Re: Rubber toroids (fwd)

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 22 Oct 1997 14:52:35 -0500
From: "DR.RESONANCE" <DR.RESONANCE-at-next-wave-dot-net>
To: Tesla List <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
Subject: Re: Rubber toroids 

to: Tesla List

Won't the electrolysis of copper chloride release deadly chlorine gas??? 
If the copper is plated I believe the chlorine might be released as a gas
if I recall my chemistry correctly.


> From: Tesla List <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
> To: tesla-at-pupman-dot-com
> Subject: Re: Rubber toroids 
> Date: Wednesday,October 22,1997 1:24 PM
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> Date: Wed, 22 Oct 1997 10:39:28 -0400 (EDT)
> From: Wes A Brzozowski <wesb-at-blue.spectra-dot-net>
> To: Tesla List <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
> Subject: Re: Rubber toroids
> Sorry to get into this so late; I'm weeks behind in my e-mail at the
> moment, and just got to the first message on this topic.
> This topic came up about a year ago, and I posted a bunch of plating
> as well as some possible serious safety problems, and some details on a
> similar technique I'd been working on. I don't have the original post
> handy, but since I post here fairly infrequently, it shouldn't be too
> hard to find in the archives.
> To summarize, I'd been forming small parts (just working small scale, to
> get data on the process, before trying anything large like a toroid) out
> of polystyrene. This stuff can be formed for individual parts without 
> injection molding by dissolving it and building it up, layer by layer.
> I used a laquer that used a minimum of tolulene to actually dissolve it
> (more like a thin putty, in that form) and then thinning that with 
> acetone, to make a quick drying laquer. Neither of these solvents are
> good to use in poor ventilation or near flame or sparks, but they're not
> all that frightening to coilers who can handle the risks associated with
> electrocution, or poisoning from ozone or the nitrogen oxides produced by
> our spark gaps. But you do have to know the materials well enough to be
> able to manage the associated risks.
> The laquer is made easily conductive by the addition of powdered graphite
> (I've experimented with mixes of graphite and conductive lampblack, which

> have radically different particle sizes, and thus load the laquer with a 
> higher percentage of conductive material) and had been trying to get a
> process down to plate the conductive plastic with a good, solid, well
> adhering plate. One of my old posts gave some plating formulations; if
> want good adhesion, just ordinary old copper sulfate solution will tend
> to fall a little short. Commercial plating tends to use a mix of copper
> sulfate and sulfuric acid in the plating bath. While the word "acid"
> to frighten a lot of people off, it's once again a matter of knowing the 
> materials and managing the risks. Personally, I consider an operating
> to be much more dangerous, but we readily manage those risks. When using 
> sulfuric acid, you do want things like safety glasses and old
> clothes, though. (When you wash the clothes, you'll see how easy it is to

> spatter droplets of the plating solution; every place a droplet hit your
> clothing will be replaced by a small hole.) It may be possible to plate
> a coating in a non-acid solution that will adhere over time even though
> it's suffering the localized hotspots of an electrical discharge, bit I'd
> expect it to be some trick. Then again, people here have managed some
> pretty neat tricks in the past. Might be worth a try, but remember that
> adding a little H2SO4 may be a trick worth falling back on...
> The original posts also contained some severe warnings about using nickel

> plating for something like a toroid, but which some people are suggesting

> now. The discharge from a toroid may vaporize small amounts of metal.
> copper can be ingested in small amounts (hey, we actually need it in
> amounts; perhaps coiling can be healthy? ;-) nickel can do really nasty
> things to you. Worse are some of the incredibly toxic organometallics it
> can form. Given sufficient energy and ordinary atmospheric components, 
> nickel can form nickel-carbonyl, a toxin that makes the cyanides
> everyone's been worrying about look like candy. The stuff is vaporized at

> low temperatures, making the path to ingestion just ordinary breathing.
> Now, I don't know for sure wether an electrical discharge to a nickel
> surface will produce nickel-carbonyl, but I personally wouldn't try to 
> find out by experiment. The stuff is just too scary to me to think of
> ingesting in any trace amounts, and I'm not particularly worried about 
> handling cyanide solutions (though I am particularly cautious when doing
> so). In any case, it might be worthwhile to hold off on the nickel
> until the toxicity issue is resolved.
> One other item; the use of copper chloride as an electrolyte has been
> mentioned, and while it seems that it should be able to deposit a layer
> of copper just like copper sulfate can, I can also see some problems,
> which may be the reason it's not used commercially. First, there's the
> problem of using an acid-copper bath to improve adhesion. If we need
> to add acid to get a decent plate for a surface that's punished the way a
> toroid is, the addition of acid to a chloride solution will evolve
> hydrochloric acid fumes, which are quite unpleasant to breathe. The 
> second is the fact that a class of chemicals called chlorates are
> commercially by the electrolysis of chloride solutions. If any copper 
> chlorate is being produced in the process, you could be producing a very
> unstable vat of liquid. I'm not sure how it acts in solution, but solid
> copper chlorate has been known to explode without provocation. Now, I'm 
> not sure wether the intermediate steps needed to produce a chlorate 
> radical can happen in a copper solution, and I may be all wet on this
> item which is admittedly speculative, but it's a worthwhile question to 
> ask, in case it happens to be meaningful. I'd look for some good, solid
> references before using this kind of plating bath. Perhaps they do exist,
> and there's only the adhesion problem to worry about, which would be 
> great, but a reference or two would be really nice for this one...
> Anyway, anyone interested in this subject might want to look for those
> postings from a year ago or thereabouts. I think there might be some 
> useful information there. In any case, I'm personally very interested in
> seeing people work on this problem again, so keep tossing out those
> ideas!~
> Wes B.
> * wesb-at-spectra-dot-net *       "It's a magical world, Hobbes ol' buddy...    
> *                  *          ..Let's go exploring."     - Calvin