This demonstration is extremely, extremely dangerous. -- If you touch ANYTHING (wires, transformer, wood... anything!) while its plugged in you will be ELECTROCUTED and DIE -- PEOPLE HAVE DIED from microwave transformers -- all it takes is one mistake -- YOU DONT GET A SECOND CHANCE.....
In this video I Burn Lichtenburg Figures into wood using a microwave oven transformer. The results are spectacular. I will give you some tips on how to do it.
Slightly updated tutorial with a little more info: http://imgur.com/a/PSmcr
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My friend provided the music for this video, here is his soundcloud https://soundcloud.com/moonfinger
First, the high voltage supply. You can use any supply you have on hand. Neon sign transformer, flyback, oil ignitor, ignition coil... you get the idea.
Second, the wood. I use thin plywood. It keeps the water from absorbing too deeply. When you put the water on, try to keep it from soaking in too much, and try not to leave thin puddles on top. It is also important to place the electrodes with the grain of the wood. If you put the electrodes perpendicular to the wood you will get a funny looking one.
Third, the solution. Any solution of dissolved ions will work. I just used baking soda because it was convenient. Na/KCl would work too, but I don't know what happens to the chlorine atom at those high voltages (hopefully it does not come loose). Play with the concentration to see what gives you the best results.
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See you next week!