Pulling Off A CRT Transplant Doesn’t Have To Be Tricky!

Whether it’s an engine swap in an old car or pulling a hard drive out of an old computer, we often find ourselves transplanting bits from one piece of hardware to another. [Emily Velasco] recently attempted this with a pair of CRTs, and came away with great success.

The donor was an old 1980s fishing sounder, which came complete with a rather fetching monochrome amber CRT display. [Emily]’s goal was to transplant this into the body of a early 2000s portable television. The displays were of a similar size and shape, though the Toshiba CRT from the 80s used a lot more glass in its construction.

The tube socket in the TV used to hook up the display matched the old CRT perfectly, so there were no hassles there. A bit of soldering was all that was needed to hook up the yoke, and [Emily] was ready to test. Amazingly, it powered up cleanly, displaying rolling amber static as you’d expect, given that analog television stations have been off the air for some time now.

After some perseverance, a VCR playing Mystic Pizza on VHS was able to deliver a video signal to the TV, proving that everything was working well. The next stage of the project is to get the television electronics to fit inside the 1980s fishing sounder housing, as it’s the more attractive of the two. Things were just built differently back in those days!

We’ve seen some other great vintage display swaps before, too. Video after the break.

28 thoughts on “Pulling Off A CRT Transplant Doesn’t Have To Be Tricky!

  1. Looks like that would have been a fun project!

    And at least the weather band radio would still pick up stations (I’m assuming it also has FM)

    Personally, I wish they had left VHF analog stations alone. But they never ask me.

  2. Talk about first impressions…
    I clicked on this story and the very first thing I thought after seeing the top photo was ‘yep I sure would agree with gutting that purple thing to repair that cool 70s/80s industrial-looking display’.
    Then I read the first paragraph :)

    1. It takes all kinds…she’s nostalgic for TV…I don’t get it either…but I also fixed things that made no sense just to build skills when young.

      Picture tube connectors hadn’t changed in 20 years? That is impressive in a nostalgic way. Surprised the early 2000s tv was B&W.

      We’re supposed to care which VHS tape she tested with?
      Bet she doesn’t even fish.

      1. There was a loophole in the requirement for closed caption decoders in every TV. Monochrome TVs under 10″ display size didn’t have to have one.

        I was today years old when I learned that Australia didn’t get colour television until 1975. Nineteen Seventy-Five! Also, one can’t contact Seven West Television by any means other than telephone (sorry, not making an international call) or Twitter. They have a Facebook page with absolutely nothing posted and all their YouTube videos have comments turned off. It’s on their history page where I learned AU TV was in the dark ages for almost a decade after the USA had all three networks doing full color.

        Why was I wanting to contact an AU media company from the US? To ask if they’d put their 1980’s series “Five Mile Creek” out in a complete DVD box set. For some reason only season one got a DVD release and it’s very hard to find. All three seasons were on VHS.

    2. I’m keeping the industrial-looking display and tossing the purple one. I just need the driving circuitry from the purple TV to run the amber CRT. The guts of the purple TV are going into the better-looking housing

        1. I got composite input mostly working, but there’s something off with the levels. It only ends up displaying the brightest whites of the video.

          I’ll have to keep tinkering on it.

          and fwiw, the video that I put into it first was Gorky Park :/

      1. I tried that first, but it didn’t accept normal composite. It takes PAL that has had it’s horizontal and vertical sync signals separated onto other lines.

        And I tried to separate out the sync signals, And I had some luck with that, but I could never get the horizontal sync to stay locked. I constantly had to adjust the horizontal sync knob while I was using it.

  3. yes, replacing a monochrome CRT is pretty easy? since they more or less have a few fingers worth of variations and maybe 4 mounting options it makes them pretty much interchangeable with a few asterisk’s behind that statement.

    I am trying to not sound condescending, its not like mono CRT’s are a daily topic in the nerd community of today, just saying that its a fairly easy thing to do if one wants to (color CRT’s start becoming more complicated just out of time on market and decades of variation)

  4. If keeping the fish sonar cabinet and getting video into it you will have to do vertical (ugh) video shots to show on the sonar if you want to keep the cabinet in original condition in it’s vertical orientation.

  5. displaying rolling amber static as you’d expect,
    Why would you expect that? Static implies absence of signal, absence of sync pulses, uniform noise. The rolling image is a loss of synchronization to the sync pulses, making them visible as they roll into the viewable part of the scan.

    If there’s no signal, there is nothing to roll, no sync pulses to see…

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.