Adjustable Strobe Light

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This Adjustable Strobe Light is the bigger brother of the plain old strobe light. This one uses a much more powerful "horse shoe" Xenon tube which produces more light. You can also control the flash rate up to about 20Hz. Do not look directly at the flash tube when this thing is on!



This is the schematic of the strobe

PC Board Layout

This is the PC board pattern of the strobe

Parts Placement

This is the parts placement diagram of the strobe light


Total Qty.
R11250 Ohm 10 Watt Resistor
R21500K Pot
R31680K 1/4 Watt Resistor
D1, D221N4004 Silicon Diode
C1, C2222 uF 350V Capacitor
C310.47uF 400 Volt Mylar Capacitor
T114KV Trigger Transformer (see "Notes")
L11Flash Tube (see "Notes")
L21Neon Bulb
Q11106 SCR
F11115V 1A Fuse
MISC1Case, Wire, Line Cord, Knob For R2


  1. T1 and L1 are available from The Electronics Goldmine (see Where To Get Parts).
  2. This ciruits is NOT isolated from ground. Use caution when operating without a case. A case is required for normal operation. Do not touch any part of the circuit with the case open or not installed.
  3. Most any diodes rated at greater then 250 volts at 1 amp can be used instead of the 1N4004's.
  4. Do not operate this circuit at high flash rates for more than about 30 seconds or else C1 and C2 will overheat and explode.
  5. There is no on/off switch in the schematic, but you can of course add one.

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newbie to technology
Adjustable Strobe Light
Sunday, August 19, 2012 5:59:53 AM
HI...I would like to ask that can this circuit be solder on a stripboard?? as i would like to make it increase the speed of flashing when i press the button increasing by time and can the flash stop and continuing lighting the light without flashing after a long pressing on the button??
Adjustable Strobe Light
Thursday, February 23, 2012 6:35:26 AM
the xenon should be rated at how many watt ? i am going to waor this circuit in 240v and i had removed the doubler (C1 & D1) how many volt n watt required for the neon bulb to discharge the capasitor ? last, the ground pin or primary pin of the trigger transformer is connected to SCR ?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Wednesday, February 01, 2012 3:24:23 PM
What determines the power output to the flash tube? How is the capacitor value determine in a voltage doubler. Say I want to power a much larger flash tube.
anonymous michael
Adjustable Strobe Light
Thursday, July 14, 2011 3:10:45 AM
What are the changes required for the circuit to work on 220V

(Editor's notes: Remove voltage doubler.)

Adjustable Strobe Light
Wednesday, May 11, 2011 6:26:22 PM
where is a good source for the SCR ? the high V cap ?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Monday, January 17, 2011 6:13:17 PM
I know what an 106 SCR is, but I can't it. Could someone help me?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Wednesday, August 25, 2010 6:27:42 AM
what volt battery does it run on?
Max Balboa
Adjustable Strobe Light
Wednesday, June 23, 2010 8:34:34 AM
Very helpful. Just a quick question, how do I do this on 220V? Best regards, -Max
Thursday, March 11, 2010 11:38:01 PM
Hi all. Just to answer some questions you might have about the neon light. Since the circuit runs (thereby charging the capacitor) as soon as it is plugged in, the components become dangerous to handle. The neon bulb is a mean a discharge the capacitor so that the circuit doesn't zap you if you go to touch/modify it. Another way to put that is: when you plug the strobe light in, don't turn it on at all, then unplug it, the neon light will go on to eliminate any build-up of charge. Give me an e-mail if you have any questions.
Adjustable Strobe Light
Friday, February 19, 2010 4:55:17 PM
I remember building this circuit as a kid way back in the 70's when all the parts were available from radio shack. The neon bulb acts as a trigger for the transistor and coil. It passes no current until there is enough charge in the capacitors and then all of a sudden it fires. It needs to be there.
Adjustable Strobe Light
Wednesday, November 25, 2009 11:33:27 AM
Can a large heatsink be used to avoid overheating and explotion of c1 and c2?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Wednesday, September 09, 2009 8:13:29 AM
This thing looks cool.
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, July 07, 2009 11:34:52 PM
can i using motor and relay into adjustable strobe light circuit?? can it operate or not??? if it can how much power can use for the motor and relay??? please help me...
Adjustable Strobe Light
Friday, June 26, 2009 12:36:40 PM
I think we also can add a 120 VAC fan to cool down C1 and C2 to avoid overheating and explotion of C1 & C2:-).
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, March 24, 2009 1:32:55 PM
why wr use noen bulb.?? where i find working of this circuit???
Adjustable Strobe Light
Sunday, November 16, 2008 12:20:36 PM
What purpose does the Neon Bulb serve?
rave strobe lights
Monday, November 03, 2008 8:58:37 PM
hey im trying to put togeather the perfect rave/poi lights and im looking for a circuit diagram i have red/blue/green and white leds to work with and im looking for something that gives me 9-12 settings solid red/blue/green/white, quick strobe, slow strobe and so on if Anyone has any advice it would help or circuit diagrams it would help tremendously.
Adjustable Strobe Light
Thursday, October 02, 2008 1:13:14 AM
how much voltage should the flash tube be able to take? is 360 good?
brit-z3zy[the blood thirsy vampire from hell]
Adjustable Strobe Light
Friday, May 02, 2008 3:03:10 PM
i do not no anything about circuts & that stuff. [ im in the ninth grade ] can you send me how to do it, but keep it simple. thanx!
Adjustable Strobe Light
Monday, March 24, 2008 4:19:50 AM
I don't have to include the neon bulb do I?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Monday, February 11, 2008 12:16:58 AM
Please It is time to change to LED's. The luxeons are so bright now and fast. Can anyone make a schematic
Adjustable Strobe Light
Thursday, December 13, 2007 3:05:55 PM
wow nice circuit...maybe i'll build this one...
Adjustable Strobe Light
Sunday, December 02, 2007 7:57:17 AM
thanks this is something like what I'm looking for and small enough
Adjustable Strobe Light
Saturday, November 24, 2007 1:12:07 AM
How can I make the trigger transformer? What are it's specifications?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Saturday, November 17, 2007 8:21:56 PM
Hi, i want to build this strobe, but i live in Macedonia (Europe) and the current is 220VAC. what changes i need to do to make it work here

(Editor's notes: Remove the voltage doubler.)

Strobe Lights
Monday, November 12, 2007 7:14:15 AM
I want to build me a Photographers studio flash heads. Do you perhaps know where I can find something like that? Do you perhaps have better, more cost effective ways of obtaining this or similar item? Thanx alot
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, August 07, 2007 11:27:38 PM
can u send me the operation for this circuit
Adjustable Strobe Light
Thursday, June 28, 2007 6:15:50 AM
hi , this is a nice concept how can i use 220v supply, what will be the changes in the component value if i cannot use a step down transformer
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, May 01, 2007 6:31:26 PM
Yes...what if i want to use DC current?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Saturday, April 21, 2007 10:25:16 AM
Hi, the circuit is quite nice but i need it to run from 12VDC.(car battery). Can you help please
Alexandre Costa
Adjustable Strobe Light - Trigger Coil
Saturday, April 21, 2007 12:05:39 AM
How can I Build the trigger transformer ?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, April 17, 2007 9:50:05 PM
Also, suppose I don't want to hook it up to an AC power supply and just use a plain DC current with a battery snap, what modifications can be made?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, April 17, 2007 9:48:58 PM
Is there no way to keep the light bulb from being so hot or to keep the capacitors from frying? Why can you not simply just increase the resistance?
Adjustable Strobe Light
Sunday, April 08, 2007 4:08:29 AM
Hey, Made this same thing in grade 10 electronics it great! the bulb gets fucking hot so be careful what you put it in...i mounted it in a plastic container and it was fine unles you leave it on for 20 min or o then it tarted to melt a very small hole right above it...till causing no major probs but u get the picture :)
Adjustable Strobe Light
Tuesday, March 13, 2007 7:19:21 AM
Hy! I just see this strobe light, and i would like to build it. the only thing that matters is that i'm in europe and we have 220V in here. how can i build this strobe to make it work here? wich parts are needed to change? thanks
Adjustable Strobe Light
Monday, March 05, 2007 7:34:25 PM
I love ajustable strobe lights, i put them on the roller coaters i build! The people love them! If you remember the Rockin Roller Coaster in Disney World, i designed that - e-mail me!
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