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Tuckerfan
07-24-2007, 02:28 PM
No fooling! Give yourself cancer! (http://www.noah.org/science/x-ray/stong/)
Almost any source of high voltage can be used for energizing X-ray tubes, including Van de Graaff electrostatic generators of the type described in this section. Simons prefers to stick with Oudin coil. It is easily constructed with hand tools. The job is simplified if you can lay hands on a vibrator of the type used in the spark coil of a Model-T Ford. As shown by Roger Hayward's diagram, Figure 231, and the general view in Figure 232, the vibrator consists of a core of soft magnetic iron equipped with an armature of soft magnetic iron and a set of breaker points.Yeah, I think that this is one project I'll pass on.

Frank Ford
07-24-2007, 03:17 PM
Once is enuf for me.

I was the only kid I knew whose parents wouldn't let him stick his feet into the X-ray gizmo at the shoe store in the 1950s, and my dad fought the dentist (unsuccessfully) about me getting too much X-radiation.

37 years ago, I had my thryroid removed because of a malignant tumor, most likely caused by those X-rays. . .

Cheers,

Frank Ford
FRETS.COM (http://www.frets.com)
Gryphon Stringed Instruments (http://www.gryphonstrings.com)
My Home Shop Pages (http://www.frets.com/FRETSPages/Machining/index.html)

lazlo
07-24-2007, 04:32 PM
No fooling! Give yourself cancer!

Ah, from the days when you could publish Darwin Award contenders without fear of being sued:

"The following is taken in full from
Section IX. Optics, Heat, and Electronics;
Chapter 3. An Inexpensive X-ray Machine
The Scientific American Book of Projects for The Amateur Scientist
Library of Congress Card Catalog Number: 60-14286
Copyright 1960 by C. L. Stong"

"WARNING! You must take these precautions

Oudin Coils are notorious emitters of radio waves that take the form of ragged noise. They can black out radio and television reception for miles around. Federal regulations prohibit the operation of such devices unless they are thoroughly shielded. If any stray radiation can be detected on a nearby radio or TV receiver after the apparatus is assembled as described, it will be necessary to insert a low-pass filter at the point where the power cord enters the housing. The design of such filters is available in standard radio reference texts.

Whenever the machine is in operation, the experimenter must wear a lead apron and stand well behind the orifice through which the rays are emitted. Never turn your back to the machine so that you are between it and the apron! It is also advisable to place a few exploratory samples of film around the room while the apparatus is in operation. When developed, these will show the pattern of radiation and protective lead shielding can be installed accordingly. Finally, resist the temptation to make X-ray examinations of the bones in your hands or other body parts. A frozen fish makes a much safer test object."

Heard from the garage: "Hey honey, want to see what the inside of my *$%# looks like?" :D

lazlo
07-24-2007, 04:34 PM
Harry Simons of 118 Windsor Street, Kearny, N.J.[now deceased], is a lonely amateur scientist. “For 23 years,” he writes, “I have been dabbling in the X-ray portion of the electromagnetic spectrum without once coming across a fellow amateur.

Oddly, all the other amateur X-ray photographers seem to have disappeared...:p

Ain't the Internet great? I'll have to find that link to the amateur vasectomy web page :)

Evan
07-24-2007, 04:38 PM
This works even better, a one half million electron volt linear accelerator that was featured in the Scientific American Amateur Scientist column. I have always wanted to build it. :D

http://vts.bc.ca/pics/accel.jpg

oldtiffie
07-24-2007, 05:01 PM
Deleted/erased-out

lazlo
07-24-2007, 06:26 PM
This works even better, a one half million electron volt linear accelerator that was featured in the Scientific American Amateur Scientist column. I have always wanted to build it. :D

Hey, that's neat Evan! Do you have a citation and/or link for it? :)

oldtiffie
07-24-2007, 06:39 PM
Deleted/edited-out

mayfieldtm
07-24-2007, 07:46 PM
Back in the 60's, when I was a teen, I actually used Roger Hayward articles to play with x-rays. I still have the old radio tube 'O1'.
It worked quite well.
We lived in the Arizona Desert, I had my shop in an outbuilding.
I remember I'd setup an experiment with a timer to start and stop, and leave the building.
It wasn't much later when I found a couple of old Dental X-Ray machines at a Salvation Army Store, of all places.
Built one good one from the 2 of them.
Thats when the fun really began, but, I was always afraid of the Rays and was very cautious about how I did things.
Even today I hate getting X-Rayed. Swear I can feel it, even though I know better.

Tom M.

mayfieldtm
07-24-2007, 07:59 PM
I forgot to make my point in my previous post.

Today if a youngster was fooling around with such things, they would have him up for evaluation and branded as a subversive.
His parents would be arrested for neglect.
Somehow I can't help but think that todays society has become so watered down and wishey washey , it has to have a detrimental effect on creativity and imagination.
Perhaps this is why China is taking over our livelihoods.

How many old timers here made their own fire-crackers or for that matter built a pipe bomb, just to watch and hear it go off?

Better not try that today!

Tom M.

TGTool
07-24-2007, 10:17 PM
How many old timers here made their own fire-crackers or for that matter built a pipe bomb, just to watch and hear it go off?

Tom M.

Ah, discretion is the better part of valour. So in guiding my son into a (so far) successful adulthood, one component of childraising was NOT telling him some of the things I did when I was his age.

Evan
07-24-2007, 11:13 PM
Hey, that's neat Evan! Do you have a citation and/or link for it?

C. L. Stong, Scientific American, 1971, August, The Amateur Scientist, Accelerator, proton. how to construct, page 106.

I have the issue here somewhere. I'll have to look for it.

Evan
07-24-2007, 11:32 PM
How many old timers here made their own fire-crackers or for that matter built a pipe bomb, just to watch and hear it go off?

Pipe bombs are crude. I had much better designs. Back then you could and I did order 100 feet of 3/32" waterproof fuse for $6 delivered by US Mail. Try that today. I had a brick bunker with periscope and remote detonation of test artifacts via electricity (Lionel train set xformer, Estes igniters). My favorite was nitrogen triiodide. :D

The formula and process is in here:

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/yfc.jpg

Wirecutter
07-25-2007, 11:47 AM
How many old timers here made their own fire-crackers or for that matter built a pipe bomb, just to watch and hear it go off?

Better not try that today!

Tom M.

Guilty. I'm always amazed that I survived my childhood, and wasn't killed either by my incredible antics or my enraged parents. My Mom called recently on my birthday to extend her greetings, and I told her that she was the one to be congratulated.

I can't help thinking that, if I had children, I'd be incredibly paranoid that they'd attempt some of the dumb stunts I undertook "back in the day". I wonder how many overly-strict, protective, and generally tough parents are inspired by trying to keep their kids from doing the things they once did.

-Mark

lwalker
07-25-2007, 12:12 PM
Firecrackers, no. I tried, but didn't realize that to make them explode, they had to be sealed. They did make great rockets tho' (homemade blackpowder).
Didn't make pipebombs, but we did make gas "bombs" that blew the lid off a coffee can using something that was probably acetylene gas.

I'm pretty sure I borrowed that very book from my local library when I was 12 or so. I really hope that if my kid wants to do the things I did at that age, at least it will happen with me watching him. I was **lucky**

wmgeorge
07-25-2007, 12:31 PM
Yes, but we did it for the entertainment value, I had no intentions of hurting anyone or damaging other peoples property. Granted our outhouse had a couple of un-explained marble sized (cast lead) holes from my homemade cannon, but no one ever got hurt.

My wife thinks that my parents did not care, and I lived a dangerous childhood. But they also trusted us to be somewhat careful and responsible. I was a farm kid and we had always lots to do... todays kids get in trouble because of the movies and television they watch, and lots of boredom and free time.






Firecrackers, no. I tried, but didn't realize that to make them explode, they had to be sealed. They did make great rockets tho' (homemade blackpowder).
Didn't make pipebombs, but we did make gas "bombs" that blew the lid off a coffee can using something that was probably acetylene gas.

I'm pretty sure I borrowed that very book from my local library when I was 12 or so. I really hope that if my kid wants to do the things I did at that age, at least it will happen with me watching him. I was **lucky**

Too_Many_Tools
07-25-2007, 12:32 PM
Back in the 60's, when I was a teen, I actually used Roger Hayward articles to play with x-rays. I still have the old radio tube 'O1'.
It worked quite well.
We lived in the Arizona Desert, I had my shop in an outbuilding.
I remember I'd setup an experiment with a timer to start and stop, and leave the building.
It wasn't much later when I found a couple of old Dental X-Ray machines at a Salvation Army Store, of all places.
Built one good one from the 2 of them.
Thats when the fun really began, but, I was always afraid of the Rays and was very cautious about how I did things.
Even today I hate getting X-Rayed. Swear I can feel it, even though I know better.

Tom M.

What would you use for film today?

Is there any electronic equivalent?

Thanks

TMT

pcarpenter
07-25-2007, 12:34 PM
That linear accelerator looks pretty neat, but I would think you would need a flux capacitor to help provide the 1.21 Gigawatts you would need to make it work. Oh yeah...that and a Delorean :D

Alistair Hosie
07-25-2007, 02:24 PM
This stuff is best left alone for obvious reasons not only your health but others may be affected leave well alone in my honest opinion Alistair

Frank Ford
07-25-2007, 03:49 PM
Alistair - you are so right. Unfortunately, I had a grandpa who egged me on by spinng yarns of his childhood, making nitroglycerine (he did it) and all kinds of exciting, dangerous Gyro Gearloose exploits.

Fortunately, I survived my bomb-making early teens without damage - to me at least. . .

Cheers,

Frank Ford
FRETS.COM (http://www.frets.com)
Gryphon Stringed Instruments (http://www.gryphonstrings.com)
My Home Shop Pages (http://www.frets.com/FRETSPages/Machining/index.html)

Evan
07-25-2007, 07:11 PM
Took me a while to find this, there have been some changes. Here is a link to a CD with the last 40 years of the Amateur Scientist columns from Scientific American, price $27.

http://www.brightscience.com/

I think I will order a copy.

PS. It includes the accelerator.

ckelloug
07-25-2007, 07:17 PM
I'm only 32. I made black powder as a kid too. I remember back in highschool chem lab that my partner in gunpowder, the school pyromaniac, had to explain to the biology teacher why you don't store Potassium Permanganate and Glycerin next to each other.

--Cameron

speedy
07-25-2007, 07:37 PM
"had to explain to the biology teacher why you don't store Potassium Permanganate and Glycerin next to each other."

It turns the glycerin purple??:D

With respect to X rays. I was subjected to numerous X rays of my spine over a period of, maybe, 30years searching for that "slipped disc/ pinched nerve" before the MRI determined that I had a massive AVM in my lower spine .
I have wondered how much effect those rays had on my particular health issue? especially after reading in a couple of journals that your regular X ray machine was not subject to regular inspection for safe levels; and when they were it was found that they generally exceeded safe levels.

KyMike
07-25-2007, 11:47 PM
>>>>My favorite was nitrogen triiodide. <<<<


We had some fun with that when I was in college. The usual procedure was to fill some empty jumbo gelatin capsules (furnished by my pharmacy major roomate, along with the pure iodine crystals), distribute them in such places as hallway ashtrays and the underside of toilet seats in the shower room, and wait for them to dry. I never made a pipe bomb, but experimented with fireworks when I was growing up. I could get all the chemicals I needed then from local drug and paint stores, no questions asked.

While I agree that x-rays can be dangerous and should be treated with respect, I have read that article in Scientific American and it gives the basic safety precautions that an experimenter should follow. These articles were intended for the segment of the public that had enough functioning brain cells not to abuse the information. Besides, risk is relative anyhow. I am inclined to believe that the danger of being injured and/or killed by a homemade x-ray unit is slight, compared to that involved in driving a car on a busy highway in today's traffic, something that most of us here probably do every day without giving it a second thought

Mike

Evan
07-25-2007, 11:55 PM
It turns the glycerin purple??

Mix the two and within 2 to 4 minutes it spontaneously combusts, violently.

X-rays are ionizing radiation and as such can damage your DNA. This is something to avoid as much as possible. A bit of shielding is all that is needed as the accelerator would produce only soft X-rays. I wanted to use it to mutate some plants by irradiating the seeds.

Alguy
07-26-2007, 12:08 AM
I have often wondered how much exposure we had when they were fitting our shoes with those x ray shoe machines, I dont think they were around
for long. The shoe salesmen proabaly got some mega dosage as thos machies were not shielded .
About the home made bombs we did them too , we were generaly carefull and it never left the farm , we did it to see it go boom, we never had any thoughts of doing any damage or hurting any one, but today we would be considered problem..

Evan
07-26-2007, 12:14 AM
I have often wondered how much exposure we had when they were fitting our shoes with those x ray shoe machines,

It happens that hands and feet are especially resistant to cancer which is a good thing if you think about all the chemicals our hands come in contact with. You can withstand very large X-ray doses if they are to the extremities only.

Sophiedoc
07-26-2007, 10:32 AM
While hands and feet may tolerate moderate Xrays they can absorb toxins that can cause problems with cancer etc. down the road.One agent made by Monsanto during WW2(when most didn't wear gloves) caused bladder cancer in up to 50% of those with regular exposure and even an occasional exposure definitely increased bladder Ca.-I know Germ cells are most prone to effects of radiation(Personal experience from exposure in Colorado as well as info in the literature)but I still don't know if this could be causing a strange eye problem I have and what I think is accelerating aging.(Of course I have never been this old before either).

Evan
07-26-2007, 11:03 AM
To give an idea of the resistance to radiation damage of the hands and feet is the allowed exposure range used for the parts of the body. A commonly used value is 1 Millisievert per year maximum allowed dose for whole body exposure but 50 Millisieverts per year for hands and feet only. The reason for this resistance is that the hands and feet contain mainly resistant tissues such as muscle and nerves and little bone mass. The bones that are present are small and much less likely to absorb radiation in the marrow than the big bones in the body.

lazlo
07-26-2007, 12:11 PM
Took me a while to find this, there have been some changes. Here is a link to a CD with the last 40 years of the Amateur Scientist columns from Scientific American, price $27.

Thanks Evan!

I'd like to order the CD, but is this guy's archive of the "Amateur Scientist" column authorized by Scientific American? He mentioned that he "painstakingly scanned each article by hand."

Evan
07-26-2007, 12:33 PM
I assume so since he wrote the column for the last six years before it was cancelled for good. I presume he made a deal for all the rights.

davidfe
07-26-2007, 07:55 PM
Perhaps, these could be miniaturezed and assembled in a garage door opener.

Wouldn't that add 'static' to the loud cars with excess amps and bass?

Ummmmm.

lazlo
07-26-2007, 08:02 PM
I assume so since he wrote the column for the last six years before it was cancelled for good. I presume he made a deal for all the rights.

Cool, that makes me feel better. I'm probably going to order the "big set" with all the kid's science experiments. There's a ton of stuff there my daughter would love...

Evan
07-26-2007, 08:05 PM
Also, according to Netcraft the site has been up since 2004. That's plenty of time for Scientific American to notice and shut him down. It must be legit.

Tyro 001
07-26-2007, 11:34 PM
Hmm.. I always wanted my own x-ray machine; but first I want to finish taking apart this dud missle I found lying around on the missle firing range down at Camp Atterbury.

Evan
07-26-2007, 11:59 PM
Is it painted blue?

Randy
07-27-2007, 12:10 AM
One of my high school buddies (early '70s) made an x-ray tube, from a vacuum tube IIRC, probably from this article. He had enough sense to operate it only when no one else was home, and he controlled it from a good distance away, hunkered down behind a big backyard brick barbecue. I haven't seen him since high school, I should look him up and see if he's still alive and healthy.

This reminds me of a book I recently heard about, "The Dangerous Book for Boys." It looks like a terrific gift for a young son or grandson.

http://www.dangerousbookforboys.com/