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PostPosted: Jul 08, 2009 8:44 pm 
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Guys, what do you think would be good for a nice cheap salt? Something that I could actually buy and get started working with...without spending much money (since it would be my own).

How about NaF-KF?

Or NaCl-KCl?

Anyone have any ideas for a salt that would have a sufficiently low enough melting point that you could potentially melt it with electrical-heating-wire wrapped around a pipe?

I want to "get my hands dirty" with some of these salts and am not sure which one might be best. I do think it should be a halide salt though--no nitrates or carbonates.


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PostPosted: Jul 08, 2009 10:06 pm 
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There are several commercial eutectic heat treating salts that have melting points of around 275 deg F (135 deg C) these are mostly nitrate salts if what you are looking for is a low temp salt to work with.


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PostPosted: Jul 08, 2009 10:45 pm 
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Looking at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Metal_halides
Al and Sn chlorides look promising
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aluminium_chloride
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tin(IV)_chloride
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tin(II)_chloride


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PostPosted: Jul 08, 2009 11:04 pm 
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Aluminum chloride is highly deliquescent, and it can explode in contact with water, also upon melting AlCl3 gives the dimer Al2Cl6, which vaporises. I don't think it's a very good salt to use in this sort of test.

If you really want a Cl based system there is the lithium chloride-potassium chloride sodium chloride triple salt called Salt Damp which is 55% potassium chloride, 40% lithium chloride, and 5% sodium chloride, (58.2 mol% LiCl, 41.8 mol% KC1) which is a eutectic mix, 352°C (665°F) and you can make it yourself or buy it dirt cheap from a heat treatment supply house. It's also a neutral system which is probably best.


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PostPosted: Jul 09, 2009 6:27 am 
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Kirk, where will you be doing this? Of the various mixtures mentioned, the salt damp ClLi/Na/K is the least hazardous, but LiCl has neurological effects and is a severe skin irritant. Lethal dose ~ 50 pcm on bodyweight. Treat it like weedkiller. See its MSDS for details. In general, googling {compound-name MSDS} will tell you what you need to know.

All fluorides are MUCH more toxic.

I have small quantities of the salts mentioned, and many others, on the shelf here. Thermostated furnace anything up to 1000C, corrosion test pieces of various grades of stainless steel, incoloy, hastelloy (but not -N), microscope for looking at surface damage from corrosion..... Can you tell us what kind of things you are thinking of doing?

Luke


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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 8:21 pm 
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Sodium fluoroborate (the secondary salt proposed) is supposed to be a common industrial salt that is very cheap and doesn't appear to be too dangerous.
Melting point is lower than the FlLiBe salts too.


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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 8:48 pm 
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Lars wrote:
Sodium fluoroborate (the secondary salt proposed) is supposed to be a common industrial salt that is very cheap and doesn't appear to be too dangerous.
Melting point is lower than the FlLiBe salts too.


There's an overpressure of boron trifluoride associated with NaBF4, otherwise it decomposes to NaF and BF3. That overpressure makes me not too fond of starting out with NaBF4.


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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 9:24 pm 
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Doesn't your wife have any epsom salts?

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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 9:27 pm 
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rmaltese wrote:
Doesn't your wife have any epsom salts?

Melting point 1124C :(


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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 9:39 pm 
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ondrejch wrote:
rmaltese wrote:
Doesn't your wife have any epsom salts?

Melting point 1124C :(


I'm sure there must be other reasons not to use it but
for further clarity it's Magnesium Sulphate and melts depending on what form or state?
1124 °C (anhydrous, decomp)
200 °C (monohydrate, decomp)
150 °C (heptahydrate, decomp)

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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 9:46 pm 
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rmaltese wrote:
ondrejch wrote:
rmaltese wrote:
Doesn't your wife have any epsom salts?

Melting point 1124C :(
I'm sure there must be other reasons not to use it but
for further clarity it's Magnesium Sulphate and melts depending on what form or state?
1124 °C (anhydrous, decomp)
200 °C (monohydrate, decomp)
150 °C (heptahydrate, decomp)

In my understanding the melting point goes down if you add water, but I guess Kirk wants no water in it.


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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 9:56 pm 
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Yeah, I've got some Epsom salt (used it to fight blight on my tomatoes), but isn't there a simple salt like NaCl-KCl with a reasonable melting point? For some reason I've never been able to find a phase diagram for that simple and cheap salt.


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PostPosted: Jul 11, 2009 10:20 pm 
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Kirk Sorensen wrote:
Yeah, I've got some Epsom salt (used it to fight blight on my tomatoes), but isn't there a simple salt like NaCl-KCl with a reasonable melting point? For some reason I've never been able to find a phase diagram for that simple and cheap salt.


The NaCl-KCl eutectic has a mole ratio of 1:1 and melts at 727°C (1340°F)


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PostPosted: Jul 12, 2009 1:46 am 
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Kirk Sorensen wrote:
Yeah, I've got some Epsom salt (used it to fight blight on my tomatoes), but isn't there a simple salt like NaCl-KCl with a reasonable melting point? For some reason I've never been able to find a phase diagram for that simple and cheap salt.

I conducted a search on webelements and the best I could come up with was SnF2 MP 213C and BP 850C. Add some CaF2 to lower MP and raise the BP. No moderating value. Good for fast spectrum.


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PostPosted: Nov 03, 2009 12:51 am 
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One potential supplier of experimental batches of molten salts is Park Metallurgical
they provide relatively economical salts for heat bath and metal heat treating applications.

Neutral Salts
PRODUCT IDENTITY MELTING POINT WORKING RANGE
#800 850 deg F (454 deg C) 925-1250 deg F (496-677 deg C)
#900 920 deg F (493 deg C) 1000-1300 deg F (538-704 deg C)
Nu-Sal 1230 deg F (665 deg C) 1300-1650 deg F (704-899 deg C)
Uni-Hard® IR 1020 deg F (549 deg C) 1100-1700 deg F (593-927 deg C)
Sta-Hard 17 1175 deg F (635 deg C) 1300-1900 deg F (704-1038 deg C)
Sta-Hard 45 1450 deg F (788 deg C) 1550-2100 deg F (843-1149 deg C)
High Speed 60 1600 deg F (871 deg C) 1700-2300 deg F (927-1260 deg C)
High Speed 75 1750 deg F (954 deg C) 1900-2400 deg F (1038-1316 deg C)
Cartecsal 810 deg F (432deg C) 850-1750 deg F (454-954 deg C)

Parks Metalurgical does not provide the exact chemical composition of their salt formulations on the website but I believe that you can obtain the chemical composition if you request it by contacting them. Their contact info is:

Park Metallurgical Corporation
8074 Military Avenue
Detroit, MI 48204
Phone: (313) 895-7215


The Park Metallurgical Website is:
http://heatbath.com/park/products/neutral_salts


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