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Zn + HCl and steel or iron plating

  1. Dec 22, 2016 #1
    I dissolved zinc in HCl until it stopped fizzing - all the Zn is gone so there may be some HCl left. I have a purple/violet liquid that I assume is zinc chloride. When I brush newly cut mild steel or iron with the solution, I get copper/brass coloured plating that does not rub off. I have no copper in the mix. My plan was to use the ZnCl to electroplate steel that has been prepared by electroplating copper which I was then intending to heat to get brass plate. The colour that I'm getting just by brushing the steel and iron with my solution is almost close enough to brass to make the rest of the process redundant. What's going on - what is the copper/brass colour? Anyone? cheers Roger
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 22, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    If the solution is purple/violet it was not a pure Zn, as its solutions are colorless.
  4. Dec 22, 2016 #3
    My zinc came from an etching plate which is marketed as being 99.95% pure zinc. The acid is 35% that I brought from the hardware shop... come to think of it, I did initially put a zinc carbon battery case in there to start with... washed all the electrolyte off and wire brushed it... maybe that isn't a good source for zinc.
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