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Forums > Technical Discussion > Coloured salt issueloured salts

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Tide
GOLD Member since Jun 2009

Future pyrotechnician...? Or something.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Austr...

Total posts: 111
Posted:Alrighty, I'm new here (hello) and I've been having issues with coloured salts. I've been experimenting in mostly very cold and not-as-cold situations, but I have used warming-baths to heat up the fuel to increase what it can dissolve.

Here's what happens for magnesium sulfate (epsom salts):
Using methylated spirits, magnesium sulfate did not dissolve that much and left most of itself behind, the substance that might have been dissolved did nothing but make the flame a little bit hotter without giving any colours.

Here's what happens for copper sulfate (bluestone):
Using two methods...
1. I tried dissolving the copper sulfate directly into the methylated spirits. It got very cloudy blue, then the copper settled onto the bottom and left a slightly blue methylated spirits behind. It burned with no colour difference.
2. I dissolved the copper sulfate into water, then poured it into the methylated spirits. It did not mix, as instead I had watery methylated spirits and the copper formed a blue rocky-cake-like substance at the bottom, and if the liquid was poured on organic materials (such as grass or cotton balls), it released a visible fume.

However, on both attempts there was the odd flash of the green flame.
_____

So far, the only salt that has worked out was sodium chloride and that gives what kerosene does, but at a more expensive and complicated cost.

What am I doing wrong, or could do better, that could be stopping me from mixing my fuel with the colourant?

Thanks ahead!


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Mr. Wally-ish
SILVER Member since Nov 2008

Mr.  Wally-ish

There's always room for 11 people in a two man tent
Location: Hamilton, New Zealand

Total posts: 31
Posted:Hello there welcome

Firstly, I havent had any experience at all with coloured salts - wow does that instill you with confidence? - But i take it you are trying to colour your flame, no?

I can though suggest boric acid, which when mixed into the methylated spirits and lit, will burn a nice bright green and will look pretty nifty at night. The only problem with this is it leaves a filthy residue on your kevlar wicks, if thats what your using. I have some old staff ones that i converted for my coloured flame.

hope my rambling makes some sense, or is helpful in some way. Also, you can search the HOP forums for more information on coloured flames, as there is alot of info floating around out there


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Fire_Moose
SILVER Member since May 2007

Fire_Moose

Elusive and Bearded
Location: Scottsdale, AZ

Total posts: 3597
Posted:try dissolving the salts in denatured alcohol

O.B.E.S.E.

Owned by Mynci!

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Tide
GOLD Member since Jun 2009

Future pyrotechnician...? Or something.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Austr...

Total posts: 111
Posted:Mr Wally-ish

But boric acid I've heard is not great on your respiratory track after a while. However, I'm looking into other fuel mixes. Thanks for the suggestion!

Poje
Methylated spirits = Denatured alcohol tongue2


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Mynci
BRONZE Member since Apr 2005

Mynci

Macaque of all trades
Location: wombling free...

Total posts: 8737
Posted:were your methylated spirits mineralised? i.e purple...

I had difficulty with mineralised meths a few years ago.


A couple of balls short of a full cascade... or maybe a few cards short of a deck... we'll see how this all fans out.

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Mr. Wally-ish
SILVER Member since Nov 2008

Mr.  Wally-ish

There's always room for 11 people in a two man tent
Location: Hamilton, New Zealand

Total posts: 31
Posted:Yeah so I've heard. I just sp0in outside, for a couple of min, in a very well ventilated area.

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Tide
GOLD Member since Jun 2009

Future pyrotechnician...? Or something.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Austr...

Total posts: 111
Posted:@ Mynci
They were perfectly clear. I'll try a different brand next time, methylated spirits is fairly cheap anyway. Although I'll keep mineralised metho = issues in mind. Thankyou!

Mr. Wally-ish
Doesn't solve the issue about not dissolving, but spinning in well ventilated areas does prevent problems!
_____

EDIT!
Would it indicate "mineralised" or "non-mineralised" on the bottle when purchasing? If not, where are LIKELY sources of non-mineralised?

EDITED_BY: Tide (1245835396)


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Mother_Natures_Son
SILVER Member since Aug 2007

Mother_Natures_Son

Rampant whirler.
Location: Geelong, Victoria, Australia!

Total posts: 2418
Posted:I am not 100% sure but I think mineralised is the stuff that is usually blue or purple.

Oh! Mynci said that, so my assumption turns out to have been correct.

Non-mineralised should be clear.


hug

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Tide
GOLD Member since Jun 2009

Future pyrotechnician...? Or something.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Austr...

Total posts: 111
Posted:The stuff I had WAS clear, but it was from Coles (so...).

What brand of methylated spirits have you used for colouring?
___

EDIT!
It's Winter in Sydney at the moment, could cold weather effect solubility THAT much?

EDITED_BY: Tide (1245841261)


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Tide
GOLD Member since Jun 2009

Future pyrotechnician...? Or something.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Austr...

Total posts: 111
Posted:I might've missed something in the rules if it states against bumping, but in any case my apologies if that's the case.

Anyway, anyone have any ideas? Anything?


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