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Lichtenberg Electric Etching (Read 4,577 times)
 
Grant Wilkinson
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #75 - Oct 19th, 2016 at 12:05pm
 
If the Allanson on Amazon will do the job, I don't see enough value added in the Conestoga kit, even for a US resident. The transformer on Amazon is $70 with free shipping in the US. Adding a foot pedal and probes would still keep it just over $100. I don't want to knock the Conestoga product. It looks very good. But, for me, I'd go the DIY route and make the transformer into a wood burning "machine".

As Rob points out, it's unlikely that anyone would use this on every piece they make. I'm a hobbyist. Much of my end product ends up in my friend's burn pile since I don't have the space to store very many. I can't justify big bucks. YMMV of course.
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Grant Wilkinson
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #76 - Oct 19th, 2016 at 4:41pm
 
Grant

First I do not remember what a Jacobs ladder is.  Also I am not sure if you said mine will work or not.
Last do you have a link to the Amazon site please.

Thank you very much for your help
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #77 - Oct 19th, 2016 at 5:01pm
 
Grant

Here are afew more I would like to know about and they do not mention about open or closed circuit.

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Ed Weber
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #78 - Oct 19th, 2016 at 6:14pm
 
Ron Sardo wrote on Oct 19th, 2016 at 11:14am:
What about those of us in the States? In your opinion, would $300 be worth it?


Personally I think the price is reasonable when you consider the time, effort and cost of collecting and assembling the parts. This is especially true for those who are uncomfortable building something like this. Not to mention the safety factor

If you're a hobbyist, it may seem too costly since, as Rob mentioned, you won't give every piece this treatment.
On the other hand, if you sell you work, (semi-pro or pro) one or two pieces and the unit can pay. for itself.
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Grant Wilkinson
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #79 - Oct 19th, 2016 at 6:33pm
 
Arlin

Here is a link to a youtube video showing a jacob's ladder. Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register

As to whether either of the two on ebay will work, I have no idea. Pls read all my posts. You will see that I thought I had it figured out. Any transformer with ground fault protection circuitry would not work. I was clearly wrong, since many on Amazon say that they used a transformer with ground fault protection for Lichtenberg. When I asked the Allanson tech about this (since he had told me that they could not work), he said that he was referring to the magnetic units and not the solid state units. He could not be sure whether his solid state units would work, as our application is clearly outside their intended purpose.

So, please do not rely on me for any expertise in this area. Like others here, I'm trying to find out what works and what does not. Then, to find something within my budget. So far, I have failed in both regards.

Here is the link to the one on Amazon that seems to work

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« Last Edit: Oct 19th, 2016 at 6:34pm by Grant Wilkinson »  

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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #80 - Oct 20th, 2016 at 1:01pm
 
Ed Weber wrote on Oct 19th, 2016 at 6:14pm:
Ron Sardo wrote on Oct 19th, 2016 at 11:14am:
What about those of us in the States? In your opinion, would $300 be worth it?


Personally I think the price is reasonable when you consider the time, effort and cost of collecting and assembling the parts. This is especially true for those who are uncomfortable building something like this. Not to mention the safety factor

If you're a hobbyist, it may seem too costly since, as Rob mentioned, you won't give every piece this treatment.
On the other hand, if you sell you work, (semi-pro or pro) one or two pieces and the unit can pay. for itself.


I would agree with that ,if a person is selling their work,then the cost you would have to pay for the unit would in time pay for it self.But for the hobbiest like myself not so much.
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #81 - Oct 20th, 2016 at 2:57pm
 
There are those that have spent that much or more on pyrography or carving setups who do so as a hobby.

Safety should be top on your the list and not second to price, even if its a hobby.
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« Last Edit: Oct 20th, 2016 at 2:58pm by Ron Sardo »  

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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #82 - Oct 20th, 2016 at 4:01pm
 
Ron Sardo wrote on Oct 20th, 2016 at 2:57pm:
There are those that have spent that much or more on pyrography or carving setups who do so as a hobby.


I agree with Ron,
There are also many that have much more than $300 wrapped up in turning tools/gadgets that are seldom if ever used.
This bears repeating,
"Safety should be top on your the list and not second to price, even if its a hobby. "

I have been working with tools of one type or another, hand and power, professionally and as a hobbyist in many different disciplines almost everyday for over 35 yrs. (I take some time off  Smiley)
I can tell you for a fact, that if I placed price before safety, I wouldn't be here now.
Those with the knowledge can build their own Lichtenberg unit safely.
For those who don't have a clear understanding of all the factors involved, please exercise caution when using any tool that can potentially injure or even kill you.
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Grant Wilkinson
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #83 - Oct 20th, 2016 at 9:37pm
 
Just to be clear, I have NEVER suggested compromising safety for price. I was asked my opinion on whether I felt the Conestego unit was worth the US $300 price tag. To me, it is not. Assuming we are all adults here, everyone is entitled not only to their opinion, but their buying decisions.

Also to be clear, the Conestoga unit is, in my humble opinion, still a very dangerous tool. There are safer ways to achieve the burns without having your hands holding the wires. Notwithstanding that he has put a foot switch on the transformer and attached bakelite probes, it still puts out 12000 volts. The foot switch will do nothing to prevent electrocution. In fact, if your foot comes off it involuntarily, it's likely because you're dead, or at least you've been shocked.

I watched a youtube video of that unit in action. The turner was using the probes around the circumference of a bowl. Rather than use clips on the ends of the leads, then standing back while the burn takes place, the probes allow you to move the burn around without turning the unit off. That is very convenient, but I would suggest some measure of safety is lost when your hands are within inches of the conductive ends of the probes, and you have one hand on each lead.

All this to say that "safety" is quite relative when playing with this stuff.
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« Last Edit: Oct 20th, 2016 at 9:39pm by Grant Wilkinson »  

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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #84 - Oct 21st, 2016 at 8:02am
 
I agree with your first three paragraphs Grant, not sure I understand the fourth.

Thank you for taking the time to post you comments.
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Grant Wilkinson
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #85 - Oct 21st, 2016 at 8:16am
 
Tks, Ron. All that I was trying to say in the one-line fourth para was that, when posters in this thread talk about one available kit being "safer" than making a kit as as DIY, we should all keep in mind that we are playing with enough electricity to kill us - quickly. We are doing this in the name of art, I suppose. Meaning that this is not some necessity were are pursuing and accepting the inevitable risks associated with that necessity.

So, "safe" is very relative. Playing with 12000 volts of electricity will never be "safe". We can mitigate the risks, but we are still playing with fire - as the saying goes.
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #86 - Oct 21st, 2016 at 8:26am
 
Ron Sardo wrote on Oct 21st, 2016 at 8:02am:
I agree with your first three paragraphs Grant, not sure I understand the fourth.


Again I'm with Ron on this topic.

I'm not trying to single anyone out when I mention price over safety but too many seem to want to go the least expensive route without considering the loss of some safety factors.
Everyone has to make their own choice, all we can do is to point out the potential dangers you may encounter.
Remember you are the most dangerous thing in your shop. Tools aren't dangerous until you misuse them.
Work safely everyone

Grant, did the turner in the video have the initials C.J.
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Grant Wilkinson
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #87 - Oct 21st, 2016 at 8:41am
 

Ed: If I sounded defensive in my "safety" posts, it was not because I felt that you singled me out. I apologize if it seemed that way.

Yes to the CJ question.

Not only do I not want to come across as being defensive, but I don't want to seem to be targeting Conestoga either. It looks like a well-made product, and for those who don't want to buy parts and put together a similar unit, it looks like a good (if pricey) way to go.

As to safety, though, the very first video I saw on Lichtenberg was by Wayne Schmidt. It's on Youtube. He is big on safety, going so far as to caution people not to use 2 hands to attach the clips that he uses on the ends of the high voltage wires. He says, if I remember correctly, to make sure the unit is unplugged while attaching the clips to the wood. In short, his method is likely as safe as one can get while playing with something that can kill us.

Then CJ shows his method, using the Conestoga unit. With no criticism intended, he does pretty much the opposite of what Schmidt recommends. Does that make CJ "unsafe"? I don't know. I think it's fair to say that his method is not as safe as Schmidt's, but it is far more convenient while working on turned pieces.

We all make choices every day in the name of price, convenience, expedience - even time - that put us at some risk over a more expensive, less convenient or slower method of doing things.

I guess that all I am/was trying to say in this thread - which I seem to have taken way off topic - is that until Mr Gast comes up with a new technology to stop the transformer's output the millisecond that our body is detected <big smile here>, be careful out there.
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #88 - Oct 21st, 2016 at 9:56am
 
Grant, I would suggest watching this video.
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Approximately 20 minutes in, Tim Yoder takes his vessel to an artist who applies the Lichtenberg process. Look carefully at his setup and all the safety precautions he has in place.

IMO C.J. is not the person I would look to for tool safety.
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Re: Lichtenberg Electric Etching
Reply #89 - Oct 21st, 2016 at 10:45am
 
I think I share others thoughts when saying the following:

I like to outcome of this process.
I am intrigued by the process and like to watch it.

I recognize the dangers and therefore I am no going to do this. I have other embellishment treatments that will use to enhance my turnings.

Thanks for the in-depth discussion. This forum is terrific! Thumbs Up

Tom
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