Thanks for your recent response. I did try various settings on the welder
when I was testing the other night. I can control the current within a
range. At the lowest setting, I get about 15 to 20 amps. I wish I could
turn it down some more. Even at this low setting, when the gaps finally fire
the power is higher than I would like to be starting out at. The discharges
from the 14" toroid with the pole pig are extremely vicious. Everything is
happening much faster and with much more power than before. This is only
running at 6 or 7 kv now, I can't imagine what this thing will do when I
raise the output voltage to 12 to 15 kv. I don't know if I want to be in the
same room with it. There are so many discharges happening so fast it is even
hard to tell what is getting hit. I can see now that if something started to
go to hell it would happen in a hurry.
Regarding spark gaps: What you say makes sense. My gaps are acting like an
almost dead short across the output of the pig - and not quenching. I did
try repositioning the spark gap and the capacitor so the capacitor is across
the HV and the spark gap is in series with the primary and the performance
seems to be identical. My plan is to build a spark gap similar to what I saw
in your video. I plan to build an enclosure and use 4 or 5 two inch dia.
sections of copper pipe, gapped at .020 and sealed so all the air flow must
be between the 4 or 5 small gaps. I plan to use my big Craftsman shop vac to
provide the vacuum. Do you think this will work?
BTW, the guy that I bought the big Powerstat variac from called me this
morning and said he knows where I can get an X-Ray power supply. 100kv dc at
200 to 300 ma. Do I want one? If I don't we can probably find someone on
the list here who does. I will check it out.