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Re: tesla coil funds
I totally agree with Terry! Things I learn from my home
projects usually go far to benefit my work. My work is typically
with new startups, so I almost never see scrap parts from work
(unlike Terry) but I'm lucky to live in Silicon Valley where
there is a real turn-over of electronics to the surplus market.
I have a regular schedule of visiting local surplus places
and scrounging bits and pieces as they show up as well as
at swap meets and flea markets.
This hobby can certainly be expensive, but many of us here on
the list really enjoy building these astounding machines for
a small investment of money and a variable investment in time,
an important portion spent on trying to be in the right place
at the right time.
I found that there is a "tidal effect" in accumulating
components, such that you'll go for months with nothing
showing up, and then there will be dozens of items that
show up all at once, and then the sources dry up again.
I also visit local plastics supply places on a regular basis
and scrounge a real wealth of expensive HDPE and acrylic and
polycarbonate plastics for $1.00/lb ... all excellent for
A local industrial drainage and plumbing place sells me
6" and 8" thin-wall (.125") PVC tubing (normally used
for drainage) for $1.50 to $2.00/foot.
A local metal scrap yard sells copper and brass in sheet
and rod forms for $3.00/lb.
I usually can pickup junk microwave ovens for free and
Neon transformers for $10 to $20 each (working). Most
neon shops have a few out-of warrantee transformers that
they will donate or sell.
And of course, when all else fails, the list is here!
Totally great fun and extremely educational!
> From: Tesla list <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
> To: tesla-at-pupman-dot-com
> Subject: Re: tesla coil funds
> Date: Friday, October 06, 2000 7:41 PM
> Original poster: Terry Fritz <twftesla-at-uswest-dot-net>
> Hi Jerimiah,
> At 09:09 PM 10/6/2000 -0500, you wrote:
> >Where do you people get all your money for this expensive hobby?
> In my case... I am a senior electrical engineer and I am single.... I
> cash, but little time...
> >I see
> >people buying all this expensive stuff in their websites and then they
> >break it and go out and buy more (commercial pulse caps). What kind of
> >jobs do some of you people have? Can you get people to sponsor you?
> No... but I do sponsor some of my own pet projects like Garry's recent
> cap experiment which has proven to be very fun!!!!!
> >you get some of this stuff from where you work.
> Some of the stuff I do at work is tied to this and I am a frequent
> feeder" at the bottom of the scrap metal bin at work :-)) We deal with
> high power caps often so the MMC and poly cap stuff here and what I do at
> work have much in common. Nothing of 'value' there but the data basses
> work have often come in handy... Actually, the work side has benefited
> more from some of this than the Tesla hobby side has dollar wise since
> info has translated to big bucks saved at work due to improvements and
> "knowledge" added to the high power equipment there... I think it is
> called "synergy" :-)) It is sort of embarrasing that I have to bring
> stuff home for testing since "I" have better equipment in some cases than
> work does :-))
> >I personally have to wait
> >a week till my next paycheck to buy things like a fuse or something.
> Been there, done that... My fabulous IGTUSOA entry took about a month's
> pay to build at the time... Senior college kid running out of money
> fast... Ho ho, ha ha, he he... that still hurts :-)))
> I guess some of use just have this Tesla coil stuff in our genes or
> something and we will never quit...