Kerry Wong documented his VFD filament driver built:
I recently salvaged a vacuum fluorescent display (VFD) from a piece of old test gear. The VFD is a 13 digit 7-segment multiplexed display and I thought it would look great in a custom digital clock or something similar. While it has the model number FUTABA 13-MT-54NA, I could not find any information on the internet specifically for this model. Of course, before I could put this vacuum fluorescent display to use in my final project, I needed to first build a driver circuit to drive this display.
VFD filament driver using 555 - [Link]
Haris Andrianakis writes:
This is a project i designed a year ago but never built, because of not enough spare time. This month i found some free time so i started building it and i send the pcb layout for manufacturing.
All started when i received some IV-11 vfd tubes from an ebay seller i ordered from and i started testing and prototyping by first trying to simple light up the VFD tube.
A VFD tube works like a 7-segment led display with some small differences.
A) The Filaments. The Filaments exists to power the tube. We have to supply these two pins with 1.2Volt and nothing more (polarity doesn’t matter).
B) The Grid. The Grid is like the common anode of a 7-Segment LED display. So the Grid has to be pushed high at 60Volt (in these tubes) in order the segments to be able to light up.
C) The Segments. The Segments light’s up simple by pushing them high at 60Volt.
IV-11 VFD Tube Clock Final Design - [Link]
Getting Started- Vacuum Fluorescent Display & Teensyduino | A work in progress…. [via]
This is a quick tutorial on getting a VFD working with an Arduino (or Arduino equivalent system). VFDs are beautiful devices with a wonderful hexagonal mesh of wires and this lovely green/blue glow. Operating at around 5V, they offer a nice alternative to high voltage Nixie tubes, while still retaining a lot of the charm.
This tutorial will show you how to connect a Arduino-like device to a VFD display as well as a basic program to display text.
Vacuum Fluorescent Display & Teensyduino - [Link]
Using VFD display with Arduino – [via]
Summer of 2010 I picked up an Arduino board from adafruit and took some time to walk through all of the tutorials available with it. Since then I have spent most of my time on other projects including my bachelor’s. Recently I have obtained the Motor Party Pack, LoL Shield Kit, and a 20×2 VFD (Vacuum Fluorescent Display) to go with the original board so my interest is sparked again. I have found that the Motor Party Pack and LoL Shield have adequate instruction and tutorials, but the VFD is lacking in beginner level instructions to get started. As such I have decided to write a tutorial for the 20×2 VFD available through adafruit.
The adafruit VFD is made by Samsung and is model No. 20T202DA2JA, this is really unimportant though as adafruit is nice enough to link you to the spec sheets for both the module and the controller chip. What you would be looking for is the pin-out found on page 4 of the module controller sheet.
Using VFD display with Arduino - [Link]
USB LCD/VFD Controller is a HD44870 based LCD/VFD controller via USB interface. The control command is compatible with Matrix-Orbital’s LCD module.So, you can use any MO friendly software to control this baby. Such as LCDC.The firmware are based on David Potter’s Serial LCD/VFD Display.Some features :this project uses a FTDI FT232BM chip as the USB bus controller,upports industry-standard LCD interface ,Configured for 16×2,20×2,20×4,40×2 LCD/VFD module,include hardware 19200-baud RS-232 input,the LCD/VFD can configured via commands.control with Microchip PIC16F873 MCU ,use 93C46 to store data. [via]
USB LCD/VFD Controller - [Link]
This instructable describes how to mount a VU meter into a case of an old cd-rom drive and then put it into your pc.
On eBay I bought a bunch of VU meters based on VFD displays build in Russia. The displays where rather cheap and looked nice. I thought I’d give it a try.
When the vu meters arrived I realized that on all devices there was one transistor missing. To make them work again you need to “repair” the vu meter … don’t panic you can easily solder a substitute transistor onto the pcb.
Building a VU meter for you multimedia PC - [Link]