Re: Neon transformers and HV caps

Re tiny spark:  All that occurs to me is that you may have a shorted out
transformer.  Do you get a nice snappy spark across your gaps?  If you don't 
there is likely to be something wrong.  Perhaps you have a short in your caps
that needs the higher voltage to punch through.  Check the output of your
transformers (without the caps in the circuit).  You should see a nice fat 
spark that peaks in the middle like an inverted V.  If you see a small squeeky
spark, it indicates that something is shorted out or out of phase.

Re caps:  If you didn't pay too much for them and you only got them for coil
use, I say go for it.  The dc voltage rating works out to about 1/2 to 1/3
(depending who you ask) of the AC voltage rating.  Therefore, your caps are 
good for between 8300V to 12500V.  I keep hearing use 1/3 the DC voltage 
rating, but I have gone to 15kV on 30kV DC caps without problems.