Date: Fri, 10 Mar 2006 14:36:04 -0800
Reply-To: Debbie Decker <dmdecker**At_Symbol_Here**UCDAVIS.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: Debbie Decker <dmdecker**At_Symbol_Here**UCDAVIS.EDU>
Subject: Re: Questions out of my realm
In-Reply-To: <2a2.6ef02b0.3143086c**At_Symbol_Here**>
You've gotten some good responses about the butyl lithium so I won't add to
the confusion .

But as to the ether - it has such a low boiling point, heating in a warm
water bath or even with the hands on the outside of the flask will get the
ether warm enough to boil.  I remember, a hundred years ago (dinosaurs
roamed the earth!) launching a Grignard reaction in just that way.  We set
up the apparatus and just heated the ether in the reaction flask by cupping
our hands around the flask.  Just enough warm to get the reaction going,
nice and gently.

Hotplate/stirrer=sparks which won't peacefully co-exist with ether vapors.
A heating mantle (turned on very low) or a warm water bath (not boiling and
certainly not steam) will be enough to boil the ether.

Hope this helps,
Debbie M. Decker, Campus Chemical Hygiene Officer
Environmental Health and Safety
University of California, Davis
1 Shields Ave.
Davis, CA  95616
(530)754-7964/(530)752-4527 (FAX)
Co-Conspirator to Make the World A 
Better Place -- Visit and join the conspiracy

-----Original Message-----
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU] On Behalf Of
Sent: Friday, March 10, 2006 8:51 AM
To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Questions out of my realm


I got the following two questions from a colleague and since I work in the 
art field, these are out of my area.  Can I get some help?

1.  a student was boiling ether in a large open flask on a stirrer hotplate 
and the fume alone caught on fire, inside the hood. .  Do you have
for them to reduce the ether amount for re-crystallization in a safer

2. a student in was quenching butyl lithium with n-propanol in an open flask

and it also caught on fire.  Is there a safer way to quench the butyl
w;ithout catching on fire?

Monona Rossol 

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