Picture of (1) Neon Indicator: With Update 3/1/13
Neon Indicator 2.png
The Neon Bulb was used to replace the incandescent bulb in electrical equipment.
First in a series of Neon Bulb projects to re-introduce the NE2 component.
110 to 125 VAC ONLY !
Here we start with the easiest circuit.
The Neon Indicator.

Update: 3/1/2013 see pictures below.

Step 1: Parts Sources:

Picture of Parts Sources:
All the parts can be had from Old junk equipment
Radio Shack
Mouser Electronics
What ever source you normally use.

mfox55 months ago

I just got more than 30 red neon lights, lamp assembly, indicator lamp, etc... at radio shack for 5$. Savings of 85$ lol.

Dr.Bill (author)  mfox54 months ago

Neon bulbs fire at around 90 volts so some interesting effects can be had by using them with a lamp dimmer.

mfox5 Dr.Bill4 months ago
Hrm, thanks for the tip. ^^ And was thinking, i have some old power supplies layin around, would one work well as a source possibly? With all the wiring hookups seems like itd make things a whole lot simpler.
Dr.Bill (author)  mfox54 months ago

As long as the Power Supplies put out at least 90 volts it would work.

ubiquity1 year ago
newbeatle2 years ago
just a question, istn't better to put a 33k ohm / 1 w in series with the lamp , instead a capacitor ? or what advantages gives a capacitor over a resistor ? i have that kind of lights as a nice night lamp since i was a kid an in fact, that was my first contact with electronics

salutes from mexico
Dr.Bill (author)  newbeatle2 years ago
Actually I made this plug-in Neon Indicator with out the capacitor and it works just fine.
so you put the neon lamp DIRECTLY to the ac voltage ? isn't it dangerous to it, considering the amount of current that must be supported by the lamp ? i have found that with the 33 k resistor the current is more safe than connecting it directly, and you makes it life so mucho longer
Dr.Bill (author)  newbeatle2 years ago
I placed a 100 ohm 1/4 watt resistor instead of the cap to limit current.
The Ne2 generally lasts 25,000 hours with a resistor and without it will only last about 8,000 hours. Either way its ah long time.

I have added other schematics for the Neon Lamp that wants different resistors to work with 120V. The circuits were designed for 220V.
~Aeronous~5 years ago
Dr.Bill (author)  ~Aeronous~5 years ago
wait for it
Dr.Bill (author)  Dr.Bill3 years ago
There It Is !