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Author: Subject: A simple first foray into the Lab

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[*] posted on 21-6-2018 at 16:47
A simple first foray into the Lab

This may be pretty simple or even laughable to most of you but I just successfully distilled tap water using an oil bath/hotplate and a simple glassware apparatus. I have never been so mesmerized by watching water boil.

My tap water reads a pH of around 8 normally, but my distilled water read a perfect 7. The water left in the boiling flask read (and I triple checked this with 2 different pH papers) a 9.5

I'm now very excited to work my way through the Illustrated guide to home chemistry, I but I'm planning on taking a detour to see if I can extract Limonene from oranges, and distill Ethanol to 94%+.

Thanks for reading my super newbie rant, ain't chemistry grand?

[Edited on 22-6-2018 by Arcane]
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[*] posted on 21-6-2018 at 17:46

Sure it is. A cool thing to start from are some extractions, and maybe later try to mix them into a nice smelling concoction. It's amazing how sensitive your nose can be.

Congratulations on your distilled water :D
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[*] posted on 21-6-2018 at 17:49

Welcome to SM. Actually, this was a good place to start and it sounds like you did a great job. I remember one of my professors getting excited about boiling (specifically two-phase flow of water/steam in pipes). We thought he was nuts at the time. But the reality is that even something as simple as boiling / condensing can be fascinating and there is always a lot more going on than you initially realise.
Stick around, enjoy and learn. :)

If you are interested, take a look at the latest offering from sum_lab:
A primer on metals and non-metals with at least one novel experiment.
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[*] posted on 21-6-2018 at 20:04

Caveman Chemistry

Here's the first 25 pages. Pity, the whole thing used to be free on the net-

Attachment: Caveman Chemistry Sample.pdf (1.5MB)
This file has been downloaded 68 times

[Edited on 6-22-2018 by Bert]

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2. List any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement).
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4. Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism.

Anatol Rapoport was a Russian-born American mathematical psychologist (1911-2007).

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21-6-2018 at 20:25
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[*] posted on 21-6-2018 at 20:48

That was also my first experiment before I came to SM. You'll be preparing lab solvents from regular household products in no time.

I'm no longer involved in this forum.
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[*] posted on 22-6-2018 at 02:53

Congrats ! Have a nice time on this forum and enjoy chemistry !

I don't know if anybody react like this but each glass flaks or apparatus I receive is like a divine apparition to me, I stare a them for half an hour before even storing them :)
Simple pleasure are the best...

keep experimenting, and always love what you're doing ;)
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[*] posted on 22-6-2018 at 03:06

Awesome !

Distilling stuff is great fun.

Welcome to SM !

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[*] posted on 22-6-2018 at 03:26

Lucky you. Congratulations. I've never even done that. Probably because something is preventing me, maybe not smart moves. I did tough try some more advanced experiments than that few years ago, but probably because i was lucky or had smarter moves for short period. Are we gonna perform any experiment in life, or succeed anything depends on environment, luck, knowledge, planning. Somebody can be smart and rich and because of lack of luck never achieve anything until death. That is randomness and probability.

Some people would judge or feel sorry for somebody who dies that way, but for judgement or expressing feeling about him, we would to have at least some knowledge first.

As Fort Minor said a decade ago:

This is ten percent luck, twenty percent skill
Fifteen percent concentrated power of will
Five percent pleasure, fifty percent pain
And a hundred percent reason to remember the name

[Edited on 22-6-2018 by DrEvidence]
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[*] posted on 22-6-2018 at 03:34
Hello and Welcome

Distilling water is the correct first step in distillation,
I boil or distil water whenever I get 'new' glassware,
a good check of the glassware, equipment and technique.

Although I don't drink ethanol for religious reasons,
I enjoy the lab-scale fermentation and distillation of ethanol fascinating.
Loads of info here

Distilling ethanol to 94+% will require a very good fractionating column,
or multiple simple distillations with many fractions to manage.

CAUTION : Hobby Chemist, not Professional or even Amateur
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