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Author: Subject: Tour My Lab
charley1957
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[*] posted on 18-7-2017 at 18:12


zts16 I have a daughter who lives in Georgetown and another in Kyle so we're out that way regularly. I feel your humid pain!



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XeonTheMGPony
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[*] posted on 6-8-2017 at 19:41


well got tired of my lab looking like some meth cooks dream get away I got to work and started to get the design of it finished, got my vacuum chamber cleaned and painted, need to finish the support brackets, going to finish the other half of my custom lab frame

then get it all plumbed up so I have water, water return and vacuum line running around the entire room

vac chamber can run either off aspirator or rotary vane vac pump.

P9060362.JPG - 1.3MBP9060361.JPG - 1.3MB
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XeonTheMGPony
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[*] posted on 8-8-2017 at 19:36


Well finally got the lab frame finished! it is made of all type L copper pipe with galvanized steel flanges, Next is the sink, then get my water/vac/air lines all set up.

It is 5.3 feet long and 3 feet high. set up on there is a 300mm leibig and a 250mm flask at 24/40 joint size to give an idea of scale.

P9080363.JPG - 1.3MB

[Edited on 9-8-2017 by XeonTheMGPony]
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JJay
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[*] posted on 8-8-2017 at 20:07


Copper tubing for a frame is a very interesting idea. I'd like to read more about how that works out.



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XeonTheMGPony
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[*] posted on 12-8-2017 at 14:30


So far it has been solid, it has held up well against most chemicals so far other then the usually discoloring. With Type L it is fairly rigid, got to be care full to not go over board on tightening your clamps of you get too many burrs makes harder to slide clamps about.

The way I configured it to allow maximum options for building.

I need to get a dozen or better boss heads and some more clamps.

I will add on 2 vertical runs that are better trimmed so each vertical will fit on either set of horizontal run

It holds a fair bit of weight, but I wouldn't climb on it!
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JJay
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[*] posted on 12-8-2017 at 23:09


I see. I have a bag of a dozen boss heads that I've been meaning to use to put together a frame, but electrical conduit is just a little bit larger diameter than I would like, and I haven't made my way to any of the metal suppliers just yet.



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wg48
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[*] posted on 13-8-2017 at 01:22


Its bit like real audiophiles have gold plated connectors.

You know you’re a seriously real chemist when you have a fume hood and a frame LOL
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XeonTheMGPony
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[*] posted on 13-8-2017 at 03:32


Quote: Originally posted by JJay  
I see. I have a bag of a dozen boss heads that I've been meaning to use to put together a frame, but electrical conduit is just a little bit larger diameter than I would like, and I haven't made my way to any of the metal suppliers just yet.


Why I went with copper figured sod it, and solder it. So the entire horizontal run and the vertical rear supports are soldered. Only the vertical runs that the actual glass wear is attached to is mobile. The top 90 degree fittings where street (One end slips into the fitting directly) and those where not soldered, So when you want to dismantle the top supports are unscrewed and simply slide off, bottom how ever must be unscrewed from the wood then unscrewed from the frame.

In hind sight it wouldn't have hurt to put some middle supports in like I originally planed for a bit more rigidity but it is pretty solid as is.

The Boss heads I got from ebay needed very minor filing to get them to fit easily
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[*] posted on 19-8-2017 at 14:40


I spent yesterday afternoon plus this morning cleaning the lab (it had been a huge mess) and I finally think it's presentable. I would take pictures but I can't figure out how to change my camera's settings because it currently takes pics that are over 4000p wide (above the image limit for SM). Instead I made a YouTube video and you can check it out if you want.

Lab Tour

Questions and comments are welcome!




I make chemistry YouTube videos: https://www.youtube.com/c/tomslab
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CharlieA
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[*] posted on 19-8-2017 at 16:50


Nice lab, Tom, but it is almost too neat and clean to be believable!

-CharlieA (aka Charlie1940)
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Sulaiman
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[*] posted on 19-8-2017 at 23:27
Tom


I Just watched a tour of your lab - I'm extremely jealous !

Only one problem ... no excuses for not getting those experiments done now, as planned :P





CAUTION : Hobby Chemist, not Professional or even Amateur
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[*] posted on 20-8-2017 at 12:35


Thanks, both of you!

@ CharlieA I couldn't believe it either :D

@ Sulaiman I'm pretty good at coming up with excuses, but I'll get 'em done eventually!




I make chemistry YouTube videos: https://www.youtube.com/c/tomslab
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Melgar
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[*] posted on 26-8-2017 at 04:34


The biggest lab I can have in Manhattan. Bonus points to whoever can deduce the most from from this picture:





[Edited on 8/27/17 by Melgar]

my_lab.jpg - 175kB




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ELRIC
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[*] posted on 26-8-2017 at 05:15


Quote: Originally posted by Melgar  
The biggest lab I can have in Manhattan. Bonus points to whoever can deduce the most from from this picture:





[Edited on 8/26/17 by Melgar]


Are you trying to seperate DCM?
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Metacelsus
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[*] posted on 26-8-2017 at 05:27


Quote: Originally posted by Melgar  
Bonus points to whoever can deduce the most from from this picture


From the metadata:

You took it with a Nexus 5X Android smartphone at (data removed upon request by Melgar)

You should really be more careful scrubbing such information in the future.

Also, I agree that it looks like you're separating DCM by distillation.

[Edited on 8-26-2017 by Metacelsus]

[Edited on 8-27-2017 by Metacelsus]




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Magpie
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[*] posted on 26-8-2017 at 05:46


Quote: Originally posted by Melgar  
Bonus points to whoever can deduce the most from from this picture:


1. You have a really tiny lab.
2. You have several unfinished experiments yet to workup.
3. You are harvesting DCM by distillation.
4. Your cooling water supply is puzzling - what is the pump?
5. You have a still head temperature indicator.
6. You need to clean up a bit.




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Melgar
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[*] posted on 26-8-2017 at 06:15


Yeah, obviously distilling DCM directly from the can. That thickening agent is no fun getting out of glass. I'm sure I'm not the only one to do it this way.

@Metacelsus Well, I suppose you win. Thing is, it's annoying to move images from my phone to my laptop to post them. I used to be able to use Bluetooth, but that broke or something. I don't really mind. It's not like there's anything illegal going on here, and the building I live in has really thick steel doors with several sets of locks.

@Magpie Yeah, the thermocouple I made to use for measuring temperature isn't plugged in, just because there isn't much point, but it does work. I was wondering if anyone would notice that I was using a thermoelectric cooler, with a CPU fan on one side and a heat exchanger on the other. It's 100W, and isn't really very powerful. It's more like a really good heatsink than it is a refrigeration unit. It definitely helps keep ice from melting as fast though. The pump is a small white submersible one that's kind of hard to see.




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[*] posted on 6-9-2017 at 08:14


Finally feeling well enough to set up some space, and as I am a bachelor I can get away with using most of kitchen

noname(40).jpg - 238kB

Love my new electronic balance. Freshly made black powder on the sheet of paper. "ball milled" by shaking in plastic bottle with 00 buckshot while watching the tube LOL. Crude 1,4 dioxane in flask

noname(39).jpg - 249kB

Ingredients for 1,4 dioxane. Was a cool synthesis

noname(28).jpg - 216kB

HOWEVER, I switched out the receiver just before this crap started acting like a science fiction monster

noname(36).jpg - 244kB

As you can see made quite a mess, and its evolution was SUDDEN. Cleaned up nicely with 10% NaOH solution

noname(35).jpg - 229kB

[Edited on 9-6-2017 by arkoma]




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[*] posted on 6-9-2017 at 14:18


Awesome Arky.
Glad you are back up on deck. I guess this means the leg is well on the mend.
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[*] posted on 6-9-2017 at 14:34


Quote: Originally posted by Melgar  
Yeah, obviously distilling DCM directly from the can. That thickening agent is no fun getting out of glass. I'm sure I'm not the only one to do it this way.


I'm surprised the short-path head condenser is up to condensing something so low boiling. And you're using an un-cooled collection flask.

I always use a long condenser and cool the collection flask in ice water to keep the stuff in the flask, but maybe I'm overcautious. Is it cold where you work?
Lately you could almost boil DCM by leaving it out on the Kitchen counter around my neck of the woods.

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[*] posted on 28-9-2017 at 01:26


Quote: Originally posted by j_sum1  

And here is the lab space. A lot of work to do. The site is a breezeway under the house. Etc... (snip)

Update.
I have finally had a bit of a chance to work on lab construction. Lots more to do but it is starting to get there.

2017-09-28 16.07.58a.jpg - 390kB
This shot was taken from the same angle as my previous post upthread. Stumps were dug out. Concrete laid. Walls put up. Painted. Electrical work done. And now the bench constructed.


2017-09-28 16.08.39a.jpg - 339kB 2017-09-28 16.10.36a.jpg - 338kB
There will be plenty of under-bench storage. On the left you can see space for 14 sliding plastic bins of two different sizes. That will be for glassware. Elsewhere will be open shelves for other hardware not in use. I have not worked out the configuration yet. I will keep some bulk chemicals over near the breeze-block wall: the ones that benefit from a bit of ventilation.

The sink has a bit of an unorthodox orientation but I think it will work. I am going to end up with a little corner behind the fume cupboard where I can put the vacuum pump and recirculation pump. Actually I can see myself most of the time just putting a plug in the sink and throwing the pump directly in there. Water will come from a rainwater tank directly outside.

2017-09-28 17.19.31.jpg - 236kB
Working round the room from the left:
  • Large lockable chemicals cupboard
  • Fridge-freezer with microwave oven on top
  • Whiteboard
  • Wall-mounted computer monitor. USB and HDMI jackpoints connect to the office on the other side of the wall so I won't need to put the laptop in the lab.
  • Main work area. The bench varies between 900 and 1200mm deep and it is a stretch to reach to the back. I likes my bench-space. I have yet to sort out how I will do the glassware frame -- probably repurposed stainless steel towel rails.
  • Dishwasher under the bench
  • Fume cupboard -- 1200mm wide by 700 deep and about 700 high. Ducting will chimney above the roof to a height of 8m which should be acceptable to the neighbours.
  • Mounted next to the fume cupboard at the entry to the lab will be some fire safety equipment on one side and a place for lab-coat, glasses and gloves on the other.
  • Drying oven below bench and a toaster oven above.


Not sure how long the rest will take but I hope to get some spare weekends to knock it off.
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Melgar
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[*] posted on 3-10-2017 at 06:13


Quote: Originally posted by SWIM  
I'm surprised the short-path head condenser is up to condensing something so low boiling. And you're using an un-cooled collection flask.

I always use a long condenser and cool the collection flask in ice water to keep the stuff in the flask, but maybe I'm overcautious. Is it cold where you work?
Lately you could almost boil DCM by leaving it out on the Kitchen counter around my neck of the woods.

There's actually a window AC unit right out of the picture, that I had aimed at the upper part of the apparatus, but it was night out anyway, and not very hot. I only distilled about 200 mL anyway.

Now I have quick disconnects on my tubing so that I can swap out distillation heads a lot easier. I actually have three different heads: a regular one that can be broken down into components, a short-path, and a regular-sized one-piece head with a built in Claisen adapter. I got that one for like $38 on eBay; usually they're listed for somewhere in the triple digits.




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[*] posted on 13-10-2017 at 18:48


It's been a very long time in the works, but my total lab overhaul is finally complete. For the full tour, see my video on my channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfoUfO0QxW4

I took a quick spin around the room to post some photos here if you don't want to sit through the full 10 minutes:

lab 1.jpg - 852kB
Replaced all carpet with tile and got all new furniture: official lab cabinets with black epoxy tops for maximum heat and chemical resistance. Also got a few lab appliances you see on the left - a toaster oven and water kettle. The kettle is AMAZING; it boils water super fast, and I got it on Amazon for about $25.

lab 2.jpg - 922kB
Large tabletop work space, desiccator cabinet, and chemical fridge. Not explosion proof, but I'm not keeping much in there anyway.
I want to point out the awesome periodic table poster - I got it from an Etsy store and the seller really worked with me to get the right size and material for me. Each square looks like a solid color from far away, but up close there's a ton of useful information on every element. The site listed on the poster is www.ptable.com. Highly recommended!

lab 3.jpg - 930kB
Real hazard storage cabinets for flammables and acids. All chemicals separated by appropriate storage code. Also note the giant SDS binders up top - it's very important to know the hazards of everything you work with. Printed SDS's are expensive, but could be very helpful if you need to provide info to first responders quickly and easily.

There's also another giant cabinet in another room, because it was way too big to fit through the hallway to the lab (see the video). Whoops! I keep extra stuff in there that I don't use often. It actually worked out nicely because it forced me to get a 3rd low cabinet, and putting those together makes another large work surface which is really nice.


Total cost: over $8,000 :o
Worth it though! I'm so happy with how it turned out.

The only thing missing is a fume hood. I can't for the life of me figure out where to put it, mainly because I can't for the life of me figure out where the fumes will go. I really don't want to put a hole through the roof. Working on the back porch will suffice for now. Exciting times ahead!
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[*] posted on 13-10-2017 at 20:40


Beautiful lab. I like the epoxy bench top.

I wouldn’t worry about cutting a hole in your roof at all. I did this for the exhaust for my hot water heater. Just cut to size for your duct, taking out the plywood and asphalt shingles ( I presume you have this kind of roof). Seal an aluminum flashing to the plywood and replace the shingles. It’s a piece of cake!




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[*] posted on 7-12-2017 at 02:06


This is a teaser /progress report.
I spent today doing construction in my lab. Hopefully fully complete this side of Christmas (maybe without fume cupboard). I will do a proper tour then.

Today's task was to complete the under-bench storage -- at least for this part of the bench. The top is 1200/900 mm deep. On the left are six black bins that slide out and 10 white bins with lids that will mostly contain ground glassware. Next to that are three open shelves for highuse equipment: power supply, pump, mantle, hotplate, boxes of indicators and filter papers and thermometers -- that kind of thing. The baskets slide out on drawer sliders. Next to that will be a dishwasher. What you see in this photo is about 40% of the total bench space.

2017-12-07 15.36.50.jpg - 164kB
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