View Full Version : nerves...

02-12-2002, 02:16 AM
I'm about to etch my first copper plate. Heading for the ferric chloride in just a minute.
I had a zinc plate ready to go, then discovered I didn't have the right mordant...so much to learn!

I'll be back...


02-12-2002, 04:08 PM
Jump right in, gal. That is the only way to learn, by doing. I can help with a lot of questions, but some things you just have to do to really learn.

Yep, zinc does take a different acid. I think you may like copper better than zinc anyway. Some people even prefer steel plates. I haven't worked with them so I couldn't say.

I'll send you the check list for timing your bites, and also post it here for others that might want the information. You know you can always call me if you get stuck with something. If my phone is busy best bets that I am online here.......lol Otherwise I should be at home.

02-12-2002, 05:19 PM
You're awesome Sassy! :D

I'm using the 'copper etching solution' from Graphic Chemical. Now it says on their website that it's ok for zinc too, but I've seen elsewhere, that zinc and ferric chloride create serously toxic chlorine gas. :eek: I think I'll take the safe route!

this is what Nik Semenof suggests on his site for etching zinc;

CuSO4 (copper sulfate -- bluestone) 1 kilogram
NaCl (sodium chloride -- table salt) 250 grams
NaHSO4 (sodium bisulfate -- Sani Flush ) 25 grams
H20 (water) - depending on bath strength 10-20 liters

Have you tried this? It's supposed to be relativly safe.

I wish I'd have paid more attention in chemistry class... :(


02-13-2002, 02:52 AM
No, I haven't tried that yet, and doubt that I will. After being forced to work with zinc in my first semester in printmaking I switched to copper, and will never go back to zinc. I just don't like zinc. If that is supposed to be a non-toxic or less toxic method of etching the plate they give it a try. Less toxic is best all the way around.