The Tesla Gun: a history

Staci Elaan is an electrical engineer who has been making Tesla guns since 2006. Her sixth generation MK6-18V is a battery powered, solid state piece of badass kit:

In the course of building my Tesla gun I had trolled YouTube and had found a few odd videos, like RMCybernetic’s infamous plasma gun:

…and this sketchy fellow:

But I wanted to build something different. Yet somehow I had missed Staci’s incredible designs. Back in May she published a history of Tesla gun designs in an effort to set the record straight. I had no idea that hand-held Tesla gun designs have been around since at least 2004!

My project got a surprising amount of attention for an idea that has been around for the better part of a decade. The Tesla gun I built this year is by no means the first (or even the first battery powered device). My simple static spark gap design is a kid’s toy compared to some of the solid state designs that came before mine.

My hat goes off to Staci and all the pioneers of hand-held lightning devices!

Do you know of other Tesla gun builds that haven’t gotten the attention they deserve? Post them below!