Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

So I’ve been on a quest to figure out why master fluid bubbles form in wax. It’s been a long road but thanks to some other posts here on OG, I think I’ve found a decent solution to fix the problem.

A year or so ago I made a post about how white vinegar helps eliminate master fluid bubbles. After experimenting with that on a couple of lamps, I found that vinegar raises the ph of the master fluid and does indeed decrease the amount of bubbles in wax. Cool, but using too much vinegar cancels out the surf’s job of keeping the interior of the globe stick-proof. So adding too much vinegar will result in wax sticking to the sides of the globe. We don’t want that… 

A fairly safe amount of vinegar would be approximately two-three tablespoons. 

Alright, so we raise the ph of the master fluid and get rid of some bubbles. Now what about a lamp that has TONS of bubbles? You know… that froth of goo that you may find in an early 70’s century for instance. 
In my experimentation, I found that that frothy nonsense can be transformed into silky smooth blobs by using a stainless steel screen on the bottom of the globe. 
You can’t just pitch a screen in there though Joe, slow down!

The stainless steel screen should be cut into a circle that is smaller than the interior circumference of the coil already in your lamp, and should be heated with either a stovetop burner, a propane torch or held in a fire for long enough so that it’s basically sterile. Then, it should be oiled or it can be dipped in goo so that the first thing that contacts the screen is oily, making it so that the goo adheres to the screen without issue. 
Make sure the screen sits in the middle of the coil on the bottom of your lamp. So you’ll have to drop the screen in while the lamp is flowing. 
This may cause many small bubbles at first. I’d suggest that once that screen is in place at the bottom of the globe, inside the circumference of the coil, shut off your lamp and let cool completely. 
It may take a few runs for the screen to do its job but once it starts working, you will see those unsightly bubbles vanish. 

You who tinker and who are brave enough to try this, please let me know how this works for you! 

Views: 693

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I've used stainless screens for some time now in various lamps

It worked  well in a grande too
It can be sourced at your local department store as sink strainers
Just remove the chromed metal ring

Nice! I had no idea. Did you start to use them to combat bubbles or as a replacement for coils? 

Claude J said:

I've used stainless screens for some time now in various lamps

It worked  well in a grande too
It can be sourced at your local department store as sink strainers
Just remove the chromed metal ring


Replacemet
Jsmooth said:

Nice! I had no idea. Did you start to use them to combat bubbles or as a replacement for coils? 

Claude J said:

I've used stainless screens for some time now in various lamps

It worked  well in a grande too
It can be sourced at your local department store as sink strainers
Just remove the chromed metal ring

In my experience the #1 way to prevent bubbles in your lava is to ensure that your coil (or mesh) is completely bonded with the lava - no surface area open to the liquid. This is what lets the liquid in, and makes the bubbles.

I sometimes have to (very carefully) spin my globes when they are hot, to scoot the lava back onto the exposed spot. Sometimes it takes a while - sometimes it never wants to fully bond!

In that case it's sometimes better to take out the coil, clean it by heating it, and apply oil or some melted lava directly to re-prime it, and then put it back into the lava.

I've never tried adding vinegar, but I already have problems with lava sticking to the glass even without doing that, so... :(

The wax de-bubbler we offer on our website adjusts the PH of the fluid

It is a super-strength commercial vinegar (with warning labels)
I've yet to have it dissolve the SURFactant, however, we use a top-end SURF called SLES with a high cloud point

I can somewhat confirm this. I had an old Astro bottle lately which had a great smooth flow but stopped flowing after 4-5h. It also had screen and since I remembered the flock bottles which had a rather poor flow had them as well I tried replacing the screen whith a coil which resulted in lots of mf bubbles in the wax. So I put the screen back in and it was back to silky smooth flow...

Reply to Discussion

RSS

About

Autumn created this Ning Network.

GooHeads

Groups

© 2024   Created by Autumn.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service