
int ledPin_1_b = 7;
int ledPin_1_c = 8;
int ledPin_1_d = 9;

// anod pins
int ledPin_a_1 = 10;
int ledPin_a_2 = 11;
int ledPin_a_3 = 12;

void setup() {               
  pinMode(ledPin_0_a, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_0_b, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_0_c, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_0_d, OUTPUT);   
  pinMode(ledPin_1_a, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_1_b, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_1_c, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_1_d, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_a_1, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_a_2, OUTPUT);     
  pinMode(ledPin_a_3, OUTPUT);   

void loop() {
  for (int i=0;i<10;i++) {
    displaynum (0);
    delay (2000);

void displaynum( int num ) {
  int a,b,c,d;
  // Load the a,b,c,d.. to send to the SN74141 IC (2)
  switch( num )
    case 0: a=0;b=0;c=0;d=0;break;
    case 1: a=1;b=0;c=0;d=0;break;
    case 2: a=0;b=1;c=0;d=0;break;
    case 3: a=1;b=1;c=0;d=0;break;
    case 4: a=0;b=0;c=1;d=0;break;
    case 5: a=1;b=0;c=1;d=0;break;
    case 6: a=0;b=1;c=1;d=0;break;
    case 7: a=1;b=1;c=1;d=0;break;
    case 8: a=0;b=0;c=0;d=1;break;
    case 9: a=1;b=0;c=0;d=1;break;
  digitalWrite(ledPin_0_d, d);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_0_c, c);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_0_b, b);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_0_a, a);
  // Write to output pins
  digitalWrite(ledPin_1_d, d);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_1_c, c);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_1_b, b);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_1_a, a);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_a_1, LOW);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_a_2, LOW);
  digitalWrite(ledPin_a_3, LOW);

If I connect my probe to a 10K resistor on A1 and the cathode pins (remember I'm sending a "0" to both tubes), I get:

Cath1Pin0: 58.1V
Cath1Pin1: 55.9V
Cath1Pin2: 59.0V
Cath1Pin3: 59.3V
Cath1Pin4: 0.0V
Cath1Pin5: 55.9V
Cath1Pin6: 60.3V
Cath1Pin7: 60.0V
Cath1Pin8: 60.6V
Cath1Pin9: 60.8V

Cath0Pin0: 71.8V
Cath0Pin1: 58.6V
Cath0Pin2: 63.2V
Cath0Pin3: 62.9V
Cath0Pin4: 75.0V
Cath0Pin5: 60.6V
Cath0Pin6: 56.4V
Cath0Pin7: 55.8V
Cath0Pin8: 75.1V
Cath0Pin9: 58.9V

I'm sure this can't be right....  Smiley
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