Forums

connecting wires to pencils underwater

Started by Adam Funk May 25, 2012
I'm interested in the prospect of using pencils as electrodes for
electrolysis of water, but I'm trying to figure out a way to attach
the wires from the power supply to the other end of each pencil so
that the electrical connection is sound but I can seal it up to
immerse (so that the exposed electrodes are underwater in tubes).


Here's a pencil example, but the gases from both working ends are open
to the surface.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Electrolysis.svg/220px-Electrolysis.svg.png


I'd like to make something structurally more like these examples, in
order to capture the gases separately, but AFAICT I'd need either
U-shaped pencils (!) or a way to attach the wires to the pencils
securely under (I guess) heat-shrink insulation.

http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/4185/530wm/A5000248-Electrolysis_of_water-SPL.jpg

http://www.miniscience.com/images/WaterElectrolisis.gif


Suggestions?


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On Fri, 25 May 2012 15:27:27 +0100, Adam Funk <a24061@ducksburg.com>
wrote:

>I'm interested in the prospect of using pencils as electrodes for >electrolysis of water, but I'm trying to figure out a way to attach >the wires from the power supply to the other end of each pencil so >that the electrical connection is sound but I can seal it up to >immerse (so that the exposed electrodes are underwater in tubes). > > >Here's a pencil example, but the gases from both working ends are open >to the surface. > >https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Electrolysis.svg/220px-Electrolysis.svg.png > > >I'd like to make something structurally more like these examples, in >order to capture the gases separately, but AFAICT I'd need either >U-shaped pencils (!) or a way to attach the wires to the pencils >securely under (I guess) heat-shrink insulation. > >http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/4185/530wm/A5000248-Electrolysis_of_water-SPL.jpg > >http://www.miniscience.com/images/WaterElectrolisis.gif > > >Suggestions?
Alligator clips (test clips) covered with Sugru (check sparkfun.com ). The teeth of the clips will make good contact with the pencil "lead" and the Sugru (a moldable silicone that dries hard in 24 hours) will provide water proofing.
On 2012-05-25, Adam Funk <a24061@ducksburg.com> wrote:
> I'm interested in the prospect of using pencils as electrodes for > electrolysis of water, but I'm trying to figure out a way to attach > the wires from the power supply to the other end of each pencil so > that the electrical connection is sound but I can seal it up to > immerse (so that the exposed electrodes are underwater in tubes). > > Here's a pencil example, but the gases from both working ends are open > to the surface. > > https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Electrolysis.svg/220px-Electrolysis.svg.png
That's an "artist's impression"
> I'd like to make something structurally more like these examples, in > order to capture the gases separately, but AFAICT I'd need either > U-shaped pencils (!) or a way to attach the wires to the pencils > securely under (I guess) heat-shrink insulation. > > http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/4185/530wm/A5000248-Electrolysis_of_water-SPL.jpg > http://www.miniscience.com/images/WaterElectrolisis.gif
Copper electrodes will work too but will taint the water, with carbon electrodes some carbon decomposes at the anode but the CO2 formed has the same volume as the O2 it replaces so the text books ignore it when discussing stochiometry. If the goal is to produce more than samples of the gasses, for improved results use stainless steel electrodes for electrolysis in a dilute caustic soda solution. -- &#9858;&#9859; 100% natural --- Posted via news://freenews.netfront.net/ - Complaints to news@netfront.net ---
Adam Funk wrote:
> I'm interested in the prospect of using pencils as electrodes for > electrolysis of water, but I'm trying to figure out a way to attach > the wires from the power supply to the other end of each pencil so > that the electrical connection is sound but I can seal it up to > immerse (so that the exposed electrodes are underwater in tubes). > > > Here's a pencil example, but the gases from both working ends are open > to the surface. > > https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Electrolysis.svg/220px-Electrolysis.svg.png > > > I'd like to make something structurally more like these examples, in > order to capture the gases separately, but AFAICT I'd need either > U-shaped pencils (!) or a way to attach the wires to the pencils > securely under (I guess) heat-shrink insulation. > > http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/4185/530wm/A5000248-Electrolysis_of_water-SPL.jpg > > http://www.miniscience.com/images/WaterElectrolisis.gif > > > Suggestions? > >
Run insulated wire all the way up in the test tube, then down to the pencil above the liquid level. Here: test tube +------------+ | +--+ | | | | | | | P | | | E | | W N | |**I**C *****| <-liquid level | R I | | E L | | | v | | | | |__|_________| | | +---WIRE------------------- I didn't draw the beaker - the above is placed into the beaker with the wire leaving the beaker at the top. Ed
On 2012-05-26, ehsjr <ehsjr@nospamverizon.net> wrote:

> Run insulated wire all the way up in the test tube, then down to > the pencil above the liquid level. Here: > > test tube > +------------+ > | +--+ | > | | | | > | | P | > | | E | > | W N | > |**I**C *****| <-liquid level > | R I | > | E L | > | | v | > | | | > |__|_________| > | > | > +---WIRE------------------- > > I didn't draw the beaker - the above is placed into > the beaker with the wire leaving the beaker at the top. > > Ed
Not shown in the pictures linked in the original post is that the setup starts with the test tubes full of water. -- &#9858;&#9859; 100% natural --- Posted via news://freenews.netfront.net/ - Complaints to news@netfront.net ---
On 2012-05-26, Jasen Betts wrote:

> On 2012-05-26, ehsjr <ehsjr@nospamverizon.net> wrote: > >> Run insulated wire all the way up in the test tube, then down to >> the pencil above the liquid level. Here: >> >> test tube >> +------------+ >> | +--+ | >> | | | | >> | | P | >> | | E | >> | W N | >> |**I**C *****| <-liquid level >> | R I | >> | E L | >> | | v | >> | | | >> |__|_________| >> | >> | >> +---WIRE------------------- >> >> I didn't draw the beaker - the above is placed into >> the beaker with the wire leaving the beaker at the top.
Not a bad idea.
> Not shown in the pictures linked in the original post is that the > setup starts with the test tubes full of water.
I'm probably going to use plastic tubing leading to some kind of vessels rather than test tubes. -- History teaches that grave threats to liberty often come in times of urgency, when constitutional rights seem too extravagant to endure. (Thurgood Marshall)
On 2012-05-25, Jasen Betts wrote:

> On 2012-05-25, Adam Funk <a24061@ducksburg.com> wrote: >> I'm interested in the prospect of using pencils as electrodes for >> electrolysis of water, but I'm trying to figure out a way to attach >> the wires from the power supply to the other end of each pencil so >> that the electrical connection is sound but I can seal it up to >> immerse (so that the exposed electrodes are underwater in tubes). >> >> Here's a pencil example, but the gases from both working ends are open >> to the surface. >> >> https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Electrolysis.svg/220px-Electrolysis.svg.png > > That's an "artist's impression"
:-)
>> I'd like to make something structurally more like these examples, in >> order to capture the gases separately, but AFAICT I'd need either >> U-shaped pencils (!) or a way to attach the wires to the pencils >> securely under (I guess) heat-shrink insulation. >> >> http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/4185/530wm/A5000248-Electrolysis_of_water-SPL.jpg >> http://www.miniscience.com/images/WaterElectrolisis.gif > > Copper electrodes will work too but will taint the water, with carbon > electrodes some carbon decomposes at the anode but the CO2 formed has > the same volume as the O2 it replaces so the text books ignore it when > discussing stochiometry. > > If the goal is to produce more than samples of the gasses, for > improved results use stainless steel electrodes for electrolysis > in a dilute caustic soda solution.
Good point. I could probably connect the wires to some bits of stainless with small bolts & nuts, then shrink-wrap over them. -- No sport is less organized than Calvinball!
Jasen Betts wrote:
> On 2012-05-26, ehsjr <ehsjr@nospamverizon.net> wrote: > > >>Run insulated wire all the way up in the test tube, then down to >>the pencil above the liquid level. Here: >> >> test tube >> +------------+ >> | +--+ | >> | | | | >> | | P | >> | | E | >> | W N | >> |**I**C *****| <-liquid level >> | R I | >> | E L | >> | | v | >> | | | >> |__|_________| >> | >> | >> +---WIRE------------------- >> >>I didn't draw the beaker - the above is placed into >>the beaker with the wire leaving the beaker at the top. >> >>Ed > > > Not shown in the pictures linked in the original post is that the > setup starts with the test tubes full of water. > >
Does that make a difference? Ed
On 2012-05-29, ehsjr <ehsjr@nospamverizon.net> wrote:
> Jasen Betts wrote: >> On 2012-05-26, ehsjr <ehsjr@nospamverizon.net> wrote: >> >> >>>Run insulated wire all the way up in the test tube, then down to >>>the pencil above the liquid level. Here: >>> >>> test tube >>> +------------+ >>> | +--+ | >>> | | | | >>> | | P | >>> | | E | >>> | W N | >>> |**I**C *****| <-liquid level >>> | R I | >>> | E L | >>> | | v | >>> | | | >>> |__|_________| >>> | >>> | >>> +---WIRE------------------- >>> >>>I didn't draw the beaker - the above is placed into >>>the beaker with the wire leaving the beaker at the top. >>> >>>Ed >> >> >> Not shown in the pictures linked in the original post is that the >> setup starts with the test tubes full of water. > > Does that make a difference? >
only if the goal of the looping the wire round to the top like that was to keep it dry -- &#9858;&#9859; 100% natural --- Posted via news://freenews.netfront.net/ - Complaints to news@netfront.net ---
On 2012-05-25, news@jecarter.us wrote:

> Alligator clips (test clips) covered with Sugru (check sparkfun.com ). > The teeth of the clips will make good contact with the pencil "lead" > and the Sugru (a moldable silicone that dries hard in 24 hours) will > provide water proofing.
That looks like fun stuff, thanks. -- "Gonzo, is that the contract from the devil?" "No, Kermit, it's worse than that. This is the bill from special effects."