Bert Pool's Bio

I was born in Fort Worth, Texas and grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, a country boy. My father provided the initial interest in electronics when I was a kid, and I built my first Tesla coil when I was thirteen. I have been building them ever since. I spent three years learning electronics in a technical high school, and I then went into the electronics repair industry. I now work for one of the largest telecommunications companies, providing computer programming and technical support for a group of about 30 people. When I'm not saving the phone company, or building coils, I am married to a very wonderful and supportive woman, Leslie, and we are parents to six rug pirahnas, one love-pig and a fish named Fernando.

I enjoy practicing Tai Chi Chuan, canoeing with my wife on quiet rivers, and I'm a self-confessed junkyard junkie. I never accepted Shemp as a real Stooge, and Johnnie Weismuller was the only real Tarzan.

My big break in coiling came in the early 90's when I learned about Harry Goldman and the Tesla Coil Builders Association. There were other's "of my own kind" out there! Through TCBA, I discovered Richard Hull and started collecting his video tapes. Richard taught me the important stuff about serious coiling, and I've become a Hullian disciple, passing on those little tidbits that can make the difference between a coil which is a dud and one which whacks the walls with sparks.

I really became interested in Magnifier coils when I saw Alex Tajnsek's "dynamite stick" magnifier run in September, 1993. Here was a coil only 2 inches in diameter and 13 inches long which outperformed every conventional coil that I had ever constructed! I was hooked. I watched Richard Hull go on to build his maggie #11-E, a 4 inch by 12 inch coil that makes sparks over 10 feet in length and it does so at a very modest power level. My current driver system (7/97) is very closely based on Richard's #11 driver.

My coil work today is much more interesting since I became friends with Wild Bill Emery, also located in Fort Worth. Together, we build and test large coils, both conventional and magnifier. We are gathering the materials for a 28.5 inch diameter, seven foot tall monster coil which will be constructed sometime in '98. A 18.5 inch smaller brother is already built and is being tweaked. Max Hempel is also located in Ft. Worth, and is moving up the Tesla coil scale.

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