Violet wand

A violet ray or violet wand is a device used for the application of low current, high voltage (min 10kV to max 50kV typically), high-frequency electricity to the body using a Tesla coil, originally sold as a supposed medical device claimed to be useful in electrotherapy, though, since the 1990s, it has been used by some into BDSM sex as a sexual stimulation device and by hairdressers to stimulate the scalp. It is especially popular among the BDSM community though antique models are also popular among collectors of historical or quack medical devices. The violet ray was recommended by Edgar Cayce. Today, it is also used, with different electrodes, for electrostatic leak detection. Chicago Police Department detectives working under Jon Burge are alleged to have used a violet wand to torture suspects in the 1970s and 1980s.

A modern violet ray typically consists of a hand held "wand" made of plastic. The base of the handle has a permanently attached electrical cord which plugs directly into a wall outlet. The wand will have an intensity level control and sometimes an on/off switch, usually located near where the electrical cord is attached. In the base of the handset, an electromagnetic "buzzer" type circuit rapidly makes and breaks the circuit, thus serving the purpose of a spark gap in a normal Tesla coil. The intensity is controlled by varying the distance between the electrodes, and thus the intensity of the output (a key difference between a violet wand and a normal Tesla coil is that the output of a violet wand increases as the distance between the electrodes decreases). The electromagnet also serves as an inductor to prevent the unit from drawing too much current. The Tesla coil consists of two coils and a capacitor. The "tip" of the handset (the output of the Tesla coil) has a socket into which an electrode is inserted.

A violet ray only creates shock sensation when there is a gap between the electrode and the body (full contact creates a slightly warm sensation). A violet ray electrode is usually made of clear tempered glass and is sealed and evacuated. There is often a backfill of gas which imparts a colour when the wand operates. Different gas mixtures produce different glowing colours, usually purple, red, blue, or pink. Glass electrodes also come in a variety of sizes and shapes (including probe shaped, rake shaped, curved-y shaped, mushroom shaped, or bulb-shaped). Most glass electrodes have a metal end cap which inserts directly into the electrode socket on the wand.

Solid metal electrodes (usually probe shaped) may also be used, and produce a far more intense sensation than glass electrodes. Note that a continuous metal rod should never be used. It should be interrupted by some sort of insulating spacer. During normal operation, the insulator will allow the high frequency high voltage output of the wand to pass through. In the event of an electrical short within the wand the insulator will block direct connection of the line voltage to the rod, a potentially hazardous situation.

The standard US size for the electrode connector on a violet wand is 7/16 inch (11.11 mm) in the US and 11mm in Europe.

Violet rays can be operated with a foot switch which attaches between the wall socket power outlet and the electrical cord of the wand. Depending upon the type used, the foot switch may adjust the intensity of the wand, or may be a simple on/off switch (which is especially useful for wands which do not have their own on/off switch).

One popular misconception is that violet rays produce ultraviolet light, and sometimes violet rays are erroneously called "Ultraviolet wands". Violet rays do not produce any significant amount of ultraviolet light and do not cause UV burns. However, the sparks do generate ozone and nitrogen oxides, giving the skin the well known "ozone smell."

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This article is based on "Violet wand" from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org). It is licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation Licencse. In the Wikipedia you can find a list of the authors by visiting the following address: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Violet+wand&action=history