RE: Quick and dirty capacitors
Here's an old post of mine that may help. While salt water/glass caps are
not great, I suspect wax paper would be even worse. The slightest warming
up and your dielectric is gone. Enjoy!
As a point of reference, I built a quick salt water cap out of a 16 oz
Nestea glass bottle. The bottle measured 6.9" H x 2.8" Dia. I filled it
with salt water (I didn't bother with the oil layer since I was only
interested in the cap value, and the oil has no effect on that). I
wrapped the exterior with aluminum foil to a height of 4.5", just where
the sides go from straight to curved. I stuck a piece of stranded wire
into the water. The length of immersed wire had no effect on the
capacitance, but it would affect the amount of losses in an actual Tesla
I measured the value on my Wavetek 27XT multimeter, which is able to read
capacitance. After subtracting the lead capacitance, the net result was
a capacitance of 0.57nF, or 0.00057uF, or 570pF, per bottle.
Still no idea to what voltage one bottle is good for though.
Waltham, MA USA
>Original Poster: "Yuri Markov" <wmondale-at-hotmail-dot-com>
>I am looking for a way to construct a capacitor who's capacitance I would
>have SOME rough idea about. I've been shooting in the dark too long with
>vast arrays of glass bottles. Could somebody tell me a somewhat quick and
>inexpensive way to make a capatitor out of, say, aluminum foil and wax
>paper? Or, if somebody knows the exact capacitance of a specific type/brand
>of bottle, could they please tell me? I realize I can measure the bottle
>myself - yeah, with an accuarcy of +/- 50%. Not good enough. So if anyone
>knows roughly the exact capacitance of a certain brand of bottle, PLEASE
>tell be. I'd appreciate it a WHOLE lot. Thanks.