Re: Hookup Wire
From: D.C. Cox[SMTP:DR.RESONANCE-at-next-wave-dot-net]
Sent: Thursday, December 04, 1997 5:15 PM
To: Tesla List
Subject: Re: Hookup Wire
For sparks up to 4-5 ft long the closewound high temp enameled magnet wire
seems to work best. For the larger coils running at 5 kva and above there
is a definite preference for 3 KV PVC covered wire (MIL-D specification).
You can run a coil on magnet wire at higher powers but it requires a lot
more electrostatic shielding (much larger toroids) or else there is a great
danger of a coil strike which causes rapid breakdown. We use the 3 KV PVC
MIL-D wire on all of our coils running on 220 VAC with spark output around
6 ft or greater and prefer the magnet wire for coils running on 120 volt
mains with a 4-5 ft spark or less. Knock on wood -- so far no breakdowns.
> From: Tesla List <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
> To: 'Tesla List' <tesla-at-poodle.pupman-dot-com>
> Subject: Re: Hookup Wire
> Date: Tuesday, December 02, 1997 10:32 PM
> From: ghunter-at-mail.enterprise-dot-net[SMTP:ghunter-at-mail.enterprise-dot-net]
> Sent: Monday, December 01, 1997 1:54 PM
> To: Tesla List
> Subject: Hookup Wire
> Hi All,
> Secondaries wound with plastic insulated hookup wire seem pretty rare.
> I've only seen one small coil on a coiler's web page that used
> plastic insulated wire on the secondary. One other subscriber has
> admitted to me that his "big coil" is wound with pvc jacketed hookup
> wire. My own little low-budget coil is wound with #22 stranded hookup
> wire. While my sparks don't knock down low-flying airplanes, I'm
> mostly satisfied with performance.
> I'm aware of some of the drawbacks of hookup wire on TC secondaries.
> For one thing, the turns-per-inch density is much lower than magnet
> wire. This leads to lower inductance and high operating frequency,
> which is not desirable. My 23" secondary only has 460 turns.
> Operating frequency, even with a top hat, is in the neighborhood of
> Also, I've heard references to lossy pvc insulation. Since many
> coilers wind their small secondaries on pvc pipe forms, this seems
> like a pretty lame complaint.
> On the plus side, hookup wire is more readily available than magnet
> wire. It's less expensive than magnet wire. It also seems to me that
> the stranded conductor would have lower loss at RF than solid
> conductor. Jacketed wire is tough & resistant to kinking and
> breakage--good qualities during the winding operation.
> Comments, experiences (good or bad) with plastic insulated wire in TC
> use will be read with much interest.
> East Anglia, UK