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Old 10-15-2019, 05:45 PM
Josh Bernbaum Josh Bernbaum is offline
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Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan View Post
That was back when they blamed the crucible manufacturers making bad pots, all of them. That didn't last long as the furnaces began to dissolve too. If the Borax comes out, something else has to go in to get similar results- either lithium, nitrates or fluorine. The caking suggests fluorine to me and anyone with an electric kiln is not going to like that at all. At one point Rollin Karg was having troubles with his moly elements and he showed me his formula which contained Calcium Fluoride. I suggested he get it out of there and his problem stopped.

I find the borax/boric acid issue to be interesting. For me, adding Boric acid to a formula often came hand in hand with cords in a lead or soda base. Borax behaved differently which makes me want to examine the variance in volition loss comparing the two materials. It doesn't keep me up nights.
So I'm sure the nitrates aren't a silver bullet to replace lithium or fluorine, but what you said got me curious as to how much nitrate can go into a melt and not cause issues. Surely there is a limit, and I'm thinking of a mix in the next few weeks where I would like to increase nitrate content so just curious of the upper limits on percentages of that. I'm also wondering if the boric acid I have here is just redundant, or at least not necessary to have. I used to use it for the phosphates I mixed in SP, but only because that's what Nick at Penland had been using. And when I switched to Dave's formula as a starting point, I've just used the borax pentahydrate. There is a good amount in there, not sure I'd want to throw that in an electric furnace.
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