Boric Acid and green fire

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#159042 - 11/11/03 02:31 AM Re: Boric Acid and green fire
divi Offline
member

Registered: 26/05/03
Loc: Ontario, Canada
heya, fellow coveters of the green flame!
thankx for all of your insight as to the reasons why my boric acid didn't produce a green flame when i mixed it with parrafin (actually, i'm extremely embarassed by that... i used to be a chemistry student! [Crying] )
boric acid is generally pretty safe. however, it is a fine powder, so just avoid inhaling it when you pour, and you're good!
hope you get your flame!

[ 11. November 2003, 02:38: Message edited by: divi ]

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#159043 - 11/11/03 05:32 AM Re: Boric Acid and green fire
audax Offline
freelance bum

Registered: 03/09/01
Loc: Upstairs
There have been extensive discussions on this before but to simplify, here are the gists of what was said before.

Generally speaking, Meths is the most widely available fuel that will "suspend" chemicals into it. Yes the flame can be weaker but, larger wicks can counteract that.

Using wicks that have had Kero/Parafin on them are sooty and have heaps of Sodium compounds on them. Consider this the Orange Flame Chemical.
It's orange colouring effect is more powerful than practically all the other ones. That's right, it's not just Boric acid. All the colours are theoretically available. There is an annoying tradition on this bord for phantoms to post that they got 4 colours to work then disappear without saying how.

Make new sets of wicks for each colour you want. Use well attached natural fibre alternatives if you can't afford to buy more kevlar.

Try the dissolve-in-water-then-dry-out technique. Make a super solution of your chemical in water then utterly drench your wicks in it let it dry out to "seed" it. Works best if you put the wick in unrolled bfore you attach it to heads, then let them sit in the liquid while it dries out.

Get pure chemical compounds or not at all. Potassium Chloride should burn purple and it's widely available as a diet salt to reduce sodium in your diet. But this product contains heaps of sodium, the orange chemical which overpowers totally... Read the ingredients, look for "100%"

IMPORTANT:
If you are going to attempt these effects, now is the time to get into MSDS sheets. There is an article on this site and there are many other directories on the net. You need to understand the dangers and be able to apply what's on these sheets. Look for what Decomposition Products relate to the chemical used, because these will include what you will be exposed to when you burn them.

Where to get. The blessed few are Uni students with lab access. You bastards! Oh I'll just pick up some Lithium Chloride to make a wicked scarlet flame. Here are some more ideas but be sensible and promise me you will learn the language of MSDS first.
Fireworks suppliers
Pigment suppliers
hardware suppliers
food additives suppliers (maybe!)
Fireworks is interesting because we all know that every colour has been done by them every day, but most of the compounds used are impractical for twirling, like phosphorous with it's beautiful intense white light and sun-like temperature. Scarily enough they use some of worst chemicals, which then settle on whatever underneath.

OH, and when searching this board, spell coloured both ways so you don't just get americans
_________________________
UYI OLDSKOOL

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#159044 - 12/11/03 07:53 AM Re: Boric Acid and green fire
darkpoet Offline
Irish

Registered: 14/05/03
Loc: Dallas.........ish
as a further note you have to remember that boric acid will only dissolve in a solvent that is POLAR!!
your petroleum distillates are not polar so your boric acid wont mix, at all, it will coagulate down at the bottem and not even effect your burn, the sodium content is also very high in petrol, because it burns hotter its what they put into fuels to get better effeciancy, this is why you should use aviation grade kero, or ultra pure lamp oil (next best thing)
and if your going to do extensive colours, have a different pair of wicks for each colour, and label your wicks so you dont contaminate your chemicals
all you need is a little bit of sodium, and your darker reds and purples just wont show up, the sodium will completely overpower the hue that you are trying to acheive
anyways
keep it coming people, this is becoming an definitive thread [beer]
_________________________
Jesus saves sinners and redeems them for cash and prizes Co-Founder of Keepers of Light Educate yourself about the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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#159045 - 12/11/03 08:04 AM Re: Boric Acid and green fire
Sir_Sheep Offline
old hand

Registered: 01/03/03
Loc: Chester, UK
Currently on order for trials and documentation:

boric acid
oleic acid
copper II chloride
lithium chrloide
potassium chloride
barium chloride
strontium chloride

[ 12. November 2003, 08:10: Message edited by: Sir_Sheep ]
_________________________
Spoiling Christmas for small children since 2003.

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#159046 - 18/11/03 07:56 AM Re: Boric Acid and green fire
darkpoet Offline
Irish

Registered: 14/05/03
Loc: Dallas.........ish
are you testing the colour, or what fuel mixes work best with the colouring agent???
_________________________
Jesus saves sinners and redeems them for cash and prizes Co-Founder of Keepers of Light Educate yourself about the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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#159047 - 01/12/03 03:54 PM Re: Boric Acid and green fire [Re: darkpoet]
darkpoet Offline
Irish

Registered: 14/05/03
Loc: Dallas.........ish
just bringin the post back...
_________________________
Jesus saves sinners and redeems them for cash and prizes Co-Founder of Keepers of Light Educate yourself about the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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#159048 - 02/12/03 05:25 PM Re: Boric Acid and green fire [Re: darkpoet]
mtx98tib Offline
member

Registered: 13/07/03
Loc: kansas
ok this might be a stupid question but i have been reading through this thread and nowhere does anyone talk about mixing any chemical with kerosene to get different colored flames. is there something about kerosene that doesn't let it react well with other chemicals? would kerosene be ok to use for different colored flames? just thought i would ask.

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#159049 - 03/12/03 06:53 AM Re: Boric Acid and green fire [Re: mtx98tib]
darkpoet Offline
Irish

Registered: 14/05/03
Loc: Dallas.........ish
it was discussed earlier in the thread
kerosene and other heavy carbon chains, (aka petroleum based fuels)
are non polar
the boric acid is polar like most acids, so its not miscible w\ a non polar solvent
so your boric acid would be your solute
the kero your solvent
since the boric is polar and the kero is nonpolar, they wont mix, so you wont get an even dispersion of the boric acid on your wicks
so.......no green
also if you get pure jet fuel, it may or may not have sodium added into the mix to make it burn at a higher temperature and give the jet greater efficiancy...so the whole issue here is trying to find a fuel w\o sodium, and that is also a polar solvent
last but definately not least, is finding a fuel that fits these criteria that isnt toxic
_________________________
Jesus saves sinners and redeems them for cash and prizes Co-Founder of Keepers of Light Educate yourself about the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

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