capacitor aging claim

William Donzelli wdonzelli at
Thu Oct 7 23:20:56 CDT 2010

> I remember the bumblebees--black phenolic body with yellow printing,
> right?

Yes, although I think the term "bumblebee" comes from the OEM version
with color code bands, much like resistors. It seems like at least two
of the six or seven bands are yellow, thus the name.

> How about the steel-jacketed Vitamin Q caps? (they could be pretty
> scary when they went).

Vitamin Qs (and similar Astron and Gudeman caps) were, and still are,
pretty bulletproof. But yes, when they fail they can make a hell of a
mess. The oil is not PCB laden, but plain mineral oil. I save every
one of these caps I can get my hands on.

> Didn't the old paper caps use oil-soaked paper as the dielectric?

The oil caps actually were paper, but the oil soaked the paper
through. Plain paper capacitors generally had no oil.


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