Thanks for the video, it´s a good one, but....
Re: Thanks Russ, -- Joyce Post Reply Edit Forum Where am I?
Posted by: Uwe Mail author
03/28/2012, 01:59:31

...but there is one mistake in handling the solution: never touch the testing piece with the bottle! Very small amounts of the testing material will be mixed in the solution and after testing some objects you will have a mixed solution and distorted results! This happened to me with my first bottle...From this time on I am using a tooth stick with a drop of the solution, and of course, a new stick for another test.

I use a solution, that was mixed for me from a pharmacie and it content: 3 parts „Potassium dichromate“(Kaliumdichromat, in German), 4 parts concentrated „Sulfuric acid“ (konzentrierte Schwefelsäure) and 32 parts of distilled water (destilliertes Wasser, aqua dest). This may be the same mix as „Schwerter´s solution“.
The very dangerous part of this solution is not the acid, but the first, Potassium dichromate.

Here is a translation by Google from Wikip., because the German version is a bit better, than the English on:
“Although the substance was until a few years yet classified as Xi (irritant) and was in many crystal growing kits and chemistry sets for children, is potassium dichromate classified today as very toxic, oxidising, harmful to the environment, mutagens, reproductive toxicants and carcinogens. It irritates the skin, respiratory system and eyes. With repeated skin contact sensitization occurs, it can even cause allergies.

With organic, combustible compounds, reducing agents, concentrated sulfuric acid, metals in powder form (especially magnesium, iron) are possible violent reactions to the self-ignition or explosion. Potassium dichromate is not flammable, but oxidizing. The disposal of potassium dichromate can be carried out with iron sulfate, wherein it to Cr3 + is reduced, which is precipitated as an insoluble chromium hydroxide much less dangerous. Commercial Chromatvergiftungen are reportable and compensable occupational diseases.”

What I miss in the video and the ebay offer (see link) are the detailed named ingredients. The ebay offer is showing the ingredients for the two other solutions, but not for the silver testing, the bottle to the right.

From my own experience with my (dangerous!) solution the changing color is not the only decisive factor. If you put a drop on 925 sterling and 800 silver at the same time, they will look same after a little while, but in the beginning the sterling reacts little faster. Doing the test often, you will learn to see the different reactions in color and time. The faster and darker, the more silver is in. A good idea would be, to start with objects, you know the silver content from, a stamped sterling ring, old silver cutlery, often stamped with 800 or less, and see the different reactions.

Do not overstate the content of silver in old jewelry. Serious collectors doesn´t mind, if it´s 800 or less or sterling... at best the content of silver gives a clue about the age of the piece (at which time they had worked with what kind of silver?), and so the age and the rareness of the piece will make the price.

Again: Take care!! Gloves are essential while using!! Don´t give the empty or used bottle to the garbage. My pharmacy take it back and takes care of the disposal.

Related link:

© Copyright 2013 Bead Collector Network and its users