Nikola Tesla People
After finding me on the Tesla Coil Mailing List, Phillip first showed up at my house in 2008 with a neon-sign-transformer-powered Tesla coil using beer bottle capacitors. I helped Phillip improve his coil, build a vacuum tube Tesla coil and introduced him to the community. We became regular attendees to every Teslathon we could find and had a little side business selling salvaged parts. Along the way, I learned a lot about photography from Phillip and taught him what I could about Tesla and high voltage.
Phillip soon surpassed me in Tesla coil building through his close friendship with Steve Ward and John Forcina. For years, he urged me to get into solid-state coiling, but I had seen too many of his IGBTs lose their smoke and was reluctant for a long time.
In 2012, an opportunity came that made me decide to take the plunge. The result was the large DRSSTC you can see in the builder galleries and YouTube. We achieved sparks more that 16-feet in length and coiling has never been the same since.
Phillip went on to design significant portions of the Tesla gun and created one of the best, digital Tesla coil controllers ever made. He has contributed numerous advances in Tesla coil control, including the concept known as "free-wheeling" and has picked up the Teslathon torch hosting his own annual event at his home in Huntsville, Alabama.