Making your own dessicant from epsom ... Return To Archives | Search

Please Visit Our New Forums at Mycotopia
Please visit our Sponsors

Mycotopia Web Archive Archive Drying/Storage: Picking/Harvesting. Making your own dessicant from epsom salts Previous Next

ClosedClosed: New threads not accepted on this page
Topic Author Last Poster Posts Pages Last Post

Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:22 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Making Anhydrous Magnesium Sulfate from Magnesium Sulfate Heptahydrate (Epsom Salts)

MgSO4 7H2O = Magnesium Sulfate Heptahydrate (Epsom Salts)
MgSO4 = Anhydrous Magesium Sulfate


Anhydrous Magnesium Sulfate will absorb water from the atmosphere, acting as a very effective desiccant or drying agent.
The drying power of Anydrous Magnesium Sulfate is superior to that of Anhydrous Calcium Sulfate (Drie-Rite).
Epsom Salts can be easily converted to Anhydrous Magnesium Sulfate by baking in an oven at temperatures between 400°F and 482°F


150°C = 302°F At this temperature Magnesium Sulfate Heptahydrate is converted to Magnesium Sulfate Monohydrate
200°C = 392°F At this temperature Magnesium Sulfate Monohydrate is converted to Anhydrous Magnesium Sulfate
250°C = 482°F Loses all waters of hydration. yielding Anhydrous Magnesium Sulfate
1124°C = 2055°F Decomposes to MgO, SO2, SO3 before or as it reaches melting point.


MgSO4 7H2O = 246.4564 molecular weight
MgSO4 anhydrous = 120.36 molecular weight


120..36 / 246.45 = 48.83%
246.45 / 120.36 = 204.76%


Anhydrous MgSO4 can absorb 204.7% it's weight in water


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From the article "sodium and calcium sulfates are surprisingly ineffective...[drying agents]"
% of drying after 15 minutes with 10% w/v desiccant
Desiccant % of drying
4A Molecular Sieves 99
Calicium Chloride (powder) 86
Calcium Chloride ( pellet) 84
Magnesium Sulfate 80
Molecular Sieve (beads) 65
Calcium Sulfate 22
Sodium Sulfate 18


Given anhydrous Calcium Chloride would be a superior choice, and is cheaper, I'd suggest that was a preferred alternative to anhydrous NaSO4 or Magnesium Sulfate ( note that Epsom Salts is the heptahydrate, and can't be used ).


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
One common item that can be purchased at your local grocery store is Epsom Salt, which has the chemical formula MgSO4*7H2O.
This compound is considered hydrated, meaning that the salt is in combination with water.
Magnesium sulfate heptahydrate loses its water of hydration in steps.
The heptahydrate, which exists as transparent crystals, will readily lose one molecule of water already at room temperature when the air has low humidity.
The resulting hexahydrate has the appearance of dull,white, fractured crystals.
The hexahydrate will lose water of hydration and form the resulting monohydrate if heated to approximately 150 °C.
At 200 °C, the monohydrate loses its water and forms anhydrous magnesium sulfate.
At much higher temperatures,decomposition to magnesium oxide and sulfur trioxide occurs.
Therefore, the conversion of the heptahydrate to the monohydrate must be carried out at temperatures below 200°C but above 150°C.

Equipment:
250-mL beaker
Bunsen burner
Ring Stand
Stir stick(2)
Iron rings
Weighing paper
Balance
Spatula


Procedure:
Prior to the laboratory period, students should go to a grocery store and purchase a one pound carton of Epsom Salt. You will only need 10 g of this salt.
The appearance of the crystals must be checked for a transparent look.
If the crystals are opaque and white, you will be starting with MgSO4*6H2O.
Measure out 20 g of Epsom Salt and place inside a 250-mL beaker.
Determine the mass of your sample to 0.01 g.
Construct a ring stand with two iron rings.
A wire gauze will have to be placed between the two iron rings.
Place the beaker between the two rings on top of the wire gauze.


Begin to gently and cautiously heat the beaker with the crystals.
Stir the crystals to allowthe water to escape. If you heat too strongly and do not stir the crystals sufficiently, too much water is released to quickly.
This water might dissolve some of the crystals andcertainly will cause your material to cake. If this happens, your final product will not be an attractive white powdery substance. After you have gently heated the material for a few minutes without any clumpingoccurring, slowly intensify the heating but make sure that your product does not begin to melt.
Continue to heat until you have a fine, white powder.
Too much heat will cause the product to take on an unattractive gray coloration and expel sulfur trioxide.
After the dehydration is complete, allow the product to cool.
Transfer the product ontoweighing paper and determine your mass.
Calculate the percent yield based upon thenumber of waters of hydration lost.
Consider the starting material to be hexahydrated orheptahydrated as determined by your initial visual inspection.
Consider the product to bemonohydrated.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Procedure
Mass a crucible and its cover and record in a data table. Place about 2 grams of the hydrate in the crucible and record the mass of the crucible, cover and hydrated salt. Gently heat the crucible and its contents for about 10 minutes. During the last minute of heating remove the cover so that any moisture which has collected on the underside of the cover can evaporate. When the crucible has cooled determine the mass of the crucible, cover, and contents.
Replace the cover and heat the crucible for five more minutes removing the cover during the last minute of heating as you did above. Cool and determine the mass of the crucible, cover, and contents. This last mass should agree with the previous mass to within plus or minus 0.005 grams. If it does not repeat this heating until a constant mass is reached. This is called heating to a constant mass and is the only way of insuring that the reaction is complete.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Magnesium Sulfate is Hygroscopic
A hygroscopic material (literally "water seeking") is one that readily absorbs water (usually from the atmosphere).

In most cases, the water can be removed from the material by heating (sometimes under vacuum or under a flow of dry gas such as nitrogen).

Hygroscopic materials are fairly common. Some may absorb a finite amount of water (such as magnesium sulfate, MgSO4) while others may attract so much water that they form a puddle and dissolve (deliquesce). For example, solid sodium hydroxide (NaOH) pellets will form a small corrosive puddle in less than an hour in moist air.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Drie-Rite is a brand of Anhydrous Calcium Sulfate commonly used as a desiccant or drying agent.
Cost is approximately $4.07 per pound.

Epsom Salt is the generic name for Magnesium Sulfate Heptahydrate.

Epsom Salts typically sell for less than $1 a pound.

from
http://mv.lycaeum.org/mu/MgSO4.html
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:25 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

by jebus2000 of shroomery.org

Quote:

After reading your post I was so inspired I went out this morning and bought 2 boxes of epsom salts. ( $4.00 each at my local pharmacy)



1

Quote:

I then baked for 45 minutes and all I ended up with was a hard shell with gooey stuff on the inside. I then heated for an additional 60 minutes and it came out dry as a bone!



2

Quote:

i have avoided using dessicant for years b/c I did not want all of those chemicals ending up in a land fill, but your method is enviorment friendly and I want to personaly thank you for sharing it! I will post a follow up on my results using this method.
I will continue to use "The Jebus Dehydrator Tek" for the first 48 hours of dryng and then move them to "The Rail_Gun Dessicant Chamber"...sounds imprssive!

If you want to check out "The Jebus Dehdrator Tek" it can be found at..
http://www.sporelab.com/jebus200.htm


Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:29 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Quote:

I baked the epsom salts dry (as noted above) then place them in a plastic container. As you can see, they formed large rocks after being baked. I used a hammer to break them apart.



1

Quote:

I them placed a piece of paper towel over the "epsom rocks" and put my partialy dry shrooms on top.



2

Quote:

Then using "Saran Quick Covers" (available at your local grocery store) I....well, covered the container. These are much easier then saran wrap.



3

Quote:

I will post my results after a few days...


Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:34 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Quote:

It worked very well. All of the shrooms are bone dry. I did replace the paper towel for a metal screen though.
Great idea and easy! I would recomend it to anyone looking for a cheap and safe alternative to harsh chemical desicants.





Quote:

The bowl measures 12" X 14" wide and is 8" deep. If by chance you are asking b/c you are trying to figure out the amount drying in the pics, let me save you the trouble...8 oz.



3571-newdry
51917-newdry1
28659-newdry2

Quote:

As you can see I have added some new pictures to include the wire screen. got the screen from my local hardware store. It comes on a large roll, but you buy it by the foot. Go to Home Depot or a hardware store, both will have it.


Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:36 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

archive material

credit also goes to "Rail Gun" of shroomery
who posted the original tek back in '01.
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Highflyer (Highflyer)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:41 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Has anyone had experience with the saran quick covers? Are they reuseable?
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Monday, August 25, 2003 - 01:46 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

yes. we've used them around the house and they stay good quite awhile, until they get too stretched out to seal tightly.
btw, not saying epson salts are 'best',
just cheap.
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Figment (Evo)
Posted on Tuesday, August 26, 2003 - 06:05 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

So one could just bake epsom salt in the oven at like 450 for an hour and a half?

After is has been used can it be rebaked and used again...or Does one have to get some ner epsom salts?
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Tuesday, August 26, 2003 - 09:52 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Quote:

So one could just bake epsom salt in the oven at like 450 for an hour and a half?

After is has been used can it be rebaked and used again



correct.[ i think, haven't tried it yet.] except go for 500*F.
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Erebus (Debremus)
Posted on Tuesday, August 26, 2003 - 09:56 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Excellent info as always hippie. Its as if you pull this info straight out of the well we won't go there :)

Has anyone tried dessicant and is there really a taste to the shrooms from it?
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2003 - 02:18 am:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

if you prevent the shrooms from touching the stuff there won't be any taste.
use the screen like the tek suggests.
the best way, in my opinion, is to pre-dry with a fan then finish with a dessicant like this.
if you want bone dry rock hard shrooms.
i prefer mine a little chewy tho' so suit yourself.
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Erebus (Debremus)
Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2003 - 02:53 am:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

So when they are fan dried and feel dry but still little chewy, they won't mold?
Top of pageBottom of pageLink to this message

Hippie3 (Admin)
Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2003 - 03:23 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

just don't cram semi-moist shrooms into a sealed baggie and they won't mold. i prefer paper bags.

Add Your Message Here
Post:
Bold text Italics Underline Create a hyperlink Insert a clipart image

Username: Posting Information:
This is a private posting area. Only registered users and moderators may post messages here.
Password:
Options: Enable HTML code in message
Automatically activate URLs in message
Action: