Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Hi there,

I have some lamps that the wax simply does not rise - it just sits at the bottom.  The wax generally looks fine.  If anyone reading this has used Propylene Glycol to get wax to flow, can you please comment:

I have Propylene Glycol.  I intend to get the lamps up and running, then add 1ml of PG

Leave to cycle for 10-15min? If no flow add 1ml PG and repeat.

Thanks

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I have a similar problem with a lamp I'm trying to fix from the 60s. Took out the liquid and replaced with distilled. Added salt. No flow. Added dish soap. No flow. Added GooKit surfactant. No flow.

So I'm jumping in here to see the responses. :)

I don't want to replace the original fluids - just get the wax to flow!

Erin, how much salt did you add?

For my Fluidium Grande (big volume), I started with a teaspoon, but finally needed 150g of salt to get perfect flow.

I think you should continue to add salt until it works.

At one point it will. I mean, even people floats in the dead sea, so how come wax won't ? :-)

I added a teaspoon to about 32oz. of liquid. The more salt I added, the more the wax detached from the coil. 

Astralav said:

Erin, how much salt did you add?

For my Fluidium Grande (big volume), I started with a teaspoon, but finally needed 150g of salt to get perfect flow.

I think you should continue to add salt until it works.

At one point it will. I mean, even people floats in the dead sea, so how come wax won't ? :-)

Just remember that adding salt has a tendency to cloud the lamp.. Better to add Propylene Glycol or Glycerin. That does not cloud the lamp!

And Simon the method you are mentioning is fine.. Just continue and have pantience.. I learned the patience part the hard way :P

What lamps are causing the issue - I have made some Mathmos lamps flow from zero flow to decent by using the Epsom salts mix - dissolving about 1 tablespoon of Epsom salts in about 700mls of DI water and then gradually adding some of this bit by bit to the lamp until it flows.

During this you will need to take some of the original fluid out before or during the process of adding the salts.

Yes Da I completely agree - salts do cloud the water but not too badly - nothing a quick filter will fix but its probably preferred to add Propylene Glycol or Glycerin.

From your experience Da it seams as though LL lamps work better with Propylene Glycol or Glycerin rather then salts. however I have seen examples where Epsom salts have worked on LL lamps
I am not too sure how mathmos lamps respond to Propylene Glycol or Glycerin - I have only used and seen the Epson salts method used on them.

Hi Tim

I have recently acquired some early Crestworth Astro bottles - with great colourways: Red-Green, Red-Violet, Red-Clear.

Had a go last night with the difficult one - Red-Blue - with great success - It is now flowing nicely!!

Have to say the wax in the early Crestworth bottles flows beautifully.

Thats good - did you use the Epson salt mix to get them flowing?

No - used the propylene glycol - worked a treat!

Well now I have to go get some of this propylene glycol!

Simon, how much PG did you add?

Some drops, or a bigger quantity?

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