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Forums > Technical Discussion > Coloured flame and corrosion

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Sabine
GOLD Member since Sep 2001

member
Location: Australia

Total posts: 29
Posted:Morning all,I'm just getting into the staff fire-twirling thing - a friend of mine put me up to it. I was playing around with coloured flames using copper (II) nitrate and cupric chloride (seperately) for blue and green. The problem is that my aluminium staff appears to be corroding. It appears that the copper has plated out onto the surfaces closest to the wick and the plating has a pink/red (like copper oxide corrosion) appearance. Has anyone else had this problem?Sabine

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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Well I wasn't going to reply because I don't really know. Then I felt bad that no one replied so here goes...If it's a DEPOSIT of salt its no problem. Any salt solution will evaporate into the salt itself. It should flake off when you pick it and leave the aluminum untouched underneath.If it's actual CORROSION then it's attacking the aluminum in your staff and that could compromise the integity of the staff. I have heard warnings to the effect of "pick a color you like because it will stay in the wick indefinately." I know some salts stay in my Bunsen burners FOREVER.

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Sabine
GOLD Member since Sep 2001

member
Location: Australia

Total posts: 29
Posted:Thanks for the reply NYC. Yes the salt stays in your wick - I light with straight meths or kero and I still get green. I even get the green comming out of the wick into the fuel. Although I lent my staff to someone who wanted red (lithium chloride) so I now have multicoloured flames on my fire staff and all the problems that go with....Happy twirlingSabine

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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Fortunately all of the salts that you're using ARE water soluable. So if you really get sick of them you can just wash/soak it for a while, then let your wicks dry and you SHOULD be good to go. Salts can be stubborn though...If you went to lamp oil you'll probably have nice orange flames again as lamp oil contains sodium and burns a nice orange that the fuels you're talking about don't.

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