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Smoke Test!

Circuit Smoke Test!

I could no longer stand it. Time to apply power and test the circuits.

Things were put away well enough and the floor cleaned. Other work caught up, So I hooked up the power supply and turned on the switch. The spark gap hissed nicely and there were no loud noises. I took out an old florescent tub, turned off the lights andΒ  examined the fields. Emm……….. kind of weak. Turned things off after 10 minutes and had a late lunch.

Later in the evening, turned the lights off. Now dark and tested again. Discovered illumination inside the disk. After some crawling around found an arc, a short between the back of the pin cushion and the shell coil ground wire. Almost the center of everything, Damn! now I must take things apart and reroute a wire and seal the old route.

At least this design can be taken apart and changed.Β  pg

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9 responses to “Smoke Test!

  1. BobN January 10, 2014 at 10:00 am

    A real Milestone, throwing that switch. That had to be a bit scary. It sounds like a small set back, but not too bad. Good luck going forward.
    I have been waiting for the test, so check mark that.

  2. Simon Derricutt January 10, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    Congratulation pg! Maybe you could wedge some polystyrene sheet between the two parts that are arcing-out. As a temporary (though possibly permanent) fix that would be quick and allow you to find any other weak spots. I’m looking forward to your getting some data from the tests.

  3. p.g.sharrow January 10, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    All; It only took 20 minuets to disassemble and begin repairs. Need to seal the passage above the pincushion, that will take a while to clean the carbonized plastic and weld closed the hole. Should have done that before I installed the great coil. Haste makes waste! And I will replace the carbon fiber dowel pins with polypropylene. All this should solve the problem in case I want to increase the operating voltages. pg

  4. p.g.sharrow January 11, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    Ok, everything is back together. The spark gap arc looks better and no apparent shorts. At least now I can continue finishing the dish surface and not worry about electrical disaster. pg

  5. Simon Derricutt January 12, 2014 at 8:17 am

    pg – nice to know you have classical music playing while you work (20 minuets)…. Replacing the Carbon-fibre dowels with pp is likely a good thing, since I’ve found that epoxy resin is maybe a bit too conductive for use with very high voltages/low currents. Part of my current project needs me to measure picoamps, and the leakage across the FR4 board is just too great to be able to use it.

  6. p.g.sharrow January 17, 2014 at 9:43 am

    @Adolfo; I know you have been lurking. I don’t usually do “YouTube” or other videos as my old computer and poor connection are not up to it. 😦
    @Simon; It sounds as if you are trying to measuring electrons one at a time! I think “pico” is a very small number? πŸ˜†
    A 20 minute minuet might be boring. you think? πŸ˜•
    Now 20 different minuets might be entertaining. πŸ™‚

    My disk is still ensconced in its’ place and I am working on it as I have time. At present the 4 support legs are being replaced with 3 better placed and stronger supports as 3 is a better number for testing weight. The old supports were poorly placed for the present weight and are distorting the shell curvatures. Seems that this thing evolves as I go along. 😎 pg

  7. Pingback: Working on the shell condenser | pgtruspace's blog

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