Anachronist58

What is Going on Here?

50 posts in this topic

Every now and then I shun my endless responsibilities, and do something fun, on a whim.

Does anyone care to comment on what is happening, based upon the empirical evidence shown in these photos?

The particular species of plant is key.

Cheers,

Robert Taylor

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20170306_123559.jpg

20170308_115744.jpg

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Interesting. Is the pressed flower shape etched into the steel then?

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3 hours ago, Anachronist58 said:

The particular species of plant is key.

Is that gray-green wood-sorrel? At least I think that's the name of what I'm thinking of. Occasionally I see a clump or two of that around here.

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if i'm seeing right you used the natural acids in a sorrel-like species of plant to etch the outline into a piece of steel by pressing it. am I close?

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6 hours ago, tonyw said:

Interesting. Is the pressed flower shape etched into the steel then?

Yes

4 hours ago, Andrew Martin said:

Is that gray-green wood-sorrel? At least I think that's the name of what I'm thinking of. Occasionally I see a clump or two of that around here.

That's a wood sorrel.

3 hours ago, Tubalcain2 said:

if i'm seeing right you used the natural acids in a sorrel-like species of plant to etch the outline into a piece of steel by pressing it. am I close?

Yes. But it gets a bit more interesting.

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So, the Latin name for this plant reveals its significance to some very specific metallurgical uses. :ph34r:

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1 hour ago, Anachronist58 said:

So, the Latin name for this plant reveals its significance to some very specific metallurgical uses. :ph34r:

Genus oxalis, from which we get oxalic acid, used in rust removal.

 

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And here I was trying to think what 'little yellow flower' might be in Latin... :)

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Plants that aren't dead and dry are still photosynthesizing sunlight and are transpiring water. Laying on the steel means the steel is a natural condenser so what ever interesting chemicals the plant concentrates or manufactures is carried to the steel and both are subjected to constant moisture so long as there is light.

Here's a tip for your survival skill kit. Putting a couple few green plants in a clear plastic bottle keeps them live and working. The water they transpire will collect in the bottle till the plants die. It's as pure as distilled. Not a lot but good for a little lip wetting every now and then. It takes a lot of lush plants and bottles to keep you hydrated in the desert.

Why yes plants breath!B)

Frosty The Lucky.

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5 hours ago, JHCC said:

Genus oxalis, from which we get oxalic acid, used in rust removal.

 

Also, "Acetosella". Acetic Acid, Vinegar, must mean something, right?

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Señor Bello,

Oxalic acid is poisonous. Vinegar is unpleasant, but not poisonous.

In other words, use those chemicals with great care.

Just sayin.

SLAG.

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Andres Bello, I believe you are referring to the wood sorrel, 'Oxalis Acetosella'?

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This is awesome. Do a mural on sheet metal. Try cutting strips of the stem for a higher concentration. Or just for laying out patterns or anything else you can think of. How long was the flower pressed on for? Or was it just laid on the metal? 

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10 hours ago, Anachronist58 said:

Andres Bello, I believe you are referring to the wood sorrel, 'Oxalis Acetosella'?

Yes, that was what I was referring to. It makes me think that the name might have been given because of certain properties. Not because vinegar content, but because of similar properties/corrosivity. After all, the word Acetic is strangely familiar to Acid...

After that thought sparked, I went and looked for the etymology, and yes, Acetic is directly related to acid.

Disclaimer: I certainly don't know the plant, since it lives in a completely different continent from me

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Thanks all for your input!

17 hours ago, Frosty said:

 

 

21 hours ago, JHCC said:

Genus oxalis, from which we get oxalic acid, used in rust removal.

Thanks Frosty, I can hear Mrs Taylor now - "Robert! Your 2 liter bottles full of rotting plants are exploding in the driveway!" Seriously though, thanks for the stimulus.

Yes, JHCC,  and as a special etchant for detecting carbide precipitation in certain stainless steels.

14 hours ago, SLAG said:

Oxalic acid is poisonous. Vinegar is unpleasant, but not poisonous.

The etymology of Oxalis Acetosella would take some time to run down, if it could be traced to its origin at all. My species is O. Pes Caprae, Oxalis from the Greek/Latin, sour/sharp; Pes Caprae: foot (of) goat.

With 900+ species of Oxalis, one could spend a lifetime investigating why Og named this one this, and Sven named that one that.

"The preparation of salts of oxalic acid from plants had been known, at the latest, since 1745, when the Dutch botanist and physician Herman Boerhaave isolated a salt from sorrel.[7] By 1773, François Pierre Savary of Fribourg, Switzerland had isolated oxalic acid from its salt in sorrel.[8]" - Wikipedia.

2 hours ago, Andres Bello said:

Disclaimer: I certainly don't know the plant, since it lives in a completely different continent from me

Andres Bello, even in Argentina, there is a good chance that a wood sorrel lives near you. It is a Globally invasive genus.

12 hours ago, Jack-O-Lantern said:

This is awesome. Do a mural on sheet metal. Try cutting strips of the stem for a higher concentration. Or just for laying out patterns or anything else you can think of. How long was the flower pressed on for? Or was it just laid on the metal? 

Gourd-Beacon, this was a very rushed and clumsy experiment. Were I to do this up proper I would lay down the plants more carefully, and introduce Oxalis juice concentrate through capillary wicking from a syringe.

Also a high polish may surely be beneficial for good contrast. As seen on the strip of commercial bandsaw blade, which needed more sanding. All done with cast-off 400 grit wet/dry silicon carbide.

Not shown is sheet metal gleaned from a beverage can, the interior of which was folded over the Sorrel. The ceramic surface showed no evidence of etching (under no magnification).

Samples were pressed  as shown for 48 hours.

I also drew freehand on my rusty hardy anvil, which made a nice figure.

Remember, water alone will etch steel, so consider that to be a bugaboo in this poorly controlled experiment.

Robert Taylor

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I must say I really liked the result, and if I happen to cross paths with these plants or others with these qualities, would like to use this as a decoration in some kind of project.

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I thought California and Argentina are in the same continent ... but may be I am mistaken. After all the Panama canal cuts it in two? :)

15 hours ago, SLAG said:

Señor Bello,

Oxalic acid is poisonous. Vinegar is unpleasant, but not poisonous.

In other words, use those chemicals with great care.

Just sayin.

SLAG.

That may be so but the plant in question is edible. No danger there. 

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11 minutes ago, Marc1 said:

I thought California and Argentina are in the same continent ... but may be I am mistaken. After all the Panama canal cuts it in two? :)

That may be so but the plant in question is edible. No danger there. 

Well, that is a controversial subject. From my understanding, some say "The Americas" as a whole continent, and other separate North America and South America.

In my country, it is even more different:

We say "America" as the whole continent, but actually separate it in 3 parts:

North America (Canada, USA, Mexico), Central America (below Mexico down to Panama) and South America.

I have personally never heard a person from USA talking about Central America, and I always found that interesting.

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8 minutes ago, Marc1 said:

That may be so but the plant in question is edible. No danger there.

Are you sure? I only ask because I once checked out a book about N. American poisonous plants, their side effects/symptoms, and what causes those symptoms. Plenty of the plants in that book were toxic because of some group of compounds involving oxalates or oxalic acid (been awhile since I read the book). IIRC some of those plants were reportedly edible only AFTER boiling/cooking thoroughly. Wish I could remember the name of the book, it even said how many pounds of green potatoes you'd have to eat before noticing symptoms.

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4 minutes ago, Andres Bello said:

Well, that is a controversial subject. From my understanding, some say "The Americas" as a whole continent, and other separate North America and South America.

In my country, it is even more different:

We say "America" as the whole continent, but actually separate it in 3 parts:

North America (Canada, USA, Mexico), Central America (below Mexico down to Panama) and South America.

I have personally never heard a person from USA talking about Central America, and I always found that interesting.

I live in the USA and call the area in the middle Central America. Seems like most everybody around hear does, actually.

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Oxalis acetosella (wood sorrel or common wood sorrel) is a rhizomatous plant from the genusOxalis, common in most of Europe and parts of Asia. The binomial name is Oxalis acetosella, because of its sour taste. The common name wood sorrel is often used for other plants in the genus Oxalis. In much of its range it is the only member of its genus and hence simply known as "the" wood sorrel. While common wood sorrel may be used to differentiate it from most other species of Oxalis, in North America, Oxalis montana is also called common wood sorrel. It is also known as Alleluia because it blossoms between Easter and Pentecost, when the Psalms which end with Hallelujah were sung.

The plant has trifoliate compound leaves, the leaflets heart-shaped and folded through the middle, that occur in groups of three on petioles up to 10cm long. It flowers from spring to midsummer with small white chasmogamous flowers with pink streaks. Red or violet flowers also occur rarely.[citation needed]During the night or when it rains the flowers close and the leaves fold.

As with other species of wood sorrel, the leaves are sometimes eaten. An oxalate called "sal acetosella" was formerly extracted from the plant, through boiling.

220px-Oxalis_sp._leaves_-_20020616.jpg
 
Oxalis acetosella growing atPhoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland.

The common wood sorrel is sometimes referred to as a shamrock and given as a gift on St. Patrick's Day. This is due to its trifoliate clover-like leaf, and to early references to shamrock being eaten. Despite this, it is generally accepted that the plant described as shamrock is a species of clover, usually white clover (Trifolium repens).

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Geologically speaking we consider North America and South America to be on different major tectonic plates.

Pretty much anything can kill you if you consume too much and there are things like rhubarb where parts are edible and others are not.  I've eaten sheep sorrel in salads  

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Well ... a continent is a continent.

Different political animosities aside,  the American continent is just one from a geological and geographical point of view. Tectonic plates? Nothing to do with continent definition. 

Oh ... wait a minute ... is that why California is all on it's own? Now that is a revelation :)

The rocky mountains and the andes from Alaska down to Tierra del fuego should give a hint that it was formed all at the same time. 

 

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But it's all connected under the sea, so you could take that to an extreme, and call Earth one continent with a really big lake!

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4 minutes ago, ThomasPowers said:

Pretty much anything can kill you if you consume too much and there are things like rhubarb where parts are edible and others are not.

True, I'm just very careful about eating wild plants if there is any doubt as to whether it's toxic or what species it is. I heard a story once about a toddler who was given nightshade berries by accident because someone thought they were grapes. Now, if you know what it is and you know it isn't t toxic and is edible, and you're absolutely sure, then you can make some pretty decent salads in the middle of nowhere.

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