Texas Steampunks & Neo-Victorians
I've been playing with the flash circuit from a single-use camera, and after reverse engineering the circuit I've begun making some changes.
The standard design uses a blocking oscillator running on a 1.5 volt AAA battery to produce 300 volts across a large capacitor. The capacitor is then discharged through the itty-bitty flash tube in about 1/1000 second.
After some modification (removing the big capacitor, flash tube, and trigger circuit) and adding a Greinacher voltage doubler, I've got about a 600 volt output.
Next, I'll be connecting one of my large xenon flash tubes to see if 600 volts will trigger it. If not, I'll start adding Greinacher stages (adding 300 volts per stage) until the tubes light up.
The end goal is to produce a high voltage/low current output that will gently fire multiple xenon flastubes in series. I'm ultimately looking to produce an (apparently) continuous filament of white light through the flash tubes rather than a millisecond-long blinding blast of light.
It should be an interesting series of experiments.