Al + Hg = Hair

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yogi
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Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 11 Nov 2018, 09:10

I love science. Chemistry always fascinated me, but I never could master it. Too many weird sounding names. However, I did love the lab work and some of the movies we watched. This one is about 8-9 minutes long and shows the interaction between Aluminum and Mercury. I was amazed.

https://imgur.com/gallery/H6vAaHY

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Kellemora
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 11 Nov 2018, 10:16

Ut Oh, now you went and gone and done did it Yogi.

You KNOW I'm going to have to try this!
Hope I can find my bottle of mercury I saved from breaking old thermostats apart, hi hi.

We used to use mercury to coat pennies and make them silver.

I'm wondering if perhaps the liquid he used to clean the aluminum has something to do with it?
I'll find out this weekend if I can find my mercury.

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 11 Nov 2018, 10:27

I think he ended up using HCl (hydrochloric acid) to prep the aluminum. I recall playing with the mercury from thermometers back when I was a kid and the dangers of doing that were unknown. I'd keep a safe distance from it now, although I do eat fish from time to time.

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Kellemora
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 12 Nov 2018, 09:03

I figure as much mercury as I played with growing up, and then even later in my mid-20s. If it was going to get me, it would have done so long ago.

Still hunting for my bottle of mercury, it wasn't in the box I thought it would be in, so it may be in one of the boxes stored away in the garage, unopened since I moved here fifteen years ago, hi hi.

I did find a few fifty year old square glass bottles, all empty, that still say Gilbert Chemistry on them. They might be collectors items by now? I packed them back in the box and put it back in the bottom of the closet.

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 12 Nov 2018, 15:46

My Gilbert chemistry set and my Erector set were my favorite toys. Lincoln Logs were up near the top as well. While packing things up to move down here we sorted out all the girls' old toys that were in the basement. My mom spoiled the hell out of them and bought everything that was popular at the time. I looked up a few things on the Internet and nothing we had was worth the trouble of trying to sell. My aunt bought me an American Flyer train set when I was a kid but it is in fairly sad shape. I found the engine on the net and could get around $125 for it if it were in good condition, which it isn't. I may have been able to get a couple hundred for all the pieces collectively if somebody was interested in buying them for the parts. I kept it all and it's in the basement of this house. The transformer still works but I never assembled the tracks or tried to get the engine going. It's one of those rare things I still have from my childhood days.

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Kellemora
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 13 Nov 2018, 10:46

We had a massive Lionel layout when I was a kid, but it was mostly dad, hi hi. He had three of those huge twin handle transformers lined up at the far end of the layout. Sold it all to a friend of his before he moved west in 1966.

I got into HO trains a little to heavily. It was more like landscape design than actual trains. I would spend a month just building a wall out of plaster and carving it out to resemble a rock wall. I would take real life pictures, then copy what I saw in the picture to my train layout. I did do one thing smart though. Each section was no larger than 2'x4', so when I moved, it was easy to take apart intact. The only problem was, I didn't measure the floor to board heights and they were all different. Never did get it back exactly the way I had it. Ended up selling mine also when I moved up north to Creve Coeur. Can't complain about how much the guy offered to buy it for either, much more than I thought I would get for sure.
Along with this deal he got all the tools, modeling supplies, and air-brush sets. Basically, everything in the train room went with it. On the bright side, I didn't have to move any of it myself.

I loved the old original Erector sets, of which the geared electric motors would be considered a hazard for kids today. Almost got my fingers in the gears a few times. Lincoln Logs were great also!
Do you remember American Bricks? I probably had about a dozen sets of these, including the army base sets.
I never could figure out with all the realistic parts in American Bricks, how Lego's ever took off like they did. I hated Lego's.

Later on in life, when my kids were approaching their teen years, I managed to pick up an O-gauge train from a grocery store who was taking it down. Then not more than a few weeks later picked up another from a hobby shop that was closing. Like both stores had it set up, I did the same thing at my house. It was suspended 14 inches below the ceiling and ran around the perimeter of the room, and through a tunnel over the door and down the hall into the next room.
The grocery store had their engine continuous running so the drive wheels actually ended up with grooves worn in them. Not so much on the cars though. I replaced the wheels and about a year later the motor fried. Couldn't find another motor to fit that particular engine, so used only the engine from the hobby shop set until it died.
We had a fire in our house and in the process of renovating, I took the train set down and gave it to one of the folks who helped us recover from the fire.

They sure don't make things like they did when we were kids. I still had most of my childhood toys, but sold them to pay the late wife's medical bills. But nothing we bought for the kids ever held up from one season to the next.

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 14 Nov 2018, 08:07

I definitely was not a model railroad hobbyist. Most of my playing with the American Flyer was at Christmas time under the tree. Lionel certainly dominated the market at the time, but I liked the idea that American Flyer didn't need a third rail to make things work. As a working teenager I took an interest in HO trains. One of my buddies' family owned a hobby shop and I got some marvelous discounts from them. Another friend and I started to build a landscape on a 4'x8' piece of plywood. We got half way through the first mountain tunnel and gave up. It was too much like work. LOL I was married by the time it came to sell the HO set and like yourself I got more than I expected to be offered. I worked with a fellow who converted his entire basement into a model train world. I've seen some amazing pictures but never went to his home to view things. Model railroading must be like computers. It's addicting. :grin:

No, I don't recall American Bricks, but I might have owned some. These were flat red plastic bricks with 8 interlocking pips on them. They were about the size of a standard USB memory stick. I had more of them than the average kid. In fact none of my buddies had these red bricks; Leggo was starting to take over things at the time. I'm guessing the bricks I had were cheaper than Leggos. My parents were very frugal.

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Kellemora
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 14 Nov 2018, 11:03

Yep, when you built a building with American Bricks, it looked like read building, complete with working doors and windows.
Yes there were cheap, probably just styrene plastic. I don't remember now how many kits I had for sure, but I also had the optional kits which included L corners, and gable slats. But I only had the optional kits in red, so couldn't use them on the tan or army buildings. All of mine were made by Halsam, before Playskool took over manufacture and made slightly large bricks without the bricklike pattern. A small kit still fetches around 50 to 80 bucks on eBay.

I didn't like the three rail track system either, but they made it possible to do a lot of things you couldn't on a two rail system at the time.
Some of the HO cars I had also required three rails, but not on the entire track, just on the siding where you could unload the car. Often the three track was an integral part of the building or device where the car was operated. Such as the lumber mill that connected to the track had three rails, and the lumber car held logs you could dump in the rack of the lumber mill. A coal car worked similarly with a building that had a conveyor that ran the coal up to a hopper after you dumped it from the rail car.
I also had a couple of cars that instead of using the three rail to power the mechanism, it had silver buttons on the side of the car that when you pulled into the loading dock, braided brushes would make contact with the buttons and you could have the cotton bails lifted off the train car by a crane built into the end of the car. However, although it did function, it wasn't all that realistic. The bales were more like rectangular blocks held together like beads on a string. So all the crane did was pick up the first bale and set it on the loading dock, and a conveyor there too brought them up to another door 1 floor up on the dock, and you could watch them move up the conveyor, but the crane didn't do anything other than start the first bale of cotton on the way. At least the white bales were connected with a black string and the conveyor was black. Even so, you could see the string and how it worked. Nothing like they showed on the ads, hi hi.

Moving ahead to the days of the better slot cars, I had an 8x12 foot slot car track I added an N gauge railroad to. Didn't have it for long though, because the hobby shop rented a large building and built a massive slot car track. I started there with Varney Cars, then switched to K&E Sidewinders. I still remember because almost all of my money from working after school went into the cars and running them at the hobby shops track.

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 14 Nov 2018, 11:40

Mom would take me downtown Chicago around Christmas just to look at the store window decorations. They were magnificent but the only one I remember is from Marshall Fields. The store took up an entire block and the window displays were elaborate. All those things you mention about what trains can do were in the Field's store window, and more. It must have taken them a month or more to set it all up, but it was well worth it. Actually the most fun part of those Field trips was the subway ride. Better than street trolleys. LOL

I recall those slot cars, and I visited a track or two in my days. Unfortunately I could never afford to buy the cars or rent time on the track. I'm thinking I might have had a very small track for a short period of time. It certainly would have been a gift from an admiring aunt, or something. :mrgreen:

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Kellemora
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 15 Nov 2018, 11:04

For us it was stores like Famous Barr; Stix, Baer & Fuller; and Scruggs, Vandervort & Barney, who had all the really neat window displays in their downtown stores.
I went to Marshall Fields several times while I was living in Oak Brook/Hinsdale area for a couple of months.
Plus a few other stores of interest to me.

I worked after school. On the way home from grade school I had a few quick stops to do chores for a few places, and those quarters really added up fast. I also worked at an ice cream shop on weekends, and during the winter worked in concessions at a drive-in theater that was open all winter with in car heaters yet. How they made any money only charging a buck a car is beyond me (on buck night, two or a carload), especially considering their electric costs even back then. Probably made most of their money from concessions anyhow!

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 15 Nov 2018, 13:36

Drive-in theaters are all but extinct now. There was only one left in the Chicago area a few years ago and their operating hours were very limited. When I was of dating age the drive-ins were quite popular. Watching the submarine races while parked on Lake Michigan's shores was also popular and free. The down side there was that the police patrolled the area and you couldn't stay parked very long. I clearly recall those in-car heaters. I was crazy as any kid in those days, but I wasn't alone. The theater was not as full in winter as it would be in summer, but quite a few cars attended the show in freezing weather. I have no doubt that all the profits were from the concession stands. That is how most theaters maintain profitability.

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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 16 Nov 2018, 10:58

We still have two drive-in theaters here where I now live. Frequent them as often as possible, because I don't go to indoor theaters at all for any reason. Their own incompetence totally ruined it for me!

I found the box with my small jar of mercury, but have not had a chance to set up to give it a try yet.
I have the aluminum cut-off ends from a shower door install.
I'll pick up an eyedropper next time I'm up at Walgreens.
Probably won't get to it until after Thanksgiving, and hopefully the frau can make a video of it for me.

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 17 Nov 2018, 08:36

Most, if not all, the newer smart phones can make great videos. The one I cited is a time lapse video. I'm not sure how well smart phones can deal with that kind of photography. Regardless, if you get something of interest digitized, I'd be very happy to see the results of your experiment.

The last indoor movie I went to see was "Chicago" of all things. That was many years ago and will most likely be the last time I go to an indoor movie. The showing room was very small because the complex of theaters needed to have at least a dozen screenings (maybe more) going all at the same time. The screen size was overwhelming because the couple we went with wanted to sit up close. I had to keep my hands over my ears and my eyes shut through most of the movie. I was trying to escape the experience with some modicum of hearing and was afraid of a seizure being induced by the flickering of the movie. What I did hear and see was great.

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Kellemora
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 17 Nov 2018, 12:53

The very last time I went to an indoor theater, they forgot to start the movie. After about a half hour wait, I went to hunt down the projectionist to tell him he forgot to start the show. He was no where to be found for another fifteen to twenty minutes. When he did finally start the reel running, there was at least a half hour of commercials before the actual show started. And like you experienced, it flashed from scene to scene so fast, it was impossible to know what was going on. And LOUD, even the seats rattled from the excessive booming noises, and this was not a war movie, hi hi.

They now do on movies about the same thing they do on television shows. They have constant record commercials running through the show, not instrumental music either, music with audio playing right over the dialogue.
That plus advertisements taking up one-third of the TV screen during the actual show.

I knew when I saw the station logo's begin to appear on the screen they would soon begin adding more and more and more to the TV screen during the shows. One of the major reasons I quit watching TV altogether, because I knew it would only get worse, and it sure did. TV stations have absolutely no respect for their viewers, and neither do the maker of the TV shows anymore.

If there is a show I really want to see, I will buy a copy of it, and if it has advertising during the show, I return it to the store if they claimed it had no advertising during the show.
I would rather buy an adventure or mystery game to play than watch a TV program.

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pilvikki
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by pilvikki » 18 Nov 2018, 10:13

that was cool!

my "chemistry set" was a broken lightbulb over a wee oven i made out of bricks. :grin:

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yogi
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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 18 Nov 2018, 10:37

Around the time our family obtained it's first television the commercial gap between shows was about two minutes. Thus a half hour show was really only 29 minutes long. Today that same half hour of content is only 22 minutes long. Some of the cable channels I've monitored down here approach 50% ad time vs content time. The only reasonable broadcasts are on the PBS network. There are no mid show interruptions with their content. This reduction of content is, like you, one of the main reasons I seldom watch television these days.

The ad revenue is obviously what television broadcasters rely on to exist. Many of the people watching have been conditioned to accept the ads as part of the programming. In fact some advertising is entertaining. But, in the end, the only reason television broadcasters offer any content at all these days is to bring in the people to watch the ads. It's a lot like Facebook offering all those gimmick games just to steal all the personal data they can from you and sell it for profit off line.

From what I've heard the best deals are had with subscriptions to something like Netflix. The ads are not present in that case because you are paying up front for the content. The good news is that you can watch programs on demand, if you are willing to pay the price.

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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 18 Nov 2018, 11:19

Tried watching a TV show last night while I was doing some work for the frau. It's whatever channel and show she selected. I think the program was Station 19, a show about firemen, but more like a soap opera.
They had one record commercial after the other built-in to the show itself, with voice from the record completely drowning out the actors and actresses dialogue. It doesn't even do any good to turn off the sound and use only the closed captioning anymore because they now add the words to the music in the closed captioning also.
After about fifteen minutes of putting up with their inconsiderate program I got up and turned off the TV. If I wanted to listen to a song with lyrics, I would turn on the radio. It's shameful what little regard the TV program makers have for their viewers, and the stations have even less.
The main thing I've noticed is the Ads that run all during a program are turned off when Real Ads come on! I guess they don't want to irk their advertisers.

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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by yogi » 18 Nov 2018, 13:09

I don't know exactly when it happened, but the television broadcast industry changed it's emphasis from when it first started out. I keep referring to Facebook in this regard because there are so many parallels. The point of Facebook is not to provide a venue for social networking. It's an aggregator of personal information about its users. That's not how it all started, but over the years that is how their business plan developed. Television broadcasting went through similar changes. Television (for the most part) is no longer about providing entertainment for its viewers. This change is particularly noticeable in news broadcasts. Fox News is the extreme example of presenting content designed to manipulate the thinking of its viewers. Other shows are a little more subtle and intermix advertising in with the story line of their content. It's not just music lyrics. You will now see the labels on the props. A can of Coke, for example, is clearly identified for what it is instead of making it a generic drink as was the case many years ago. Thus, the advertising is not limited to commercial breaks anymore. The point of television broadcasting has little to do with entertaining the viewers and everything to do with getting them to view propaganda/advertisements. It's naive to view a television program and expect it to be for the amusement of the viewer just as it is naive to expect Facebook to be a virtual gathering place for for friends and family.

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Re: Al + Hg = Hair

Post by Kellemora » 19 Nov 2018, 10:46

Well put Yogi!

I don't mind seeing a name brand product used by an actor or actress, unless they stop their normal dialogue to make a comment about it, aka advertisement within the story.

Had an uncle who worked for a packaging company, and every so often they would get orders to produce boxes marked Brand X, or Brands A, B, & C, for local TV advertising agencies. Originally these packages were totally generic, then as time passed, they were redesigned to emulate recognizable brand colors. Then I guess the law changed enough that advertisers no longer needed the generic boxes or packages.

I still remember our first cable TV connection. It was originally hawked as Commercial Free TV.
That lasted about as long as an ice cube in the proverbial hot place.

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