Build Your Own Class-E Musical Tesla Coil

We’ve all seen a million videos online with singing Tesla coils doing their thang. [Zach Armstrong] wasn’t content to just watch, though. He went out and built one himself! Even better, he’s built a guide for the rest of us, too!

His guide concerns the construction of a Class-E solid state Tesla coil. These are “underrated” in his opinion, as they’re simple, cheap, and incredibly efficient. Some say up to 95% efficient, in fact! It’s not something most Tesla coil fans are concerned with, but it’s nice to save the environment while making fun happy sparks, after all.

[Zach]’s guide doesn’t just slap down a schematic and call it good. He explains the theory behind it, and the unique features too. He uses an adjustable Schmitt trigger oscillator for the build, and he’s naturally given it an audio modulation capability because that’s a good laugh, too.

If you’ve ever wanted to convince you’re friends you’re incredibly smart and science-y, you can’t go wrong with a singing Tesla coil. This beats out Jacob’s ladder and most other plasma experiments for sheer mad scientist cred.

Have fun out there! Video after the break.

9 thoughts on “Build Your Own Class-E Musical Tesla Coil

  1. Zack is very smart and a great creator, I just want to clarify something you mentioned in your write-up about efficiency. Coilers love efficiency, we wouldn’t put all this effort into Active PFCs and adjustable phase-angle rotary spark-gaps if we didn’t. But, power throughput is still very limited with single transistor drivers such as Slayers and Class-E. Even the beastliest builds pale in comparison to a relatively small 9kV/30mA NST, nevermind Pole Pigs or an H-Bridge of CM600 bricks.

    All that to say, efficiency is a misnomer in aircore transformers that output directly to the air. Even the most efficient Tesla Coil is ultimately a big toy throwing lightning for fun, and most of us love all builds from the smallest to the largest! Keep up the great work Zack I love your channel!

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