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For those of you with an overwhelming desire to build your own subatomic particle accelerator, look no further than this Instructable by Xellers, which shows you how to convert a wine bottle into a cathode ray tube (CRT). Of course, that’s not all you need: other ingredients include a two-stage vacuum pump, a neon sign transformer, a high voltage microwave oven diode, and a few other parts that can be found at your local hardware store. Xellers doesn’t recommend running the tube for more than 40 seconds at a time, so unfortunately you’ll have to use a different method to build that needlessly complex (albeit really cool) reading light you’ve been dreaming up.

More:
The Cathode Ray Tube site, old electronic glassware…

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson is a San Francisco-based creative technologist and Contributing Editor at MAKE. He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.


12 Responses to How-To: Wine Bottle Cathode Ray Tube

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  1. Wear a LOT of suntan lotion and UV goggles when doing this.  The guy is getting an incredible amount of UV radiation standing there videotaping it.

  2. I’m no expert in CRTs but I’d want to include a Geiger counter in the list of necessary tools.

  3. I’m no expert in CRTs but I’d want to include a Geiger counter in the list of necessary tools.

  4. Anonymous on said:

    I think the glow indicates there’s something in there that’s getting ionized. So it’s not a great vacuum, but very cool overall. This could inspire some neat follow-up projects. Good work!

  5. Check out Spark bang buzz for another great home brew CRT as well as lots of other educational projects:
    http://www.sparkbangbuzz.com/

    • I got an iPad 2-32GB for $ 23.87 and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $ 38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $ 657 which only cost me $ 62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, http://x.co/Z9j7

    • I got an iPad 2-32GB for $ 23.87 and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $ 38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $ 657 which only cost me $ 62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, http://x.co/Z9j7

  6. FuturePhysicist on said:

    What happens if you keep it running for over 40 seconds?

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