Does Max still keep tabs on his ancient musings? If so, he mey be interested in the material below to use instead of glass or (cringe) plastic for various windows and ports, especially if he goes for the "coal-fire" look. It's VERY Victorian/Steampunk: Mica!
Of course, getting the very best quality means there are no decorative imperfections. Where can you find a more NATURAL-looking supply?
When CJ died Rudyard Kipling wrote a poem that went:
"the immense and brooding spirit still shall,quicken and control. Living he was the land, and dead his soul shall be her soul." Of course Kipling was an arch imperialist himself, as you can tell. I wrote the above from memory, being the second or third poem I had to memorise at school. It was inscribed on a scroll around the picture of Rhodes' head on the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland pound note (now I am really going back, to what is now Zimababwe, Zambia and Malawi). I just looked it up, and it seems I remembered it perfectly- what a waste of brain cells!
@antedeluvian (and David): " ... Cecil John Rhodes' favourite colour- the country being named for him. Better known today for the Rhodes scholarship."
There were varying opinions on Mr. Rhodes. Here's one from one of my favorite authors:
"Before the middle of July we reached Cape Town, and the end of our African journeyings. And well satisfied; for, towering above us was Table Mountain--a reminder that we had now seen each and all of the great features of South Africa except Mr. Cecil Rhodes. I realize that that is a large exception. I know quite well that whether Mr. Rhodes is the lofty and worshipful patriot and statesman that multitudes believe him to be, or Satan come again, as the rest of the world account him, he is still the most imposing figure in the British empire outside of England. ...
" ... I admire him, I frankly confess it; and when his time comes I shall buy a piece of the rope for a keepsake."
Mark Twain, "Following the Equator," end of Chapter LXIX, commenting on Cecil Rhodes of Rhodesia.
Please remember that Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorn Clemens) was first and foremost a humo(u)rist.
PWM might mean extra stress to a filament and thus kill it much faster. best practice would be a linear adjustable rgulator. if it shall be voltage or current conrtolled i can not say right now. for LEDs current conterol is quite the standard.
a permanent drive is fine as it is a steady condition. heating up and cooling down is a little bit extra stress.
those switch might not be safe nowadays for what it was used once.
using it in a >100V setup it can be a dangerous part. todays safety rules reflect more than 100 years of experience with electricity. where once open metal was okay its not okay as of today. and please note that even such a device sees material degradation like increased risk of breakage or increased conductivity.
best practice is using such a device only with low voltages. you might know the limits for DC and AC that are allowed to be exposed to even human tampering such as in audio plugs, chargers and electric model train tracks. its the "toy's voltage" level.
have fun with your toy project and abstain from high voltage where ever possible.
@Rcurl: What ever happened to the small circular multi-colored sound activated display device you had in your office a while back? I think it would fit right in.
Ah -- that plasma display thing -- I'd forgotten all about that -- it's on the shelves behind me somewhere (burried under layers of other stuff) -- but just wait till you see what I picked up thsi morning from Mock Electronics -- I'm writing a blog as we speak...
What ever happened to the small circular multi-colored sound activated display device you had in your office a while back? I think it would fit right in.
As for the male part of the project- in my opinion it should be nothing more than a battery, single pole toggle switch, and an LED in a clear acrylic enclosure, and it should be referred to simply as "The box". Alternatively it could be called "Part A".
It's a fair bit older than the ebay one... probably was old when I bought it some twenty-five years ago... and it's housed in a metal-reinforced glass tube. Gives a nice and relatively quiet little electrical display, still... and no noxious nitrous smell of a hot open air J-L spark.
@ Max: "Not a bad idea, although I'm more of a low-voltage man... I did find anther really interesting -- low cost -- tube there -- I can get the coil glowing -- and I'm just about to try lighting it from underneath with NeoPixels -- I'm just waiting for the hot glue holding the NeoPixels on the tube to cool down."
I can relate on that account. Once built a solid-state relay board for my first Commodore 64... for switching some 115VAC lights... and then got a little careless with a screw-driver. Would hate to think what 10KV+ would do to a string of Arduinos. Less smoke, I imagine... but probably more shock!
Still... for lighting and such-like effects, there's just something about such displays that LEDs can't touch.
Then some nixies, maybe? Or perhaps one or two of those "magic-eye" tubes? Or somehow a mix of LEDs and those small neon-bulbs for the "furnace"?