Railroad counterpoise


I have been following the tread of the railroad ground business and have 
to post a note which some may not be aware of.

I have mentioned this on our tapes before.  You need a counterpoise, not 
necessarily a ground.

1 mile of railroad track built on teflon ties elevated on glass supports 
would be a ground counterpoise far superior the driving of (6) 10 foot 
ground rods in most locations!!

Ground, like dirt, is just a counterpoise and in most localities, the 
resistance is so high that you only grab a clump of conductive earth a 
few feet (if that) from your driven rods.  Still, it serves most of us 

If I had a chance for railroad track, a lake, what have you, I would use 
it.  My gound rod system is sunk in rock salt soaked sand in earth and my 
aluminum sided home is also attached to the system.  I would throw it 
away for a mile of elevated track. buried track would even be better.

The quality of a ground can be roughly determined by an ariel collector 
plate's arc to the outside ground rods.  Run your coil. If the arc is 
whimpy or non-existant, then your ground is great. if it is rather noisey 
and hot then you are overdriving the counterpoise.  Tesla did this in 
Colorado springs to test his ground! (which was very, very poor)

This is a quantitative and relative test. It should be done as the ground 
is improved or coil size/power input is increased.  I choose a plate size 
at the outset which will give a small spark when the coil is running.

The old home water pipe ground of the early 1900s is fading fast as the 
underground water systems are upgraded to plastic pipe and homes use 100% 
PVC for internal water handling.  The local utility's ground is good, but 
remote for tesla counterpoise use on really large systems.  Grounding is 
a little understood and often glossed over part of Tesla coiling.

Richard Hull, TCBOR