Let’s Wind A 60hz Pole Pig

Project Specs:

  • Months of work: Sep 2009
  • Approximate Build Time: 2 Weeks
  • Max Voltage: 30kV
  • Max Stored Energy: 0
What more to say? I wanted to suffer and wind my own pole pig (x-ray transformer really, but it turned out only being about 15kV since I needed more primary windings than expected). I really don’t have any idea how many secondary turns there were, at least 15,000 though. The core was scrapped from a dead x-ray transformer.
Ultimately it wasn’t very useful, it had an exceedingly high resistance on the winding which I think was one big issue, additionally the core saturated much sooner than I thought it would so I couldn’t get 110V in on the 40 turn primary. I think there was an arc inside somewhere too.

Winding jig… turns out Legos are still useful

A few layers in. Fortunately it’s only a volt or two per turn so small errors are not catastrophic as they are in a tesla coil

Finally… done… winding

Core and the windings in the bucket

Awaiting vacuum oil impregnation (don’t use 5 gallon metal buckets for this, they implode… oops)

After pumping, awaiting tests

  1. Transformers usually use 75 volts per layer for enamel coated copper.
    That is why “fly-back” transformers look so unusual.
    “Voltage Doubler” circuits can raise the output voltage
    but HV capacitors and rectifiers can be expensive.
    I have seen (2kv 1a output) with primarys wound using copper tubing
    so that water cooling can be used within the primary.

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