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I've been trying to put together a relatively simple electrical circuit to heat an electrode to 750 degrees celsius. In theory, is it simplest to persist with using several car batteries (not those to be used in a car) in series or to use a step-down transformer to heat either by induction or conduction?

Using batteries (24vdc), the 8 AWG jump leads seem to get too hot, with the graphite electrode only getting to 190 celsius. Using a toroidal transformer I put together, it seems to reach saturation and just not work.

Also, would stainless be better than graphite given it's lower heat capacity?

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    \$\begingroup\$ You need to add a bunch of information to your question. We know the temperature you want to heat to, but what are you heating to that temperature and how fast? From what you've written, induction heating is probably beyond your skill level, so you should only use it if strictly necessary. A heater's power dissipation will depend on both it's resistance and the voltage you apply to it, so until you've chosen a heating element, you don't need to choose a voltage, and vice versa. What exactly did you hook up to the car batteries? Use the edit button to add information, not comments. \$\endgroup\$ – K H Feb 10 at 1:37
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Using car batteries is a very bad idea. Car batteries run out if you keep your headlights switched on for a few hours. If you're going to use it for heating, it's going to run out way sooner.

So the best solution is to use heating could that have been built for handing such temperatures. And use a transformer to obtain the necessary voltage.

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If you're making a custom heater, I'd recommend nichrome wire. It should be OK at those temperatures, and it's well characterized at them so you can determine what length of wire you need to output the appropriate amount of heat at that temperature.

I'd also recommend some sort of thermostat like a bimetallic strip that disconnect the positive side of the coil from the battery if it overheats. A fuse is always a good idea!

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