Insulating wire

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LDC3

Joined Apr 27, 2013
924
I recently bought some bare nichrome wire and I would like to know how to insulate it so I can make a coil to place in front of a fan to heat the air.
 

KJ6EAD

Joined Apr 30, 2011
1,569
The usual way is to leave the wire bare and arrange it on ceramic insulators. In some lower temperature applications it can be sleeved with teflon or silicone tubing.
 

tracecom

Joined Apr 16, 2010
3,944
I tried lots of materials, but only two worked: ceramic and mica. Mica is better, but more fragile to work with. For ceramic, I bought some small tile pieces at Lowe's and used a diamond point drill to penetrate them. Either way, you then face the problem of connecting the nichrome to the copper feed wires. I ended up using mechanical (e.g., nut and bolt) connections.

You can also wind a coil on a bolt, and then turn the coil off the bolt, and let air be your insulation. Just don't let the turns touch or your resistance will be lowered. Here's a good introduction.

http://www.cecs.wright.edu/balloon/images/2/22/Nichrome_Wire_Heating_Element_Design_Basics.pdf
 

studiot

Joined Nov 9, 2007
4,998
Get some chemists' glass strirring rods or tube, cut into suitable lengths.

Stick the rods into a blob of epoxy putty as a hub and create a star like the spokes of a wheel.

Wind the nichrome wire in a spiral fashion, over and under the rods, round and round like a spider web or basket weave fashion.

This will create a rigid, self supporting, heatproof structure you can use.
 
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