Re: Believe it or not!
I think the *true* problem lies somewhere else. No
amount of talking or warning on this List will do much
good esp. for our public image. I think ~90% of the
people on this list DO indeed know what they are doing,
at least to some degree. This, however, doesnīt help the
*inexperienced* "kid" next door (cause he is not on this
List) who saw the show on TV. Getting a Tesla Coil to
work properly does require some thinking before actually
*doing* it. I think the *kid* will get killed by high voltage
from the primary circuit long before he gets around to
doing the dangerous stunts he saw on TV.
Itīs pretty similar to the gun laws (Germany vs. U.S.A.)
Over here, we have followed the shootings and brutal
slaughtering, which teenagers in U.S.A. have carried out
in the last year. Anyone you would talk to about this, would
say "Hey, that will NEVER happen in Germany". Well, last
week (sadly enough) a 14 year old proved them all wrong.
There were some comments on TV, that this kid looked up
to the teenagers that created the slaughter at the school
in U.S.A. Itīs a sad fact, but NO amount of laws can change
such an *insight*. Itīs simply human nature (if you can call
such creatures humans, as there is nothing human about
such an act).
In Germany, we have very strict laws pertaining to gun
possession. You need to be at least 18 years old and have
no record at the police HQs. Then you are allowed to posses
a weapon, BUT NOT the ammo. You can ONLY (legally) get
ammo, if you have a "Sprengstoffschein", which requires a
sort of driverīs license and a test to get. The ONLY way
you can get this, is if you are a member of an amateur shooting
club OR a hunter. Reloading your own ammo takes yet another
step (and more tests), if you want to do it legally.
No amount of laws (I know, its the government; it doesnīt have
to make sense), will prevent you from getting a gun illegally,
anywhere in the world. AND NO amount of laws can
*compensate* the stupidity of the individual, who leaves
guns (or HV equipment) lying around so that children, etc
can get and use them.
A law may be hindersome, but it SURE will not be a 100%
prevention scheme. (Why do some people run a red light?)
Laws: a good example is (high powered) model rocketry.
Americans have been using black powder / composite
reloadable motors for quite a few years and the stuff IS
tested again and again for safety, etc, before it EVER
reaches the public. Yet, the German authorities (BAM) feel
the need to re-test and ban some sizes (not meaning bigger
here) and if it is to be released to the public, IT MUST have
a BAM sticker. Now, quite clearly this is NOTHING but a
money making scheme!!
I think the TV shows, with a reporter commenting on something
he doesnīt know a blessed thing about, will do MUCH more harm
to our hobby, than any individual getting killed (w/o harming an
innocent bystander) could ever do. When I sometimes listen to
*experts* (sic) on certain subjects, I can get pretty mad. I
remember on one occasion a show called 24hrs, they talked
about jet dragsters and that they consume 35-50 gallons of
kerosene down the 1/4 mile and how discremental this fuel
*wasting* is to the ecology. Yet NO mention was made to jet
airplanes that use the same fuel (and their thirst) and
sometimes must even eject the raw fuel into the atmosphere
This is also a reason, why I think live shows, like Jeff Parisse,
Bill Wysock, Doc R, etc, etc, put on, are MUCH better for our
public image. These guys KNOW what they are doing and I am
sure they warn about the dangers, every time they put on such
a show. But even here there are problems. For example, letīs
suppose (to show what dangers a coil can present) they take a
piece of wood that gets struck by the coil and it bursts into flames
(no persons involved; like holding it, while it bursts into flames).
MOST people will start to realize this hobby IS dangerous, but
darned it, I assure you there WILL BE at least one person who
thinks this is *cool* and "I gotta try this at home". There IS
NOTHING anyone can do to prevent this.
I mean if some climbing artist scales up an electrical pole (where
those beloved pigs hang) and gets electrocuted, what do you
want to do? Put a ban on all overhead (HV) wiring? Thatīs crazy!
Of course warnings SHOULD be posted now and then on the List
(esp. since the List experiences an ever-growing population), but
the final decision IS left to the individual, no matter what anyone
says or does.
I find it very amazing that in 100 years, we (as coilers) *only* have
very few deaths to account for. Of course, this is NOT an excuse
or a reason to get careless, but I doubt there are many other
potentially dangerous hobbies that have such a low death toll. This
probably has a lot to do with the fact that coiling is not *that*
popular and with the fact that building and operating a coil
definitely needs some brain work.
>Has anyone tried lately to buy supplies for their
>home chemistry lab?
Sure, I know what you mean. However this will NOT (it CANīT)
prevent a terrorist from making a bomb. Anyone with chemical
background can make a bomb from everyday chemicals, which
simply canīt be banned. If you look through the Internet, you can
find dozenīs of sites (no, NO URLīS!!), which boast the old "bible"
called "The Anarchists Handbook". I have done many a dangerous
chemical stunt (as I am sure quite a few members of this list have,
too), but ALWAYS with the necessary caution (otherwise I wouldnīt
be able to run my mouth off here), BUT, any kid that can handle
a computer and has Internet connection, can receive this info for
free. NOW thatīs what I would call dangerous!!
All I can say is: stay safe, donīt get careless and if not sure about
something ASK (the List or the pros) BEFORE doing it. Lastly,
USE SOME COMMON SENSE.
Coiler greets from Germany,