Urania neon tube specs, anyone have them?

Equipment doesn't work? Troubleshooting? If you're handy, members can help.

Postby Marcelnl » Jan 12, 2019, 12:25 pm

As my Urania is lacking the original neon and we happen to have a link to a company doing neon so I'd like to see if I can get the neon restored.

Does anyone have dimensions and general specs? I measure about 18 cm overall length but haven't seen the actual tube yet.
If feasible I may get a small production run going and make kits available.
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Postby Sansibar99 » Jan 12, 2019, 6:11 pm

single oder doublegroup Urania?

I have an original doublegroup neon in the garage and coud do measurements tomorrow...
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Postby Marcelnl » Jan 12, 2019, 6:31 pm

forgot that, single group in my case..
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Postby Paul_Pratt » Jan 14, 2019, 7:30 am

The tubes for the Faema machines are standard tubes, but the electrode caps on the ends were custom. The end caps then snap into the clips inside to make the electrical connection. So the overall length is the same as the distance between the clips.

I did actually make some tubes and also planned on selling a kit, but the things run on high voltage from a neon transformer and I thought better of it. You can see the replica tubes here:


They are great for my own machines but I'd want someone to sign a waiver before selling them :D

If you want the specs I can measure the tubes.


Postby Butterfinger_414 » Jan 14, 2019, 8:48 am

@ Paul 110v or 220v I'm looking one for my single group 110v President also?


Postby Butterfinger_414 » Jan 14, 2019, 9:02 am

From end cap to end cap it's 132mm x 18mm


Postby Marcelnl » Jan 14, 2019, 7:29 pm

I'll sign anything as I'm more than used to high voltages used in Tube amps, many of the nicer sounding tubes have top caps delivering voltages up to a thousand volts.... however having non isolated metal end caps on a neon tube would not be my most likely candidate solution, I suspect that in the fifties the life of a human was valued differently....a different solution putting out the same color and amount of neon should be within reach.

the transformer putting out the high voltage required for neon is likely laid out for 110 or 220 or that is possible if I have a small production run made (without metal non isolated end caps)

Paul if you can please share all details of the original 1 group, and if available two group neon tube so I can check with the neon company.
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Postby Marcelnl » Jan 14, 2019, 7:33 pm

Butterfinger_414 wrote:From end cap to end cap it's 132mm x 18mm

thanks a lot for that measurement!

I measured something like 180mm between holes in the back plate, so this means the tube is tiny.
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Postby ira » Jan 14, 2019, 10:50 pm

There are small solid state neon transformer replacement devices that are much nicer than transformers. I think the one I use on my neon sign came from:

http://t2-neonpower.com/PRODUCTS/NEON_S ... _list.html

It's tiny and has an optional dimmer which I'm glad of as the sign is big and way to bright for our small space. What I have is way to powerful for your needs, but I'd like for something like this.


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Postby Paul_Pratt » Feb 16, 2019, 10:46 pm

Here are some photos of a tube from a later Urania/E61/President.

Overall length is 230mm.


Brass end caps are 25mm, total length of end cap and electrode is 75mm. It means the actual glowing section of the tube is only around 80-70mm.


And here is the original against the 50 or so tubes I had made. The ones I had made do not have the custom brass end caps which plug into the tube clips on the Faema frame.


For the power to the tube you will need a transformer that will convert your voltage to high voltage >1kv to say 10kv. The output high voltage should be configured to the tube length and diameter. For the small tubes I have found the smallest 1kv transformer works fine. There is a formula I think but I just did trial and error.

These days no need to use a large clunky iron transformer but you can use a small solid state transformer, for example:


There is no doubt that the glow from the neon is just incredible but you need to consider the safety aspects and insulate the thing correctly. Also you should use special neon high voltage wire from the transformer to the tube. The transformers will come with the high voltage wire but bear in mind if you need to extend the wire you need to buy the special wire, you can't just extend it with household mains wire.