On August 11, 2012
Liver of Sulfur is a potassium sulfide mixture used in the creative community to oxidize, prematurely, fine or sterling silver, or copper bearing metals, including bronze and brass. Though available as a water-soluble solid, the Liver of Sulfur Extended Life Gel settles well into the metal or wire working worlds, more convenient in both time and expense, than its dry versions.
Unlike solid versions, the Liver of Sulfur XL (extended life) Gel is crafted for versatility and ease of use. It’s shelf life is far more impressive than it’s dry counterpart, and less likely to degrade in light or air, thanks to its easily stored screw-top or flip-top bottles.
The odor, though pungent, is harmless when properly prepared for use in well-ventilated areas. Purchased from Monster Slayer, the gel was thick and requires mixing pre-use. If left untended, the gel begins to settle and harden in a insoluble layer so, though its potency lasts much longer than the dry versions, still requires some attention.
The gel, as purchased from Monster Slayer in 4 oz containers with screw-top lids, was easy to use, requiring a small dipstick of gel mixed with water. A gel and hot water solution results in instant antiqued gratification, with deep and complete patina. It was my experience pre-mixed solution only sustains potency for twelve hours before discard becomes inevitable.
The gel may also be heated and painted on surfaces, though I found my supply woefully inadequate in this regard. Not only was this process messy, but neither heating the surface nor the gel granted me patina of any real notable depth when painted. However, the liquid solution was entirely successful in all regards.
Having also purchased a flip-top bottle of Liver of Sulfur Gel from Beaducation, I can attest to, without hesitation, the superiority of its screw top counterparts. The flip-top bottles seemed convenient and easy for storage, but leaked if on its side. Also, drips were harder to contain with the flip-top variety (ironically), than with a screw-top container, which allows for a greater area over which you can transfer and control the gel. Also, the Beaducation gel was inferior in potency, requiring more gel in less water to attain the same level of patina as with a less gel/more water solution from Monster Slayer.
The Monster Slayer gel proved itself remarkably resilient, attaining a shelf life of more than fourteen months while maintaining the same level of potency as its first use. I can easily recommend this product and this company for a reliable source of oxidization for those willing and ready to experiment beyond the frustrations of boiled eggs.
Have fun experimenting and happy weaving!
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