Author Options:

My try on the.... tesla coil. I need some help. Answered

Hi. I made this tesla coil out of scrounged wire from a crt tv, a old 120 V.A.C to 12 V.A.C transformer (reversed), pvc pipe and a brass nob for the "toroid". When i plugged it in , the outlet i was plugging it into arced?! Do I have it wired right? I used the schemetics from the book "The Boy Scientist" by Popular Mechanics.
                                                                   Thanks in advance.

P.S: srry about the bad pics


I've not actually ever built one before (though I've wanted to), but I have had problems trying to drive a transformer in the reverse direction. My suspicion is that the secondary side (normally 120V primary) of your transformer is arcing (and shorting). I think that when the arc/short happens there will be a kick on the other side... Does your tesla coil run at all? Does the schematic you referenced use the same type transformer? Most of the coils I've seen use a neon sign transformer, which are also current limited to prevent serious injury or death, which is a nice feature.

i don't know if my tesla coil runs or not. when it arced, i didnt plug it back in again.

Probably a good idea... I can't see in your pictures if you have a spark gap on the TC primary? The primary on your TC looks a bit odd to me... not the traditional style I've seen. Also, I suppose you could put a very small (terminals close together) spark gap on the side you are connecting to the outlet to try to keep any arcing away from the outlet. Overall I would be very careful since you are hooking up the transformer in a way that it wasn't intended.