Friday, January 13, 2012

An oscilloscope clock - Recycling vintage equipment without destroying it.

As a fan of vintage electronics, and vintage technology in general,  I love to see things being re-used rather than being dumped in the trash. This has the very desirable effect of preventing sometimes toxic chemicals from being released into the environment and reduces the demand for new parts that can also involve toxic chemicals during their manufacture.

The only downside to this recycling is that frequently the original function of the equipment is lost so I was pleased to see this creation from Bob Alexander. He has combined one of the oldest types of test equipment with some of the newest microprocessor based devices to bring us a Oscilloscope Clock that still functions as an oscillloscope!

Heathkit oscilloscope with AVR Oscilloscope Clock module
Bob ran into some problems while installing the AVR Oscilloscope Clock Module but was able to invert the horizontal output from the clock module before feeding it into the scope. To read about his build in detail have a look at : An Oscilloscope From the Trash

A small modification to the rear panel to allow setting the clock and switching between clock and scope.
Check the video below for a demonstration of the Sparkfun AVR Oscilloscope Clock Module in action on a significantly newer oscilloscope.