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Etching with Nitric Acid


#1

I am trying to do some etching on Silver using Nitric Acid. I have
used a 10% concentration so far with little effect. Does anyone have
more on Etching, particularly the concentration of acid
to use on silver?

Many thanks
Richard Whitehouse
UK


#2
I am trying to do some etching on Silver using Nitric Acid. I have
used a 10% concentration so far with little effect. Does anyone
have more on Etching, particularly the concentration of
acid to use on silver? 

Why don’t you skip the nitric acid and use Ferric Nitrate instead.
It works well and doesn’t have all the hazards associated with Nitric
Acid. If you want more info on it, email me, directly thru my
website. I use it alot and really like it.

hth
Carla
www.carlamfox.com


#3

First I brush the article with melted candle wax, then cut the
design after which I apply neat acid with an eye dropper, when the
correct depth of etching is obtained I swill off the acid under the
cold tap.

If some parts need to be etched deeper repeat process, when
satisfied remove wax with a kettle of boiling water. Crude but
effective.

Sam.


#4

Hello Richard,

20-30% acid, agitation and possibly slightly higher temperature. The
process produces heat so once it gets going… be careful with
heating. It is a good acid but don’t inhale the nitrous gases, they
are not benign. If you get acid on skin -rinse with plenty of water-
you’ll get yellow spot, a kind of burn but it won’t kill you.

And you can easily recycle the silver from the used liquid once it
becomes inert.

michaela


#5

Be a little wary about nitric etching in your workshop, the fumes
will rust your steel tools! It is a strong oxidising agent, if that
is your only option make a hood over the top and have an extractor
fan to suck away the fumes.

regards Tim.