Noritake Itron VFD Handling and Warranty

As the Vacuum Fluorescent Display (VFD) is made of glass, it is essential for the customer to pay the utmost attention not to supply excessive shock and/or vibration during assembly or transportation. Special attention should be paid to protect the evacuation tube which is the weakest point.

1 handling and mounting VFD glass

1.1 The cartons and internal Styrofoam trays supplied with the VFD are designed to protect the product from damages or scratches during transportation. Please use the original package for transferring the VFD in your factory.
1.2 Handling of VFDs with bare hands may cause deterioration of the lead pin solderability or leave stains on the surface of VFD. Please use gloves or finger stalls during all handling operations.
1.3 Ensure sufficient space between the VFD and other components. (especially at the evacuation tube area) on your PCB design.
1.4 It is recommended that you allow adequate shock absorption to safeguard the VFD from mechanical shock transmission via the PCB. Therefore, please avoid metal brackets, etc. which may transfer the shock.
Also, as some conductive nesa-materials remain on the display, it may be wise to ensure conductive materials are not employed for shock absorption.
1.5 When utilizing display holders to finalize the position of the VFD, please make allowance for the maximum dimension of the substrate glass. That should include the tolerance added by excess frit glass; especially around the edge and evacuation tube area.
1.6 The PCB with VFD should be assembled securely in the enclosure.


2 hand soldering VFD glass

2.1 When forming (changing angle of) the lead pin, lock the base of the pin and form the pins within the specified shock and vibration parameters described in APN103.
2.2 Lead Pin soldering must be performed a minimum 3 mm away from the glass substrate to prevent thermal cracking an glass envelope. The VFD is specified to comply with MIL-STD-202E, Method 210. Condition B soldering test as follows;
Soldering temperature: 260 +/- 5 deg.C
Immersing duration: 10 +/- 1 sec.
Immersing depth: Minimum 3 mm away from glass substrate
2.3 When trimming lead pins after soldering, never apply shock and vibration in excess of the parameters specified in APN103.
2.4 A 0.8 to 1.0mm in diameter mounting hole is recommended.

3 automatic soldering (not recommended)

3.1 During automatic soldering, the excessive heat generated by the solder bath may cause the PCB to warp. This in turn causes stress to the lead pin which may crack the glass substrate. Therefore, the use of a jig during auto soldering or, alternatively, hand soldering the VFD is recommended.

4 handling and installing VFD modules

4.1 Avoid touching conductive electrical parts during operation since the grid/anode voltage may exceed 30 to 100V
Allow one minute for the voltage stored in capacitors to discharge.
4.2 Use antistatic precautions while handling or transporting the modules.
4.3 Do not plug / unplug the module while power and/or data are applied. Sending data to the module while power is not applied may cause interface component damage.
4.4 It is recommended that signal cables should not exceed 30cm for CMOS/TTL signals. Please plan your circuit to minimize noise and provide sufficient current capacity in the power supply routing.

5 operation

5.1 The power source should be suitably regulated to meet the operating conditions of the module.
5.2 The illuminated phosphor will decrease in brightness during extended operation. If a fixed pattern illuminates for an extended period of several hours, the phosphor efficiency will decrease compared to non operating phosphor causing a non uniformity of illumination when the pattern eventually changes. Consider scrolling, character shift and screen saving options to use the phosphor elements evenly.

6 storage

6.1 Prior to production, the VFD should be stored within the environmental parameters set out in each devices' separate technical specification. One of the general characteristics of VFD is that it loses uniformity of brightness if subject to prolonged storage.
Therefore, when stored in excess of 3 months, it is recommended to re-age the VFD by illuminating the entire display area under typical specified conditions for several hours to reverse this effect.

7 disposal

7.1 The products contain lead(Pb) in solder and frit material. Please discard the product according to related government laws and regulations.

8 product warranty

The standard warranty offered for Noritake VFD glass and module products is 18 months from the point of manufacture or 12 months from the date of invoice. The warranty applies to failure due to workmanship and internal component failure while operated within the specified conditions. We will happily discuss the design of PCBs, enclosures, methods of handling, and assembly techniques to help reduce damage in process and service. The products are not designed for military, aerospace, medical or life-critical applications.

9 non warranty failure

The most common failure modes not covered by warranty are:
9.1 Broken glass or evacuation pip causing loss of vacuum due to impact or excess force.
(The dark getter area at one end of the display turns white when vacuum is lost.)
9.2 Broken or deformed lead pins and other components due to excess force.
9.3 Damaged interface IC or power supply component due to connection or disconnection of connectors while the power is still applied to the module or host.
9.4 Ingress of foreign matter causing breakdown of the electrical or visual function of the product.
9.5 Excess or reverse voltage applied to the product causing failure or rapid aging of one or all of the components.
9.6 Modifications or attempted repair.

10 acceptable criterion

The following features are considered acceptable for optimizing the yield and value of the product at the point of manufacture. Any tightening of these criterion shall incur additional cost in proportion to the change in manufacturing tools or yield.
10.1 Scratches and stains on the display face glass which will not disturb the readability.
10.2 Chips or scratches outside the viewing area specified by the viewing angles shall be acceptable.
10.3 Visual deviations as described in quality document PM3012 or the product specification.

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