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Caustic Soda / Lye / Sodium Hyrdroxide

I need some Caustic Soda for my next Instructable, and I've found a drain-cleaning product with Sodium Hydroxide listed as the main ingredient. (Potassium Nitrate as the second, yay!) Is there any way to measure the purity of any of the ingredients? Does anybody know of a better source of lye? (As it's kind of a pain to sift out the pellets of saltpeter from the mix.)

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pyro2210 years ago
you can get sodium hydroxide here. United nuclear just got it in. only bad part is you have to have an adult signature on delivery. Hope this helps.
trebuchet0310 years ago
Drain cleaners tend to also have Aluminum in there too -- part of the awesome drain cleaning action :) You probably don't want that in your soap ;)


Tool... It was discontinued.... The company (Reckitt-Benckiser) was getting a lot of pressure to pull it :/ Kinda like cutting a major artery for people that make their own soap and biodiesel.

But it can be made from hardwood ashes ;)
carbon (author)  trebuchet0310 years ago
I noticed some metal strips in my Drano-knock-off, I was wondering what that was... By the way...how does one do a break in the text as in your comment?
4 dashes ("-") ;)
Funny I was going to come in here and tell you to just go buy red devil lye, but ends up it's supposedly been discontinued because of the "War on Drugs". First choice, do a google for soap making suppliers. Second choice chemical supply house, if you can find one that will sell to an individual.
for something that has been discontiued, i see an awful lot of it on the grocery store shelves.
It's a pretty recent thing ;) It will take time for the shelves to clear.
carbon (author)  Tool Using Animal10 years ago
An individual under 18 who looks kind of shifty, for that matter.