Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Hello,
My blue/green LavaLite Aristocrat needed a liquid change, as it was cloudy and created bubbles in the wax. So far I'm ready to throw it out the window. I've tried 3 different times, all have failed.
Two days ago, I poured the old blue liquid into an empty water jug, poured distilled water in, added a drop of pure glycerin, then added a few "strawfulls" of a salt solution (table salt mixed with warm water) as I don't have any Epsom salt as some here have recommended. Turned it on and 2 hours later....nothing. No motion, the wax wasn't even doming as if it was about to produce a blob. Just sitting dead flat on the bottom.
So I tried again the next day, again with distilled water, but this time with dawn instead of glycerin, and the salt solution. Once again, no flow, wax sitting flat at the bottom. So I let it cool and harden, the added the old liquid back in and *surprise* it flowed perfectly fine (albeit cloudy and bubbly).
Today i tried something different. I used tap water instead of distilled, glycerin, and a little more salt solution. I also added a bit of propylene glycol left over from my goo kit project. I was excited to see some real flow. However, two hours later, the exact same thing! Wax melted and sitting flat at the bottom! Seriously?! I would've been happy if it was just doming.
Am I missing something? I know Epsom salt is recommended rather than table salt because it can cloud back over time, but I don't have any Epsom salt at the moment. However I used the distilled+glycerin+salt mixture for a newer lamp last year and it worked fine. Is this because the older wax and liquid formulas are different? If they are different I'd still expect this to work. Maybe I need to cycle it on and off for a few days? I'm about to give up. Right now, I'm waiting for it to cool so I can put the old blue liquid back in and at least get some bubbly flow going.

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I use a approximate ratio of 70/30 distilled water and propelyne glycol

No salt-no need

Not sure what will happen now that is been subjected to all those different combinations

Might want to boil/clean clean your spring too

What Claude said is basickly what you need to do but start again as its probably not going to work with everything else in there

Claude J said:

I use a approximate ratio of 70/30 distilled water and propelyne glycol

No salt-no need

Not sure what will happen now that is been subjected to all those different combinations

Might want to boil/clean clean your spring too

Would glycerin work as a substitute for propylene glycol? Also I put the original liquid back in, heated up, and we're flowin'

I hear it might

Its all adjust the specific gravity

For the record, Clear dishsoap will only adjust the consistency of the lava

what color is the fluid?,

The original fluid is light blue and the wax is green. I heard that the blue/green combo is very prone to getting bubbles in the wax.

I may have some extra brand new blue fluid form dumping out globes for glitter conversions

got to check

I use glycerin on mine and the key is to add it while the lamp is HOT. I don't pre mix with the h2O, just leave 3-4 inches at the top and level off with h2O when it looks right.

Don't try to do too much in one night IMO. Cycling them is key - at least for me.

I dilute my glycerin 50/50 with refrigerator filtered water and use a condiment bottle to ad it 5-6 drops at a time til the mound starts arisen. Never used PG but have had great success with the glycerin.

Good luck.

Ben said:

Would glycerin work as a substitute for propylene glycol? Also I put the original liquid back in, heated up, and we're flowin'

Got a picture?

I'll post a picture below. Currently I've been using the original liquid and the flow has gotten a bit worse. It doesn't produce as many blobs and columns a bit more now, and only flows properly for about an hour before going into "complete column mode". Do you use any salt solution when you use the glycerin? And how much do you add?
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Just thought I'd give a quick update-

I tried again about a week ago with tap water and aquarium salt, using glycerin as my surfactant. I poured the water in about 3/4 of the way up, and added salt solution to fill the rest of the space. I finally have some flow! The blobs are a bit stringier than I want, and I've been cycling it daily to see if they'll change. I may have to buy some clear dish soap as I hear this can make the blobs more like the familiar round blobs (I only have blue Dawn dishsoap). At this point I'm just glad I have flow at all.

In my (admittedly limited) experience, distilled water and a bit of soap only works with the 1960s lava.

Ben, can you show a photo of the stringy flow? If you're getting what's termed serpentine flow (I'll need a photo to say for sure) you're very lucky.

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