Ronnie, my theory behind the spark gap came from your telling us about the crackling sound in your coils, specifically when out of tune you arc and burn-up your secondary. This got me thinking that you actually have some sort of spark gap within your secondary based on the type of wire you are using and the voltage levels being reached inside the secondary. So I took these thoughts and kind of ran with them on a tangent trying to match this phenomena with something already done previously. That match led to the Tesla hairpin circuit which has various similarities to the VIC.
I really have a gut feeling the form of electrical energy coming out of the VIC is the same kind of energy coming out of the Tesla hairpin circuit (LMD waves); the only difference is the spacing of the nodes. The VIC I propose has very closely spaced nodes that equate to the distance between the plates of the exciter array, whereas in the Tesla hairpin circuit the nodes are much further apart. This led me to look at the subtle differences between the Tesla hairpin circuit and the VIC. What jumps out is the capacitors versus resonant charging chokes. As it turns out, these chokes actually are capacitors; they have "capacity" just as Tesla stated.
What this all boils down to is the VIC is a tuned hybrid of the Tesla hairpin circuit. Now obviously I could be wrong and if I am, then I do apologize for leading everyone on a wild goose chase. If on the other hand I am correct, then we have in fact found the most fundamental mechanism of the VIC and all of Stan's derivative works, that being LMD waves. The missing link is the spark gap and if there really is a spark gap happening within the secondary windings of your VIC, we can pull this outside of the coils and precisely tune it in such a manner the VIC becomes easy to replicate for everyone, no special wire, no magic winding pattern. You told me at one time you wound five VICs and only four of them could you get working. Suppose the reason you couldn't get that one to work was because of the way the secondary was wound. It wasn't forming any workable spark gap within the windings. If my hunch is correct, then I just solved that mystery as to why.