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Re: 12kV / 60 ma Neon Sign Transformer

Original poster: Jim Lux <jimlux@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>

At 04:30 PM 3/7/2005, Tesla list wrote:
Original poster: Davetracer@xxxxxxx
Hello all,

I have not built a Tesla Coil in quite some time. However, if both of my brain cells that are left remember correctly, one starts at the power supply. I could be wrong. I've been wrong before, plenty of times!

I do have a 12kV / 60 ma neon sign transformer and I had good luck with copper tubing as a primary "last time".

Now, what I need to determine (I believe) is the capacitance C to store up current each 1/60th, the primary's L to determine resonant frequency, and the secondary's L to make sure it's a 1/4 wave electrically from the primary's L frequency.

Does anyone happen to have software to do this? I have seen references to some programs but am not finding them.

Alternately, would someone be willing to give me the numbers to design the coil with (e.g., "You're going to want 800 turns on the secondary, Dave")?

As I recall finding capacitors was always a joy :-( but I'll give it a try. If nothing else, I can use aluminum foil in 14 x 14 and plate glass in 18 x 18.

Again, any pointers to software, or existing designs, would be quite nice. I too started with the 1964 "Two Tesla Designs" magazine articles.

    Thanks again,

Dave Small

You can do a lot better these days..
Download one of the Excel spreadsheets, or use the online Java based Tesla calculators to figure out turns, C, etc. http://www.pupman.com/ -> look at the left hand column.

The 1/4 wave thing will just cause problems. Ignore it. For all intents and purposes, you're dealing with two coupled lumped LC circuits.

For capacitors:
beer bottles in saltwater in a bucket for low budget
multiminicap (MMC) for more.. (string together a bunch of 2kV, 0.15 uF caps, but not just any old cap. You need the right type. Check the archives)

800-1000 turns on the secondary, Dave, just like you asked...