Big Capacitors are fun

I was into disassembling old TVs for electronic parts in high school. One day I bought a huge old 1950s unit (broken) at a flea market for $1. It had a 1 Farad capacitor in it about the size of a tin of peaches. Our school library had recently been re-carpeted with nylon carpet that generated epic levels of static charge on cold, dry days. So I used to scuff my feet around the library holding onto one of the terminals of this giant capacitor, then approach a victim and give them my “Star Wars Emporer” electric shock treatment.

A few years ago a colleague did some quick arithmetic and suggested that I may well have been approaching an amount of current that could have caused heart failure. Woops.