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using glow stick fluid outside the stick help

alright need some help. im wanting to fill a bunch of test tubes with the fluid from glow sticks for my halloween costume this year. but for some reason after removing the fluid from the glow sticks and putting it in the tubes it does not stay lit for very long at all. im talking anywhere from 3-4 mins to 60 seconds. i have tried breaking the inner container before and after putting it into the test tube, and for some reason mixing the two after seems to have a longer life. moving and shaking the test tubes does cause the mix to glow for less time and im going to be wearing them so i cant have this. does any one have any kind of knowledge if this area? i could really use your help. any ideas on how to fix the life span?

Picture of using glow stick fluid outside the stick help
pearce606 (author) 4 years ago
just an update for anyone who finds this....

the container in which you will be keeping the glow stick fluid MUST BE AIR TIGHT.

i got a really good glow for about 3 hours and then a normal/pretty good glow for another 3.

and thats enough time for a good costume party
Good to see you got this figured out.  Here's a thought you might try to experiment with if your so inclined.  Try adding some hydrogen peroxide to the tube before you seal it and see if it makes it glow for a longer time or brighter.  May work, may not, you never know till you try lol.  I know that putting the sticks in the freezer makes them glow longer, and I seen on here somewhere some one microwaved them to make them brighter.  Have fun playing with this and keep us posted.
pearce606 (author)  RedneckEngineer4 years ago
haha we just tried that! and the hydrogen peroxide doesnt help. the results were sort of like oil and water and let all the built up air pressure out at the same time.

now with freezing
freezer>glows longer/not so bright
microwave>glows shorter/really bright

but im supposed to be wearing them so neither one is really a useable mod..
lemonie4 years ago
It's based upon singlet oxygen, if you expose it to the air it gets contaminated with other things (e.g. triplet oxygen). Can you seal the tubes? L
pearce606 (author)  lemonie4 years ago
i have ordered some new tubes with screw caps so im hoping that will do the trick. i did notice the caps popping out a bit while i was testing
Do post an instructable, I'm sure it'd go down well. L
I have no clue for sure but could it be that the reason it stays lit longer in the stick is the lack of air? Could be the air is effecting the chemical reaction and causing it to "burn out" faster. Just a thought. You might be better off to just coil the sticks inside the tube without opening them.
pearce606 (author)  RedneckEngineer4 years ago
i did a bit of looking and turns out in real glow sticks, one part of the solution is hydrogen peroxide, so i think my test tubes need to be air tight to keep the HP in tact for longer. i dont think its just the new air inside the tube because there is always a big bubble in the glow sticks when you get em
guyfrom7up4 years ago
I think when it's out of the container the chemical reaction that makes it glow happens a lot quicker because the fluid can move around much faster. How many tubes are we talking here?
pearce606 (author)  guyfrom7up4 years ago
thats what i thought too... but shouldnt a normal glow stick go out under that condition too? 15-20 3"x1/2" in a bandolier belt so they need to move a bit.
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