I've been playing around with the well-known slayer exciter, and trying to make a tesla coil.
The standard 1 transistor setup works fine for me, but the arcs I'm getting are pathetic, and it can only light up about half of a CFL bulb.
I tried replacing the transistor I was using (BC548) with a larger power NPN (BUL310PI), which stopped the circuit working altogether.
Since the circuit worked with the smaller transistor, I thought it was either to do with the larger transistor being too slow or having too low an hFE value.
I thought if I used the BC548 to drive the base of the BUL310PI, I could overcome the gain problem if there was one.
The LED I was using for a diode lit up when I did this, so I had oscillation working again, but the coil couldn't light a CFL or make arcs. The LED also dimmed whenever I brought my hand close to the topload.
The transistor on the left is the BC548, the one on the right is the BUL310PI.
I've used 8 turns for the primary, ~300 for the secondary, and a large cardboard circle covered in aluminium foil for the topload.
I'm running the circuit off of 5V from an L7805.
I've tried all the usual slayer exciter troubleshooting gubbins, i.e switch primary connections, add/remove turns, etc.
What else can I do to make this work?