Tesla Coil: Secondary Coil





Introduction: Tesla Coil: Secondary Coil

About: Twitter: @mindsforge

How to get a nice/free winding station set up for a medium to large sized secondary coil.

Step 1: Supplies for a Secondary

To build the secondary coil, you will need magnet wire, a form to wind the wire around. The form can be cardboard, PVC, or other non conductive material tube.

Step 2: Good Place to Wind

Winding the secondary is the longest most tedious part of making a tesla coil (IMHO)

So its a good idea to find a nice place to wind for hours on end. I picked a shady spot in the backyard.

Grab a stool to sit on, I also recommend a pair of gloves, magnet wire can be pretty rough on the skin after a while.

Also, have a roll of tape sitting near so you can tape down your progress as you go along, its no fun seeing hours of work unwind!

Step 3: Now the Setup

This is a pretty simple setup if you have these supplies sitting around. I just flipped a bench upside down, and covered the legs with old rags so the form would rotate easily as I wound the wire by rotating the tube.




    • Water Contest

      Water Contest
    • Oil Contest

      Oil Contest
    • Clocks Contest

      Clocks Contest

    100 Discussions

    Hi,good day.My secondary coil just cutd away from my tesla coil please help me

    I wish somebody would make an easy to understand, small, and as un-complicated as possible tesla coil. I'm a long exposure photographer and just want BIG sparks. I'm not AMAZING at electronics but i do have alot of know-how, but all the instructions available make no sense. Will somebody just make it simpler.

    3 replies

    if your looking for sparks, try a microwave mots transformer, use the middle prong on the base plate. big sparks.

    one of the best resources for making a tesla coil is http://www.pupman.com/ - they have years of archives of coil building adivce to search through, or you can join their mailing list and ask what questions that you cant find answers to in the existing knowledge base

    Tesla coils are extremely simple. They are just air-cored resonant transformers. Capacitor charges, sparkgap fires, primary coil fires, secondary coil picks up current, bang you have sparks. If you can't get an even basic understanding of tesla coils then maybe it isn't for you..

    I have done a lot of research on trinary coils. They seem cool. I kind of built one, but it wasn't very big. I got 4 foot sparks from 5 amps, though!

    1 reply

    I'd love to see an instructable on it. would you just design the secondary circuit similar to the primary's, except with all tolerances, ratings, and values adjusted accordingly?

    I'm just a curious bystander in this conversation, but has anyone thought to try to set that pvc pipe up on a motor to slowly rotate? Then you let the motor do the work while you simply guide the wire. Seems like it would save a LOT of time, given how much wire you have to spool onto it. Just an observation.

    3 replies

    actually, when I would one of my coils I used a foot pedal from a sewing machine and variac and a motor.  You use the variac to set the speed of the motor and then you use the foot pedal to turn it on and off.  It works really well and prevents any problems.  Me and another person wound our coil(4.5 feet of it) in about 3 - 5 hours.  Not 100% on the time frame since it was over 8 years ago.

    Yes, you can. I bought a 5 RPM motor off of ebay for a buck, and used that. I sat next to it and wrote emails, taking the occasional glance and slight move of the wire feeding mechanism. I actually did it with my one foot one and my 3.5 foot one.

    Can you kindly let me know if you wound the wire so closely with your hand??
    How many turns per inch could you achieve??

    I'm knew so I don't know the protocol. Should I make comments to this project or just submit an alternate method of winding? I start here: To keep the windings tight and even, before starting the winding, apply 3 or 4 strips of double-sided tape down the entire length of the core. Or, spray a small amount of aerosol adhesive (I 've used 3M Super 77) to the core as you go. Either method einsures close windings, liimited pressure to the wire and your delicate paws. One more advantage is that if you experience a wire break it's easy to make a splice. I've wound at least 10 secondaries fo various diameters and lengths with no problems what-so-ever. CAIO

    1 reply

    I'm getting the impression that you don't actually know what you're talking about. Tesla coils are not powered from units anything like arc-welders, and they don't incorporate big capacitors either. L

    1 reply

    Hi lemonie, I think the reference to welders is the High frequency TIG welders that also use spark gap technology Regards