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Old 22nd July 2006, 01:17 PM   #11
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muriatic acid can be found at a swimming pool supply. Used for cleaning the coping tile and the concrete deck around the pool.
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Old 22nd July 2006, 04:14 PM   #12
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I think I would try some more conservative approaches before resorting to pool acid. Ketchup, Coca Cola, and vinegar are all good ways of cleaning things up. I would have to assume these socket contacts are plated and not well suited to a sledgehammer technique.

Better still, there is a material known as De-Ox-It that the pro techs here give very high marks.

I use pool acid for stripping plating away... not restoring it. Diluting it makes total sense... who has a good ratio... of pool acid to water?

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Old 22nd July 2006, 05:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by poobah
Diluting it makes total sense... who has a good ratio... of pool acid to water?

Using a small paintbrush to apply just a film of the acid prevents stripping of the plating that would occur eventually if the terminals were literally dipped in an acid bath. Muriatic acid I buy from the hardware store comes in a 4 litre plastic jug and smokes when the screw cap is removed. IIRC the concentration is in the 30 percentile range. I take that and use about 1 fluid oz added to the 8 cups of water going into a coffee maker hopper to clean a coffee maker (beats the sh*t out of useless CLR sold for this purpose BTW). For deoxing sockets and other tube amp vintage parts I'll mix what comes out of the bottle with one or two equal parts of water.
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Old 22nd July 2006, 05:47 PM   #14
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Food-grade citric acid is a much better choice for your coffeemaker.
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Old 22nd July 2006, 05:54 PM   #15
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Is that what that white powder stuff at the Indian stores is?

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Old 22nd July 2006, 05:55 PM   #16
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Food-grade citric acid is a much better choice for your coffeemaker.
Do you mean like a bottle of lemon juice concentrate or what? What concentration would I use? Thanx.
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Old 22nd July 2006, 05:59 PM   #17
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Don't use lemon juice; too many impurities. You want the pure stuff, a white powder, available where any canning supplies are sold. Also at most pharmacies.
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Old 22nd July 2006, 06:02 PM   #18
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There was an article about acid cleaning tube sockets in one of the old Audio Amateur or Glass Audio mags. I tried it, with some success. I used the pool acid straight (since I already had a gallon for adjusting my pool's pH), but only for a very short time. I figured that dilution and time were tradable. I poured a bit into a bottle cap to a height that would cover the lower 60% or so the tube pins (outdoors!). You donít want to get acid on the glass-metal frit seal. Then I carefully set the tube into the cap resting the pins on the bottom. After only few seconds in the bath, I rinsed the tube with tap water, and then submerged it into a second bottle cap with a solution of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to neutralize any remaining acid. I set the fluid level higher in this buffering bath, to cover the entire length of the pins and even the flat glass bottom too. This way, any tiny bit of acid vapor or spray that might have hit the frit would be neutralized too. Finally I washed the tubes very thoroughly with running tap water, and finished with a spritz of distilled water from a squeeze bottle to remove any dissolved mineral residue from the tap water. A hair dryer made sure the tubes were dry in no time. The acid etching not only cleans the oxides off, but it creates a matte texture on the pins that might make for a good pressure contact with the socket.
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Old 22nd July 2006, 06:06 PM   #19
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Tube pins are mainly iron, right... some alloy to match T coef's of glass?

What is the plating on tube sockets, other than silver or gold of course?
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Old 22nd July 2006, 06:18 PM   #20
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From a document I had saved on Dumet Seals:

"In 1915, Colin G. Fink filed a patent for a revolutionary new type of seal. Nickel/Iron alloys can be made with a wide range of expansion co-efficients which cover that of glass. The problem is that seals made with Nickel/Iron wire are often porous. It also suffers a chemical reaction with the glass during the sealing operation which causes gas bubbles to form. Copper seals well to glass, but has the wrong expansion co-efficient. The step which Mr. Fink made was to make a wire which has a Nickel/Iron core bonded to a sleeve of copper. The thicknesses and expansion co-efficients are chosen so that the radial expansion matches that of the glass. The axial expansion is less than the glass, but the stress is taken up by the copper sheath. This type of seal is now known as a Dumet seal. It is pronounced 'dew-met'. It is used in CRTs, vacuum tubes, fluorescent tubes and filament lamps. Dumet seals can be easily identified by their red appearance within the glass."
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