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Geek Chess: Nixie Tubes as Board Pieces [Video]

We’ve seen some geeky chessboards in our day, but this board is a masterpiece of geekiness. Check out the video to see the Nixie tubes in action.

Courtesy of a tinker named Tony, we find this delightfully analog and geeky chess set. He writes:

This developed as a spinoff from the hardware and controllers I’m designing for a range of nixie clocks and watches as a ‘simple’ project that wouldn’t need much software to complete it.

All visible parts are made from materials contemporary with Nixie technology and no modern plastics or resins are used anywhere in its’ consruction (other than the electronic components and PCBs). The board and pieces are machined from phenolic resin laminate and assembled using brass fittings. The brown base pieces have been filled and wiped with gold and silver engravers wax, giving a ‘worn gilding’ appearance.

The displays are ex-Soviet Nixie gas display tubes, manufactured in the early 1980s. No Chinese LEDs here…

Hit up the link below for more videos and high-resolution photos of the set.

Nixie Tube Chess [via Hack A Day]

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 06/27/12

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