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Author Topic: Tesla Coils  (Read 4376 times)
Fantômas
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« on: February 26, 2007, 02:08:58 am »

Has anyone here constructed a Tesla coil? I have been thinking about this for a while, but I am not sure where to begin. The variety of tutorials I have seen online are intimidating to me. Anyone want to help me get less intimidated? is there some small project I could work on to get my feet wet first?

~Ike
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Hex
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« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2007, 02:34:01 am »

This tutorial seems user friendly enough. You just scale it to whatever size you want
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TheClockWorkWasteland
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« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2007, 02:50:05 am »

Thanks for the tutorial.  I haven't found one before that suggested a readily available capacitor.

I'm working on much the same thing right now with one of my buddies.  In a couple of weeks I'll be doing an update on my website focused specifically on Tesla coils.  I'd recommend going to the local electrical supply store, purchasing the necessities, reading some plans for more simple circuits, and building some circuits. It helped me a lot to actually get my hands on the electricity (so to speak) to better understand how it actually works.  I've been working with this, trying to make some different inventions, and now I'm trying to learn more about resistors, transformers, and capacitors. The part I'm having the most problems with right now is figuring out how to build the right kind of capacitor.  Some of the best help I've found was through talking with a guy at the local science museum.  He even showed my buds and I the museum's coil, which helped us see what the confusing circuit drawings really meant.  One cool experiment that illustrates the power of coils themselves is as follows:

Take a bunch of copper wire (two really long strands) and wind each strand around its own spool. Wire one spool  into a small christmas-style light, and the other into something that can hook into a power source (like a male plug adapter).  Insulate the spools after you've wound the wire really tight around them many times.  When you plug the first coil into the power source, move the second one near it and the light will glow because electricity is being transmitted through the air.  Put a piece of iron through the coils and you'll feel the magnetic field. 

Just so you know, I'm far from an electrician, so I'm not promising that all of this is exactly safe. 

Nice to see someone else on the journey; let me know if you find anything that might be helpful in our endeavors.

Cheers and Good Luck,
Neal
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phuphuphnik
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« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2007, 11:42:58 am »

http://www.sparkmuseum.com/images/Misc/Tesla-coil.jpg

This one looks easy, and punk enough

Or try an Oudin coil. A little safer output apperently... never seen one, though.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2007, 11:46:34 am by phuphuphnik » Logged
Copper Sulphate
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« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2007, 06:14:21 pm »

Or try an Oudin coil. A little safer output apperently... never seen one, though.

I've got a small one I made at age 14 or so. Spark generator was a Ford T ignition coil, which I had on loan at the time. HV resonator cap is a piece of doublesided PCB with the edges etched off.

Worked beautifully and was safe to touch, so you could draw sparks from metal objects held in your hand.

Maybe I should find a spark coil just to power it up again...

C.S.
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July 15th, 02009: Much progress was made today on clearing out my future laboratory, yet there is a ways to go still.
Tinkergirl
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« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2007, 09:15:40 pm »

I have the book, Electronic Gadgets for the Evil Genius, though I have never dared anything within it, and it has lots of big spark generaing projects within it.
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