Like most of you, I had dealt with the brown La Brea slime floating
in my Sparex filled crock pot. I had never seen it earlier in my
earlier days using Sparex or when I used another brand of sodium
bisulphate pickle. Finally, I called the company. They seemed puzzled
by my description, as if they’d never heard of a such a thing. I kept
describing it, coming at it from different angles and adding that the
granules themselves were brownish.
“Oh”, they finally said, "You must be referring to the Amber Hue!"
As if this were some special feature. “Oh, well, that won’t hurt
I hung up and drove to Home Depot where I purchased “Spa- Down”,
reasoning that any chemical approved for total human immersion has to
be cleaner than some sort of industrial by-product.
I do a lot of depletion guilding on rose and 18k golds, and the
Soium Bisulphate sold as “Spa Down” ph adjuster for spas, pools and
hot tubs works as well as the official Sparex brand pickle. I rarely
miss the amber hue.
One thing: I told a workshop class about this once in CA. A year or
so later, in another state, a workshop participant began shaking her
head adamantly when I told them about Spa Down. Seems she had
attended my other workshop and went right out and bought my
recommended Home Depot pickle. She tried every concentration, cold,
hot etc. and she was here to tell me that it simply doesn’t work. She
even brought the container in.
We both smiled when she realized that what she had bought was Spa
Up-- sodium bicarbonate: baking soda. I have certainly made similar
Amber Hue free in Seattle,