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Re: [TCML] Excited

I stumbled across a cool trick with Johns phase angle controller when I
built mine many years back. In my basement, where I was building my TC, I
had a shelf of Halloween props. Among them was a strobe light with an
adjustable frequency. I put two and two together and figured why not? I was
able to match the flash of the strobe to the rotation of the spinning
electrode on the synchronous motor and watch the actual range of adjustment
of the phase angle and verified that it swept across the full range of the
stationary electrodes. It was really cool to see something moving that fast
as though it were standing perfectly still. It did not wander at all so I
knew I had the strobe locked into a solid, usable frequency. I do not
recall the exact position, but when I got the coil up and running I used
the strobe light again to see the position of the electrodes during optimum
streamer performance. I believe just using the naked eye that it was
roughly 1/4 inch before direct alignment. So you want the timing to be a
little retarded, not dead center, and definately not advanced (yes, I have
a lot of experience timing automobile ignitions). I doubt this will work
for everybodies setup and it was just pure luck that I got the electrode in
range on the first try but for $20 its worth a shot if it saves hours
fiddling around. The only technical mumbo jumbo I may add to this is that
you probably want to use the same leg of your breaker panel for the TC,
motor and strobe light. Then again, being exactly 180 degrees off between
components would likely produce the same results.

My two cents, and probably all its worth.

 - Brandon, NJ USA

On Tue, Sep 15, 2020 at 12:43 PM shaun <snoggle@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> After reading several post about setting the John F phase controller seems
> many are incorrectly setting the timing to the peak ac mains, as was I. You
> guys straightened me out and I have restudied Richie B, web site and now
> know to set the firing to peak of the charging cap, at least that what I
> understand at the moment. Im pumped to try the correct method out. Have one
> question, is there a easy way to find the peak of the cap, seen some just
> going by ear. With only 45 degrees of phase movement could take a bit of
> lock and unlock, would like to be in the ball park.
> My initial idea is use a ct to trigger off the primary. Thank any for there
> insight.
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