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Gas Tube Question (CK1006 Rectifier)

kantthpel

Member
2013-01-16 1:05 am
So I'm new to tubes but I like to think I'm learning quickly :)
I work as a solid state circuit designer for processors and I'm pretty young so tubes seem exotic and retro-cool to me. My current project is to build a relatively hi-fi audio amplifier without any solid state devices (not even LEDs!)

I bought a box of random tubes from a ham radio flea market and found some interesting stuff, including a CK1006 full wave rectifier. Datasheet:
http://frank.pocnet.net/sheets/138/c/CK1006.pdf

The tube has great properties so I hooked it up to my transformer, and it had this super awesome blue glow when turned on (image attached). After doing more research I find that the tube not only costs $50 (I bought the box of 50 tubes for $30!) but that it is not a vacuum tube, it contains gas. A number of places warn about mercury based gas tubes for safety and because they often require heating time before used. Recommendations are usually for 30 seconds on the coil before applied voltage. I don't want to hurt my expensive tube by not waiting for the heat!
http://frank.pocnet.net/sheets/138/c/CK1006.pdf

Unfortunately I cannot find anything that says what kind of gas is in the CK1006s and it seems like only mercury based gas tubes need heating time. So my real question is:

TLDR: Does the CK1006 tube use mercury gas? If not does it still require a 30 sec heat up time before voltage is applied to the plates?
 

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kantthpel

Member
2013-01-16 1:05 am
Thanks for the reply payloadde. So this is encouraging since I was worried about safety with mercury. If the gas is inert it is likely a noble gas, and we know it glows a bright blue (similar to mercury) then it is very likely Krypton since that is the only noble gas with a blue glow:

File:Krypton discharge tube.jpg - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I think I feel comfortable using the tube without pre-heating since as DF96 says, that information should be in the data sheet if it was important.

Thanks for the help guys!
 

kantthpel

Member
2013-01-16 1:05 am
Some info: 1006

A little googling seems to indicate an inert gas but nothing specific - seems like it would have to be something other than Mercury to operate with no heater.

The 0Z4 (no heater) reportedly uses Argon and glows blue/violet. Likely the same here.

Cool, yeah argon and xenon both have violet hues. The link you shared says that he sees purple but as you can see from my picture in the first post the glow for my tube is clearly blue. Well I have enough information to continue my work so its all good :)
 
One easy way to see if the Tube you mention is a Mercury Vapor Rectifier is to check it when it is COLD (No Heaters on)....if you see a SILVERY Deposit around the inside of the Glass bulb then this is Mercury....it will therefore need a Warm up period (I would suggest about 30 seconds) before you apply any Voltage to the Anode or start to draw current