Continue to Site

Welcome to our site!

Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

  • Welcome to our site! Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

need help building a football ( NFL ) scoreboard

Not open for further replies.


New Member
I am giving my time to a football club for children , and at their matched they are writing the score on a chalk board ( so you know what happen when it rain )

i would like to build the 7 segment digit With bright 7 X 3 bright led strip , so i need what is going to power the led

So can some one help me with the electronic diagram

and it will run on 12 volts car batteries

What we they need

down counter that start at 15:00 min (settable via keypad) , with a one button start/stop for the clock

Home and Guest 2 digit ( 0-99) score ( settable via keypad )

Qtr ( one digit 1 to 4 )( settable via keypad )

Down ( one digit 1 to 4 )( settable via keypad )

Ball on ( 2 digit 1 to 55 )( settable via keypad )

To Go ( 2 digit 1 to 10 )( settable via keypad )

so if you have an existing diagram , or some one could draw one for me

dont forget it is for a good deed for children

Thanks in advance for all the help



Well-Known Member
Are the clock and scoreboard separate displays? Are you comfortable with programming microcontrollers? How large are the digits going to be?
Can you attach a photo of what you'd like it to look like?
Like this?
**broken link removed**


Have you tried to determine how long a car battery will run such a scoreboard? If the battery will be deeply cycled for each event, you'll have to use a special deep cycle battery. You might want to start with these calculations. Figure out how many led's you're going to need, and add up the current required by each. Then research the amp-hour capacity of car batteries. I dunno, what are they typically? 100 AH????


New Member
here is more detail

yes it will kind of look like the picture

the 7 digit segment will be about 9 inch tall , built with bright led so not to much power drain

And the way i would like it to work

i would like to punch on the key pad a number , and then send where it should go on the score board , so i could have a button for each display , what i mean , i punch 21 on the keypad and then i could push a home button , and the the home score would read 21 , the push 4 on the keypad and the push the QTR button , and it would display the fourth quarter

For the clock i would punch in 1500 on the keypad , then push the clock button and the clock would display 15:00 , after that i would have only one button to start/stop the clock.

could it be build without programming chips , just keypad reader chips , and display chips , for simplicity of use



New Member
What about a big board with hooks to hang big numbers on?

Remember if it's electronic, you need to cater for human error during use, so it'll need to count downwards if you pressed the wrong team's score increment by mistake


New Member
Are the scoreboard and keypad going to be separate units?

Assuming they are, you may want 2 microcontrollers (MCUs): one in the scoreboard, and one in the keypad. Have the keypad transmit data serially to the scoreboard, minimizing the number of wires to be run between the two.

Then you're talking coming up with a communications protocol, such as a command/data sequence (e.g. "set home score to 21", "start clock", "stop clock", etc.) Getting the keypad MCU to send the data and the scoreboard MCU to receive/interpret it.

The MCU in the scoreboard would handle the display multiplexing, receiving commands/data from the keypad, and running the clock. The MCU in the keypad would simply read the keys and send commands to the scoreboard MCU.


New Member
for the budget i'll have to add up the parts , and see with the other fathers ,
the reason we want a electronic scoreboard is for the children to have something nice and different from the other (well sponsored ) team , for them to be proud of their home field


Well-Known Member
Any large digit daylight visible display with 18 large 9" seven segment displays will chew through power and cost $$$$ if you're starting from scratch. You'll need PCB layout or you could attempt point to point wiring but it may suffer if you're moving it around.

As a heads up: If this is your first foray into electronics this is a very complex project, unless you can find a premade design / kit this could take quite awhile to design and build.

A prebuilt 4" display clock with RS485 control is about $200, display prices go up exponentially based on digit height and brightness (needed for daylight).


New Member
a local store is selling me the 3 led segment for 2 $ each ( his cost) , so it is going to cost me about 14 $ per digit

if you know of any kit fell free to show me the way
or if there is any existing schematic ,

any help is greatly appreciated


New Member
i am located in Piedmont , Quebec ,Canada

i use to be technician in electronic a while back so to solder and put together, and read a schematic I'm OK

and there is an other father that his a tech to, so both of us can build it

has a time frame, the season is just beginning , and it will be used for a couple of years


New Member
Is it really that complicated , i thought that with today technology , there would be a chip or couple of chip that are made to go together ,


Well-Known Member
Yes they're called microcontrollers. They can scan a keypad and with driver ICs can run those large LED displays. Getting it professionally designed for you would cost more than buying a premade scoreboard.

It's something that can be done but not a first project by any means.

A modern microcontroller can contain anywhere from thousands of transistors to millions. The new 8 core intel CPU will contain 2.3 billion.

Q. What does it look like on the outside?
A. Not much, just a small square of silicon.
Last edited:
Not open for further replies.

Latest threads

New Articles From Microcontroller Tips