Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Current images of fusor efforts, components, etc. Try to continuously update from your name, a current photo using edit function. Title post with your name once only. Change image and text as needed. See first posting for details.
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Dennis P Brown
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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by Dennis P Brown » Fri Jul 31, 2020 8:07 pm

John is correct. Also, sharp edges on bolts start to allow serious corona discharge problems - for now, however, that isn't a big concern. More of a FYIO.

Good start on your vacuum system. Though a real vacuum gauge will give you a better idea on the pump and system's overall performace.

Certainly, getting your first plasma discharge is a good goal.

caden_Burkhardt
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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by caden_Burkhardt » Fri Jul 31, 2020 8:48 pm

ok, thanks for pointing that out

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Rich Feldman
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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by Rich Feldman » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:50 pm

Looking good there.

I bet your "NST" is a high frequency power supply, which is warned against in FAQs here.
* When it's off, what's the DC resistance between the two high voltage output wires? Can you measure a DC resistance between those wires and a metal part of the case (if any) or the ground pin of power plug (if any)?
* Another way to get a clue: what's the weight?
* A third way: connect it back up to light the neon sign. (Any subset of intact glass elements. Or you can safely drive any ordinary fluorescent lamp or CFL tube directly.) In an otherwise dark room, it should be easy to see stroboscopic effects if the brightness is fluctuating at 120 Hz. Just wiggle your finger in front of your eyes, or look at a spinning fan or motor shaft.
* Fourth way: look up the model number on the Internet. I just did & found the answer within a minute.

If you have a high frequency power supply, I bet you can still light up a demo fusor, it'll just take a bit more work. Microwave oven diodes might be too slow to serve as good rectifiers.
Another surmountable hurdle is the Secondary Ground Fault Protection which appears on the label in one of your pictures.
All models are wrong; some models are useful. -- George Box

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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by John Futter » Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:15 am

Rich
I didn't see that it was a high freq unit
you can get high frequency HV diodes out of dead panasonic inverter microwaves they usually blow the igbt

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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by caden_Burkhardt » Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:52 pm

It would seem I leaped before I looked . . .
However the NST was only a $10 investment, better to fix my problems now that be bewildered later

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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by caden_Burkhardt » Wed Aug 12, 2020 12:57 am

8/3- bought a NST(12kv, 60mA and began wiring it up
NST.PNG
8/4- did a lot of work with my electrical system, including remounting everything in a plastic container, as per john's advice


8/11- After taking a break for a week, I finished wiring my electrical system. I put wire nuts on the exposed bolts as per Dennis's advice, and my HV system was ready. I hooked everything up and fired up the sytem. While putting a grape wont get me into the plasma club I hope this will. My first run I cranked the variac to the max and ended up blowing a fuse. My second run I didn't turn the input voltage over 80 volts. One thing to note is that I didn't really run my vacuum system for that long before applying voltage. I waited one minute on the first run, and ten on my second.
finished box.jpg
Box closed.jpg
full setup.jpg
My setup
plasma.jpg
Plasma
plasma 2.jpg
Plasma
This is by no means the end of my journy I hope to order some metering equipment and a TC guage soon so I can get measurements on my system

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Richard Hull
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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by Richard Hull » Wed Aug 12, 2020 5:52 am

Good work on first plasma, Caden. You are now in the plasma club.

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Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Dennis P Brown
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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by Dennis P Brown » Wed Aug 12, 2020 8:51 am

Agreed - good start and congratulations on the 'Plasma Club'. Your aim to get the vacuum system better qualified via a proper vacuum gauge is a good and necessary goal.

Of course, a better support system for the fusor chamber should also be a top issue.

In the future, even if you get a proper fusor supply, NST's are very useful - they are a great way to test high voltage (HV) diodes and meters and being fairly safe are ideal for these purposes. Speaking of HV systems, in the furtue, don't cross HV lines like you have in the pic. Keeping HV lines well apart - even under oil - is both a good and safe pratice.

As you are likely aware, you also need to address a proper pump port/line for the fusor; that tiny line is fine for the plasma club but will really interfere with pumping your chamber. However, that is perfect for use as a deuterium feed line (which, I guess, is its real future purpose.)

Not sure of your HV lines - I see only co-ax cables in the pic but if that is what you are using for HV, you need to replace those ASAP and get proper HV lines: for a quick fix, the local auto stores have HV lines good to 20 kV and would work well for a NST. Of course, you could order proper higher current and voltage (30/40 kV) line from companies/ebay.

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Bob Reite
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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by Bob Reite » Fri Aug 14, 2020 3:16 am

Actually RG-8 Coax cable is good to 60 KV DC. One does have to prepare the ends carefully.
The more reactive the materials, the more spectacular the failures.
The testing isn't over until the prototype is destroyed.

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Re: Caden Burkhardt-Fusor Progress

Post by caden_Burkhardt » Fri Aug 14, 2020 6:20 pm

Thank you Dennis for your input and advice. I'm not actually using co-ax cables in my system, I'm using some 8 gauge copper wire that I acquired from my dad's work. They were throwing it out after a project so it's what was available.
IMG_0285.jpg
The same is true with my vacuum line, just leftovers from my dad's work.

I plan on replacing all my HV lines with properly rated Hv lines soon and I'll uncross those lines ASAP

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