9 digit pulse counter

At roughly $20 to build, this 9 digit pulse counter is an excellent example of home built tools. The builder, [Josh] found himself repairing a device and in need of a pulse counter. With the components cheaply available, he just built his own. He says that it has a few limitations, like display brightness, but overall it seems to do the job well. You can download the PCB from his site.

[via MakeZine]


  1. XenoMuta says:

    Simply Sweet. Try putting some shades to the display, maybe negative photo film.

  2. osgeld says:

    or drive the led correctly

    anyway good tool

  3. chisaipete says:

    I second using shades on the display, it’ll help a lot!

  4. wickedshell says:

    yes, but it does it’s job, he acknowledges the flaws, and has solutions if he were to do it again. So congrats to him. I like it

  5. komradebob says:

    A few octal line drivers would up the IC component count but might actually be cheaper than discrete transistors. Feed the enable line with a variable freq clock and you can dim the display.

  6. Erik says:

    Maybe I’m not seeing the “hack” here, but most counting ICs have an overflow which can cascade the count into another IC…

  7. Dennis says:

    if you want a hack take a $2.00 calculator and a couple components and make a 9 digit counter on the cheap.done that back in the 70’s with a high end HP cal.Basically using a transistor to pulse the + and 1 keys.

  8. malgan says:

    even easier with most cheap calculators if you enter 1 , press = then add 1 then press the = button again it increments the count so you can wire just the = button

  9. Ren says:

    Pedometers can be found at most Dollar stores.
    substitute the pendulum switch for the input pulse,
    and you have a real cheap counter with an LCD display. But it will probably be limited to 1ppsor so.

  10. Ren says:

    I meant 1 pps (pulse per second) or so!

  11. Hirudinea says:

    Homeland Security will be at your door shortly.

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