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Types of Electrolytes
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imtheman0313 Offline
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Post: #1
Types of Electrolytes
Ok, so I see everywhere now, people talking about HHO this and "hydrogen generator" that and blah blah blah. After doing some homework, I've discovered preferred electrolytes and some others that may be of interest. I am starting this thread solely for the purpose of cataloging all the different electrolytes out there, and listing all the advantages or disadvantages of each. Starting off, this list is from my own knowledge which, while not vast, continues to grow daily. Also, I would like to point out that my experience with these cells has been an adventure to say the least. I set out to start my own business, "budget man's fuel cells" kind of thing. Thus far, I have poured much much more money into this than I had initially anticipated. My build is different than most I have seen, consisting of parts I picked up at lowe's and my own designs. I may try and get some pics of it up eventually, but for now no such luck. I used 1/4" plexiglass, stainless steel wall switch blanks, stainless steel cable ties (for power transmission between electrodes), marine epoxy, and I have experimented with a few different electrolytes.

(Also, keep in mind please that I do live in a small town, with limited access to raw materials and the closest metropolitan area is 80 miles away.)

Sodium and Potassium Hydroxide: Everywhere I look everyone uses this in their systems. I have not had the opportunity to try this one (or rather these ones) but from the tests I have observed, it works very well. Word of caution to beginners, however, mixing these with water can be very dangerous if not done properly, PLEASE PLEASE be careful when using any chemicals. The release of hydrogen gas during mixing is the only down side, as that is gas that could easily have been used for an engine.

Baking Soda- Sodium Bicarbonate: This is a mediocre electrolyte, at best. The reaction requires high voltages to be of very much use (of course all terms are relative) and after a while it will cake up and clog the electrodes, if your not careful. The one up side to this is that it is extremely stable when mixing/dissolving into water, so there is not much danger here.

Salt- Sodium Chloride: This could be a wonderful electrolyte for these systems, except for one thing.....If you want to use stainless steel electrodes in your system, anything containing chlorine can and will corrode your electrodes. I have done it, not fun. (kinda cool looking though) The chlorine, when released, will replace chromium (correct me if I've got the wrong element) in the stainless steel and you will get just a bunch of big holes. However, that being said, if you were to use, say silver or gold plated or even silver or gold solid electrodes, this would not be a problem, and would probably be one of the best electrolytes, because of its availability.

Koolaid®: I hear tell of people using koolaid as an electrolyte, I will try it I swear, I'm just too lazy. I think it would be the funniest thing in the world.

Epsom Salt-Magnesium Sulfate: I will be trying this very very soon, but as of yet have not. The electrical properties of the molecule itself should lend to a very powerful reaction, however, I am not certain of the end result. If sulfates or sulfides are going to be coming out of the exhaust, think of what your neighbors will say when you need to goto work at 2am, and you wake them up every day.....haha.

Potassium/ Sodium Carbonate: Closely related to baking soda, just missing the hydrogen atom. This is a base that has a relatively uninteresting reaction when mixing with water, and is therefore almost as safe as baking soda itself. The same problem plagues this electrolyte as baking soda though, in that higher voltages are required to get good results. I have, however, had very good results on just 12v out of my car, @ ~45A. Thats the only problem, it takes a lot of something. The best thing about this is its readily available at wal-mart. Guess where? That's right, pool stuffs. Its the base used to balance pH during the first phases of pool maintenance.

There is one other thing I have been fiddling around with, although I have yet to try a full run with it. I'm not sure it's worth mentioning, but I will anyway.

Iron Filings: Such as those you may get off a brake lathe. I notice that there is a very fine powder that will dissolve in water fairly easily. This should theoretically lend to very good conductivity, while never losing any electrolyte at all to electrolysis or thermal breakdown. The only downside I can determine would be the oxidation, during the break-in phase, the water would become very brownish-red, the color of course of rust. So oxygen output would be down slightly in the beginning. But once all the iron atoms bonded to the oxygen, the oxygen production would resume normal levels and the water would still be electrically conductive.

Now, I will reply (or post back here) to this in the next couple days, and see if anyone would like more information on my particular build. I have a few more things to add, but that are not electrolyte related, so I may put them in another post. I encourage anyone who knows, or that wants to, to correct any mistakes I have made, and add any other viable electrolytes you can think of.

Thank You for letting me ramble
11-11-2011 06:03 AM
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amos33 Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Types of Electrolytes
(11-11-2011 06:03 AM)imtheman0313 Wrote:  Ok, so I see everywhere now, people talking about HHO this and "hydrogen generator" that and blah blah blah. After doing some homework, I've discovered preferred electrolytes and some others that may be of interest. I am starting this thread solely for the purpose of cataloging all the different electrolytes out there, and listing all the advantages or disadvantages of each. Starting off, this list is from my own knowledge which, while not vast, continues to grow daily. Also, I would like to point out that my experience with these cells has been an adventure to say the least. I set out to start my own business, "budget man's fuel cells" kind of thing. Thus far, I have poured much much more money into this than I had initially anticipated. My build is different than most I have seen, consisting of parts I picked up at lowe's and my own designs. I may try and get some pics of it up eventually, but for now no such luck. I used 1/4" plexiglass, stainless steel wall switch blanks, stainless steel cable ties (for power transmission between electrodes), marine epoxy, and I have experimented with a few different electrolytes.

(Also, keep in mind please that I do live in a small town, with limited access to raw materials and the closest metropolitan area is 80 miles away.)

Sodium and Potassium Hydroxide: Everywhere I look everyone uses this in their systems. I have not had the opportunity to try this one (or rather these ones) but from the tests I have observed, it works very well. Word of caution to beginners, however, mixing these with water can be very dangerous if not done properly, PLEASE PLEASE be careful when using any chemicals. The release of hydrogen gas during mixing is the only down side, as that is gas that could easily have been used for an engine.

Baking Soda- Sodium Bicarbonate: This is a mediocre electrolyte, at best. The reaction requires high voltages to be of very much use (of course all terms are relative) and after a while it will cake up and clog the electrodes, if your not careful. The one up side to this is that it is extremely stable when mixing/dissolving into water, so there is not much danger here.

Salt- Sodium Chloride: This could be a wonderful electrolyte for these systems, except for one thing.....If you want to use stainless steel electrodes in your system, anything containing chlorine can and will corrode your electrodes. I have done it, not fun. (kinda cool looking though) The chlorine, when released, will replace chromium (correct me if I've got the wrong element) in the stainless steel and you will get just a bunch of big holes. However, that being said, if you were to use, say silver or gold plated or even silver or gold solid electrodes, this would not be a problem, and would probably be one of the best electrolytes, because of its availability.

Koolaid®: I hear tell of people using koolaid as an electrolyte, I will try it I swear, I'm just too lazy. I think it would be the funniest thing in the world.

Epsom Salt-Magnesium Sulfate: I will be trying this very very soon, but as of yet have not. The electrical properties of the molecule itself should lend to a very powerful reaction, however, I am not certain of the end result. If sulfates or sulfides are going to be coming out of the exhaust, think of what your neighbors will say when you need to goto work at 2am, and you wake them up every day.....haha.

Potassium/ Sodium Carbonate: Closely related to baking soda, just missing the hydrogen atom. This is a base that has a relatively uninteresting reaction when mixing with water, and is therefore almost as safe as baking soda itself. The same problem plagues this electrolyte as baking soda though, in that higher voltages are required to get good results. I have, however, had very good results on just 12v out of my car, @ ~45A. Thats the only problem, it takes a lot of something. The best thing about this is its readily available at wal-mart. Guess where? That's right, pool stuffs. Its the base used to balance pH during the first phases of pool maintenance.

There is one other thing I have been fiddling around with, although I have yet to try a full run with it. I'm not sure it's worth mentioning, but I will anyway.

Iron Filings: Such as those you may get off a brake lathe. I notice that there is a very fine powder that will dissolve in water fairly easily. This should theoretically lend to very good conductivity, while never losing any electrolyte at all to electrolysis or thermal breakdown. The only downside I can determine would be the oxidation, during the break-in phase, the water would become very brownish-red, the color of course of rust. So oxygen output would be down slightly in the beginning. But once all the iron atoms bonded to the oxygen, the oxygen production would resume normal levels and the water would still be electrically conductive.

Now, I will reply (or post back here) to this in the next couple days, and see if anyone would like more information on my particular build. I have a few more things to add, but that are not electrolyte related, so I may put them in another post. I encourage anyone who knows, or that wants to, to correct any mistakes I have made, and add any other viable electrolytes you can think of.

Thank You for letting me ramble

that was a nice post, I just wanted to say that of all the electrolytes we normally use in the production of OxyHydrogen, I prefer a 10% concentration of KOH in distillate water. But the salt as an electrolyte in water is a big no no, it produces Hydrogen and Chorine gas, the Oxygen stays in solution as OH. Hope you get some good replies...but I am a newbi to OxyHydogen Technology.

I am a Christian
11-11-2011 07:04 PM
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imtheman0313 Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Types of Electrolytes
I have yet to try the potassium/ sodium hydroxide route, primarily because in the town I live I cannot find it at any store, and I have been trying to do the small town budget thing. I do have another tidbit, for anyone who wants to know. Cleaning of electrodes. Because of the surface of the electrodes being rough, its hard to just wipe off any buildup easily. I am open to anyone else's solution to this problem when using electrolytes that can leave buildups on the electrodes. Personally, I have taken a liking to HCl. Let the electrodes sit in a solution of ~15% HCl for about 1-2 min, then drain off the solution and run water over the electrodes for another 1-2 min to remove all traces of the acid, because again Chlorines will just eat away at any stainless steel.

Also, I have a little bit more information on the iron filings. Assuming one can obtain a substantial amount of filings, and there are particles small enough to be easily dissolved in an amount of water, iron would be the best "electrolyte" to use. For the reasons I stated above. Only reason I bring it up again is I talked with a physicist a bit and ensured my theories were correct. The iron will not leave the water in any way, ever (unless u include "boiling" where the iron is trapped in steam or some such larger cluster of atoms) and after the oxygen bonds to it, the iron oxides will still be electrically conductive.
11-12-2011 02:48 AM
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