Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Microwave Guts and Wood

I'm the type of artist who views a piece of art in public, then goes home and tries to recreate it. Why spend $400-500 on a piece when I can recreate it in 25,000 easy steps and 6 months of labor?!?

 One day while surfing the net I saw something called fractal wood. It's a process where baking soda and water is applied to wood then electricity is applied and voila - beautiful, mysterious burn patterns appear. I decided this was a project I could take on and master but I needed some supplies first.

I needed a slab of wood so I got one. I needed baking soda water so I made some. I needed an electrical source and that's when the fun started. I watched an instructional video where a gentleman used a microwave transformer and I just happened to know where to get my hands on one, so I got a transformer - but I had to dismantle a microwave first.

Sounds easy peasy, right? Yes it was however - I am not well educated in matters pertaining to electricity so it really scares me, and I was about to dive into something that is capable of generating 2000 volts of the sparkly stuff. The gizmo shown above is called a capacitor and I've been told that the thing can shock the holy shit out of you if you accidentally discharge it. I had to remove it from the microwave in order to get to the transformer so I was really nervous to reach into the guts of the machine. I had one eye shut, my face screwed up with concentration and a silent prayer running through my head the entire time.

I had visions in my head of making a mistake, getting shocked and watching my hair fly out of my scalp and landing on the floor in a little pile.

Sounds of "zing, zap, poof" and my hair would gently float to the ground.

Luckily, the extraction went well and my hair is still intact. I've got the capacitor in a safe place where I won't set it off, and my transformer is ready to go. Now all I have to do is figure out how to hook the transformer up to an electrical source and find a way to connect battery charger clamps to all of that so I can get to zapping. I'm thinking that maybe I should ask someone how to do that rather than plugging a bare wire into the wall socket. I'd probably have a pile of hair on the floor if I did that!  It kind of reminds me of the time as a kid when I stuck a bobby pin into the wall socket.............

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