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Thread: how to turn glass into a mirror

  1. #1 how to turn glass into a mirror 
    New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    hi to all,
    i have some questions about glass silvering;

    i found this procedure:
    1) make a solution (A) with 1.4 gr silver nitrate + 17gr water
    then, add to the solution 1.2gr of ammonia 26% solution

    2) make a solution (B) with 9.2 gr potassium bitartrate + 4gr sodium carbonate + 17gr water

    3) make a solution (C) made of 5gr (A) + 5gr (B) + 100gr water

    4) put a very clean glass sheet (*) in solution (C) , and leave it in the solution until the glass silvering is done.

    (*) the glass must be very clean before silvering :
    to clean it, wash it with a 6% tin chloride solution,
    then rinse it with hot water.

    The author claims that with this procedure is possible to silver also plastic with very smooth surfaces.

    The questions are:

    1) Do you think that this procedure can really work also for plastics?

    2) How can i make the plastic surface clean (and smooth)?
    do you think that the 6% tin chloride solution is suitable also for plastics, or does need another cleaner?

    I am interested in plastics such as PLA,ABS,PETG; i have read somewhere that PETG is more suitable than the others...

    P.S: this is my first post in this forum,
    i am sorry if i have posted the question in a wrong forum section, in this case i ask to moderator to move it in the right place...

    Thank you!

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  3. #2  
    Bullshit Intolerant PhDemon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK
    1) It might be worth a try but I don't think the silver would stick to the plastic.

    2) The tin chloride is there to act as a reducing agent, to convert any remaining silver ions to metallic silver, AFAIK it will not react adversely with plastics.

    As an aside, I would be careful with this, silver nitrate becomes explosive when ammonia is added to it! (Chemist's call this mixture Tollen's reagent).

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