Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

I Successfully Revived Black/Cloudy to Clear Grande Lava Lite using Epsom Salt/Palmolive Detergent Method

Hi, I posted a topic on asking for advice of reviving a cloudy Grande a couple weeks back. Well, I received multiple answers that did interest me, but they didn't seem like the right choice. I thought of buying a 65$ filter pump, no, I thought of sending it back for a new one, no, I thought of using a Brita or Pur pitcher filter, didn't work.

So.. I decided to make my own liquid recipe. Yep! And oh what a joy it was to stay up until 8 in the morning having spent 10 hours on this thing. I used the Brita pitcher filter and it kept coming out cloudy. I mean it might of worked.. but it would've taken days upon days and new filters. Ah!..

What I ended up doing was taking my cold globe's top off, slowly emptying the liquid contents of the batch into a big whey protein canister, sealing that up in case I may need it later, spraying cold water into the globe from a sink shooter thing, rinsing that out, pouring cold water into my Brita pitcher filter, using that purified water to slowly pour into the empty globe, reached near the top, and began my Epsom Salt/Palmolive Pure dishwashing detergent surfactant mixing method...

I will begin to list the next steps in a list order so that you may find it more convenient when you decide to revive your cloudy Lava Lite Lamp. I do not know how these guys stay in business with defective products, but it is well worth it to spend 60$ on a Grande Lava Lite (which is 5 times as big as the standard 52 ounce ones) which doesn’t look quite right and take the time and energy to actually take it apart and fix it. The self-satisfaction and pride you take in your lamp will be much higher after you too have successfully done this.

So, without further ado, here goes guys ☺.

1. Grab your cold, cloudy Lava Lite and remove the cap. To do this, either take a special bottle opener (for the 52 oz. (I’m not sure of the name of the opener but I do know it will let you recap it when you are finished)) or a small, thin, very strong pocket knife, and open the top.

2. To open a Grande, do the next few steps.

a. Take the knife, facing away from your hand, and slide the tip underneath the metal side. Gently pry upward. Do this gradually. You need to have about fifteen millimeter increments going side by side where you started to pry upward.

b. Next, you may begin to pry a little higher and wider. You can begin to make roughly half-centimeter increments, along with taller openings.

c. Now you may slide the knife underneath the metal and begin to slide sideways to ensure nothing is sealed.

d. Once you have a nice straight opening around half of the cap, you can then pull upward on the cap until the lid comes off. Be careful, it is very sharp and it may pop off because of the pressure. Haha, you might flinch when it happens, I did.

e. Now you can take the rubber seal off and set aside.

3. Take the globe and go to the kitchen sink. Using the kitchen will allow more space to set aside any other materials as well access to the sink water shooter thingamajig.

4. Find a container large enough to hold all of the liquid that came inside of the globe to begin with. Again, I used a whey protein canister that looks like a pill bottle on steroids, but you may want to use milk jugs that have been thoroughly cleaned out.

5. Put the canister in the sink. Gently grab hold of the globe around the top and bottom. Slowly guide the opening towards the canister. Gradually pour the liquid into the container. Once the liquid gets about halfway, pay attention to wax at the bottom. It will soon give way and slip onto the side of the globe. When this happens it may chip the wax, thus creating a mess for you to clean. I advise you use caution at this point. Once all of the liquid is poured out, keep holding the globe in the same position.

6. Try to not drop the globe. Remove the container from the sink. Grab the sink water shooter doohickey. Keeping the globe propped upon it’s side on the side of the counter, gently (make sure the water pressure isn’t on too high) spray the top of the inside of the globe. This will ensure all of the cloudy boogers are removed. As you are spraying, rotate the globe so that all of the surface area has been hit. Now you should have a very decent and clean looking globe.

7. Let the sink water shooter doodad go. Grab the top and bottom of the globe. Begin to slowly turn it into a vertical position. Remember, the wax will chip if you aren’t careful. Stand it up on the counter.

8. It’s liquid making time! Now, you do want only the cleanest water. I used a Brita water filter but you may prefer to buy a couple gallons of purified water. Make sure the water is cold. Grab the globe and set at a 45° angle. Pour the water very slowly onto the edge of the inside of the globe. Fill the globe up until you are roughly an inch away from where the bottom of the top silver piece will show once you lay it on top.

9. Here comes the tricky part. Please pardon me for not keeping track of the specific amounts of ingredients that I used. Hopefully you will take joy in this phase and become somewhat of a mad scientist experimenting on your very own concoction.

a. Grab some Epsom Salt. I had some lying on the floor in my bathroom because I use it in the tub when my muscles become fatigue. You may find it at Wal-Mart of course, or other stores that I am not aware of. (The Epsom salt acts as density controller for your liquid. The more you add, the heavier your water will be. Thus in effect the wax will supposedly become lighter when heated, and rise more easily.)

b. Grab some dishwasher detergent. You want the kind that you use to hand wash dishes. It is best to use clear detergent. I used Palmolive Pure. It has a great smell and is crystal clear. (The detergent acts as a surfactant. (Sur•fac•tant - | ser’faktent | - a substance that tends to reduce the surface tension of a liquid in which it is dissolved.) This helps to allow the wax not combine with the salt water. Thus in effect, the wax will flow throughout the globe, hopefully, mostly intact.)

c. Add around two drops of surfactant to a 52 oz. globe. Add around ten to a Grande globe. This is just to be safe.

d. Grab a glass of purified water and pour in some Epsom salt. Stir until it is dissolved.

e. Put your globe on top of your lamp. Cut the lamp on. Keep the top off. Wait an hour and a half for a 52 oz. globe. Wait four and a half for a Grande globe. You can tell if the wax is ready for the salt solution by grabbing the bottom of the lamp and gently turning it side to side. The wax will look like choppy waves when it is ready.

f. Grab a straw for a 52 oz. globe. Put the straw into the salt water glass about an inch and put your finger on top to create suction. Lay the straw on the inside side of the globe and release. This will create pretty cool affects. Be careful! Water will trickle down the side and if it gets underneath the globe your lamp could crack or worse, explode!

g. With a Grande, I realized a straw took too long. I began gently pouring around an ounce of Epsom solution at a time.

h. When you put the salt solution in, wait 30 seconds so the liquid can become hot again.

i. I began to mess around with adding more surfactant. You may not want to do this but I did. I would suggest adding more Epsom salt until the wax at the bottom begins to column but not separate.

j. What you are searching for is a nice balance so the wax will column, split into separate globs, rise to the top, and fall back down.

k. I reached this conclusion. However I kept adding salt solution and it began to act insane. If you add too much it will split into globs very soon at the bottom and it will have roughly thirty different globs.

l. I fixed this problem though. I grabbed a t-shirt (don’t laugh) stuffed it inside the globe, let it soak up some of the liquid, and then I ringed it out. It began to settle back down. I kept doing that until I had the balance of psychedelic affects that I was looking for. Again, be careful! Water will trickle down the side and if it gets underneath the globe your lamp could crack or worse, explode!

m. Once you have found your balance, fill the rest with purified water. Pour it until it becomes roughly a centimeter away from the bottom of the silver cap when it is laid on top.

10. Now that you have achieved a crystal clear liquid, you may recap the globe. I suggest you wait a couple hours with the cap off. Watch the globe and make sure it is working properly. When you recap it, stuff the rubber seal back, put the metal lid back on. Grab a marker or something. Try to crimp (reseal) the metal cap back into its original condition. You want it as tight as before. The lid could blow off if you don’t seal it enough. For a 52 oz. globe, I am not sure exactly. I guess recap it with those special bottle opener things I said to buy earlier. Set the lava lamp somewhere you can watch it for a couple hours.

11. Pop in your favorite movie or something and take pride in your creation. I love my lava lamp now and it works like a fucking champ.

- I hope you guys have found this tutorial helpful and not entirely too long. This is exactly what I did. Do not be afraid to attempt this yourself. Okay peoples I guess I am out of here. Stay cool and keep your Goo Hott!

p.s. – A special thanks to the Molten Meditation website which made my experience possible. Also I’d like to thank Bohdan and others for the advice of other possibilities.

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Jep give us some news :)
Anybody please post with long term success with brand new liquid or goo . Long term is key .

What ratio did you use? How much Epsom salt per gallon?  I tried filtering min and it was marginally better, but I think I'm just going to start new and create the liquid. 

Kevin, this forum string is from 2009.

You might not get a response from the participants

I do this al the time,

Currently making 3 custom colors for clients

Use distilled water and I find it is best to use propylene glycol to modify the specific gravity, Espons salt deteriorates the lava over time and makes it cloudy

Also, Add the clear soap (SURF) at the start so the lave does not stick to the sides

Kevin Kwasneski said:

What ratio did you use? How much Epsom salt per gallon?  I tried filtering min and it was marginally better, but I think I'm just going to start new and create the liquid. 

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