Hot Russian Tubes


On the heels of our post on retro-Soviet transistor teardowns and die-shots, [nikitas] wrote in to tell us about a huge thread on rare vacuum devices of all varieties: oddball cathode-ray tubes, obscure Nixies, and strange Soviet valves. We thought the other forum post was overwhelming at just over 110 pages, but how about 391 pages (and counting) of blown-glass electronics?

If you read through the decaptholon, we mentioned that a particularly enthusiastic poster, [lalka], looked to be cataloguing every Soviet oscillator circuit. It turns out that he’s also the one behind this incredible (random) compendium of everything that’s had the air sucked out of it.

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We don’t know what it is about tubes, but Nixie clocks are cooler than other clocks, and VFDs are cooler than LCDs. Maybe it’s because they embody so much more obvious human effort? They’re fundamentally simpler, visible devices? Or maybe it’s just because they glow purty. Anyway, we’re drawn to them. We’ve written up hand-blowing your own vacuum tubes like a pro, and a distinctly less tech approach with aluminum foil, and everything in between.

Thanks [nikitas] for the tip! You and [lalka], keep up the good decapping work.



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