My Troubleshooting Explained/Overcoming My Problems

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My Troubleshooting Explained/Overcoming My Problems

Postby nickpalmer789 » Fri May 30, 2014 10:28 pm

The One Tesla Project Explained
I have just completed my oneTesla, and it worked pretty much on the first try, however I (just like anybody else) made plenty of mistakes when making the oneTesla. Here I hope to divulge my experience making the oneTesla kit, and what I would do differently next time.

My Trials and Tribulations/How I solved Them

1. Power Plain Troubles
The first problem that I encountered was soldering issues.
Many of the pads on the board connect to a main power plain, and are difficult to solder. The reason for this is that the power plain acts as a large heatsink. This results in poorly conducting cold joints. I solved this by putting solder onto the iron before applying to the electrical pads, waiting a couple of seconds, and then feeding in more solder.

Also, on many of the connections the solder joint can be seen from both sides of the board, so you really get two chances to solder on many of the components

2. Component Sorting
When starting to assemble the main control board I started to place many of the components, and was using the large picture of the board as a sort of guide. However, several of the components are different in the picture than they are in the actual book that they send you. If you want the most accurate and up to date version of the booklet available (I can't guarantee that this will be 100% accurate to your kit) print off the digital version of the booklet.
That is available here:

3. Order matters

One of the problems that I ran into when making the main control board came when I had to attach the wire that runs from the power pad and through the transformer and into another power pad. I had already soldered in the IGBTS and had put on the heatsink. This meant that I needed to get into the area between the capacitors and the heatsink. I was able to do this, however it was strenuous and I was sure to pay attention to the order of the components in the future.

4. Chassis Chaos

Especially on the interrupter board I had a little bit of trouble with the assembly of the chassis. I quickly found that the chassis goes together in a very specific way, and that the cost of taking it apart once it has already been glued is possibly breaking a small part of it. BE SURE THAT YOU ARE SURE THAT YOU HAVE YOUR CHASSIS ASSEMBLED CORRECTLY BEFORE GLUEING!!!

Another part of the chassis that was less than satisfactory was that the hole through which you put the spade terminals is off-center and too small. This made it so that it was impossible to pipe either the primary coil leads, or to put the fan cable through the hole. I solved this one by making another hole around the hole that was already there that was larger, and that would be centered on the hole. I used my high-schools laser engraver, so that it looked like it had been that way all along.

5. Assembling the Secondary

Another problem that I encountered with this build was when one of the fragile leads broke off of the secondary coil during assembly. Not only are the wires very small, but they are very tightly packed together. In order to fix this I had my friend cut just the outermost wire on the other side of the dab of glue so that I could unwind more. This worked really well. BE VERY CAREFUL WITH THE SECONDARY WIRES!!! THEY ARE VERY FRAGILE!!!

6. Secondary Coil Failure

The final problem that I encountered in my quest for high voltage was a failure of the secondary coil. With my secondary coil I had a little bit of slack left in my secondary coil, because I didn't want to break off the wire during assembly. I then just pushed this back into the tube thinking nothing of it. However, the toroid actually arced to this point on the secondary coil, causing something to this effect:
(This is not my picture, however it is part of this post: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=1140&p=2654&hilit=charcoal&sid=60b72ec32a9eb8afc2c8b2311ec1cbba#p2654)

This was solved by taking the extra slack out of the wire and then taping the slack back neatly to the secondary coil.


Remember; even though the words, "Don't Panic" are not printed in large friendly letters on the front of this particular tesla coil, almost everything CAN BE FIXED. The forum is a MAJOR HELP!

Even though this is not an exhaustive list of problems that CAN go wrong with the oneTesla building process these are most of the major problems that I encountered with this particular build.

Please leave any questions that you have for me about my build or about the problems that I encountered below!
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