I was always a fan of the steampunk style, and having also had experience building steam engines in the past, there was only one real direction this project could go. Once I had my radiation detector kit hooked up to my Raspberry Pi running InfluxDB and Grafana, I found myself woodworking, machining, and fabricobbling an enclosure out of mahogany, brass, copper, toggle switches and, because it just had to be done, nixie tubes.
Read the story of the almost year-long journey (cough some other stuff cropped up…) I went on to make my steampunk vision a reality below, and if you want to get up and running quickly, find out how to build your own simple version right here!
Low cost radiation monitors and Geiger counter kits have been available online for around $30-50US/£25-45 for a while, but standing alone they don’t do much other than make the recognizable “clicking” sound we all know from movies and TV. I decided to up the ante by connecting one to a Raspberry Pi, storing the data with InfluxDB, and showing the readings with a Grafana dashboard.
I updated the tech, gave it a web interface, added remote management, and built a custom mahogany housing with brass and copper fittings to show everything off, because it’s important to look suitably hip when sitting on the desk next to your train sign… right?