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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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  4. #3  
    New Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    If you are looking to do practical in your lab then you can tray in many ways and wide range of process available on online places. I am not going describe the whole process because it might be different from industrial production. So here i am listing the some of website name and list of great article which will help you in finding the answer of that question.

    • Get 1 gram of silver nitrate and 1 gram (0.035 oz) of sodium hydroxide in separate containers and add enough water to both to dissolve them.

    • Mix the two solutions together. A black precipitate of silver oxide will form.
    • Add ammonia until the precipitate completely redissolves.
    • Add 4 grams of sugar and stir until dissolved.
    • Place your article you want to silver into the solution, or pour the solution into a tray containing your article (for larger articles like glass panes)
    • GENTLY heat the solution but DO NOT let it boil. Boiling tears the silver off the surface
    • Eventually the solution will turn to a cream color and your article is now silvered, take it out and wipe off the silver from where you don't want it.
    • If the silver is really stuck to places you don't want it you can apply hydrochloric acid.
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