Dissolving Borax in water

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by pete_gee, Jun 20, 2004.

  1. Im trying to try out Gainers modified Rodinal formula with Sodium
    Ascorbate and Borax. I got some borax from a potters supplies but im
    having a heck of a time dissolving the damned stuff. Can never seem
    to disolve all of it. Ive tried boiling water, and warm water both
    before and after adding sodium ascorbate and rodinal, but just seems
    to dissolve SLOWLY - like hours of stirring it would seem...

    Would it be best to get a mortar and pessle and pulverise the crap
    out of it first? or is there some trick?

    Also, can i make up a known concentrate of borax and water (say 1
    gram/250 mls water or something) and use it later, or will the water
    effect it?
  2. Odd that you're having such a hard time of it. If you're in the U.S., try getting some 20 Mule Team Borax at the supermarket instead. It dissolves in a few minutes with stirring in hot tap water. I believe a borax solution in water will last quite a long time.
  3. Ah, you're in New Zealand. Well, making a stock solution should work.
  4. My 20 mule team borax dissolves easily in room temp. distilled water. Maybe it's your borax?
  5. AFAIK there's one type of borax that is very hard to dissolve - I've forgot which is it. maybe your is that kind?

    Try dissolving it in some water (up to 3g/100cc, or the solution will saturate) and see how it goes.
  6. There was a thread on rec.photo.darkroom, in which it was stated that anhydrous borax is extremely difficult to dissolve. Laundry borax is the decahydrate, and according to a table i got from a web site once, should dissolve about 55gram/Liter at room temperature.
  7. The really hard to dissolve stuff (anhydrous) is marketed as 'Boraxo'
  8. The only stuff I have seen marketed as Boraxo is a hand cleaner that contains another detergent in addition to borax and an abrasive that will not dissolve. Do not use it for photographic purposes except perhaps for scrubbing trays.
  9. Peter, did you get "soluble" borax? It sounds like you didn't.
  10. Its anhydrous borax, it did eventually disolve, just took bl**dy ages... Processed a roll of 35mm hp5+ @320 for 7:48 in 1:48 rodinal with vitc and borax - havent printed it yet, but it looks fairly good on visual inspection. will print some frames tonight.
  11. It's actually quite difficult for us to get Borax here, no 20 team mule. I bought some soluble Borax from a potters supplies but I don't use it anymore because it has too many "things" in it. There is something I would like to try, a water softener which looks like Borax and I will ring the company today to find out exactly what it is.
  12. I found out that the stuff I thought might be Borax is in fact--not. Its Sodium Hexametaphosphate, otherwise known as Calgon. Still useful, not as useful as Borax though.

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