Modding CFL circuit?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by cjdelphi, May 5, 2011.

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  1. cjdelphi

    Thread Starter New Member

    Mar 26, 2009
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    Alright then 2 questions, 1st question.

    [​IMG]

    I want to modify this circuit so it outputs more power, right now it's doing quite a good job and consumes around 2 amps (@14v) the 2 Transistors doing the switching are C2328A 031

    [​IMG]


    Could I swap the Transistors for more powerful ones? and get a bigger bang for my buck? At the moment when i short out the connections I get a about half an inch of a spark jump if i touch metal on metal then bring it away, I want to modify this circuit for say a Jacobs Ladder?...


    If ^^^ all that can't be done, 2nd Question?..

    If i take a 240volt CFL (60 watts) would it be possible to turn this into a Jacobs Ladder? (i've never looked inside one, hoping someone here has).. I'm presuming it has to ramp up the voltage from 120/240v to something closer to 800volts to energize the gas in the tube..

    But instead of connecting those ends to the fluro, what about a Jacobs Ladder? would that work or would it just short out burn and die a horrible death me included ?
     
  2. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
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    The autotransformer/ballast on the board will have been designed specifically for a certain type and wattage tube. It's not going to make a Jacobs Ladder as it only outputs the high voltage pulse for a fraction of a second before it expects the fluorescent tube to drop into operating conditions which is usually between 70 - 90V at a set mA that depends on the wattage of the tube it ws deigned to drive.

    A CFL already contains its own internal circuitry to run off the line - something that creates a quick pulse then expects things to settle down to the lower voltage and current. They are typically very cheaply made and making an arc utilizing their internal circuit would kill it.

    If you want to make a Jacob's Ladder the only effective way is the way they've done it for eons - with a 15 - 20 KV Neon sign transformer. You can often find these used on eBay, better yet local surplus or sign shops.

    Oil burner ignition transformers will also work but with only a 7,500 V output it won't be anywhere near as long of a "ladder spark" before it quits then starts over from the bottom again.

    Be EXTREMELY careful, Neon sign transformers can typically output 200 mA and at 15KV they can easily kill you.
     
  3. cjdelphi

    Thread Starter New Member

    Mar 26, 2009
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    Fair enough then Thanks.... talking of killing you, this driver for the CFL outputs 800vac but obviously low current, am i right in assuming that if i touch 1 I'll be safe, touch both expect a kick?.... I came across a rodent thread (chewing through the insulator and making contact, but never touched the 2nd live wire)...
     
  4. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
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    No, chances are there's not enough mA available to kill you but I'd still follow the one hand in the pocket rule so to speak. You'd probably get a kick off just one wire, it's next to impossible to insulate yourself from ground due to the humidity in the air, etc. I can have rubber soled shoes on, be on a scissor lift with rubber tires and I will still get but if I touch a single live 277V wire.

    There would be a danger in doing this, many of those CFL and regular fluorescent drivers utilize autotransformers which means they have a direct connection to the mains voltage.
     
  5. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
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    I would consider that circuit quite dangerous even though it runs from 14v input!

    It consumes 28W and will probably be able to output 20W or so, with the power transfer optimised for the running voltage of a fluoro tube or about 100v. So depending how you touch it it could put 100v @ 200mA through your body or 200v @ 100mA etc!

    Don't do anything with this device that might let you touch the output! :eek:
    Moderator time?
     
  6. R!f@@

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 2, 2009
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    Need more power, rewind the tx, beef up the caps and driver.
    and expect a bang too.
     
  7. bertus

    Administrator

    Apr 5, 2008
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    Hello,

    Due to safety and / or enviromental issues I am closing this thread.

    Quote:
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