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(M^u^

- CIRCULATJOH

Cornell University Library

QC

645.H18
its

The Tesla high frequency coH,

constr

3 1924

012 334 706

the United States on the use of the http://www.org/details/cu31924012334706 .archive.Cornell University Library The tine original of tliis book is in Cornell University Library. There are no known copyright restrictions in text.

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.

THE TESLA HIGH FREQUENCY COIL .

.

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Plate 1. . — Complete 12" Apparatus. Frontispiece.

THE TESLA HIGH FREQUENCY COIL ITS CONSTRUCTION AND USES BY GEORGE F. . HALLER AND ELMER TILING CUNNINGHAM S6 ILLUSTRATIONS NEW YORK D. 23 VAN NOSTRAND COMPANY 1910 27 Murray and Warren Sts.

A. Van Nosteand Company X The Plimpioii Press Norwood Mass. . 1910. U. by D.S.Copyright.

and other parts of the high-frequency apparatus. details of construction and out.INTRODUCTION In presenting this book on the Tesla filled coil to the felt pubhc the authors hope that they have practical library of science. it. who just learning how to string and connect up to batteries. alternating cur- rent. from the elements of the galvanic the working of a high-potential. tried to lead the bells cell Neither have the authors is amateur. as first constructed. a long vacancy in the No attempt has been made to give a mathematical explanation of the oscillation transformer. due to . but have merely made an effort to place in the hands of advanced amateurs in electrical science a practical working manual on the construction of high-frequency coils. was a decided failure. now so useful in scientific investigation. electrical were carefully worked and the coil. and when obtained of no practical use. simple reason that the theory is for the too complex. authors finally decided to design and construct a larger The coil. A systematic line of experiments was carried on with in order to study the effects of a change in the constants All the mechanical of the various circuits. The coil attention of the authors was first called to the Tesla when they were fortunate enough to be given the use of the 7" standard coil described in the last chapter of this book.

. further For about five months they experimented on the details of construction and book. C. finally arrived at the 12" coil described in this coil This It is they feel assured to is as efficient as can be made. In conclusion they have to thank Mr.VI Introduction too small a condenser capacity. They feel that without his help the writing of. F. O. H. T. This latter fact makes it useful for wireless telegraphy. this htde book would have been impossible. E. especially designed give a high-frequency discharge of great volume. G. Mitchell for many this suggestions and for the kindly interest he has taken in work. G.

. 32 Construction of the Boxes . Theory of the Coil Uses of the Coil Dimensions of . 97 iii . Assembling 64 72 VIII.CONTENTS CHAPTER I. . . III. X.. 4 . . . PAGE General Survey . 60 . . IX.. VI. 20 24 Oscillation Transformer Interrupter . IV.. V. VII. The The The The The Transformer Condenser .. 7" Standard Coil Appendix . .. 84 . i II. .

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I\'.LIST OF PLATES FACING PLArE I. Discharge from the 12' Coil 96 The 7' Standard Apparatus .. . .. 52 52 The Electrolytic Rectifier VI. II..... Motor-driven Interrupter . \'. 96 . VII.. PAGE Complete 12" Apparatus Transformer for 12" Apparatus Oscillation Transformer and Glass for Condenser of 12' Coil Frontispiece . . . .. 20 20 III. . .

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LIST OF FIGURES
FIG.
1. 2.

Method

of Fastening

Primary Terminals

— Completed

PAGE
Primary
8
ii

Secondary Bobbin of Transformer

3. 4.
5.

Hand Winder
Wire-spool Holder
.

13

14

Frame

for Secondary of

Transformer
.

18 18 22
25

6.
7. 8. 9.

Section of Completed Transformer

Condenser Frame and Brass Condenser Sheet End Support for Secondary of Oscillation Transformer
Fibre Strip

25

10.
11.
12.

Rod End Support
Centre

25
for

Primary

28 29

13. 14.
15. 16.

Primary of Oscillation Transformer . Completed Secondary of Oscillation Transformer Bushings for Support of Oscillator Standards
.

29
.

30 30 34
37

Hard Rubber Block on
Simple Primary Air-gap

Oscillation Transformer

17.
18. 19.

Magnetic Interrupter

Motor Interrupter Fan
Brass Angle Piece

.

38 39 40

20.
21.
22.

Hard Rubber Block Section of the Motor
Patterns of Base

Interrupter

.

41

42 44

23.
24. 25. 26. 27. 28.

Patterns of

Yoke
Molor
.

Section of Completed

45

Rotor Disc Rotor and Clamp Nut
Stator Disc

46 48

49
.

Frame

for Stator Coils
.

51
. .

29.

Self-starting Device
Rectifier Plates

52 58
61

30. 31.
32.

and

\\'iring

Diagram
.

Transformer Box
High-tension

Box

63 65

33.

Connections for Primary of Transformer

xil

List of Figures

FIG.
34. 35. 36. 37.

PAGE
High-tension Bushing
Oscillators

38.
3940. 41.

and Standards Wiring Diagram Waves on Wires Primary and Core of Transformer Secondary Bobbin of Transformer Plate and Frame of Condenser
.

.....
. -

^
^7

08
92

of 7' Coil of 7" Coil

98 99 loi
.

Oscillation

Transformer of 7' Apparatus
Apparatus
.

104 106
107
.

42. 43.

Box

for 7"

44.
45.
46.

Wiring Diagram Oscillators and Standards for 7' Apparatus

109
113
115

Transformer of Small Coil Completed Transformer of Small Coil
Oscillation

47. 48. 49.

Primary Spark-gap Wiring Diagram Wiring Diagram

.

.

117

.

118 118

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THE TESLA COIL
CHAPTER
I

GENERAL SURVEY
By
is

far the largest for

and most

interesting

branch of science

electricity,

Maxwell has proven mathematically, and
light
is

Hertz verified experimentally, that

an ejectromagnetic

disturbance in the ether, and thus added that subject to the

realm of
electricity,

electricity.

Amongst

the various

phenomena

of

those of the high-tension current are the most

interesting

and

instructive.

With such a current

all

the

wonders of the Geissler and Crookes tubes may be seen.

With
space,

it

waves

for wireless

messages

may be

sent out into

and a great number
purpose of
this

of other experiments carried out.

It is the

book

to

show how a

satisfactory

apparatus for producing these currents

may

be constructed,

and

also to describe a few of the uses for such a coil.

The
known

apparatus, as described in this book,

is

most commonly

as the Tesla High-Frequency Coil, and consists, in
:

general, of four parts

i.

The Step-Up Transformer;
4.

2.

The

Interrupter;

3.

The Condenser;

The

Oscillation Trans-

former.
chapters.

Each

of these will be fully considered in subsequent

Before entering upon the description of the Tesla high-

frequency apparatus, however,

it

would be well

to

make a

few general remarks which are of the greatest importance.

wound on an octagonal frame. All the in in- wire used must be carefully tested. but also to prevent any slipping of the wires. so that ai the occasional jar will not displace any of the wires on secondary. it is the wire is completely act given about five coats of shellac. These must be tight. All connections must be soldered. by two turns of carefully oiled paper. and the connecting wires run through glass tubes. that When When winding the wire. howe^'er. This iii . and insulation must be The secondary consists of one layer only of No.2 The Tesla Coil of construction the Throughout the whole work ing care most exact- must be given to the matter of insulation. making two the half turns around a circular frame surrounding the primary The frames on which \'ery and secondarj wound must be firm and sulDstantial. care must be taken no two adjacent wires touch. and each layer of wire the transformer must be thoroughly shellacked. are consists of a thin band of copper. & S. circuit. When the apparatus is finished. two carefully made box6 oil must be constructed. The primary and a secondary. It is in the high-frequency apparatus. for that would cause a short wound. that the greatest care as regards both construction taken. In the condenser. double cotton-covered wire. the glass should be of the best grade obtainable. not only to as an insulator. It must also be free from all air bubbles. which is really the vital part of the apparatus. gauge. and then sulated from the next layer. 32 B. formed of strips of vulcanized fibre fastened to two end pieces of wood.

Some who intend to build this coil will think that all these precautions regarding insulation are extreme. oil. high potential care cannot be taken. Then is boxes are filled with pure paraffine which the only efficient insulator for these high-tension currents. in dealing with high-frequency." . all joints. too lation is much "Good insu- the key to success in high tension work. coats into Into one box the transformer and the the other the condenser and oscillation transformer.General Survey 3 accomplished by mortising boxes. about four or fits. shellac. and then giving five the of especially the joints. but it will be found that. for currents.

000 working of a transformer depends largely upon the design of the core. the magnetic flux falls maximum value. without the use of an interrupter. no The volts or 55 volts. efficient and steps it up to about 10. oil-immersed. The iron used must be of high straight permeability and should have core its little retentivity. fall A is always best to use. for. of watts In a transformer number number in the primary equals approximately of watts in the secondary. and the the is used to raise or lower the voltage. not to zero. step-up transformer. at It takes the alternating current from the mains volts. In the case of any step-up transformer. but the amperes decrease in the inverse ratio. is The of transformer used in the coil described in this book the common induction-coil type. but to a value which from depends .CHAPTER II THE TRANSFORMER The transformer — sometimes coil that is called a converter — is merely an induction connected directly to the alternating-current mains. the ratio of the number ondary in the of volts in the primary to those set is up in the sec- nearly the same as the in number of turns of wire primary to the number the secondary. on the of the current from its maximum value to zero.

open circuit is 5 The residual magnetism in an much less than in a closed magnetic circuit. gauge iron wire 18" long. it is greater with a straight core than with a closed circuit of iron. therefore.' when assembled. stand the pipe on end on a smooth surface. the bundle are sawed off square with a hack saw. and having is an internal diameter with these wires. while made too short the secondary coils to would There have is. is As the electromotive force in the secondary proportional to the fall in the magnetic field.The Transformer on the residual magnetism. the mag- netic flux drops lower in an open circuit than in a closed one. as the the iron core from the experience of it is mathe- matics for calculating too complex. The iron core made up of pieces of No. 20 or 22 B. and. although simple and useful in the case of closed circuit transformers. size The wire first cut nearly to the ends of with a pair of pliers. slightly less than 2". in fact. In the case of this transformer the length of the core was all determined after having gained possible information from certain eminent matters. this special use all men who had made in this a life study of these the dimensions of the transformer for were determined is way. a certain length which will give the best results. is & S. so that when the current suddenly becomes zero. a than 18" long. little less An ordi- nary piece of iron pipe. and force in each wire until . The coil designer is obliged to determine the length of others. to be made of too large a diameter be efficient. is If the core made too long if the primary magnetizing current will be too large. tightly filled When putting the wires in.

" is The or coal tube containing the iron wires fire now placed in a coke and left there until the fire burns itself out. When the shellac dry they are again packed. wiped dry. copper wire No. About 2\ pounds be . the cloth should be filed flat hea\ily shellacked. the upper end sawed off «-ith a hack saw to exactly i8. thus preventing the wire from becoming heated and energy wasted. is gauge. the wires are taken out and sandpapered to ^emo^'e any superfluous oxide. then. entire core is When the wrapped with this cloth. is The use of the insulating varnish on the iron wires to arrest iron eddy currents as much as possible. Then. The bandage should be between one and two inches wide. dipped into boiling water. after this it put in a warm place to dry thor- when will be ready for the primary winding. When cool. while out of packed closely together. as tightly as possible. starting at the end thus released. but no more. they are forced slowly the pipe. one above the other. in the pipe. The ends it is of the core are now and smooth. is When the bundle is finished. one They are by one. which can be obtained from any surgical supply house.6 it The Tesla Coil hits this surface. &l S. oughly. thus insuring slow cooling. double cottonwill used. and while still warm is are coated with thin shellac varnish. This heating and subsequent slow is re- cooling so softens the iron wires that their retentivity duced to a minimum. to hold still them in the desired shape. which would lower the transformers efficiently. they are tightly bound with a narrow cotton bandage. 12 B. The primary covered is wound in two sections of two layers each.

The one piece of pipe is used to prevent any of the wires from being forced in unequally at the points where the chuck clamps it. wire a good coat of shellac. the tail stock. of turns of tape around At its this point bind the wire to several turns tightly the iron core. and ring slip fit it over the extreme end of the core. the core by as it it and having a to receive the iron core. Make it the as tightly as possible by placing between and the core a few strips of tin or other thin sheet-metal. Proceed now wind the wire and of closely to within i" of the other end. 7 The primary may be wound by hand. erecting 2" hole two wooden supports bored in each. About I ft. hand the wire may be wound But is rather difScult to wind the wire tightly in this way. to by taking around it. if the amateur has access To mount cut a half-inch piece from the end of the pipe in which the core was formed. Here the winding the primary is stopped for a short time in order to give the After the shellac has dried.The Transformer required. and the other to afford rest. another coating is given it. may be pressed up against it. it. satisfactory to to one. fitted The other end of the core should also be with a half-inch piece of pipe and supported at this place in the steady rest. it Now clamp firmly in the chuck. about i" from of tape end. and then wet. would be more wind it in a lathe. with the centre removed. the second layer is wound on while the wire is still When the winding . by 17" apart. by turning fairly well. a smooth bearing surface for the steady If there is any tendency for the core to slip out of the chuck. from the end of the copper wire take a couple it. Then.

/I kf''') Sji-ix^rams showing rnar^rter oC CasientTn^ la^t "tuTYt. In this way the last turn kept from slipping By using this method or fastening it is unnecessary to use any bobbin heads for the primary. off. Completed The winding tape. as. — Method of Fastening Primary Terminals Primary. The wire is cut off about 2' from this ending . of the second layer is finished over the piece the of tape. with a removable primary. the last turn being brought through the loop in The loop is drawn tight by pulling on the other is pro- jecting ends.' 8 The Tcsla Coil point. with its ends projecting beyond the unwound portion of the the second layer. See Fig. this is a decided advantage. The looped end of the tape i. bobbins are always getting loose. must be on outer side of the winding. a has come to within about six turns of the starting piece of tape doubled back on itself is laid on the first layer. Fig I.

Mount the rod in the lathe with the tube on it. cut off seven rings. and then one of the 3J" rings. tightly within the other. off in If the amateur has no lathe the rings may be cut a mitre box. clamping one end of the wood in the chuck. thin parting tool. 6" in diameter in the centre. It will first The secondary wound in four sections. fastening them with glue. extreme end of the Slip one of the 1" rings it and with Le Page's glue fasten tube. same end. the external diameter of the larger one being 35". and supporting the other end on a centre. Two After more discs are put on. and having a 3" hole on the smaller tube. 3^" wide. section wound directly on top of the to first. is The second starting at the direction. Out of some quarter-inch sheet-fibre. the one fitting The inner diameter of the smaller tube is a trifle greater than 2!". as before. and then another 3^" ring. which layer is be described in a later chapter. . The length of the tubes is 18" and their thickness Now around turn out a it wooden rod so that the larger tube will fit tightly. three i" wide. -J". the section of the primary complete. be necessary to procure two micanite tubes.The Transformer in order g to allow plenty of wire for will making the various connections. With a and four. first When this is thoroughly shellacked. cut eight circular pieces. to the Next slip on one of the circular discs of fibre. and being sure layer is wind in the same Each turn when wound is thoroughly shellacked. and the last fastened in the same manner If the wire in the 16" has been put on carefully 164 turns can be wound and the total is diameter will be 2|".

will tightly. It should be If the coil builder is skilled in winding wire in the lathe. is seen in Fig.10 this The comes another 3. I'rsld Coil ring. For the hand winder. The standards are made of '(" oak. who has had but experience lathe.{" ring. small holes should be drilled them. driven into these holes. have them drilled about from Obtain a wooden rod upon lit which the secondary bobbin i8i" long. to serve as an fit They should tightly. or for one the following who does not possess a in method is given. in Before putting on the discs. 7 ha\'e the holes the connecting wires on \" their inner edge. through which to carry the wires. great care must be taken is that the wire not snapped off when is the end of the layer reached. while the others their outer edge. followed by the remaining disc is and i'' Be sure that each ring carefully glued in place. fastened jg|" apart.-. 6. followed disc and a i" by a disc and a Then put on two more This is discs and the remain- ing 3 1" ring. Pieces of |" iron are then axh. fcjr 2. ring. In winding is the lathe. but for an amateur. num- 3. . the winding may be done there much more rapidly than by little hand. so as to turn with the cylinder. The The romijlcted discs bobbin for the secondary bered drilled 2. which bent into a handle. the wooden rod. is About 6" should 1 project at one end. and while the jjaper is being wrapped on before the next layer wound. on which the secondary bobbin fits tightly. is drilled in at both ends for about 4" with a litde less than a {" hole. with lathe windirig. !/' at the other end is sufficient for a bearing.

?/-^ .The Transformer II ^ r -I* „9 -^ 1-^ -Id- <5^ f -I* ^ "1 4e- ^ :.f^i^.^^-J^.

A oak f" square and 2" long fastened with two screws to the top of each standard. This allows the cylinder necessary. and the standards bear on. them. As it is the wire must be wound under some tension. The dimensions of the winder are seen in Fig. 4 was devised. Care must be taken in the wire. the holder shown in Fig. be taken out of bearings when Two iron washers are slipped over the shaft at the short end to act as a thrust bearing. There a thread cut on one end of this axle for about 2" It is then mounted in two Iron washers for the spool is wooden standards fastened are put between the spool to to a baseboard. It consists of is an axle which fits the spool tightly. and as tiresome to give the required tension by letting the wire run through the hand. with an open. is and which 4" longer than the spool. to give the required A washer and a nut are now put on tension to the spring. A lock nut is put on to keep this nut from turning. and two washers. 3. are put on the other end. to serve as a cap. An open spring made of piano wire slipped up on the threaded end of the shaft. A I" hole is then bored with to its centre on the its joint. and still be sure that the cylinder will not rotate and so loosen the turns of wire. outside of the standards. steel-wire spring between This will give the friction required to enable the amateur to stop the winding at any time.12 to Tlie Tesla Coil piece of a baseboard is 2' long. to detect any breaks that may occur it When winding the wire quite frequently .

The Transformer 13 c o "n -a I M F\ O C5 .

bought. the standard. It is }" wide and This is fastened by several flat-headed is brass screws to one side of the spool on which the wire / ^ Fig. to the coil builder. on the side on which the ring one pole of a dry cell.14 The Tesla Coil little happens that a it is kink will cause a break. unknown To detect these breaks immediately. 4. the authors used the following method. If the wire has been bought from a reliable dealer. is A ring cut out of a piece of sheet brass or copper. will be wound on the bobbin. 8 — \\'ire-Spool Holder. but because it covered by the cotton insulation. fastened to the upper end is. From here a wire is led to . the inner end will be found projecting outside of This wire is soldered to the ring on the outside of the spool. A strip of sheet it will copper or brass. 3" in diameter. which is is of such a length of that bear on the ring. the reel.

all the axle between the washer and the wooden circuit It will now be seen that there spool. the Bell receiver. 3. It bent so that it presses firmly on the projecting axle. as a on the wire . If the amateur prefers he may use a sensitive galva- nometer. or in the case of the galvanometer the needle will return to the zero position. the break should be located When little left this happens Acid and the wire soldered. best to fasten is it to the one farthest up from the handle. amateur has only to his an attachment to hold it head can be arranged. make good elec- A wire is then led from the brush on the standard to a binding post on the baseboard. pass about of the wire through the hole in the 2. should not be used in soldering. The insulation should be scraped off of the end of the wire for about 2". receiver is A telephone now connected in series with the binding-post and the other pole of the cell. tightly and then this bare part should be wrapped on cylinder. easily is the best to use.The Transformer 15 is On the winder a strip of sheet metal It is fastened to one of the standards. with a If the head attachment. Everything is now ready i' for the winding of the secondary. A watch-case receiver. the diaphragm will return to normal position and a click will be heard. if is a complete through the wire on the The diaphragm a galvanometer the wire should in the telephone receiver is is drawn down or If used. which has been polished to trical contact. its break. bobbin heads numbered from the side on which bobbin head 2 is. To begin. the needle will be deflected.

and then solder the connection. . Rosin the best thing to use as a flux. so as to thorou'^hly The section between the bobbin heads 3. t^vist it around the end of the wire from the spool. is first layer in the section between the bobbin heads 2 to i. the hole in disc i. as the transformer when finished immersed in paraffine oil. a little Before winding the next is over a turn of paper taken around the pre\ious one. All the layers after should start about \" from the inner face of the discs and stop the same distance from them. The edge of the paper can be held down with a little shellac. 4. after polishing the uninsulated part with a piece of emery cloth. wound from and after it is wound it is given layer. is now wound. also \\'rap the silk thread. a good coating of shellac. which has been polished. its thus spoling the first insulating properties. This wire its is then brought through and end is connected to the axle. each layer after it Be sure to shellac is wound and then take a turn of paper in place.6 1 The Tesla Coil it will corrode is and spoil the electrical connection. which acts as a partial solvent to paraffine wax. Parafiine wax must not be used to increase the inis sulation. 2. Continue winding until 61 layers are The last layer should be wrapped over with a narrow cotton is bandage which thoroughly shellacked to keep it in place About two section for feet of wire should be left projecting from the making the various connections. bare part of the wire with some insulate it. around it. Unwind the other wire from the axle and. The I.

howe\er. 6. and only 61 to la\ers in the section between Remember keep the direction of the wire same as in the previous coils. The reason middle . one of them being that static strains. the winder is wooden is ^^hen this done rotated the same as predously. The two remaining - sections are now wound in the same manner.The Transformer . making ahvavs easy to bring out a new piece of wire if an}. The first layer is wound from j towards the winder being turned in such a direction that the direction of the current in the wire of this section will be the same as in the one just wound. there being 71 layers in the section between the bobbin heads the discs the 7. Each layer must be shellacked and wrapped with paper and must stop before getting 71 layers are to the the winding bobbin heads. 2' In this section wound on. thus . This method of winding it has several advantages. the That means that the winder must be rotated in in opposite direction. 8. 17 4. 5. for ha^'ing a greater number of la}-ers in the coils w-ill readily be seen from a consideration of the direction and intensity of the lines of magnetic force around a solenoid. Leave the completed secondary in a warm place to thor- . For convenience.are ever broken off. off of the the winding the secondary bobbin can be taken rod and put back in a reversed position. connections. The same instructions hold for this section as for the pre\"iou5 one. relieves A practical reason is that all the leading out it wires are from the outer layers. About of wire should be brought through the hole in disc 4 to allow for .

— Section of Completed Transformer..r. are erected at the points m. .. 6. 5. 5.The Tesla Coil <t'V----7f" ^'V 7i ff Fig. oughly dry.nm-rrrr-g^ !lbi'Anm(Trn-F-n-3T^"'T:::r. Fig. to give it The comers Three and edges are rounded a better apgearance. supports of i"x7" pine. 1! . for the Working drawings are given in Fig. The base is made of a piece of i"x 9" pine 20^" long. — Frame for Secondary of Transformer. 4V' high.—.r. and in the meantime construct the frame secondary.

The two are silk terminals from the middle coils of the secondary now soldered together. . and the connection wrapped with it. Into these the tube on which is wound.The Transformer shown in the figure. The distance between the supports 7r. The reason for using a cotton cloth instead of tape in the is construction of the transformer that oil almost immedi- ately spoils all the adhesive qualities of the type. thread to insulate The other two terminals are left alone at present as their connections are described in a later chapter. is 19 At the top of each a half-round hole fits 3j" in diameter the secondary is cut.

CHAPTER III THE CONDENSER A CONDENSER is an apparatus for accumulating a large quantity of electricity on a small surface. These sheets may be had to size for about nine or ten cents apiece. finished the condenser immersed pure parafi&ne For the in size. The brass used is number 32 or 34. Forty-six sheets . is The dielectric used glass and the plates are is made in of sheet brass. the dielectric strength de- pends on the character of the material. dielectric 95 sheets of glass. When oil. it carefully to see in there glass If any are found a sheet of should be rejected. The condenser used for in this apparatus is especially designed long continued use on high voltages. the greater its The thinner the dielectric and is specific inductive capacity. the greater denser. yV thick and io"xi2" cut should be obtained. potential. In purchasing if them each sheet should be examined are any air bulAles. the capacity of the con- A thin dielectric. however. but in all cases it consists essentially of dielectric. The form may vary considerably. cannot withstand a high Besides the thickness. two conductors separated by a non-conductor or and its action depends entirely upon induction.

Plate III. . — Transformer for 12" Apparatus.Plate II. — Oscillation Transformer and Glass for Condenser of 12" Coil.

.

When sheets. so as to make them is a little less than i" thick. A j" hp is bent across rolls 8" the top of this tongue. Before putting any of the glass sheets in the frame. and ends should be planed up smooth on both sides. with flat one of the ends down. built up is made out of well dried The The base is made of a piece of ]" x 11" pine. sides are cutout of y'xi2" material lof" The ends The sides are also cut from j"xi2" wood and are 11" long. except around the were the tongue comes out. 7. should be used in the These tongues should always be soldered in the figure. The frame in which the condenser pine. a little more should be obtained and cut 3"xi|". Place the condenser frame on a table or some other surface. If the brass can be had in wide. not acid. The for soldering as a flux. side is 21 In one of the corners of the shorter i a tongue 2" wide and j" long. The completed frame seen in Fig. is shown As a most right rule 12" the only width that can be obtained in this places. width is used the tongues are cut on the The condenser for it occupies the part that has been constructed in the oscillation is transformer box. iif" long. the lip on the . in the Commence by putting two glass sheets the frame so that they reach bottom of the frame. long. position Rosin. they should be carefully wiped clean so as to remove any dust or moisture. They should be them to the plates. is Place a brass sheet on top of these a i" margin of glass If all glass plates so that there sheet. the tongues cut extra i" is out of it.The Condenser 8"xio" are required.

be a i" margin around the brass as in the previous After is the brass come two more sheets of glass. In forcing in the last few sheets a good idea to lay a cloth between the pressure." "Frame for Condenser B. — Condenser Frame and Brass Coxdexser Sheet. . but in case the tongue comes out on the reverse side.22 The Tesla Coil it tongue has been bent carefully sheets of glass. n. Three sheets If the glass of glass are placed on top of the last brass plate. kept up until the 46 sheets of brass have been put in place. two."Sha|3= Dotted tort4ue o^ lines brass jheet show size op w^dn so\<ierG6 on. of glass will just fit up against the Without displacing the brass lay two it. to take up any excess which would otherwise crack the glass. 7. This process A. Fig. sheets this on top of A brass sheet is next put in. and the brass used are the size called for in this book last the last sheet will just go it is m tightly. There should case.

the end which has the three glass sheets should be placed against the partition. that is. through into the condenser.The Condenser Set the condenser upright. piece of 23 finished. is to facilitate moving should the condenser to rebuilding. due the rupturing of the glass AA'hen the condenser is placed in the box. Two frame leather straps should be fastened to the sides of the to lift it by when lowering into the oscillation trans- former box. and the same is done on the other side. down the one side. The object for building the condenser in a separate frame. ever require shet . This is to pre\-ent the spark from the oscillation transformer its breaking air path. 16 bare copper wire about long to each of the lips in turn. 3' when and solder a No. nearest the oscillation transformer. instead of following . instead of in the division in the oscillation transformer box.

A wooden rod about and i" diameter now obtained and a shoulder turned on each end. These strips are 17" long and \" square and are cut from the best vulcanized fibre obtainable. or many other small similar mistakes. deep and \" wide cut at these points. as it if it will be necessary to reconstruct careless. the fibre strips. such as two wires touching. not wise to hurry the work. which to fasten in them to the is end pieces. eter. which the most care as regards insulation must be taken. supports are made out of any suitable piece of The two supports for the secondary are 8" in diamto i" in thickness. eight being required. its may It is cause a short circuit and require reconstruction. In to each end of the strips a hole recei^'e is drilled is and countersunk a small brass screw. of the shoulder is The diameter \" its length just equals the width of 24 . These is slots are for on which the secondary wound. 8. so simple in construction. The least fault. success of the whole apparatus depends on the care is The with which this part constructed. The end wood. and from f " Eight equidistant points slots J" are marked off on the periphery and See Fig.CHAPTER I\' THE OSCILLATION TRANSFORMER It in is this part of the apparatus. to fit into.

These pieces are now slipped on. Secondary of Oscillation Transformer. one on each end of the rod. Oscillation Transformer 25 if |" if f" wood is used. — Fibre Strip. See Fig. "TT 77" Fig. 10. after fitting Screw the fibre strips on the them in the slots If and seeing any of the that they strips are are parallel to the rod in the centre. A h" hole is now drilled in the centre of each of the end pieces. End Support for S. i.. . or i" i" all wood is used for the ends. supports. — only 17".The the supports.e. The length of the rod over must be Fig. 9. 10. E ITFig. — Centre Rod.

first file and moving them as needed. Two of these methods be described. is about 6" apart. A light cut taken off the strips. If the amateur has a couple of clamps it made of strips of sheet iron with a bolt through the ends. so that their ends are in and that they strike one another. and on are screwed the eight line. 28 B. strips are When lie the mounted on the frame again it will be seen that with- there is a continuous groove in which the wires will out touching one another. 18 thread is a and sandpaper. The secondary frame in is now supported between centres the lathe so that it just turns easily. and lea\c them thus over night. and then they are polished with No. starting the about from the end of the It strips to within an inch of other end. will greatly help matters by clamping them around the strips.20 The Tcsia Coll bent or warped they should be straightened before being fastened in place. gauge double cotton is covered copper wire required for the secondary. as the authors have found them both satisfactory. Around one end . A good way to straighten them is to lay them between two boards. strips of fibre. The first method is intended for those that have a lathe cylinder of at their disposal. i" A now cut. A wood it 4" in diameter and 18" long is first turned out. should be cut just as deep as possible. placing some heavy weight on the top board. About 4 or 5 ounces of Xo. &: S. \\'a\-s There are several equally good in which the wire can be wound will on the frame. clean cut the tool In order to make a must be \cry sharp and several light cuts should be taken instead of one.

Till'

Oscillalion Transformer

~i

of one of the strips
to

wrap about

i'

of Xo. 2S wire.

This

is

be used for connections.

Starting at this point

wind the

wire tightly on the

frame, always
i'

keeping the wire in the
the end

groove cut for
for

it.

About

extra should be left at

making
is

the connections.

When
the wire

finished, a
rest

hea\y coat

of shellac
strips.

gi\'en to the wires

where they
is

on the

fibre

When

this

is

dry

all

heavily shellacked.

A

soft

brush should be used so as not to displace any of

the wires.

The secondary should now be

placed in a

warm
not

place to dry.

The

following method can be used in case a lathe

is

available.

A

spool of silk thread and some silk are resilk

quired.

There must be enough

to

make two

turns

around the secondary frame.
smoothl}'.

It is

wrapped on
It

tightl}',

and

and shellacked

in place.

might be mentioned
alcohol

here that shellac dissoh'ed in

wood

should

not

be used.

The

wire

is

then

wound

on, starting about i"

from the end up to within an inch of the other end.
silk

A
the

thread

is

wound on

at the

same time between
it

turns, to
is

keep them apart,

^^'hen

is all

wound

the wire

heavily shellacked

and the frame put

in a

warm

place to

thoroughly dry.

Get

t\vo pieces of

J"xi2" pine 12" long and find the centre
their diagonals.

of each

by the intersection of

With
4I''

these

points as centres describe two circles, with radii

and 5^'

on each board.

Di\"ide the circles ha\-ing the radius 5}"

into 36 equal parts.

These points can be located with a

protractor or mariner's compass, there being one e\ery 10°.

28

Tlie Tesla Coil
drill

At each of these points

a \" hole.
i".

In each corner of these

boards cut out a piece i"x

See Fig. ii.
-]"

At a planing

mill

buy eighteen

dowels, 36" long.

These
cut

may
in

be had for one cent apiece.

Each one should be
\" rods,

two, which will

gwe you

thirty-six

18" long.

Fasten one of the 12" end pieces to each of the ends of the

Sb- ^ holes

o

\
o
\

o

Ai

-5i-

o \ o
I

o

v

\/,

,0^

^-o'

/^'
Fig, II.

— End

Support for Primary.

completed secondary frame, by four flat-headed brass screws.
See that the circular end pieces of the secondary just
the smaller circles
fit

on

drawn on

the boards.

The

^" rods are

now

driven into place, thus forming a circular cage on which
is

the primary

wound.
8' piece of

For the primary get an
i" wide.

No. 36 copper ribbon AAYap the end of the ribbon once around the end

The
of

Oscillation Transformer
in

29
it

the dowel

shown

Fig.

12

and solder

in

place. here.

A

piece of copper wire should also be soldered

on

Starting

from

here

take

two and a half turns around

Fig. 12.

Primary of Oscillation TRANSrORMER.

the secondary frame. the

This

will

bring you to the end of
the

dowel

diametrically

opposite

dowel from which
this

you

started.
it

Wrap

the

ribbon once around

dowel

and solder

in place.

A

piece of wire should also be

Fig.

Completed Sec13. ondary or Oscillation
Transformer.

soldered on.

The

turns of the ribbon

should be equally
183"

spaced.
fasten

Get four pieces of

i"xi" pine

long and
to

them

as braces

from the one end of the frame

the other,

the pieces fitting in the corners that were cut

out for them.

Bushings for Support of Oscillator Standards. 15.3° The Tcsla Coil I I J I I . . ^ 4- / ~^ z "¥" -e "^ Fig. — Hard Rubber Block on Oscillation Transformer.

shown is in Fig. The length over is all is V' and the the shoulder centre. is A §" hole drilled down and the shoulder drilled and slightly countersunk two opposite points to recei\"e two small brass screws. ^^'hen this all is done the oscillation transformer is is finished that needs to be done to connect is it up properly.The Oscillation Transformer 31 Turn two bushings out They are of a piece of f" brass or copper rod. at I" thick. The completed oscillation transformer seen in plate III. Two pieces of vulcanized fibre or ebonite J"xi''. 2" long. with a 5" hole drilled h" from the end. The bushings in place. are fastened to the middle of the top side of the primary frame. 14. just made are fitted into the holes and screwed The and wires from the secondary are soldered onto these bushings. .

which prevents the condenser its from performing function. The simplest form of spark-gap for the primary of the oscillation transformer. have ceased.CHAPTER V THE INTERRUPTER Let us now consider that important part of the apparatus. stated. as previously path of high resistance until the conits denser is charged to full capacity. one which has given 32 fair results . The air between the discharging balls becomes heated. but in no case perfectly. the primary spark-gap. is to provide a The function of this. the ideal spark-gap should return to maximum disruptive strength before the condenser can be charged by the next cycle from the secondary of the transformer. is The mechanical problem to find which confronts the designer of this some way to get rid heated air and thus prevent the arc being formed. and allows the current to surge back and across it. In practice this is far from being the case. Then it suddenly forth breaks down. results in offers This an arc being formed. is The tially object of this chapter to show several ways of par- accomplishing this result. until the current in is damped After out by resistance and the oscillations its other factors the circuit. and a comparatively low-resistance path for the current.

consists of merely two adjustable brass balls. These two holes must be Next two pieces for the of \" brass rod 3!" in length are threaded fit whole of their length to the holes tapped in the standards. hard rubber. Nevertheless sufficient oscillations are set up its to bring the coil to within i" or 2" of maximum length of spark discharge. These balls are drilled and threaded to in the brass rods. No provision is made for blowing out the arc that forms. so that considerable of the energy of the transformer is wasted. to see what the possibilities of work A good idea of the working value of the apparatus a designer coil is may is be obtained with the simple air-gap. THE SIMPLE AIR-GAP Two standards of brass J" in diameter and 4" long are of mounted on a piece 5" apart. their coil builders will. Two vulcanized fiber rods are turned out of f" rod.Tlte Interrupter ^li with the writers. in line. is They should be about from the upper end of A -^^" hole is drilled J" each rod and taped with a standard \" machine screw tap. at this point in the con- be very anxious are. 3" in length. and a \" shield 2" in diameter is screwed on one end of each handle. When more acquainted with the workings of a Tesla he can construct that one of the spark wipe-outs which best suited to the current that he has at his disposal. Most amateur struction. Two balls Y in diameter are turned out of in physical fit brass or are procured from a dealer supplies. The handle is drilled and tapped for .

The shield the to safeguard the operator's hand from sliding off fibre handle and coming into contact with the transformer current. have been adjusted will be a convenience See Fig. i6. .34 i" to is fit The Tcsla Coil the brass rod on which it is screwed. i6. — Simple Primary Air-cap. which would probably be fatal. A set screw at the top of the standards to clamp the rods in place after they to the operator. for a thumb screw bind the wire. and then drilling and tapping another hole at right angles to the to first. J <- e . Connection can drilling be made to the brass standard near the bottom by -6 -*Afcl*' an !_ ^ IEHIImQ) -^ '• 0/-/'A/-)'/'/-.f c Fig. a small hole through them.

THE MAGNETIC INTERRUPTER The magnetic blow-out is well suited for those who have a no. For those who to use the have only the alternating current and who wish magnetic wipe-out the writers have added to this chapter a simple home-made electrolytic rectifier of their own design . getting rid much of the heated gases between the spark terminals. either the lighting circuit or a suitable battery current. and he will soon decide that the best policy is to construct either a magnetic wipe-out or a motor-driven interrupter. lamp or any other suitable supply of compressed good blast of air to form. a air.volt source of direct current at their disposal. that a tedious task to pump occupying so much of his time as to handicap him in per- forming experiments with the high-frequency discharge. ard and is mounted on a brass standto a foot connected by means of a rubber tube is bellows such as used in the laboratory to operate a blast air. however. A will effectually wipe out any arc that tends thereby increasing the disruptive length of the bright oscillation transformer discharge. a foot bellows. it is The operator will find.The Interrupter 35 THE AIR-BLAST INTERRUPTER In order to of make the air-gap more efficient. mechanical means can be used of forcing in cold driving out thus the heated gases and keeping the resistance efficiently is much higher. To accomplish into this a piece of f" hard glass tubing drawn out This is a nozzle having an opening ^\" in diameter.

filed into an egg-shaped point are screwed to the upper ends of the core. Two electromagnet bobbins 5^" long and having fibre an iron core |" in diameter with are procured. 24 should be used. 14 B. balls of the by two screws through the iron yoke. of J" in diameter. and the bobbins are fastened to it by a screw in the core. Fig. . The spark-gap should be between the projections of the magnet. a direct curIf the rent of rectifier 1 10 volts is available No. The bobbins are wound wire. 17. gauge cotton-covered magnet they are to be operated on a battery current of from If eight to ten volts such as a plunge battery. is described at the end of this chapter used No. but 6" in length form as those used in the simple and having spark balls I" instead 7". Two standards of the same interrupter. Two polar pieces of f " square iron. The magnets must be thoroughly saturated in order to give the best results. are mounted on a hard rubber base 10" x The fibre handles and shields are also necessary for this in- terrupter. if full of No. at right angles to the rods carrying the spark balls. A sheet of mica is bent around the polar projections of the magnets in order to prevent the spark from jumping to the cores of the magnets. to After the magnets are finished they should be fastened the hard rubber base.36 The Tesla will give Coil which a current suitable for magnetizing the magnet of this interrupter. & S. heads 3" in diameter 7" long An iron it yoke made from i"xj" iron in the has 2 holes drilled in middle i^" from both ends. 22 wire should be used as the voltage of the rectified current on no volts alternating is about 90 volts.

The outer ter- minals are brought out to interrupter is suitable binding-posts and the finished. no volts. 17. Fig. extin- THE MOTOR-DRIVEN INTERRUPTER This interrupter is the one the writers used in their earlier coil experiments with the 7" standard part of this book. driving having a number of projections bolted around and a brass it oscillator so mounted that the distance disc separating at will. The principle of this piece of apparatus is based on Da\'y's is experiment in which he found that the electric arc guished upon the approach of a magnet. It described in the latter consists essentially of a fan motor a brass its run on the alternating current at disc face. — ^Maonitic Inieehupter. from the projections on the of can be varied The motor may be any suitable design that the builder may possess.The Interrupter 37 The ends will traverse of the coils are so connected that the current them in opposite directions. A small battery motor rimning on if direct current can be pressed into service the amateur does .

38 The Tesla Coil not care to go to the expense of purchasing a fan motor or has not the facihties for building one. The directions for building a suitable induction motor are given at the end of this chapter. face Lay eter off two concentric Di\ide the circles. i8. inner of into equal divisions and draw radial lines from the centre of the disc through each of the points marked o£F. — Motor Interrupter Fan. /bbei" Fig. no lathe is avail- may be on its procured at a model maker's quite reasonably. 8" and 9}" these in diamthirty respectively. To make able it the disc for this interrupter turn out of \" sheet If brass a circular piece lo" in diameter. thus dividing .

The
the outer circle into the
Drill a hole
circles

Interrupter

39
of equal divisions.

same number

through each of
to
jQt

the points laid off

on both

and tap them

a standard 4-36 machine screw.

A

number

of brass angle pieces

made by bending
coontersunk

j'g"

brass

I,

->i^

Brass Angle Piece.

into the

form shown

in the figure are procured. in

Two

holes

are drilled
flat'-headed

and tapped

each one to

fit

a standard 4-36
are screwed to

machine screw.

These

pieces

the brass disc with j" screws.

A

\" hole

is

drilled in the centre of the disc

and

three ig"
|".

holes are drilled

on a

circle

having a radius of

Next

40

The Tesla Coil

turn out a circular block of hard rubber 2" in diameter and
the
to
is

same shape as
it

in

Fig. 20.

The

brass disc

is

screwed

with three brass wood screws {" long and the whole
to

fastened

the
it.

shaft

of

the

motor so as

to

be well

insulated from

To

mal<:e electrical contact with the brass

&

%

I

Fig.

20,

— Hard

Rubber Block.

plate a brush to bear

on the back near the centre

is

cut out

of a piece of y^" sheet spring brass. 10" long

This piece should be
piece of hard

and

Y

wide.

It is

mounted on a

rubber with a suitable binding-post, so as to press against
the back of the disc.

For the other side of the spark-gap a standard mounted

on hard rubber similar
spark-gap
is

to the

one described

for the simple
it is

used, but instead of being 4" long

6" in length

The Interrupter
and the brass
diameter.
ball
is

41

best

if

it

is

slightly less

than \" in

The

fibre

handle and shield are necessary in
is

order to adjust the length of spark-gap while the coil
operation.

in

r

.

There are two castings The base supporting the punchinss for the stator cast directly on the standard which supports the motor. is assumed that the amateur pattern-maker is is aware that the an iron casting smaller than the pattern from which mould was made..The Interrupter 43 A SiLVLL SELF-ST. Turn out a circular piece 5 " in diameter and i" in thick- . The first step in the construction is to make the necessary patterns for the base required. therefore shrinkage must be allowed will for in the pattern in order to be sure that the casting is be large enough. For those who have had but litde experience in motor construction. the writers suggest that the amateur purchase an alternating-current fan batter}- motor or a suitable direct -current motor. One eighth of an inch to the foot about the proper amount. The It drawint. will give the required dimensions.\RTIXG SDsGLE-PHASE IXDUCTIOX MOTOR To build a motor. suitable for difficult. 23. builder will require of perhaps ver}' The more tools and a much greater knowledge machine shop pracall tice to construct an efficient motor than to build of the parts of Tesla apparatus combined. to run on the single-phase alternating current of is no volts. running a fan interrupter. Fig. is and yokes. is The given following description of the building of this motor in order that this book may be complete have all in itself and so that the coil builder will the necessary data to build the complete apparatus without reference to other works.

The radius of curvature of the arr fit it must be 2\" glued is so that the stator will accurately.. The whole pattern . and 6" long. — PAn.'s oi' YoKE. This jjiere is and nailed to the top of the upright. 77/r 'Icslii ('nil Then a rod i" in diameter.i':. 23. is a graceful enlargement at the lower turned out and < fastened with glue and nails to the centre of the in iilar disc.'^ - D-^ for jiUUifr heads I'lO." stock to the form shown in the figure. A piece of wood is cut out of .44 ncss. -^ 1- -. swelling into enrl.

.:4. — Section of Completed Motor. .The Inlcmipter iliilllllllilMI'Hliii 45 A Fig.

— Rotor Disc. They not only ser\e to furnish bearings the rotor. 25. one to lit each end for of the stator. To make this pattern turn out of \\" sloik a circular disc 5I" in diameter and of the same form as in the drawing. Two castings are made from this palleni. Vie. After the patterns arc shellacked they should be sent to a foundry where the castings can be obtained quite reasonably. tompktt's llic pattern for the base. In order to pro\i(le a su|)porl for (he bearing of the rotor shaft we must make we a pattern lor a yoke. It requires one casting of the base and two of the yoke the castings or journal. When all arc obtained they should be off. chipped and the roughness filed The rotor consists of a number of iron discs 2\" in diameter . but also to enclose the entire motor and thus keep out moisture and dust.46 gi\cn two coals of Tlic Tcsla Coil l)csl it shellac \'arnisii. containing suOicicnt 'I'his lampblack to make jet black.

The Interrupter drilled 47 and having twelve f " holes j^g" around the edge and a of iron about pile hole in the centre. In this case they will not be punched out. much metal has been removed as of these discs is is possible by The diameter given in the draw- ing on Fig. 27. These made by the coil builder wfith the help of a lathe and drill press. it. but will be cut out on either a shaper or milling machine. about forty of discs can be them making a i" high. or they can be obtained already in electrical sup- stamped out from any of the large dealers plies. The next thing to consider the stator punchings. cut roughly out of tHtt" . two heavy rings made circle by bending two pieces of \" copper rod into a an outside diameter of if" are soldered rods. A sufficient number of them are mounted on a shaft. This completes the is rotor. To short-circuit them. As it the will will not have a very heavy load thrown on to the shaft. in having to the ends of the connections Use sufficient solder in making these order to prevent heating at the connections by the induced current in the rotor. turned down from a f" rod of cold rolled steel to the size shown motor in the figure. not be necessary to key fit A good driving is sufficient to keep them from turning. or cut out by hand after as drilling. To make them. The One conductors consist of twelve s" copper rods 2f" long. They can be clamped in position by the nut shown in the figure. to make them a pile 2v" in height. of these rods should be driven in each of the holes around the edge of the discs and should project J" beyond them on both sides. They should be made j^|§Q-" in thickness.

"T «)i» I o s o ^ .48 The Tesla Coil hi %k -%%.

The Interrupter 49 .

The to whole is clamped in a chuck and the centre slots are is bored out 2f" in diameter. The two ends way between are fastened to the stator with four l" fillister screws i" long. with a pair of snips. Next four Y' holes are drilled as in the figure. fit In order that the heads up against the stator four holes should be drilled to allow the nuts to project into the heads. mark them place. binds the After tightening up the nuts the bolts can be slightly riveted to guard against possible loosening. and a fibre is tube i" in external diameter and J" internal diameter driven in each hole. either Next the cut as in the figure. A J" stud 3I" in length. saw and drilling. A large bulk of the metal can be removed by When the stator is complete it is mounted on the pedestal with four cap screws which screw into the bottom edge. . is so that they the space can always be put back in the same Then between the shaft and the journal grade of filled with the best Babbit metal obtainable. is The rotor next wrapped with paper until it just fits into the stator and the heads are bolted on It is well to in the way they are to be permanently. and f" iron washers. Cardboard washers slipped over the shaft prevent the babbit from running out. The holes for these screws are drilled mid- the nuts binding the stator discs together. A I" hole is drilled in the centre of them and the whole number are clamped on a mandrel between two nuts and turned down in a lathe to si". of a hack on a milling machine or shaper or by the use file.JO The Tesla Coil iron about loo pieces 6" in diameter. with hexagonal nuts discs together.

shellacked. and allowed dry by thoroughly baking. The in coils are wound wooden frame the size are shown Fig. in a The wire of No. After the coils are wound to they wrapped with tape. for means must be provided This is making the motor self-starting.The Interruptef 51 The used is next thing to do is to wind the stator coils. Before the coils can be put into place. 28. accomplished by means of a short-circuited copper ' . 22.

the to suitable end terminals being to the brought out pieces binding-posts fastened it. jar.52 pieces. resistance consists essentially of This such any suitable glass cell. The Tesla Coil The six coils are in series. tween them can be varied at erally Copper sulphate is gen- used as the electrolyte. 4Short circuited of Wo. 14- cortduc/br Bare Cof>(>er Wi>«. which is a great advantage in operating the coil. end and suitably insulated from A coating of black paint completes the motor. 29 — Self-starting Device. as is used in a Daniell or Gra\'ity ha\'ing two metal plates suspended in an electrolyte. by inter- posing a liquid resistance in series with the motor. so that the distance bewill. showing €haf]e of wire bff[ore alijj^in^ into slots Fig. Although the induction motor at varying loads. is a constant-speed motor slight we can secure some speed regulation. .

Plate \'. — The Electrohnic Rectifier. — Motor-driven Interrupter. .Plate I\'.

.

that current to traverse. sufficiently great. there are two paths for the resistance enormous and one of very low resistance. The the greater number of rectifiers now on the market use method of choking out the one half of the alternatingit current is wave and is to this fact that their low efficiency due. motor for the induction motor de- scribed in this chapter. reasons for so doing. efficiency very high. which entirely foreign to the Tesla apparatus. to the authors at the least. for amateur constructs the magnetic wipe-out he will need a source of direct current at since this current circuits about 80 or go volts pressure. and the current which a small set will rectify very large. however if appeared. The high efficiency of the apparatus devised by the authors depends on what might be called the alternate path connection or method.The Interrupter 53 AN ELECTROLYTIC CURRENT RECTIFIER It was only at the last moment that the authors decided to make public the results of their experiments on an electrorectifier. To a great many it may seem The out of place in putting in is this description of a rectifier. lytic current which has proven highly it satisfactory. which are generally alternating or from this source of direct current Then having to substitute he will be able a D. one of is. built. can hardly be obtained from the lighting batteries. it Its advantages are that is easily its and cheaply is is re- quires only slight attention. The idea of this form of rectifier came to the authors in . C.

essen- together with some acid salt capable of forming an oxide with aluminium. carbon. due entirely to the difference in the forms of the two electrodes. Some of the conductors suitable for the other electrode are iron. The other electrode might be any conductor unaffected by the solution. A line of experi- ments was carried out effect.54 the The Tesla Coil following way. . They were experimenting on some cathode tubes of peculiar construction. slightly and phosphates. The current from the secondary of this coil It ^-ery is oscil- latory in character. It tial was found that an aluminium electrode was the thing in every cell. especially dis- charge through the tube was when the interruptions were not very rapid. From a previous study of the effects of various electrodes on the electrolysis of certain solutions we arrived at se\'eral cells which exhibited these properties to a marked extent. to determine the cause of this unusual' with the result that the resistance was found to be in the enormously greater for currents one direction through the tube than in the opposite direction. Acid sodium car- sodium phosphate. carbonates. using a 12" induction coil. tartrates. of course. potassium alum. acid less satisfactory results. and in fact most of the ionizable. acid sulphates. was observed that the unsteady. and the following solutions all gave more or bonate. if After discovering this fact they wondered lytic cell some electro- might not be made which would possess the same properties and could be used to rectify the ordinary alter- nating currents. and lead. acid potassium tartrate.

the current can flow will be seen that when E is positive of from either plate 2 or 3 across the elec- trolyte to plates I or 4. Before describing this method. When on the reversal is of the current the aluminium becomes the cathode there merely the resistance of the electrolyte encountered. the following the method devised by the authors. Three cells are needed in all. Two of these consist of one electrode of aluminium and one of iron. we will take After a current cells. passed for a few minutes through one of the of oxide tically is a coating is formed on the aluminium electrode which While this prac- a non-conductor. the one out. This condition of is enormous resistance exists when the aluminium the anode.The Interrupter 55 the circuit. a single cell by being merely put would choke out the one half of the alternating wave. The path from 3 to 4 is enormous . As stated circuit before. does not prevent the cell. is but as this gives an intermittent current. By merely But putting one of these cells in half of the alternating current this wave may be choked than 50%. however. method gives an efficiency of less Thus up is the authors were led to devise the alternate-path method. The same 30 it solution is used. with a solution of sodium acid carbonate. The third has two aluminium plates and one iron plate between them. in detail the properties of a single cell. On looking at Fig. difference of potential from being maintained across the it does prevent the ions from giving up their charge and in this way it acts like a polarized copper plate in a single gal- vanic cell. cell Any in the possessing this property is called asymmetric.

as the I Tlic Tcsla Coil is aluminium the anode. The aluminium should be comparatively pure to prevent deterioration of the plates due to local extent impure rectify it action. They are 5" x 7" and four are required. but the path from this to 2 is of low resistance and hence the current takes path. light mains. In this way both waves of the alternat- ing current are used of the electrolyte. The rectifying cells have glass containing jars. the Two of them are the same is aluminium plate and the is third 8" x 5". If to the plates are to any the cells may fail work. AA'hen H becomes positive the current can flow from It 6 to is 7 or from s to 4. 7" The jars are all X 6" X 4" inside -J" The aluminium the plates are cut out of sheet and are all same size and shape. The directly following are plans for a rectifier suitable for use on the no. and the only loss is due to the resistance Thus in the direct current all from this set has a sine wave form.volt-alternating-current measurements. required to fasten the bind- ing-post The plates are held three eighths of an inch apart in the following manner: canite or hard rubber (fibre Out of some f" sheet it vul- must not be used as swells in . The iron plates size as are cut from I" sheet. The making plates that it goes between two aluminium is and the extra length to. takes the path from 6 to 7 as this of low resistance. and if they do will be at a very low efficiency. which the negative values in the alternating have been made positive. This larger necessity for plate to it be used in the middle larger is cell.56 resistance.

The electrolyte. is it must be a stable compound. This method of using hard rubber bolts and nuts is far superior to using iron ones and is fitting them with an insulating bushing. and when no current it flowing slightly must not attack the aluminium plate and only it attack when current is passing. should this be a saturated solution. The and strips of rubber are used across the tops of the plates the washers at the bottom. sodium acid carbonate used. Some \" vulcanite fit cut up into about 2" lengths and threaded to a \" nut. See Fig. Besides it is about the cheapest of all the possible electrolytes. Also cut out four washers about V' in diameter and a number of pieces h" square. Other solutions than can be used. These latter pieces are drilled and tapped -}" to fit a standard \" thread. when electrodes are put in place they will be suspended in the solution by the strips resting if on the edges of the is jars. In selecting an electrolyte the following factors must be taken into consideration. although the authors obtained the best results with this one. To make mounted the set con\'enient to handle the jars should be the cell containing the in a wooden frame. 30.1" x 61". with . It must have low resistance.TJic Interrupter 57 water) cut four strips . The washers have a rod is hole drilled in them. of each A binding-post fastened at the top one of the plates. As the strips across the top of the the plates are longer than the jars are wide. With these strips and washers and the plates are held the required distance apart the bolts firmly fasten them together.

— Rectifier Plates and Wiring Diagram. ehowr'tig faos'ition o£ 1fia ce)/5 and eledrtdcs Fig 30. :. A. r lauRE.58 The Tcsla Coil -->fi'bai* wojW D. .c.C.

as the electrolyte when cool has the greatest current density. It will be necessary to renew the set is electrolyte at intervals.The two aluminium electrodes are Interrupter in the middle. 59 The connections shown in the figure. depending on the use the given . taps with a resistance and allowing the take a full to load current. The efficiency of the apparatus will be somewhat increased by using a cooling worm. With this electrolyte the it aluminium plates will form in a few minutes. C. being merely necessary to short circuit the rectifier D.

up to make them imper\-ious to paraffine which will soak through almost anything in time. but is harder to tight. to handle. One box for transformer. except those inside where they are is which lead to the interrupter which placed on top of the box. however. Pine the best material to use as the joints will require filling considerable oil. if They and ha\'e the advantage of not being too bulky the transformer in this form can be used separately. has the advantage of taking up less room and of having all the high-potential connections safe. Two separate boxes give the ideal result. Sugar \-ar- pine may be readily stained and looks very neat when nished. but for a coil of this size the be objectionable. so desired. owing filling to the fact that the shellac \'arnish which used for up the pores in the it wood does not sink into oak with the same readiness as is does in a softer wood. A single box. it Oak makes make is the most substantial box. and high-tension weight would coil might be used. For the sides and ends of the transformer 60 box it requires . condenser.CHAPTER \T THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE BOXES The is next thing to consider in the building of a Tcsla coil the boxes which contain the transformer and high-tension coil.

and ends are heavy coat of hol. The end end. i J" x 14". After the sides TOP l/IEW-Tiivy rm^vtj COVER -i'i' Zoi" iA zsi- -iSif' I®! i®| I® I '®l l@| 0000 I® I® I® I©' i@| W SIDE VIEW Fig. A brass washer Y l^i diameter should be placed on the screw to prevent the head from sinking into the wood. and while Six long brass screws with round heads are to be used in each board to hold the sides. ij" x lo". The bottom and should be made i"x of a piece of 11". 6" long. the top of a piece of Cut the pieces to the size shown in Fig. i@| T ' END VIEW Teansfokmer Box.— The Conslniclion of the Boxes 6i a piece of straight-grained pine free from knots. if Next the edges should be gone over with a plane sary so that the neces- bottom board will fit flush in all places. pieces must be mortised into the sides i" from the These tongues and grooves may be cut with a saw chisel if and a rabbeting plane is not at hand. The . 31. 31. still and grooves are given a in grain alco- which has been dissolved wet are put together. 26" long. 2' long. and plane the edges true. finished the tongues shellac.

Next the inside should be given five or six coats of shellac. placed every four inches along the sides and ends. and as it is Walnut stain dark it covers up a multitude of faults . finish. but the labor of putting is box will not leak such that a siphon oil. After the boxes are finished they should be stained or varnished to suit the taste of the builder. make it tight. The screws must be forced in until they are flush with the wood. This box must also have several coats of shellac. is A it small brass cock in the end near the bottom a conven- ience in emptying the in so that the box of its oil. \\'\\tn the bottom board gi\-e ilat- cut to size. so laps over V' on each side. and allowing dry before applying the next. to get it paying especial care each coat to into the joints. looks well.62 TJic Tcsla Coil bottom board that is it is to be i" wider than the width of the box. the edges are rounded off with a plane to it a and then is fastened to the box with long headed brass screws. is quick enough for an occasional emptying of the The box for the high-frequency coil its and condenser must have the same care taken in of the transformer box. A partition put in between and oscillation transformer. construction as in the case are given in the is The dimensions working drawings the condenser in Fig. as the insulating oil used will leak through in spite of all the precaution taken. 32. it but several holes free should be bored in circulation of the near the bottom to allow of the oil. box A coating of shellac is given to the edges of the to help just before putting the bottom on.

1 "?+= COVER h— /? ii :=F^ J6i -36?- :^i .The Construction of in the the Boxes 63 wood working. several coats of shellac makes a very good TOV VIEW COVER REMOVED . by If the boxes are well made a good ciling followed finish.

or by a short piece of brass rod which fits in the holes of the binding-posts. In brush-discharge effects will be noticed on operating. First Care should be taken follow these directions. After lowering the transformer into box bring four primary leads to four heavy binding-posts on the end of the box. its its mount the transformer in its box. and the two outer ones to the other two. The two to inner terminals of the two sections are brought two adjacent binding-posts. accomplished by means of a it piece of fiat brass with slots filed in so that it just fits across two binding-posts. which extend through the opposite end of the box for ij". high-tension wires not properly insulated.CHAPTER VII ASSEMBLING It for if is not wise to hurry the when assembling are the apparatus. in such a manner that connecting electrically the two series middle binding-posts puts the sections in circuiting the and short- two outer pairs throws the sections This is in parallel. See the diagram. 64 These rods are insulated . nine cases out of ten poor insulation will result in puncturing his condenser and probably burning out to his trans- former. The secondary terminals are soldered directly to two brass rods f" in diameter and 3" long.

except for a flange drilled on one end the full diameter of the rod. — Connections and 8" for Primary of Transformer. This brings them well above the level of the thus assuring no leakage at this point. oil. The rods are 6" apart up from the bottom of the box. A §" hole is down the centre fit of the bushing. is A hole drilled and tapped in the end of each rod to fit a standard .Assembling 65 by two heavy hard rubber or lows: is fibre bushings made as fol- A 2" piece of hard rubber or fibre i^" rod 2" in diameter turned down to iV'. The leads from the sections should be led to the brass rods through glass tubing bent in the desired shape. in the end of the box and over the brass rod. 33. The bushinsrs should be a driving both Fig.

The box is filled with enough pure paraffine oil oil to cover the trans- former. which which it is can now be placed to occupy. This finishes the connections in the position on the transformer. These holes should be about from the bottom and 3" apart. the first The Tesla Coil Another hole is drilled at right angles to first about \" from the end of the rod to meet the efficient hole. The primary terminals are connected to a source of alternating current by means of a suitable switch and fuse capable of carrying 30 amperes. This makes an binding-post to hold the con- ductor. are driven through holes end of the high-tension box next to one end of the 6" oscillation transformer. free This should be of the best quality obtainable. is from moisture and impurities. should be allowed to soak into the sections for 24 hours before using.. The next step is putting in the connections and terminals in the high-tension box. to those Three brass rods similar box. such as It used for insuall lating purposes. The brass rods project .66 brass set screw. 34 .h- -- I High-tension Bushing. I FiG. with the in the used in the transformer same form of bushings.

. — Oscillators and Standards. prevent the end of the oscillation transformer from coming in contact with them. tight 67 rods can be The bushings and made oil by giving them a good coating of Le Page's glue before driving them into place. The condenser wire to ' is first lowered into place in the box and a to the nearest outer brass rod. i!.c: <J} Fig.35. A 2" strip of wood is glued on in the lower inside end of the to box below these rods. . The wire should be enclosed in a follow the lower edge of *^ glass tube suitably bent and should the box. A wire is run from the other terminal of the con- .Assembling I" williin the box.. is run from one terminal it which is soldered.

are set in two holes cut in the directly above the holes in the brass is bushings on the lation transformer.68 The Tesla Coil It denser in a similar manner to the other outer brass rod. The oscillators and standards can now be in constructed. 36. These leads should be run in glass tubes and as directly as possible. i. o o Fig. and having a and 3" in diameter co\'er oscil- turned on one end.\" Two fibre or hard rubber bushings 2]" flange ]" thick diameter and in length. filled with so that the entire apparatus is completely immersed. 36. oscilla- A wire also soldered to the is middle brass rod. The tion transformer now lowered is Tlie tap wire from the condenser lead soldered to one end of the primary band and the wire from the middle brass rod to the other end of the band. A tap wire is led from this conductor at a point opposite to where one terminal is of the primary band of the oscillation transformer is to be. After is all connections have been securely soldered the box oil. into place. They should also be kept under the The connections are shown in Fig. — Wiring Diagram. A J" hole drilled through the centre . oil. follows the other lower edge of the box.

Assemhling of each bushing. The built is particular form of interrupter which has already been connected to the binding-posts of the high-tension wiring diagram. In order that the discharge gap the coil is may be adjusted while in in operation two vulcanite handles f" diameter are screwed for on the ends of the rods. They should be as straight and . gauge hard copper wire and enclosed est glass tubing obtainable. at the top of A set screw each standard will be of convenience in clamping the rods in any desired position. which are to slide easily in two holes drilled \" from the top of the standards through both the fibre and the rod. carrying the oscillators. This completes the connections should the second box. leavthe ing a space of about i^' for interrupter between two boxes. The ends of the brass fit rods project from the fibre the bushings and can be slightly tapered to on the oscillation transformer. coil as in the These leads and those from box should be of No. The oscillators consist of two brass balls i" in diameter screwed on the end of two ^f/' brass rods 12" long. Slide the standards through the bushings in the cover until the rods make good contact with the bushings on the in oscillation transformer. about li". in fibre tubes f" 69 Two J" brass rods 10" long are enclosed in outside diameter and gY' lo^ig- The tubes should fit the rods tightly. in the heavi- the transformer to the high-tension 12 B. It now be end the of placed in its final position at the high-tension the transformer. & S.

it transformer and makes a desirable acquisition to the apparatus. This matter is left to the taste of the individual worker. closed until the condenser discharges across Then. oil has dri\en out the air that open the interrupter gap about i" and cautiously close the transformer switch. snapping discharge of over 12" in length will pass between the oscillators. if fuses or an alternating-current ammeter one is obtainable. the spark-gap can be slowly it. the voltage output of the secondary it would be about double what denser If ought to. bluish white.yo as short as is The Tesla Coil consistent with safety in operating the pri- mary spark-gap. and hence the con- may puncture. In most cases will be due to the fact that the sections on the primary or secondary of the transformer are connected in opposition. but is not essential. When the connections have all all it been made and the can. with the necessary fuses. if the directions have been carefully followed in building the apparatus. further adjustment of the interrupter gap. fail to by any chance a discharge should take place. the transformer is used on 55 volts the primary sections should be connected in parallel If the sections and for no volts in on the primary were connected parallel on no volts. A suitable panel switchboard. If no excessi\'e load is taken by the transformer as manifested by the 30 ampere in series. a heavy. the it fault may be due to several things. interrupter sv/itches. To deter- mine whether the transformer is working satisfactorily or . upon the When in series.

and then and due see if there is any short circuit bet«'een the primary secondar}-. then some error has been made in the construction. color and extinguished by any draught of If if you do not obtain a 6 or 8 inch arc test the sections to see they are connected in the right manner.e charge. it is most likely that it lies in the condenser. does not lie If the fault in the transformer. To test this if connect the transa condenser dis- former up with the condenser and s. is none obtained. then the apparatus cannot fail to discharge over a 15" air-gap. to If these parts are all right the fault may be poor insulation. condenser most likely short-circuited or its which can only be remedied by reconstruction. disconnect it -ji from the rest of the apparatus and see if an arc discharge of at least 6 or 8 inches can be drawn out bet\\"een two electrodes. . determined by in the its bluish white color. your even punctured. can be obtained If there is primary spark-gap. in having the turns of the secondary touching. The remedy and is ob^ious. is The next place to look for trouble in the oscillation transformer. easily This arc is generally of a yellow air. Ring out by means of a magneto the primary circuits to see that there are and secondary no open circuits. Finally look see that aU the electrical connections are as they should be.Assembling not. and if they are and no arc still results. which is highly improbable.

depends on electro- magnetic induction. that if the transformer is self-regulating for vary- ing loads. ary. in the introduction. the authors stated that they would not attempt to give a mathematical explanation of the coil. well known almost everybody. The alternating current flowing in the field. the current through itself the primary automatically adjusts is as the self-induction decreased by the opposing ampere turns of the secondis. due to induction. It will also be of assistance amateur wishes first to construct a coil of his is own design. still they feel that a few facts regarding the theory of place here. the secondary . As a load thrown on to the secondary. When the secondary is open there is theoretically no its current passing through the primary. high the self- except is that necessary to magnetize core. primary sets up an alternating magnetic which being force linked with the secondary induces an electromotive in it. The normal used current through the primary of the transformer in the 12" coil is from 22 72 to 25 amperes.CHAPTER VIII THE THEORY OF THE TESLA COIL Although. in that it would not be out improvements the may suggest certain if to the reader. Its action. The as is thing to consider to the transformer.

is in connection with the construc- used for creating electric oscilla- to secure a sufficiently small resistance in the secondis The reason for this that the transformer is used to charge a condenser. of the condenser. constitutes The condenser. else.Theory of the Coil 73 voltage being about seventy-five hundred.- The time is gi\en in fractions of a second. and thus seen that an ordi- nary induction coil or even a static machine of the proper dimensions could be used. as has the effect of cutting the . When an electromotive force full is applied to the terminals of is a condenser. The use of the transformer in the Tesla apparatus it is merely to charge a condenser. but they are not nearly as handy.primary turns in two. more than anything the . but rises gradually. is The constant in in to be reckoned as the product of the capacity (Q microfarads and the resistance {R) of the charging circuit megohms. in a The product and CR is called practically the condenser charged time time equal to ten times the time constant. the difference of potential not created between the terminals of the condenser immediately. this On is one hundred and ten volts the sections are connected in series. Another important matter tion of a transformer to be tions ary. and thus the amper- age in the secondary is about -3 oT- To to get the required voltage of seventy-five fifty-five volts hundred it in the secondary on in the primary is necessary connect the two sections of the primary in parallel. The time required to charge the condenser depends on its capacity (C) and the resistance {R) of the the time constant is charging circuit.

What we call inertia in material substances corresponds with the inductance of an resistance experienced electric circuit and the frictional by a liquid moving If in the tube. lies in coil. with the electrical resistance of a circuit. the discharge may take one of several forms. or the liquid viscous.74 The Tesla Coil It essential part of the Tesla coil. When any condenser discharged. There then a force due to the difference of tending to cause the liquid to return to an equal height in both limbs. goes back to original is position without oscillations. consisting only of a gradual equali- zation of the potentials on the two plates. then owing to the inertia of the mercury it overshoots the position of equilibrium and oscillaIf the tions are created. these oscillations will quickly subside. level. tube is rough in the interior. however. either oscillatory or and resistance. depending only on the three constants of the discharging circuit electrical — inductance. the constraint suddenly removed. being damped out by friction. is purely electrical and of its great advantage setting up the currents is enormous frequency. and the mercury to be displaced so that the in is one side of the tube is higher than in the other. capacity. may be made clear by the following mechanical to illus- Suppose a glass U-tube be partly fdled with level mercury. however. its that it is released slowly. If. is If the mercury so is now allowed to return. plays the same part as the mechanical interrupter in the ordinary induction Its action. This tration. but it constrained. The discharge may be entirely unidirectional. we suppose the .

and must possess to is other words. Professor William in Thomson. and must overshoot Frictional resist- the position of equilibrium in so doing. Under these condi- sudden release of the electric strain results in the production of an oscillatory electric current in the circuit. In the same way the conditions for establishing oscillations in a circuit is electrical that it must connect two bodies having electrical capacity with respect to each other. titled Lord Kelvin. the and low resistance. provided the resistance of the circuit critical value. would correspond to the electrical capacity in a The necessary conditions for the creation of mechanical oscillations in a material system or substance are that there displaceability of inertia. published 1853 a paper on "Transient Electric Currents" in which the discharge of the in Leyden jar was mathematically treated facts. and the circuit itself must possess inductance tions. moved must tend go back to original position when the restraining force removed. a manner that elucidated important If we consider the case of a Leyden jar or condenser charged .Theory of the Coil 75 to U-tube at its to include air above tiie mercury and be closed up ends. ance causes decay in the amplitude of the oscillations by dissipating their energy as heat. its must be a self-recovering the matter displaced the thing some in kind. the compressibility of the enclosed air circuit. is less than a certain We have these conditions present when the two coatings of a Leyden jar are connected by a heavy copper wire. such as the plates of a condenser.

C= capacity. then the solutions are determined by the that relative values of — and LC. time constant (Z) of the dis- The charge ratio — R is called the circuit.76 The Tesla Coil in through a circuit having inductance and resistance. R= resistance. and dissipated as heat in the connecting At any moment is the rate of decrease of the energy in the jar equal to the rate of dissipation of the energy in the discharging circuit plus the rate of change of the kinetic or magnetic energy associated with the circuit. If 4U if is greater than — LC . vi^hich leads to a certain class of differential equation ha\ing two solutions. If Z= inductance. the relation The solutions in this case depend on resistance. the charge in the jar dies away gradually as the time increases. and capacity. From these facts Lord Kelvin sets up an equation of energy. is. in such a discharge current is manner that the always in one direction. between the constants inductance. then the act of discharge the electrostatic energy stored the condenser is up in con\'erted into electric current energy circuit. V (J or — 4 J^C is greater than — R T . Hence the discharge unidirectional is when the time constant of the inductive circuit less than half the geometric mean of the time concircuit: stants of the inductive circuit and condenser . if R is greater thanl/lr:. and the product CR is called the time con- stant {T') is of the condenser circuit.

— (^ J? T is less than 4 — R the discharge current will be oscillatory. and the inductance small and hence easily measured in centimeters or absolute C. In the majority of cases are practically used. 2- > LC 4L- If R is very small. . S. and then the frequenc}- is In this equation both the quantities C and L must be measured in electromagnetic units or both in practical units. then the ordinary resistance (R) and in- ductance (L) must be replaced by the high-frequency ance and inductance of the circuit.Theory of the Coil however. then can be neglected in comparigiven by the expres- son with sion. . one milli-henry being equal a million centimeters (10°). in henrys and farads. the current decaying in accordance with the law of a damped oscillation train. viz. is When rent is the discharge so highly oscillatory that the cur- not uniformly distributed through the cross-section of the conductor.. cuit is in which of electric oscillations the resistance the is oscillatory cir- negligible. resist- AA'hen the discharge takes the oscillatory form the fre- quency is given by the expression. 77 If. to G. units.

mica. where is the capacity of the con- denser and V the charging voltage. Glass of certain composipractically its ebonite.033 X 1= VCL C 10" The energy storing capacity of a condenser is given by the expression 2 CV. where K is the dielectric constant. and micanite are is all that are suitable.78 The Tesla Coil the Also capacity is best measured in microfarads. capacity of a condenser depends on the area of the plates. as its dielectric constant is is high. and dielectric strength also great. however. . capacity. G.. 5 the total area of the plates expressed in square centimeters. and of these flint glass the best. the expression for the natural frequency of the circuit becomes n= 5. and this number is reduced when cost and internal energy loss in the dielectric are considered. one microfarad being the one millionth part of a farad or S. IO-" of an absolute C. and liable to have flaws which sooner or later give way. Glass brittle. The main thing in constructing condensers to be used on is high charging voltages all the solid dielectric. unit (electromagnetic) of Hence when L is expressed in centimeters and C in micro- farads. being from is 5 to 10. tions. their distance apart and the constant of the dielectric and is expressed by the following formula in micro- farads. The used. There are in only a few dielectrics suitable for high-tension work. and D the distance apart in centimeters.

The reason for this is continues. tial Since the potento the difference between the spark balls is almost equal potential difference across the condenser. about exactly annulled by the decreased current through the primary due to its own greater inductance. or at most differ only by a few hundred volts. the secondary terminals of the transformer are reduced to nearly the same potential. its The construction are that it should be built to withstand great voltage differences between the turns. because the increase of inductive effect on the secondary. due is to an increase in the number of primary turns. is The function of the primary spark-gap to regulate the voltage to which to charge the condenser. and that the primary is should have as small an inductance as to is practicable.000 electrostatic units of capacity. is The function of the interrupter to destroy any arc that may be formed gap. in order make the frequency as great as possible. for if across the terminals of the primary spark- this arc is not wiped out there will be no true oscillatory discharge in the condenser circuit or only a feeble that as long as the arc discharge one. The oscillation transformer is nothing but a modified transonly important facts about former with an air core. the condenser will discharge at a voltage determined by the length of the air- . No advantage gained by having many close turns in the primary.Tlieory of the Coil 79 ^_ The constant 9 x lo'^ KS fact that comes from the one micro- farad equals 900.

qualities of a circuit to The resistance of the conductor. difference between the The main is reason for the fact two cases to be found in the that a high-frequency current does not penetrate interior of a thick solid is into the conductor of good conductivity. . The inductance of the conductor depends on its geo- metrical form. when dealing oscil- with circuits which are subject to the action of electric lations. which is always greater for high-frequency currents than for the ordinary currents. there are be considered. it when opening ing. and the nature of the surrounding The greater the frequency. it out any further would cause to cease passresults. material. it gradually lengthening out until a point is ahnost reached. 2. but effect. The processes and means used for the measurepotentials ment of low-frequency alternating currents and are not always applicable or correct either when applied to high-frequency measurements. to that is. This spark length almost always gives the best this chapter it In the earlier part of was stated that the high- frequency resistance and inductance should be substituted for the ordinary resistance and inductance. the smaller the induc- tance becomes. The Tcsla Coil Now rule there is a certain length of spark-gap which is best trial. tra^'ersed by an alternating current. direct currents and alternating currents up about a frequency of loo per second. suited for each coil and it can easily be determined by As a it is best to start with a rather short spark-gap. insulator.8o gap. five merely a surface or skin When 1.

can The high-frequency constants can. be delicate measured directly. dielectric constant of the dielectric surrounding insulator. work together to form the Tesla high-frequency appara- The condenser is connected in series with the secondary of the transformer and thus is being continually charged. depending on posi- tion with regard to the return circuit and other circuits and on the 4. which exist in the dielectric. the authors will try to show how parts tus. he will find the description of the necessary instruments in other books as it is beyond the scope of this work. \Vhen the potential difference betweeen the plates of the condenser reaches a certain critical value determined by the length of the primary spark-gap. the values of the constants be calculated fairly correct. If between the con- the constants of a circuit for low-frequency currents are for high frequencies known. Under this heading comes the air loss of energy from the brush discharges through the ductors. If the coil builder cares to measure the constants of a circuit for himself. the diameter of the spark . however. 5. the Coil 8i its The capacity of the conductor. due to other causes than conductance. but the apparatus is rather sat- and inconvenient for use and besides not always isfactory.Theory of 3. The conductance of the insulator surrounding the conductor. Ha\-ing now briefly treated theoretically on all four of these the principal parts. such as dielectric hysteresis. The energy dissipating power.

. the induction capacities of the circuits. etc. as of the circuit.82 balls. up a rapidly sec- which being linked with the in it.000. the capacities of the circuits playing an important part. The Tcsla Coil a discharge takes place which oscillates through the primary of the oscillation transformer forth across the primary spark-gap. ondary induces an electromotive force induction in this case is The law for the not nearly as simple as in the case of the ordinary transformer. If the capacity of the circuits is is below a the certain critical value. air After the initial discharge has passed and the as becomes heated and ionized the resistance may drop This fact plays low as two or three ohms. shown on the constants that the On first thought. but a that the inducis consideration of the matter will show tance of this circuit to electric oscillations of this nature so great that no discharge can take place. The discharge from the condenser which oscillates through the primary of the oscillation transformer sets alternating magnetic field. part in the an important damping of the oscillation trains. current depends entirely. Before any discharge has passed and under normal is conditions the resistance of the spark-gap voltage required to break very great: the down one centimeter of air being about 10. that might be touched Another matter on here is the resistance of the spark- gap. and back and of the The frequency before. while if in the ratio of greater the induction de- pends on the relation between the number of turns in the . one would think condenser would discharge through the closed circuit in the transformer secondary rather than little jump the air-gap.

of the spark in the large spark-gap is The frequency not a simple one but consists of se\eral. voltage the Coil 83 The formulae for calculating the difference across the secondary in either case are extremely complex. which act as a condenser. There is small current of a high frequency. . The problem is that presents itself in the construction of Tesla coils tically the prac- same one that presents itself in selective wireless telegraphy. the capacities of the circuits. and other constants. one being the natural period of vibration of the secondary and one a forced vibration of the secondary. so that the solution of the one will solve the other. involving the damping factor. due to the fact that the primary and also a certain secondary are never exactly in tune.Theory of primary and secondary. The Tesla much to coil in its present form is still very crude leaving be improved upon and wished for. Drude and Bjerknes have treated the subject of the oscillation transformer analytically in an admirable maimer. due entirely to the constants of the spark balls and connectors.

that some heat must ter- be developed by the impact of the molecules against the minal or each other. Waves for wireless messages may be sent out into space. besides affording a It is These pleasing sight. advantage. some interesting in their effect. on the brush discharge should be performed in the dark. since the brush hot. and a great number of other things done.CHAPTER IX USES OF THE COIL The in Tesla coil readily lends itself to a great number of experiments. X-Ray brush tubes excited. are of fact that the great scientific \alue. a known phenome- non and is due to the agitation of the molecules near the terminal. is it is thought. illuminated. others useful scientific research. A little consideration of the matter 84 . Geissler tubes effects beautiful shown. the beautiful brush coil described which may be obtained even with the All of these experiments in the Appendix. The high potential current obtained from this coil pos- sesses certain interesting properties due the to its high frequency that are not possessed by either coil or Ruhmkorff induction a static machine. as they then show to the best effects. in These properties are best seen effects.

Uses of the Coil leads us to the conclusion that ciently high if 85 suffi- we could but reach enough frequencies. although it may be very thick. But this is stray- much from the practical nature of this book. we could produce a brush light which would give intense ing too and heat. When this adjustment has been obtained and the wires are fed by either . the first and thus they can be performed by every one. that it might suggest to the amateur new lines for experiment." There supports is practically nothing except all some wire and a few on the brush In required for these experiments discharge. take the wires at the start very long and then adjust them by cutting off first long pieces and then shorter and shorter correct lengths until the length is reached. To produce the best effect the primary gap and the length It is best to of the wires must be carefully adjusted. the only it reason for putting in being. does not affect the result. of course. experiment two insulated wires about 10 feet long are stretched across the room. They are supported at dis- tances of a foot and a half by insulating cords. One of the wires coil is is attached to each terminal of the in action the wires are seen to When the put be strongly illumi- nated by the streams issuing abundantly from their whole surface. (This experiment must be shown in the dark. coil.) The cotton covering on the wire. The have following experiments on the brush discharge been taken from Nikola Tesla's "Experiments with Alternate Currents of High Potential and High Fre- quency.

When the coil turned on the whole space . The two circles must be concentric and is in the same plane.86 The Tesla Coil from them will the 12" or 7" coil. is When the discharge in the is set up. 36 insulated copper ' wire to the one terminal of the coil and the opposite end to an insulating support. Another way in is which the luminous effect of the discharge may and be shown as follows: two circles of rather stout wire. 12". increased by focusing illustrated them upon a small This is by the following experiment. lea\-ing the wire hanging clear. the area of the sphere should be equal to the area of the wire. To get the best results possible with this experi- ment. are formed. Another way of easily exhibiting the brush effect is by attaching the end of 10 or 20 feet of No. and illu- dark one half of the brass sphere seen strongly minated. is wire bent into a circle about one foot in attached and to the other terminal a small brass centre of the sphere should be in a line at right its The angles to the plane of the circle at centre. the hght be sufficient to distinguish objects in the troom. Upon touching the remaining terminal with a bit of metal held in the hand. coil a To one of the ter- minals of the diameter sphere. the wire will break forth into numberless streams or threads of light palpitating in unison with the discharge of the condenser. The luminous intensity of the streams can be considerably surface. circles is one being about 32" in diameter and the other to each of the terminals of the coil one of the attached. a luminous hollow cone is formed.

By this time the experimenter will realize that to pass ordinary luminous discharges through gases. when light will be produced without air at the use of sure. any vessel whatever and with light is ordinary pres- When obtained this way. delicate purple hue. in which the vacuum has not been destroyed. no particular degree of exhaustion is is necessary. On putting the coil in action the bulb lights pulsating. . but merely a transfer of energy. so that the discharge through the centre of the bulb. This shows us that the attempts of the molecules or produce hght by the agitation atoms of a gas is need not be limited to the vacuum tube. which waste so much of the energy in heat. but the time to be looked forward to.Uses of the Coil 87 with streams. and that in the near future. in order to see the The room should be dark changes that take place in the globe. but a very high frequency fairly essential. up with a in a gently This color few minutes generally turns to a lovely pale green. is between the wires is uniformly tilled The such intensity of the streams forming this luminous disc that objects in the room can be plainly distinguished even though at a considerable distance. To show it the bulb should be suspended will pass from an insulating knob. there will be no chemical process nor consumption of material. and of course a to high potential. and then sometimes. and the probability is that such a light would have an efficiency far exceeding that of even the best of the present incandescent lights. The Geissler effect can be readily shown by using only a bui^nt-out incandescent globe.

As the terminals X-ray tube are alternately cathode and anode. if and thus double the space filled with the rays than a single-focus tube had been used. The discharge it must not be continued too long through the tube as is liable to pierce the glass. if A peculiar thing always happens is a bulb with a good filament is used. these may be up by connecting them. but the delicateness to of the colors is something be admired. without any connections to the up. namely. va:ry- X-rays may be would be objectionthis but due to the high frequency of the current from the pulsations are not noticeable. coil if used the pulsating or rather called light. If the amateur is fortunate enough to possess lit some Geissler tubes. for it to light hand. .88 but rarely. although is what known any other tube may be used of the with not quite as good results. that in a few minutes the filament found to be completely shattered. to the coil. coil In the case of the large tubes will light up when merely brought into the vicinity of the discharge. when is an alternating current ing light. The is best X-ray tube to use with this Tesla coil as a double-focus tube. various changes in the intensity of the light will be seen. able. this TJie Tesla Coil changes is to a delicate white light. With the 12" coil it is only necessary to hold the globe in the coil. is When first the doublere- focus tube flector used the rays are reflected from one and then from the other is in rapid succession. in series with an adjustable spark-gap. The in- tensity of the light not very great. By moving the bulb around in the vicinity of the spark.

For those amateurs who may desire to use this coil for it wireless telegraphy. . spark-gap. written by very eminent field. not the easiest subject to experiment in by any means. the field in which Hertz made himself famous. mathematically investigated by Maxwell. The subject itself is still in its infancy and great results are expected when the laws of electromag- netic disturbances are verified in It is a convincing manner. referred to a large For detail information they are number of admirable books. A good place in the loft It of a large barn. provided no better place can be had. it is on the other hand the most difficult. The tube if should be it felt now and then to see coil if it has become hot. in most of the systems using a step-up transformer. especially devoted to this subject. all In order to carry out any of the experiments at satisfactory results a large and get room free from all metallic objects is and electric wiring is required. the of electric waves. men in this But opens after all the great field of experimental investigation itself to the possessors of one of these coils first when they enter the realm that field is. to prevent any injury to this On starting the coil spark-gap should be open as far as possible and then is gradually closed until the best result obtained. is suit- with a few minor changes.Uses of the Coil If the 89 tube it is a small one and is used on either the 7" or 12" coils. and becomes too hot the should be stopped and the spark- gap lengthened. should be connected in series with an adjustable it. the authors merely state that able.

for the two plates on the oscillator form a condenser. When breaks the potential dilTerence reaches a certain point deair pending on the length of the spark-gap.QO The Tesla Coil in a large was barn that the authors verified some of Hertz's waves. Jones has made a translation from the German of the original papers of Heinrich Hertz. the electromagnetic and the electrostatic. D. the electromagnetic waves and the tionary waves ing both the all on wires. with air as a dielectric. The radiator or oscillator used by Hertz consists of two metallic plates. dealing with the experiments and results which have made his name famous. This creates in the space around a magnetic flux. There are also sta- two classes of waves. the direction of which is everywhere . the insulation down and a current flows from the one It is plate to the other across the spark-gap. the plates are brought ence of potential and lines of stretch out electrostatic a displacement from the positive side of the oscillator to corre- sponding points on the negative. We have thus a strong electrostatic displacement created along the lines of force. These knobs are connected electrodiffer- to the Hence. the which is that can consistently be brought within scope of this work. having attached to in them short rods ending knobs a short distance apart. merely the discharge of a condenser. E. A method will be given for obtainstationary electromagnetic and the waves. experiments on electric In dealing with to electric waves there are two disturbances be taken into account. secondary of the coil. as the secondary to motive force accumulates.

By tor. best determined by experience. The electrostatic energy is thus transformed into electrokinetic energy. at least three things are necessary: the spark-ball surfaces must be bright and balls. clean. The form of resonator de\ised by Hertz consists merely of a nearly closed ring or rectangle of wire the ends of which end in metallic balls placed very close together. have been many but the one the authors found most satisfactory was where a neon or carbon dioxide Geissler tube of the spectrum variety was connected directly across the spark-gap. Instead of getting a spark then the tube becomes illuminated. As the coil is continually in operation we have groups trains of intermittent oscillations off and therefore of electric waves thrown In this which spread out through the dielectric. modifications of this resonator. no ultra-violet light must fall on the and the balls must be a certain distance apart. using this resonator and the before-meintioned oscilla- the magnitude of the electric displacements in the space surrounding the oscillator can be Hertz's great air.Uses of the Coil 91 normal to the direction of the electric displacement. mapped out. The one There ball is adjustable by the use of a micrometer screw. way the electromagnetic waves are set up in the air. In order to have the breaking down of the air sufficiently sharp to obtain the oscillations. work was in setting up stationary waves in This is accomplished by having a large metal plate . If the electric oscillation is is started off as sufficiently sudden some of the energy thrown a displacement wa\e.

the To used. set up stationary waves on wires plates to those same radiator is Two similar on the oscillator are gotten . parallel to the By holding the resonator parallel to the metallic reflector the nodes and antinodes can be easily traced out. 6 copper wire. The resonator was a ring of about No. its radiator set in front of at some distance from is so that the plane of the plates on the oscillator reflector. — Waves on Wires. The this size of the plates on the radiator used by Hertz in experiment was i6" square. 37.92 set The Tcsla Coil up in the is room up to act as a it. n w a^ Fig. 14" m in diameter. reflector. The coil with it.

refraction polarizaa small oscillator and interference of electric waves. unless the amateur has sufficient knowledge of German course be far to read the originals.Uses of tlie Coil 93 and mounted a short distance from the plates of the radiator. Thus the wires are electrostatically connected to the Hertz radiator and the plates rapidly alternate in potential. This EMF creates electric which travel along the wires with the velocity of is If the length of the wire electric current suitably adjusted. To tion try the experiments on reflection. consisting of in a zinc two brass rods ending of parabolic in balls and mounted box form is required. potential light. There are several experiments which can be readily performed with this apparatus and which would appeal to those having no knowledge of electric phenomena. These experi- ments have but little practical value. As before stated the authors said that they would merely outline the experiments possible with the Tesla coil. the only reason for . staset tionary waves of and potential are up by the interference of the direct and reflected waves. The plates are all parallel and have two parallel wires led from them across the room as shown in the figure. and for the detailed information the translations of Hertz's original works must be consulted. The resonator must be very tained. and this applies to the ends of the wires an alternating waves of electromotive force. for otherwise no results will be obeither The prisms and lenses used are moulded from paraffine or pitch. which will of more satisfactory. sensitive.

The best shown in the dark. about 55. An is modification of the same experiment to touch the cloth to the hair of the operator. 2". intensity After he has become somewhat impressed with the of the discharge. he should keep in constant hand motion is to prevent the spark from playing felt on one point. any of the audience are inclined to smoke. To do his this without severe burning of the hand. There is only a very slight sensation when this current traversing your body and no injurious effect effects result so is far as the authors are aware. is To get the result without tightly any uncertainty the cloth assistant's is wrapped amusing rather hand. a suggestion as to lighting cigars on a windy night without the annoyance .000 for Then show the discharge across the 6" or 12" gap and let the spectator imagine what voltage that represents. is The next experiment the coil is to grasp one oscillator with the hand when in operation and to have an assistant touch the operator's bare elbow with a cotton cloth dipped in alcohol. The handkerchief immediately around the bursts in flame.000 for i". the operator can approach one of the oscillators and allow the spark to play on his bare hand. To begin the performance the operator should make a few general statements as to the voltage required to leap different air-gaps. such as 30. etc. The writers saw them performed on the vaudeville stage with an is Oudin resonator which far inferior to the Tesla coil.94 citing The Tesla Coil them being friend that they may furnish entertainment to some first who should chance into his shop. showing that the hair If not ignited.

On the near approach of the hand the filament will violently vibrate and then shatter. To convince the audience of the tremendous voltage passing through the operator's body he has merely to bring one hand up to a lighted incandescent globe.Uses of the Coil of 95 matches blowing out will be greatly appreciated. lit A gas flame can be with the bare fingers by grasping one oscillator with the bare hand and approaching the burner with the finger of the other hand so that a spark will the metal tip of the burner.currents is is who does touch with in the lighting of an ordinary incan- . Lighting Geissler tubes held in the hand or even in the mouth by approaching them ment to the oscillators is an experi- that never fails to bring forth the applause of those present. blackening the bulb and of course extinguishing the lamp. The operator has merely to bring a piece of metal. held in the hand to within h" of one of the spark terminals and light the cigar from the spark. Perhaps the most spectacular experiment. such as a nail. letting the spark jump from the tip of In these experiments an assistant should adjust the spark- gap so that no more current passes than is is necessary. one which unaccountable for by the every-day electrician house wiring and has never been brought high-frequency. jump to The A^riters have made this more spectacular by the tongue. This to prevent the spark from burning the operator. while he grasps one terminal of the coil with the other hand.

the lamp may be brought up to full brightness. should stand on an insulated stool and grasp one terminal of the coil with one hand. and that this therefore taken through the operator's body. the other lead of which has been previously grounded. . Before performing this experiment some few remarks to bring the filament on the quantity of current necessary to full brightness if on the no.volt circuits should be made. and approach with a piece of metal held tightly in the hand or mouth one lead of a lamp. to bright red The lamp will come up and if an assistant adjusts the primary spark- gap to its best working distance. The reason is why this amount of energy can be it is taken with impunity to not definitely known. to get the best results. \ no \olts this means approximately ^^ of an ampere.96 descent lamp with The Tesla Coil the current traversing the operator's body. They can amount At thus see that the energy C. while according is fatal to the best authorities ampere to the aver- age human. but follows the surface. those present are ignorant of electrical matters. but thought be due to the fact that the high-frequency current does not penetrate into the interior of a solid conductor. lamp is is required to light an ordinary 16 equivalent to 55 watts. This is known as the skin effect. The operator. P.

— The 7" Standard Apparatus. Plate VII. . — Discharge from the 12" Coil.Plate VI.

.

Wireless messages were also sent successfully over a distance of three miles in wet weather. This was the greatest available distance over which the authors could try the considered the coil. In clear weather messages could easily be sent a distance of about fifty miles. for the authors themselves used the very apparatus described in this chapter in carrying out their first experiments with the X-ray and Geissler tubes. this chapter has been added. depends on this whether the coil builder is to get a thin. Because does this apparatus that is not as powerful as the other. think an apparatus giving a twelve-inch their spark is too large for limited uses. inter- mittent spark or a fat crackling one. besides that of 97 . less not mean any care should be for taken it as regards insulation entirely and mechanical construction. provided your antennae is well insulated from grounds. so that three miles should not be maximum transmitting distance. read the previous chapters. The only difference between this apparatus and the larger one.CHAPTER X DIMENSIONS OF For those 7" STANDARD COIL ha\'ing amateurs that who. This coil is by no means to be thought of as a toy.

long after the manner described Chapter The same iron care should be taken in annealing and insulating the wires as was done is before. & S. Each layer is thoroughly shellacked are held when put on and the terminal wires in by the same method as described two feet should be left for Chapter II. starting i" from the ends of the core. — Primary and Core of Transpoemer of 7" Coil. The secondary is wound in two sections. & S. 32 B. 32 B. At least bringing out the terminals to the binding-posts. Each wound towards Fig 38. for a distance of 5". is in the The Tesla Coil construction of the transformer trivial. used.98 size. as seen in Fig. The primary wound in two sections adjacent section is to each other. 16 B. and is up No. is and condenser and then they are only The built core of the transformer of pieces of 2f" in diameter S. tube gauge double cotton covered copper wire The . & in gauge iron wire 13" II. gauge double cotton covered copper wire in each section. is No. There are six layers of No. the centre. 38.

When put on it . Fig. and the distance between the two sections in the 2}/'. - Secondary Bobbin of Transformer of required. or in this case will be sufficient to wrap some heavy brown paper several times around the tube between the bobbin heads. 39. The bobbin heads can be held in place same manner as described in Chapter II by cutting it the rings out of a very thin fibre tube. The bobbin heads They are 6" in diameter and have a hole 4g" in diameter cut out of the centre.Dimensions of on which it is 7" Standard Coil 99 wound has an internal diameter of 4" and the is thickness of the wall ^^". Four of these are w^ II ^^--^^—^4^11 -4^ ! J -^i- ->'i^ 7" Coil. shellac turn of paper. \" of the it After winding it and wrap with one In this way build up the secondary to within the last layer is bobbin heads. It is 11" long and made from are cut out the best vulcanized fibre. of j" sheet fibre. a layer on the secondary. The is distance between the bobbin heads of each section 3 J". They the are slipped on the tube to the positions shown in figure.

The frame made is constructed from well seasoned pine. the side The frame is now laid on a flat surface with on which the strips have just been fastened down. twenty-eight sheets of brass 6" x lo" are required. it \A'hen finished should be left for some time in a warm dry place as behind the stove. to thoroughly dry the shellac. Whether they are cut directly on the sheet or are soldered on will depend on the width are cut lip is of the brass sheet used. thus causing the sheet of glass reconstruction of the condenser. Each sheet has a lug i^' long and i]" wide either cut direcdy on it or soldered on in the upper corner. one at the top and the other at the bottom of the frame. The heads of the screws should be sunk flush with the wood.loo is The Tesla Coil several turns of paper wrapped with which is shellacked in place. The reason for this is that green shellac is a fairly good con- ductor. For the condenser. The base tened to the sides by some flat-headed brass screws. on the sheet or soldered on with 8" A i" bent across the top of each lug. clean before putting it Wipe each in to the condenser. See figure. it Any sheet of glass that has an air bubble in should be rejected as it is liable sooner or later to give way. The is of a piece of I" x 4" pine 8" long. No. \Mth 12" brass they brass. The base fas- two sides are made is from J" x 12" pine 4" long. On the one side of the frame two strips J" x i" are fastened. See Fig. Thirty sheets of glass -^q" thick and 7" x 12" are required. This completes the construction of the transformer. 40. . 32 or 34 soft sheet brass is used.

— Plate and Frame of Condensek. i^Cstrl^ --3" ^ ^ Fig. .Dimensions of 7" S/andard Coil lOI I t:: f^l" Sirijit I I ^it'^l'strik I I I I I > ^ . 40.

These are on to receive two strips of pine l" X i" similar to those tjie other side. but in this case is the lug to on the brass brought out on the opposite side this the previous one. About No. is Then a brass sheet is laid in so that there i" margin of glass at the bottom and a V' margin on the fit sides. Two glass sheets are placed on top of the last brass sheet. The manner for the oscillation transformer constructed in the same as the one for the 12" coil. and solder a piece of copper lips which has already been tinned. strip down so that they press firmly against A piece of paper or cloth placed between the glass will prevent the breaking of the latter. The lip should just against the upper edge of the glass. Mortices should be cut in the top and bottom of the upper ends of the sides a last little deeper than the point to which the glass sheet reaches. Without displacing the brass sheet place a sheet of glass on top of it. Continue process until the 28 sheets of glass have been put in place.102 The Tesla Coil is A glass plate placed in the frame after having been wiped it dry and clean so that touches the bottom of the frame. and the Set the condenser upright wire. to each of the in turn down the one side and another wire to all the lips on the other side. This is followed with a sheet of brass. the per- . These should be screwed the glass. 16 bare wire will do. Enough extra wire should be left to make is all necessary connections. Also remember to bring the lugs from the brass sheets out on alternate sides. The circular supports secondary are 6" in diameter and are turned out Eight equidistant slots are cut in of i" material.

in place. coil the In the original fibre wire was merely wound on three supports 3" wide mounted on a hexagonal end piece. This rod holds the two supports for If the method of winding the wire in grooves is to be used. It is i" in diameter and has a A" shoulder turned on each end. of Although method it winding gave good results while the coil was new. dowels used in fit The diameter of the circle in which the is 8". was found after some usage that the wires became loosened. the dowels slipped all is The length of the frame o^'e^ 12" The and primary winding consists of one and a half turns of a copper ribbon -i" wide. 28 B. The fibre strips are A" is square and 11" size rod 11" long turned out to the shown in the figure 41. the secondary apart. so The wire was wound contact this that no adjacent turns were in and the whole was thoroughly shellacked. The turns should be equally spaced the ^^'inding stretch other. There are twenty -four \" maple dowels is all. A better way howe\-er. f' Standard Coil 103 Y A square. from the one end of the frame is to the A copper wire soldered on to each end of the . gauge double cotton covered copper wire and was 18 turns to the inch. & S. thereby reducing the effecti\-e sparking distance. is to use one of the methods deis scribed in Chapter 1\. After the secondary wound and these end pieces are screwed to the secondary frame. the thread should be cut on the fibre strips before mounting them on the supports.Dimensions of iphery long. wound The end pieces for the primary are cut out of h" material and are 9" square. The wire used Xo.

OC r — I T1 o . 1^ I- t3 f„0 DC (I to ' I '^ "-• ° "^ I I U =-i il-jt I I ' K (Jj IP — -^ CO i^. -^J' o i4 is! « Ti H z o ii --.104 The Tesla Coil UJ -*IT'-| I T./ ^ 4 g^ .

in it Two holes are drilled 8-y apart. used in the 12" coil and described in Chapter IV. to allow of the free circulation of the Suitable handles are put at each end of the box for carrying The transformer It is is now set on end in the smaller division of the box. similar to those fitted. it. order as for the transformer on the large shorting. They should be soldered on in the coil. Into these two bushings. . one carrying the interrupter oscillators. held in place by two yoke-shaped. of holes drilled in it has a number oil. The primary same terminals are brought to four heavy binding-posts at the upper end of the box. The cover divided into two halves. the that is. wooden supports fastened to the inside of the box and encircling the core between the two sections of the secondary. 12" long. screwed across the top of the completed oscillation transformer. The is dimensions of this box are given in Fig. 42. and the other the discharge The connections from the interrupter to the condenser are the hinges so that the cover made through may be swung back is without disturbing the connections. are When the secondary terminals are soldered to is them the oscillation transformer complete.Dimensions of primary band for making strip tiie is f Standard Coil 105 connections. All the parts of the 7" coil are mounted in one box. All the directions given Chapter VI apply is to the construction of this box. A hard rubber i"x|". built out of f" well in The box seasoned oak. so that two middle posts puts the sections in series and shorting the two outer pairs gives a parallel connection. A partition It put in be- tween the transformer and the condenser.

roo Tlie Tesla Coil K > .

From one side of condenser a wire is led to an end of the primary band on the oscillation transformer. the in glass tubes. — Wiring Diagram. 43.Dimensions of 7" Standard Coil 107 The condenser and in place. oscillation transformer are now put The sec- the condenser being between the two. ondary terminals from the transformer are led suitably bent. gauge copper wire. The connections between the primary spark-gap and hinges can be run in glass tubes lying in grooves cut in the under side of the cover. They should be of about No. The connections are shown in the wiring . The remaining end of the copper band and the other side of the condenser are directly connected to the two hinges of the cover carrying the interrupter. All connections should be carefully soldered. diagram. o o Fig. interrupters described in Chapter the coil in question being equipped with the motor interrupter. A piece of I" hard rubber sheet should be screwed over the grooves is wherever there transformer or any danger of shorting to the core of the primary terminals. enclosed oil and kept under the as much as possible. in glass tubes & S. Any one of the forms of V can be used with the coil. 20 B. directly to the condenser.

which are two holes drilled \" fibre from the top of the the rod. Two rods fibre f " brass rods 8" long are enclosed in fibre tubes f " in outside and 7 V' long. The standards are now slid through the bushings in the cover until they make good contact with the bushings on the oscillation transformer. When the coil it is now connected break forth in up to the alternating current mains. A I" hole diameter tightly. through both the and A set screw at the top of each standard will be of convenience in clamping the rods in any desired position. will a beautiful 7" discharge. the trouble may be found manner described Chapter VII. In order that the discharge gap the coil is may be adjusted while in operation. carrying the oscillators. The tubes should fit the The ends of the brass rods project from the and should be slightly tapered to fit the bushings on the oscillation transformer. about i\". standards. Two fibre or hard rubber bushings 2" in diameter and iV' having a flange \" thick and 2^" in in length and diameter turned on one end are set in two holes cut in the cover directly abo^•e the holes in the brass bushings on the oscillation transformer.io8 TJic Tcsla Coll The oscillators consist of two brass balls J" in diameter screwed on the end of two to slide easily in -^^" brass rods 7" long. The standards are constructed as follows. two ^'ulcanite handles I" in diameter are screwed for on the ends of the rods. . is drilled through the centre of each bushing. If everything in the is not as it ought in to be.

Foil 7 COIL 7" — Oscillators and Standards for Apparatus. .i> 7 Coil s" hrasfi rod BUSHINQ FiG.- Dimensions of 7" Standard Coil 7 log i f m§$$^^^ \- 5 i Oscillator **« %5tandar. 44.

.

let us state that to purchase a coil giving a 12" spark from the regular dealers coil in would mean an outlay a single box is of about $300.APPENDIX For those of our readers who have limited means at their disposal. It is spark should large enough for most of the experiments on Roentgen and Geisler tubes and for wireless work o\-er short distances. 3'' This piece of apparatus giving about a not exceed Sio to build at home. which they may substitute for the transarticle. . while the 7" cost of construc- worth S165. Besides many are not situated in is where an alternating-current lighting supply but available. While speaking of cost. giving a two or three inch spark. The tion by the amateur. Appendix cities. and who desire to carry on some of the many experithis ments possible with high-tension currents. former to be described in the present This coil is it not is oil immersed. as simply mounted on a base in a place free from dust and moisture. should not exceed S50 for the 12" coil and $25 for the 7" coil. thereby reducing the cost of the materials to within the reach of almost every one. has been added. not considering his time. who possess an ordinary induction coil. hence no boxes will be required. regarding insulation A large amount of the precautions and other things can be dispensed with.

32 & S. Cut each dowel and fit one in each of the holes on the smaller circle of one of the boards. too tightly the holes may be reamed wound on out. The ends of the primary are connected to two binding-posts mounted on a piece of hard rubber.112 The Tesla Coil include the The above sums simple interrupter. circles. The B. When empty they are all in place the other board is put on the is other end of the dowels. 18 bare wire are the outer dowels. having diameters of 9 and 7 inches On these circles bore a number of \" holes i" mill apart as in the figure. Next procure from a planing about twenty Y dowels. pletes the high-tension coil. Begin the winding about Y from the ends. These are made of hard wood and into 12" lengths come 36" long. Next six turns of No. This com- . secondary winding consists of one layer of No. The high-frequency coil is made as follows: Cut out two end pieces of i" wood lo" square and describe on each one two concentric respectively. The others will bring the price up in proportion. when the winding is The dowels ing for the primary are next put in place by pushIf they fit them through the holes from one end. Two oscillators with standards are provided for the terminals of the secondary. Shellac the wire with several coats of the best orange shellac finished. until the The is outer circle of holes left secondary wound. over an inch from the one next to The whole coil is then mounted on a base. each turn being it. gauge double cotton covered copper wire.

A ppendix "3 ^- 1 ^-- .

114 '^^'^ Tesla Coil The condenser consists of fifteen sheets of foil window glass lo" X 12". It is the next piece of apparatus essentially the same as the two trans- formers already described. The whole and is condenser best is bound together with in insulating tape mounted a box. & S. is brought out on the opposite Continue this until the fifteen sheets foil. for the of fastening the layers. still wet place a sheet of all tin foil on one top of it. of The core consists of a bundle No. The primary See Fig. This completes the condenser. leaving an inch margin of glass foil around. follows: 8" x 10" between each sheet is it The method Lay a While of arranging this condenser as a glass plate on a smooth table and gi\e coat of shellac. i is wound method two sections one above the other. with a piece of tin of glass. 1 00-110 The transformer for use with the is or 50-55 volt alternating-current circuits to construjt. of glass are used up. Each section consists of one layer of No. . well annealed. after the The diameter in is lY and when II in is formed method described Chapter wrapped with insulating tape. 20-22 iron wires. This will give seven sheets of tin with the strips coming out on the one side and seven projecting on the other side. is After the primary wound wrap on is several layers of paper built well shellacked until the diameter up to 2}". On corner lay a strip of tin glass. projecting an inch beyond the On top of this lay a second sheet of glass and another foil. sheet of tin only the strip in this case side. The strips may be fused together with a hot iron and a copper wire soldered on. gauge double cotton covered copper wire. 16 B.

Appendix "5 .

that the current will traverse the windings in the same direction. . however.ii6 The Tesla Coil of S. Then either the desired connecseries tions may be readily certain. in either case to bring the primary terminals out to four separate binding-posts. shellac each next. a j" hole in each V' from one end. The method of making this given as follows: Procure two pieces Drill' of vulcanized fibre rod |" in diameter 4 inches long. 4" in diameter and having a Slip these on the primary to the positions shown in the figure. the series. is to be u^ed on the 50-55 It is volt current the sections are joined in parallel. made for or parallel. 47. Next bore two -|" holes 6" apart in the base of the transformer as shown in Fig. The secondary winding two sections of this transformer consists of No. If. The two end ones are |" from the ends of the core and the middle ones are \" apart. In order to set up the high oscillations we must introduce a spark-gap in series with the secondary of the transformer and the high-tension primary spark-gap is coil. Wind formed layer the wire of the secondary until the on the two spools Thoroughly just diameter is 3J". Always be though. the primary terminals being connected to binding-posts. and wrap a piece coil is of paper on before beginning the The whole If the mounted on a suitable base. two sections of the primary are connected it on the other hand. & gauge double cotton covered copper wire. 32 B. of wood. well. First saw out of \" stock four circular pieces 2 J" hole in the centre. transformer is to be operated on the loo-iio volt in current.

terminal of the secondary from the discharger the and connect secondary terminal to a binding-post suitably insulated by hard rubber. The spark-gap fibre is made of two }" brass rods 6" long with tube 2'' long slipped over the end to act as an insu- lating handle.\p. One lead of the secondary of the transformer goes directiy to one rod. 47. There care is no interrupter used with is this apparatus so that must be taken that the spark long enough to prevent arcing. One terminal of the primary of the high- . is The return wire from the primary of the high-tension coil soldered to the other side of the spark-gap.— Appendix 117 Drive the fibre supports into these holes with the holes in the fibre in line. the condenser is The diagram shows how connected and also the connections just described. Those possessing a suitable induction to substitute this for coil and who wish the transformer and primarj' spark-gap Disconnect one may do so by changing one connection. —6 ^H ^-- 1- --^ i Fig. the other goes to the primary of the high-tension coil. Prim-^ry Spakk-g.

ondary of the induction tension coils primary The other terminal of the high- is connected to the new binding-post. A glance at the figure will make this plain and also the method Fig. — Wiring Diagram. of connecting up the condenser. Fig.*-^ WriUNG Diagram. 49. When making it is connections between the various parts of the apparatus the wires in glass tubes well to enclose and to keep them back out of the way. 48.ii8 tension coil is The Tesla Coil connected to the spark-gap instead of the seccoil. is The operator will soon find that ordinary insulation of .

along the conductors that are in too . so that all terminals must be kept apart a distance greater If this than that of the high-tenson discharge gap.Appendix no value whatever in dealing 119 with these high-tension currents. caution is pre- not observed you will have some very beautiful all brush discharges close proximity.

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