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  1. #1

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    Obtaining small quantities of KBr in UK ... ?

    In order to pursue trying Caffenol development (35mm) I'm trying to obtain small (c.100g) quantities of KBr at a "sensible" price, but am finding it frustrating.

    While a couple of suppliers (Silverprint & Process Supplies) are able to supply, the shipping cost quadruples or even quintuples the cost of the chemical itself (not the supplier's fault - it can't be sent by Royal Mail as it is a "prohibited substance", so has to go by courier).

    One answer might be to "top up" the order with other supplies, thereby making the marginal cost of the carriage tolerable, but my throughput of film is so small at the moment (3 or 4 rolls a month) that I already have as much other equipment/film/whatever as I need for the time being.

    Anyone got any bright ideas?

  2. #2
    K-G
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    Take a day off , go to London , visit Silverprint and enjoy the town. It will certainly be more expensive but what a day you can have !

    Karl-Gustaf
    Karl-Gustaf Hellqvist

    www.heliochroma.com

  3. #3

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    thanks! yes - very good, lateral thinking ...

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by pdeeh View Post
    it can't be sent by Royal Mail as it is a "prohibited substance", so has to go by courier).
    Having checked with Royal Mail, KBr in small quantities is perfectly acceptable to send as long as it is well packed. Some of the other chemicals that we might use are on the "prohibited substance" list - Dichromates and (surprisingly) Potassium Ferricyanide are two examples of NO.

    I'm going to try to get a copy of the list, but apparently, it is quite a large tome.

  5. #5

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    Many thanks to paul_c5x4 for helping sort this out

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_c5x4 View Post
    Royal Mail ... "prohibited substance" list ... (surprisingly) Potassium Ferricyanide
    They see the 'cyanide' and go no further. Marzipan has more active cyanide in it. Call it 'Prussian Yellow', instead.

    P. Bromide is still in the pharmacopoeia - your doctor can maybe get you some on the national health.
    Last edited by Nicholas Lindan; 06-28-2012 at 04:59 PM. Click to view previous post history.
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  7. #7
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    I like the idea of visiting London - or perhaps a friend or relative will go to London and would be willing to get the chemical for you. (Alternatively, Silverprint can probably courier it somewhere within London pretty cheaply, so that your assistant doesn't have to go to Southwark to get it.)

    Alternatively, can you top up your order with other bulk chemicals with long shelf lives that you can use up eventually? Your volume of film is irrelevant as long as you get value out of the purchase eventually.
    Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_c5x4 View Post
    Having checked with Royal Mail, KBr in small quantities is perfectly acceptable to send as long as it is well packed. Some of the other chemicals that we might use are on the "prohibited substance" list - Dichromates and (surprisingly) Potassium Ferricyanide are two examples of NO.

    I'm going to try to get a copy of the list, but apparently, it is quite a large tome.
    This is a perfect example of bureaucrats making regulations without the input of chemists and toxicologists. A bureaucracy loves to make regulations whether it is in the UK or elsewhere. God knows we have a superfluity of them in the US.
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  9. #9
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    Also, if you are making searches only for Potassium Bromide, you can widen your search to include Sodium Bromide (NaBr). It is exactly identical in 99.99% of photographic uses, just at a bit different weight to match the molar mass of KBr.

  10. #10

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    You can get 100g with sensible postage on ebay http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Potassium-...item1e6f8d417a . Obviously you take your chances with ebay, but the seller linked has 100% feedback and only sells chemical, so I guess it is a fairly safe bet. You pay slightly more per gram, but if you really do only need 100g in the foreseeable future, then it makes sense.

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