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Re: X-ray film capacitors

Original poster: "Steve Cook by way of Terry Fritz <twftesla-at-uswest-dot-net>" <Steve-at-g8cyerichmond.freeserve.co.uk>

The burn and sniff test appeared in a number of school text books until a
few years ago. A slight improvement on the techinque was to use litmus paper
to check whether fumes were acid or not. In addition one could try
stretching th products when still hot, unfortunately I no longer have the
books concerned. Personally I was never too keen on the method, as a class
full of pupils all burning the materials in an open lab was pretty foul.

----- Original Message -----
From: Tesla list <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
To: <tesla-at-pupman-dot-com>
Sent: Monday, May 07, 2001 11:51 PM
Subject: Re: X-ray film capacitors

> Original poster: "Dr. Duncan Cadd by way of Terry Fritz
<twftesla-at-uswest-dot-net>" <dunckx-at-freeuk-dot-com>
> Hi Marc, All!
> >is there anything toxic in the "coatings" of these plates? because
> most
> >plastics are actually identified by the "burn and sniff" test,
> >polyethylene has the "sweetish" odor that we mostly know and mylar
> has
> >an acrid smell like acid, propylene kind of smells like a cross
> between
> >styrene and polyethylene and so on. these smells and the flame
> >characteristics are well documented in plastics engineering and may
> be
> >found on some web sites? if you have a piece of mylar handy give it a
> >light and "waft" the fumes for a VERY LIGHT sniff then compare, but
> do
> >this very lightly and please if there are any polymer men out there,
> >please comment.
> I suppose that with any plastics based on aromatics (mylar is one)
> there is a chance of carcinogenic fumes, but at a very very low level.
> I can also think of other plastics I would rather not sniff if they
> had been burned (PTFE comes to mind).  Your directions to WAFT the
> fumes towards your nose from a distance rather than stick your nose
> close and inhale are spot on.  Follow that and you are unlikely to
> come to any harm.
> Of all the stuff crammed into us by our lecturers, I have to confess
> that the "burn and sniff" test escaped my polymer education entirely!
> Evidently the apparatus required to conduct the analysis is not
> expensive enough, doesn't go "beep", can't be hooked up to a computer
> and doesn't produce pretty diagrams for publication.  You want to keep
> this quiet - if the manufacturers of half million dollar spectrometers
> got to hear about this one I dread the consequences ;-)
> I'm sure my old Prof would love it!  Point me to a website quick!
> Dunckx
> Geek#1113 (G-1)