Re: Building a coil

Hi Jeremy,

>I am looking in to building a very small scale coil, to start
>...just a project that won't eat up too much time or money.....

Time and money.  Tesla coils take both.  You can scrimp on the money, but the
more money you save, the more time it will take.  For instance, I bought a small
commercial pulse discharge cap for my first coil.  It cost me $50.  I later
built one to the same specifications, it cost me less than $10, but took me 4-6
hours, maybe more.

I guess to give you advice, I would need to know how much money you can spend,
not how much you want to spend, how much you CAN spend.  You'll find out as you
get started that you will first lay out the money for those components you know
you have to buy.  Then you begin to scrounge up the other pieces.  While
scrounging, it will be $5 here, $2 there, $10 here, etc.  As you approach
completion of your first coil, you will grow impatient, so you will tend to buy
more components, instead of making them.  Remember, you'll be spending the money
over several months, so it won't be as painfull as ploping down one lump sum.
Depending on how deep your wallet is, I would count on spending at least
$125-$150 over several months for a small coil with about 10" discharges.  I've
heard people say you can do it for $70 in this performance range, but I'm
skeptical.  If you include all of the nickel and dime items, I believe it will
cost closer to what I described.

I just posted some instructions on building a 4" secondary.  That would be a
good place to start.

>.......and will give me a good understanding of how they work.....

Well, that takes some study.  Anyone can build the thing and make it work.  That
doesn't necessarily mean that person knows the principles by which it works.
There are a lot of books you can read on them.  But, here again, the money
factor.  I recently ordered the Colorado Springs Notes ($40) and Richard Hull's
guide ($24.95) to them.  I suggest downloading everything you can from Bill
Beaty's Homepage and associated links to it (like nic.funet.fi) and begin
reading.  This is good study material and costs little, just download time.

Well, what are you reading this for?  Start downloading!  :-)

Scott Myers