Can I use this VFD?

I just picked up this VFD for $5 at a local store.

It is made by Futaba and is 40x1 characters.

Here is the pinout

I should be able to get this working with the Arduino, however I do not think it supports 4 bit and the old LCD library does not work with version 10. Any way to get the old library to work?

Hook it up according to the 'Serial In' column. Then try using it like a Serial LCD. :)

Need full part# or datasheet.

Parallel In should also work... but you need a datasheet to be able to issue commands to the display

Need full part# or datasheet.

I have to full datasheet in .pdf

is there anyway to get it on here? I had to contact to company to get it in the first place.

Just the part number or a link to the manufactures pdf would do. I don't know if you can attach it here.

Okay, I just uploaded the .pdf to my googlepages

So will this VFD with with the Arduino?

It should be compatible. It has a serial mode. You can test if the VFD is working but using the test pin, it's active low signified by the line over it. Just power the VFD with +5 and short pin 16 to ground. It should display all characters as a test. This is on page 7.

All the signal voltages are +5 or 0 so it's good. You will need a larger +5v supply it's very specific that you need +5V at a max of 1A so you may want a 1.2Amp (min) supply for it. You can get a +12V 3A wall wart and use a linear regulator.

I'm not sure if this is compatible with but it sure looks like it. There is a very interesting RXD line that's supposed to be the serial input which I'd like to try.

I repair devices at work that use these but have not yet tried them with an arduino. I will be doing so soon as they are too nice a display not to. I'd just wire it up as the instructions on the tutorial state. Page 8, table 10 has the pinout. Pins are not the same as an LCD but I think the chip acts like the one on an LCD. It should do no harm if not as the voltages are compatible.

This may be the controller IC It could be a 16311, 12, 15, etc not sure

Okay thanks for the help.

I tried activating the test mode with a computer power supply but nothing happens :'(

This voltage regulator on the back (circled in red)heats up a lot, and I think that the two capacitors may be the source of the problem.

When I pulled this thing out of the bun it was in the two caps were fairly bent up and I wonder if they might not be working? It looks simple to replace them but I was wondering if there might be any other reasons for the hot regulator.

Also, here is an image of the overall VFD! This thing is truly massive

Oh those are notorious for that. It's a switching regulator. It provides all the needed voltages for the vacuum tube. What happens is over time the tube want's more and more current and the power supply will oblige to a point. This eats up the capacitors and eventually may blow the fuse. Another failure is the capacitors will fail and some damage happens to the digital side. I see them lock up the CPU because the engineer didn't bother to buffer it from the display and didn't put in some sort of time out.

MDLS20268D is the one we use. It's absolutely gorgeous when new.

Here's a different brand for $35 Don't know much about it but the data sheet looks very similar to the futuba.

I'm planning on getting a working but 'bad' futuba if the boss will let me. I'll post results if I do but it's going to be a couple months.