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Pickle & flux sources and discarding chemicals


Looking for a source for Prips Flux and a source for ProCraft Pickling
compound. I have been ordering both of them from a company out of
Cincinnati, Ohio called Casker Company but I am not happy with their
prices or their service. If anyone knows of another source for either
of these products I would appreciate it.

Also I am sure this topic has already been discussed somewhere on the
forum, but I am interested in how most of the fellow jewelers
neutralize and/or discard their pickle after it is spent. Concerned
about the ecological aspects of course and would like some
suggestions. Thanks for all the great advice.


TOM & GRACE STOKES wrote: I am interested in how most of the fellow
jewelers neutralize and/or discard their pickle after it is spent. 
Concerned about the ecological aspects of course and would like some

G’day; What about this?:- Add baking powder (sodium BIcarbonate) to
your waste pickle until there is no further fizzing occurring, then
put a bit extra in and leave it for a short while. Now in my
opinion, the best and simplest way to dispose of the resultant liquid
is to slowly pour it into a plastic bucket of ordinary sawdust - a
timber yard or cabinet maker will happily give you some. Failing that
you could use ‘kitty litter’ from a pet shop. The wood sawdust and
shavings will absorb around 3/4 of a bucket of liquid waste. Simply
lay this out to dry on a tray or large piece of plastic in a place
where you won’t tread in it and wind won’t blow it about. Don’t worry
about fumes - there won’t be any other than invisible water vapour.

Finally, when dry you could bundle it up in several thicknesses of
newspaper, holding it tightly with masking tape and either put it
bundle by bundle into the heating furnace (which writers tell us exist
in all apartment blocks!) or put it with the usual garbage collection.
It won’t ruin the countryside - there wouldn’t be more than a few
grams of copper in a whole year’s unchanged pickle jar. If you have
really large (industrial) quantities, then you’ll have to obtain
advice from the local city council. And there you go Cheers, –

John Burgess; @John_Burgess2 of Mapua Nelson NZ


Hello Grace, The recipe for Prip’s Flux has been on Orchid many
times, but I’ll copy Peter Rowe’s words heRe:

“The recipe I’ve always used is ONE quart of ordinary tap water, 80
grams each of borax and TSP, and 120 grams of Boric acid. It’s the
2:2:3 ratio of the chemicals that matters, not the quantity of water.
In one quart of water, boiling, the above chemicals will not quite
dissolve completely, so you then add sufficient additional water to
finish dissolving them. The idea is to make up the most saturated
solution you can, so you don’t have to spray so much to get
sufficient coverage. But there’s nothing wrong, really, with making
it up much more dilute, if you wish.”

TSP stands for TriSodium Phosphate, and be sure that you get the real
stuff. In the effort to reduce phosphates in the environment, TSP
has been eliminated from many store’s stock. I get mine at a paint
store. Borax comes from the laundry section at the grocery store and
Boric acid from the pharmacy. After you have the flux all mixed and
cooled, pour it into a plastic bottle and cap well. For application
I reuse one of those misting pump spray bottles from body spray. To
keep the silly nozzle from clogging from day to day, simply fill the
little cap (that covers the pump) with water, invert the mister, and
put it into the water-filled cap until it snaps on. Store it upside-
down in a heavy container. When you next go to your bench, remove
the cap - keeping it upside down unless you want water to run down
your hand. Voila’ no clogging. You will find that the saturated
solution you have made will precipitate out with time. Not to worry

  • just reheat with some additional water.

So far as the ProCraft Pickle, I don’t know of it. I use citric acid
solution and there have been many discussions about using sodium
bisulphATE - as John Burgess posted recently, “it is an excellent
jewellery pickle. It is also sold by pool and spa shops as a pH
modifier, and is far cheaper than Sparex, despite being identical.”

When the pickle is spent, I use common baking soda to neutralize it
before disposing down the drain. Hope this helps. Judy in Kansas

Judy M. Willingham, R.S.
Extension Associate
221 Call Hall Kansas State Univerisity
Manhattan KS 66506
(785) 532-1213 FAX (785) 532-5681


Hey, John – great idea! I know about and use the bicarbonate thing,
but then just pour it out on the ground in my yard (the part where I
can’t plant anything anyhow, as that’s where the gas company pipe
comes into Silver Reef. But making it into fireplace logs, so to speak
– that is really ingenious!!!