Re: Neonics wonderland!!!!

Tesla List wrote:
> Original Poster: "B**2" <bensonbd-at-erols-dot-com>
> Hi All,
>     I can buy a 15 kV, 60 mA brand new neon sign transformer for $155
> that runs on 120 VAC from the local distributor.  It also comes with a
> guarantee!
> kV      ma     pri. v       qty.         cost         type
> 15.0    60  240-277     13     150.00ea        neon

I might add that your $155 price is more than double the wholesale
price small shops like mine pay.  Large shops get ever better price
on pallet lots.  Most any decent neon shop will sell you a tranny
for (near) cost if you tell the guy that it is for a science

I might also add that I have a more than ample supply of late model
used trannys from the large sign shops.  There is so much churn on
national account sign shops that many trannys get taken out of
service after only a year or two.  And with the new UL requirement
for secondary ground fault protection, old-style transformers are a
dime a dozen.  I either haul 'em off for free if the shop is short
of space or pay at most a buck a kilovolt.

While I'm writing, I must convey some other very bad news for
Telsaphiles.  The neon transformer as we know it is gone.  In some
of the dirtiest political trickery seen in a long time, a few
manufacturers pushed through a new UL standard that they thought
would give them a competitive advantage.  This standard requires the
UL Listed transformer to trip off if any of the following conditions

*	More than 15 ma to ground
*	Unbalanced load 
*	the midpoint ground (what you guys think of as the ground stud) is
connected to ground instead of the midpoint of the neon.
*	The ground lead is disconnected
*	The hot and neutral are reversed.

Conspiring with this is great pressure from the safety lobby to move
from tar potting to polymer epoxy potting.  The secondary ground
fault protection (SGFP) must be arranged so that it is
tamper-resistant.  As a practical matter that means that the SGPF
electronics are potted in the can in unmeltable epoxy or polyester

The NEC and the national building code bodies are stumbling all over
themselves to incorporate the UL requirement by reference into
building codes so this standard promulgated by a private special
interest has become law.  While it is not illegal to make or sell a
tranny without SGPF, it is now against the code to install one so as
a practical matter, no market exists for non-SGFP trannys and so
they won't be made.

There are exemptions for smaller trannys but the big muthas that we
like to use for Tesla'ing are now gone from the market.  I suggest
hoarding every one you can get your hands on.  Since they may not be
installed in new signs (and not in repair jobs after 2002 [I
think]), they have little to no value to neon shops and so should be
available for scrap prices or even free.

I have X-rayed a couple of new SGFP trannys and it looks like the
relay could be accessible with a carefully placed drill.  A suitable
rod could wedge the contacts shut.  Perhaps someone on the list with
access to either a fluoroscope or a CAT scanner could develop some
3-d X-rays of new units so that SGFP could be easily defeated.

John De Armond
Neon John's Custom Neon
Cleveland, TN
"Bendin' Glass 'n Passin' Gas"