View Full Version : Automated Solve et Coagula

03-20-2013, 01:02 AM
If you are like me, you might enjoy a nice simple apparatus that provides a continuous cycle of dissolving and crystallizing whatever salt you wish for as long as you wish... all completely hands off.

I wanted to be able to be able to put my salt in a box outside and let the rain dissolve it and the sun crystallize it, but sometimes it rains too much (I live in the Pacific Northwest) and the water would overflow the box and I would lose salt. Also, it would get dirty and things would fall in it. I have solved all these issues.

Once you know the basic idea, you will be able to automatically dissolve and crystallize salts on whatever scale you wish simply by scaling up and modifying the basic concept.

To make the basic apparatus, you will need the following:

1. A transparent plastic tub about the size of a shoebox
2. A piece of transparent plastic somewhat larger than the top of the tub. Use strong clear plastic that will not degrade under UV.
3. A empty 1 liter soda bottle
4. A drill
5. Strong glue or epoxy
6. Fine screen
7. A bit of filter paper

What you do is glue or epoxy the soda bottle to the center of the plastic sheet.

Near the glue point or points, cut out a very small hole (like a hole punch hole) and glue or epoxy your filter paper so that it covers the hole.

Then drill half inch holes all around the very top of the plastic tub and glue a strip of fine screen over them. Leave a hole open.

Next glue all along the top of your plastic tub and then invert it onto the plastic sheet, centering the plastic bottle and allow it to dry. Allow two inches excess around the edges.

Now, put salt in it through one of the holes, cover that hole with screen and set the apparatus outside.

When it rains, water will pool on the top and be filtered down into the interior. When the water level raises high enough, the plastic will be pushed upward by the buoyancy of the soda bottle and will not allow water to pool and will fairly well seal the filtered water hole. When the rain stops and the sun comes out, the water will begin to evaporate and exit the container thanks to the ventilation holes around the top. When it has evaporated sufficiently, the bottle will lower and the next time it rains, it will fill up again. You may wish to paint the outside of the lower part of the tub black to aid this process.

That's it. Make one and put some copper sulfate in it and watch it for several years. Maybe your favorite ore? Enjoy your new hands-off natural evolution apparatus!



03-20-2013, 02:02 AM
This sounds like a very good idea but I'm having a difficult time visualizing what you're describing. Would you mind taking pictures?

Thanks for sharing!!

solomon levi
03-20-2013, 04:03 AM
yeah, great idea. thanks.

03-20-2013, 04:43 AM
I really like this idea, thanks for sharing. I am fortunate enough to live in an area where it rains about the right amount that it isn't so much trouble but if I moved this might be of great help.

Just for a better visualization I thought I would give my understanding of it.

From my understanding the shoe box sized container goes over top the liter soda bottle with it's bottom facing up. A hole is drilled into the container and a screen with sides glued to the container with a paper filter in it. Then you make holes near the top of the soda bottle to let air out. This way water gets in slower and when too much water is on top it simply runs off the sides of the container and can still escape the bottle without being hindered. And if you need to add anything the holes at the top should work fine. I guess I could see it working fine without the bottle being glued to the container though, just seems like more work if you do it that way.

07-09-2013, 10:53 PM
Joshua, wanted to PM you but your inbox is full.