High voltage ignition coil supply

Picture of High voltage ignition coil supply
In this Instructable I will teach you how to build a High voltage power supply using an Ignition Coil.This project uses a 555 timer based circuit.We use a 555 IC because an ignition coil needs a squire wave signal to power it. so basically the 555 timer is making pulsed DC electricity which powers the ignition coil.
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Step 1: Danger High Voltage!!!

Picture of Danger High Voltage!!!
This project shows how to make a High voltage power supply which produces about 30 or more MA, which is enough to Kill you! so Don't try this if you are not experienced with high voltage!

Step 2: Getting an ignition coil

Picture of Getting an ignition coil
The first thing you need to do is to get an ignition coil,I got mine from a friend who's dad works on cars,but you can buy a new one for like $30, Or you can get one from the junkyard for about $5.The reason we use an ignition coil is because ignition coils are what power the spark plugs with high voltage. so instead of hooking it to a spark plug you can use it as a high voltage supply.

here is a pic of the two ignition coils I got.

Step 3: The driver circuit scematic

Picture of The driver circuit scematic
This is the driver circuit that powers the ignition coil .
part list:

two 10k ohm potentiometers
two 1k ohm resistors
one 555 timer IC
one 8-dip IC socket
one 100 ohm resistor
one .1uf 12v capacitor
one 2n3055 power transistor and heatsink
12v 6amp DC power supply

Step 4: Gather all your componments...

There are a few components that are missing from this image because I ordered them and they are not here yet.

Step 5: Solder all your components

Picture of Solder all your components
now you need to solder all your components using the schematic.

Step 7: Finished!

Picture of finished!
now your finished! now just turn on the supply and adjust the frequency using the potentiometer until you get a good arc! you can use this to: power a Tesla coil, power a Jacobs ladder, and much much more!
ARJOON3 years ago
i used an irfp250 instead for the 2n3055. i got far much bigger spark and also when i used 32v of input to the mosfet the ignition coil was sparking to the concrete. the was super crazy. like a tesla coil. haahahahaha

When you used the irfp250 did you connect it the same has the 2n3055 like this? or did you change anything? thanks!

yes like this but substitute the 100R resistor to 150R else the gate will be too saturated
I agree on your choice for using IRFP250n as not only a mosfet has a better rise/fall time in other words is more capable for fast switching, but it also incorporates a flyback diode for protecting the drive transistor from back EMF blowing all the circuit to nothing. A steering diode at the supply input would also be a wise idea to protect the circuit and improve commutation.
bswt ARJOON2 years ago
can i use a IRF510 Transistor
ARJOON bswt2 years ago
it think it should work
becuase it basically is a mini low voltage tesla coil If you think about how it wroks they are both very similar.
techno guy2 years ago
This doesn't work, I already fried 3 555 timers because of how the negative is connected to the chip and the high voltage goes into the chip and fries it.
safetec2 years ago
I have a question: Can the 2n3055 power transistor be replaced with any other transistor? and also can this circuit be run using for example a standard 9V battery to produce a little less current? Is there anyone out there that can perhaps propose a circuit using a cellphone charger's transformer to boost the V output?
cdousley3 years ago
can i use less than 6 amps i know i wont get as high of a voltage but i wouldn't want something this powerful until i had some more experience.
ge6aaaa33 years ago
How can i make bigger spark?
hinmung3 years ago
can replace the car ignition coil with motorcycle ignition coil ??? and any bad things happen such as the 555 timer explosions.
N3v3rm0r33 years ago
How do you connect the power transistor? It has two pins and I don't what they are for. Also, is it my idea, or it lacks a pin?
mark-c944 years ago
got a few questions here, why does the 12v + go to the negative side of the coil? and surely with that design you're going to have a few thousand volts going to the ground of your power supply, your transistor and everything else connected to ground? 
Can I run this off a converted computer PSU? It generates in the tens of amps on the +12V rail, so how would I go about getting just 6A out of it? Do I put in a resistor/potentiometer right after the power supply?

Also, how long can the circuit be run? Can it be run indefinitely, or should I only run it for say, 5 minutes before turning it off and letting it cool down?

Can I make a "singing arc" using this? I've heard mixed results about using an ignition coil as the HV supply in a plasma speaker.

Thanks in advance if you can answer my questions! 
zuperzoim4 years ago
can this circuit produce 50kV.
if it ca't be, how can i make it ?
skuitarman (author)  zuperzoim4 years ago
it produces from 30kv-50kv
billdan4 years ago
I would like to use this as an ignition for an old engine but I am not sure what to use as the trigger. Do you have any ideas?
zuperzoim4 years ago
Can i use another IC....?
I think IC 555 not support with changed frequency
skuitarman (author)  zuperzoim4 years ago
you can try.
physicas4 years ago
How do you determine the 6A and is it important?
skuitarman (author)  physicas4 years ago
i dont know what you mean by determine. but the reason 6 amps is important is it gives it alot more output
Well how do I create 6A, I thought electronics just drawed the current it needed. e.g, a parallell circuit, adding a light bulb will draw more current from a battery.
ianrab5 years ago
Where does the HV spark to? I have my ideas, but I'm not 100% sure...

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