From: Jim Lux [SMTP:James.P.Lux-at-jpl.nasa.gov]
Sent: Wednesday, August 19, 1998 11:27 AM
To: Tesla List
Subject: Re: Electroplating
Tesla List wrote:
> From: RODERICK MAXWELL [SMTP:tank-at-magnolia-dot-net]
> Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 1998 9:26 AM
> To: tesla-2-at-emachine-dot-com; tesla-at-pupman-dot-com
> Subject: Electroplating
> I want to try to build a torus by using wood turned on a lathe, or on
> a homemade spindle. After the torus is shaped, sanded, and coated with
> varnish I wish to use a method to electroplate the torus mentioned in a
> book by Walt Noon "Secrets of Building Lighting Bolt Generators. With
> this process you can coat nonconductive objects with copperplate. One of
> the chemicals mentioed is Silver Nitrate.
> If there is anyone on the list that has a chemistry background I would
> like to know what concentration of silver nitrate you would need for
> this process. There are many different concentrations listed at Fisher
> Scientifics website.
Check the archives. About a year or so ago, there was a lot of
discussion about "home" electroplating. As for silver nitrate, you want
the solid granular stuff, and you probably don't need the most expensive
reagent grade either.
The tricky thing about silvering things (non electroplating methods) is
that the classic processes (Brashear's, for instance) can produce silver
fulminate which is notoriously unstable.
For electroplating, I don't think this is an issue, although the
cyanides and acids necessary would require some attention, particularly
with respect to disposal of your used plating baths (you can't really
just dump it down the drain in good conscience).
Lindsay pubs has a plating handbook of some sort, as I recall. And, a
trip to the library might be useful. This whole plating thing is very
much an art, at least at our level, and there are a whole host of
interacting variables like current density, bath temperature and bath