Device design will be as simple as possible, so that it can fit any environment: work desk, coffee shop, or library. This means no backlight LEDs, no huge logo, only streamlined material shapes.
So, we need:
- "raw" materials
- streamlined design
- manufacturable design
This log is work in progress.
The starting idea was to use aluminium and wood, and after short brainstorming this came out:
Natural materials are present, but enclosure is not smooth, and manufacturing is complicated, due to two materials. At the same time, top aluminium plate looks like it's missing something, a CNC marking, which further complicates the manufacturing.
Frustrated by the previous combination of materials, I moved on to a single wood (or Aluminium) block:
Now everything is smooth, manufacturing is simpler. Enclosure can be painted glossy black, or manufactured in a nice wood, such as mahagony, which would give it that nice "Rolls-Royce dashboard" look.
Before plunging in to CNC wood milling, I decided to manufacture this prototype on a 3d printer in a local service in Serbia. After a short wait, it arrived: This prototype illustrated why you should always prototype before production.
It appears that Nixie cutouts are too big, which means that the whole device can be scaled down a little. Also what became apparent after playing around is that the device itself looks way nicer when tubes are recessed:
On the rear side, I planned to have a cover plate, made from FR4 or Aluminium. This cover plate is attached to the enclosure via two screws, one for left and one for right side:
Time to move to Prototype 1.2 version.