Author Topic: Your Really STUPID Lab Mistakes....  (Read 36103 times)

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  • Guest
Doing a 22Lt size Grignard, and trying to start ...
« Reply #20 on: November 11, 2002, 09:33:00 PM »
Doing a 22Lt size Grignard, and trying to start it by adding way over 10% more like 40% of the THF sol to the Mg. It still wouldn't start so Scooby being so smart thought a little controlled heating would be the way to go. The next thing Scooby sees is the drierite being shot out of the drying tube and 10 Lts of THF vapour/liquid filling the room, with lots of electrical stuff running. Talk about funny!?!


  • Guest
and scooby, what was the consequence? :-( ...
« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2002, 05:12:00 AM »
and scooby, what was the consequence?  :(

...sounds horrible...


  • Guest
How about
« Reply #22 on: November 12, 2002, 06:55:00 PM »
Making PCE... oh, about to use cyclohexanon, not reading the flask-label swim added cyclohexanol, what a suprise: it didn't work..

Scooby_Doo: That's what makes chemistry fun!  ;D

1-2-3 ACiD


  • Guest
« Reply #23 on: November 13, 2002, 07:20:00 PM »
During the last recrystalisation step of the first attempt to make methylamine, the glass beaker containing methylamine in methanol was promptly dropped inside the fridge, shattering and spilling everywhere.  After a 3 hour cleanup operation, which included having to place the fridge upside down and washing nearby walls and floors, the "chemist" was sitting on the couch exausted, smelling of rotten fish and poor hygene.

The cleanup operation had to be repeated a number of times on the subsequent days, due to extremely bad smell in the house.  Three packs of nag shampa insence were spent as well as multiple cans of deodoriser and many cleaning agents.

The fridge had to be cleaned inside and out three times, and two weeks later a faint smell of something resembling baked urine can still be smelled next to the area immediatly surrounding ground zero.

The "chemist's" partner was not impressed.  Never again.


  • Guest
My Mom would've killed me if I did that!!
« Reply #24 on: November 13, 2002, 07:23:00 PM »

1-2-3 ACiD


  • Guest
Xicori: Mr THF and me had a little race to see ...
« Reply #25 on: November 13, 2002, 09:33:00 PM »
Xicori: Mr THF and me had a little race to see who could get to the power points first, luckily for me THF is pretty slow off the mark. :)

pHarmacist: That's what makes chemistry fun!

I would probably agree with you there, after you have survived doing insanely crazy and flat-out reactions, everything else seems a little dull. ::)


  • Guest
back wen some friends and i were kinda 'new' to ...
« Reply #26 on: November 16, 2002, 02:46:00 AM »
back wen some friends and i were kinda 'new' to chemistry and we tried to make some chloroform, we were doing the reaction and distillation in one setup, and we had stoppered all the ends so there wasn't any room for the pressure to escape during the reaction.
one moment we were standing there watching wat we thought was going all fine wen suddenly the condensor blew up and the sudden release of pressure pushed the reactants up out of the RBF really fast and all over the whole room. took a while to clean up  ::)  ...
and in our next try to make it one of my friends decided to hold the 2L RBF instead of attaching it to the retort stand and it got too hot for him to hold so he dropped it :(

and all the other glassware we've broken b4 that and since then :(  ....


  • Guest
major mbrp accident
« Reply #27 on: November 16, 2002, 01:51:00 PM »
A few weeks back Swib cut the strikers from 15 boxes of matches. All the strikers were set aside, and the actual matches were thrown into a plastic bag. 15 boxes of matches is now 750 books of matches without any cover on them to protect them from friction.
So Swib tosses the whole bag of matches into his 15th floor garbage shoot. And guess what, matches are friction sensitive. So during the 15 floor drop they must have ignited, becasue within minutes the fire alarm went off, and the building was burning. The fire was in the garbage bin, but the fire dept smashed in the walls to see for fire inside the walls. They casued thousands of dollars in  water damage.

Well nobody asked Swib about it, so swib never mentioned it.
750 books of matches is an excellent arson device. Actually it's a crude match head bomb.


  • Guest
EtOH fumes -> Drunk Off Ass
« Reply #28 on: November 18, 2002, 09:22:00 AM »
Pinch situation,
    Recreational camper evapping 10gal. of EtOH using electric skillets and hot air guns with very inadequate ventilation. (nuf sed)

A false sense of security, is worse than being unsecure.


  • Guest
Really bad day
« Reply #29 on: November 19, 2002, 12:18:00 AM »
Missing label. Thinking container held NaBr (but really held sodium Hypochlorite) poured into DMSO. Flask flashed and contents rushed to the ceiling.

"Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits." Satchel Paige


  • Guest
« Reply #30 on: November 19, 2002, 02:09:00 AM »
Superheating a solution of filtered acetone and ethanol and then adding the stirbar in the flask.

Instant volcano covering the ceiling and filling the room with explosive solvent vapours, luckily no smokers where in the lab!.


  • Guest
venting HCl vapor thru a fan motor
« Reply #31 on: November 20, 2002, 06:37:00 AM »
squirrel cage vent fan; seized up real quick; instant rust; left 'stupid' without a vent.


  • Guest
Never rotavap leftover extractions from a ...
« Reply #32 on: November 28, 2002, 01:36:00 PM »
Never rotavap leftover extractions from a standard, shulgin-style performic to dryness. I tried that once, on a rotavap where I'd set the heating bath to hand-warm. Ended up with about two or three grams of `dark-red/brown colored  oil'. Big surprise when I brought the rotavap to normal pressure and the gunk in the flask decided to explode. Rotavap instantly covered with smoke, fortunately no damage.  But I did realize that I was lucky...

Hardcore libertarians consider the idea of a Libertarian Party dangerously socialist.


  • Guest
I once decided to try a hydration of safrole ...
« Reply #33 on: December 04, 2002, 01:14:00 PM »
I once decided to try a hydration of safrole using concentrated sulfuric acid. Without stirring or cooling. It took two weeks to clean and repaint the fucking room after the volcano of polymerized shit blew up the flask.
There was also the time I decided to try gassing methanolic solution of mdma base in a closed system. Those rubber hoses don't hold up like they should. I had to make an excuse at work why my face was red and my nostrils and mouth were torn to shit. Luckily, cleared up in a week. Also, on my first attempt at mdma, I tried to speed up the evaporation process with a stove top in a kitchen with no ventilation in the middle of downtown in a VERY small apartment. The neighbors were nice and called the fire department while we were trying to put the fire out. When the glass shatters and methanol seeps under the burner, it's a bitch to put out without a fire extinguisher. Anyway we played it off with a story that I was cleaning the stove with ammonia and didn't realize the stove was on. The list goes on and on... ::)

"I laugh in the face of danger, and then I hide until it goes away."


  • Guest
I don't know about EtOH, but acetone vapors are ...
« Reply #34 on: December 05, 2002, 12:00:00 AM »


  • Guest
Almost Fatal
« Reply #35 on: December 06, 2002, 12:43:00 PM »
Walking up to a motorhome parked with the lights off in the middle of the desert in the middle of the night without announcing my presence first.

Seems they were reacting some P2P with some other stuff and didn't like being surprised.

I've been shot at before but for some reason this time scared me more.


  • Guest
tennis ball
« Reply #36 on: December 06, 2002, 08:52:00 PM »


  • Guest
another volcano
« Reply #37 on: December 07, 2002, 08:16:00 AM »
not stirring conc. sulfuric acid while dripping in hydrochloric acid. wondering about the slow rate of HCL gas evolution after a few minutes, I jiggled the flask and painted me, the roof, and walls with about 300mL H2SO4/HCl. goggles and a respirator saved me from any serious damage, and without the goggles I suspect I woulnd't be able to see anymore.


  • Guest
Cumulus Methylaminus
« Reply #38 on: December 10, 2002, 09:04:00 PM »
To produce a "big" batch of methylamine HCl, ammonium chloride was added to formalin (about 2.5L)in a 5L RB and the reaction was allowed to progress at 104 degree.  Subsequent distillation and ammonium chloride recovery steps were then performed.  But for the final concentration and sublimation step, swim fell asleep (been going for 2 + days straight)and woke up suddenly to an entire house fuming with cooked methylamine HCL.  Swim ran to the lab and found huge streams of methylamine smoke flying out the vac adapter and the base of 5L RB was black with burnt methylamine.  It took swim 2days to wash every surface in that house and multiple weeks to air it out.

Everything went fine as it it appeared that the smoke billowing out of the house was coming from an overcooked turkey.  (swim feigned taking out a cooking pot on the balcony and everything 8) )

never, never again....

Don't drug the mind-let the mind use the drug-it won't mind.


  • Guest
ran a 21g MeNO2 reduction using extra heavy duty ...
« Reply #39 on: December 12, 2002, 02:31:00 AM »
ran a 21g MeNO2 reduction using extra heavy duty foil. had to keep pouring water of the flask and overflowing the water bath to keep it under control. ran water all down the sides of the hotplate/stirrer, some of which must have penetrated it because the heating function is shorted out now.

don't do this!

uhm, and once tried to extract some mda from basic acqueous solution using IPA.