Colloidal Silver Generators: Constant Stirring

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Constant Stirring
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This commentary describes the different methods employed to add constant stirring to improve colloidal silver production.

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Ivan Anderson
B.B. <not yet approved>
Brooks Bradley
Ken, Coyote ZEnterprises
Bob Lee
S.Y. <not yet approved>
Trem, SilverGen
Fred Peschel, PII

References to specific names of persons outside of the commentaries have been abbreviated.

Original Source Format: Text messages
Edited: Reformatted, emphasis ours, spelling, small linguistic modifications, greetings removed
Copyrights: Content under public domain. HTML copyright 2001 The CSDW, rights reserved, released for noncommercial applications except by participants whom have unlimited rights.

Items both in brackets and italicized are editor additions to the text.

[ Taken from a thread entitled "on generator quality" - I.A. summarizes the need for constant stirring to reduce agglomeration in the colloidal silver production process. The reduction of agglomeration and the dispersion of silver in the production vessel greatly improves the end quality of the colloidal silver produced ]

Ivan Anderson( 7-11-2000 ):

What causes one generator to produce 'brown sludge' and another to produce clear CS, is... in a nutshell, the uncontrolled stripping of silver ions from the positive silver electrode (anode) in ever increasing clouds, and the aggregation of these ions into larger particles before they can become solvated (surrounded by water molecules), dispersed and stable.

If a generator uses some sort of process to restrict and control the stripping of the anode, or increase the dispersion of the particles before they grow too large, then a very stable (indefinite?) clear colloid can be made at high concentration (15+PPM). Current limiting is essential in my book, as this restricts the number of ions stripped at any moment, and if the current density of the anode is low enough one can achieve the above alone. However this takes time and can be increased somewhat if active dispersion is employed, either by stirring or thermal convection.

The physical dimensions of the generating container and electrode configuration are also important in the overall properties of the colloid.

But it must be said that all colloidal silver, even the brown sludge (if intercepted at the gold stage) is reported to be effective in treating infection etc., and this is likely because of the manner in which it is absorbed (IMO), but the darker the brew the less stable it is likely to be, and such a solution should not be stored for any length of time.

[ The most popular methods for constant stirring include mechanical stirring, air bubbling, thermal stirring, magnetic stirring, and water circulation via a pump. The following is a combination of three separate posts by B.B, one of the early pioneers in actively promoting stirring as a method to improve colloidal silver production. ]


The reason for stirring is to reduce the agglomeration of silver ions. The field strength between the wires is considerably stronger than the repulsion of like polarity ions.

Here is an easy check to see the difference. On a brew with no stirring at some point, say 4 ma., make note of the current reading and disconnect the battery. Wait about 3 or 4 seconds and reconnect the battery and note the drop in current. This is due to the Ag+ ions dispersing through the liquid. This doesn't happen to any extent with constant stirring.

The current levels for a given PPM are much higher with no stirring than with stirring.

If you want good colloidal silver then stir. So at this time I will show you a very simple and inexpensive way employ stirring:

First you need a lid for your brew vessel. Then put a 1/4" hole in the center and create holes for your electrodes at the spacing that you desire. For 14 to 16 oz I prefer about 1/2" spacing with 3 1/2" wet length.

Then get a Radio Shack 1 1/2 vdc motor $0.99 , a battery box and a "D" battery, and a pkg. of 10 ohm resistors.

Hot glue or epoxy the motor to the lid. Place three resistors in parallel and twist their respective ends together for 3 1/3 ohms that you will place in series with one of the motor leads. When the battery gets old it may be necessary to quickly short the resistor pack with a clip lead to start the motor. With the resistor pack the motor voltage will be about .5 volts.

The actual stirrer is a 2" length of plastic insulation from a #14 copper wire pushed on to the motor shaft. This setup stirs a cylinder of distilled water that is 4 1/2" dia by 8" tall (2 liters) very effectively.

My colloidal silver has such a weak tyndall effect even at 10 to 15 PPM as measured by my spect. that one must go into a dark room to see it. GOOD STUFF!!

Don't waste your money on gear motors. "They run to damn slow"!!!!!!!! I have tried them. The best and least expensive is the Radio Shack $0.99 motor. Use the All electronic speed control and a 5 v dc walrat.

The idea behind stirring is to get enough velocity between the electrodes to reduce or eliminate agglomeration.

Been there and done all that.

Up until about four months ago I would spend 10 to 12 hours a day doing all kinds of engineering type of investigation on as many aspects of CS as anyone mentioned. Quite frankly I have run out of things to do with out going into equipment costing 20 to 30 thousands.

[ Trem from SilverGen contrasts bubbling and mechanical stirring ]

TREM ( 1/18/02 ):

Here's my take on it.

I don't like bubbling for several reasons:

1. Typically there are about 10,000 spores and dust particles in each cubic foot of air near the floor. That level decreases with height but nevertheless one can see that air is NOT clean in an average room. I do not think it wise to pump those particles through the water. I also think that it will raise the conductivity of the water giving one the false impression the mix is getting stronger. Stirring doesn't have this downside.

2. As Ivan stated, it also adds CO2 to the water. Stirring does not.

3. The bubblers most people opt for have tubing and diaphragms made of some plastic which may or may not outgas into the water. Not good.

As to the SG6 Auto. I have done quite a bit of experimenting with different motors and stirring speeds before settling on the motor speed we use which was 30 RPM but is now 40 RPM (different motor). My observations
are that it only takes a very gentle movement of the water to move the cloud away from the anode. It does not take vigorous movement. Slow stirring accomplishes that quite easily. I have watched the dispersion for long periods using a laser pointer to see the movement. I think vigorous stirring can cause more agglomeration than gentle stirring. That's only an opinion...I may be wrong. I had poor results when using a small higher speed DC motor. Maybe others have better results.

[ ~ 01/03/02 ] :

Previously, I was working on a stirrer but hadn't come out with it until sources of suitable motors and enclosures were located. I was trying different stirring methods and wasn't having much luck using the little DC motors because they spin too fast and I couldn't slow them down reliably. Didn't want to use resistors to slow them down because there was too much heat being dissipated in the enclosure. Tried using zeners to drop the voltage but then the motors didn't have much torque so they just weren't suitable. It wasn't until I discovered slow speed AC motors that everything came together.

[ Ken from Coyote ZEnterprises, agrees, and expounds upon mechanical stirring ]

Ken ( 1/19/02 ):

Stir speed:

I've found that stirring too fast promotes a build up of a fuzzy grey deposit that grows opposite to the direction of the water currents. I believe this to be caused by water pressure keeping the size of the hydrogen bubbles so small that their buoyancy won't overcome their adhesion to the electrode and silver becomes deposited on the surface tension of the water/bubble interface.

As the hydrogen bubble is stabilized in size by the coating, a new bubble forms and also becomes stabilized. Eventually, a structure forms on the electrode that falls off into the water as light grey chunks. Also, this
build up is only semi conductive and slows the process [keeping the hydrogen bubbles forming slowly...sometimes developing a feedback loop that just makes the structure bigger and deposits little silver into the water.

I have found that a high speed DC motor will do a good job if the stirrer is straight. The rate of stir can be adjusted by shortening the stirrer. Just 3/8 of an inch of a spinning straight cylindrical stirrer exposed to the waters surface creates a vortex that reaches the bottom of the container like a slow tornado. Place a tiny piece of paper in the water to see just where the currents go. It spirals down the center of the vortex and wafts up the outside of the container when it reaches bottom. A longer stirrer can make the water look like it's going down a drain.

The slower the currents, the long as it keeps all the water moving.

[ 01/08/02 ] :

It took me a long time to find the right motor. I use one that looks exactly like a CD ROM drive motor. 25 ma max. draw and pancake shaped to get enough slow speed torque and run through a NPN transistor controlled by a trimmer pot. Very low heat dissipation.


[ 07/12/00 ] :

A heater is easily made by cutting a 1 inch hole in a can and placing it upside down on a night light. I looks really cool too! Hand stirring takes a bit of attention. Stirring devices are far more complicated for the home brewer.

[ 10/08/01 ]

If the container size and initial water temperature are the same, the light bulb method of stirring via thermal currents is very repeatable. The bulb [5 or 7 watts, usually] always uses its rated power, in the same base,
under the same container. What is variable is the room temperature...which is variable with or without doing thermal stirring. Thermal stirring is, however, slow. If the current is over , say, 1 might not be causing the water to move fast enough to keep the "ion cloud" dissipating, thus limiting effectiveness of that stirring method
( 'limiting'..not 'eliminating'). Moving the water too fast can cause other problems. Experiment! Everyone's set up is different.

SY 07/02/00 :

For those looking for suitable motors to stir their colloidal silver during its production, here are a couple of sources:

Both have the same 110 volt 60 Hz AC motor which rotates at 30 RPM. It is a timing-style motor, originally designed for use in microwave ovens, measuring 2 inch diameter by about 0.8 inch thick. The output shaft is 0.16 inch square about 0.27 inch long. Price is about $2.50. These should work better than the small DC motors which run at hundreds to thousands of RPM. Stirring should be gentle so as to not dislodge "sludge" from the electrodes.

All Electronics: Part No. ACM-105 ( they are in California )
Marlin P. Jones: Part No. 12277-MA ( they are in Florida )

You can order from both places on-line.

[ Ivan Anderson on bubbling vs. stirring ] :

Ivan Anderson ( 1/19/02 ):

I tried bubbling with first with air and then argon. I found in using air that I was seeing a definite Tyndall Beam (TE ) with many sparkles, which is not acceptable in my product. Argon was better, but too expensive, so I only use that as a pressure source for my filter (0.2um so that I can claim filter sterilization). I find a slow mechanical or thermal stirring to result in a perfectly clear product with no TE. The selection of a very small current density is the secret of fine colloidal silver.

[ Trem from SilverGen on an alternate, successful method for "bubbling" ( 10/17/00 ) ] :

If you have the electrodes trapped between two side pieces to form a square tube, then what an air bubbler will do is make the column of water act as an "air lift" as used by divers to move sand, etc. I have just started to experiment with this system and it is encouraging. The water does move quite well and I don't see any agglomeration yet. Color is clear and it has weak Tyndall with 25 PPM on a PWT meter. So, that's about 20 PPM after subtracting water uS and meter correction.

So far so good! Don't give up on air bubblers. Just don't use them in the open water. Contain the air and I think you'll be surprised.

[ Brooks Bradley on bubbling ]

I do not intend to initiate or exacerbate excessive dialog.....nor to become embroiled in adversarial contentions favoring bubbling over stirring----as being more advantageous in supporting CS generation. We have found both methods to be quite successful. However, I do believe the more vocal detractors may, possibly, be overzealous in their condemnation of bubbling as an effective support function for generating acceptable "home-use" quality CS.

Frankly, we have been unable to prove a superiority of stirring over bubbling----for size, ppm, or reaction speed ---among the LVDC methods we employed. Others may have achieved different results.

With these preliminary considerations in mind, I offer the following commentary especially directed toward those actively considering the prospects of utilizing a bubbler as an ancillary protocol. The following is a brief outline for a useful bubbler system, determined by one of our investigators to be of measurable value for supporting satisfactory CS generation.

Our best results accrued from the following general arrangement: A conventional LVDC system including a D.C. Power source of 30 vdc or higher (40 to 46 volt range proved superior....but not an absolute requirement). No voltage source lower than 24 vdc was utilized.

The D.C. Power Supply was connected through a conventional Digital Multimeter configured to the appropriate milliamp scale, thence on to one of the silver electrodes....then completing the circuit by connecting the remaining D.C. power lead to the other silver electrode.

The bubbler system used included the following parts (all obtainable from Walmart) : One small Aqua Culture Air Pump (5 to 10 gallon tank size)...about $6.00. Aquarium Gang Valve (#c9047/2) about $2.50; Aquarium Bubble Stone #ASC-1(B)...about $1.50; Silicone Airline Tubing #JM005......8' by 2.44mm.....about $1.25.

Directions for employment:

Connect about 3' of the tubing (or as desired) to the air pump outlet; connect the gang valve inlet to the remaining end; select another length of tubing (e.g. 2' to 3') and connect one end to one of the gang valve outlets (blocking the other by closing its valve); connect the remaining end to the bubble-stone. Locate the bubble-stone between the electrodes---at or near the bottom of the liquid container. After starting the generator, plug in the air pump and adjust the position of the bubble stream between the electrodes and adjust the gang valve to the desired output volume.

Allow system to operate until the multi-meter is reading the desired milliampere current ( usually between 2.0 to 6 m.a. for our purposes [ the list exhibits considerable controversy over current levels---we have not found any reasonable current level to degrade the solution to consequential levels ] )........then interrupt the generation process and test for desired solution strength or utilize a laser pointer to confirm Tyndall effect. If stronger solution is desired wipe electrodes clean----even if gross accumulation is not readily visible to the naked eye....and re-energize the generation system. For the more discriminating among you, the use of two coffee filters to cover the entire outside surface of the air pump may be employed to serve as an effective pre-filter.

Construction of this element is accomplished by placing one filter over the bottom half and the other over the top-half (clam shell type) of the air pump and securing with four rubber bands (2 lengthwise and 2 across). This system facilitated the generation of high quality CS with little detectable compromise in either composition, concentration or size parameters....when compared to other ancillary amendments. Size sample were subjected to Scanning Electron Microscopy.

p.s.: Some, inconsequential, "plate-out" may occur on the silicone tubing....especially noticeable for those using preheated water. A majority of our "do-it-yourself" staffers do use preheated water for accelerating the early process stage. Additionally, a simple method for cleaning the bubble stone and/or removing loose residue, occasionally (every couple of months), is to submerge it in muriatic (Hcl) acid for about 5 seconds, removing and placing in a container of distilled water and forcing air through it for about 3+ minutes. Use proper caution as this acid is a severe tissue burner.

[ Fred from PII on Constant Stirring ( 10/03/04 ) ] :

The real need for stirring is to prevent a point discharge, as a conductive stringer grows between the electrodes, due to the low velocity of silver ions in water. If allowed, the disruptive current flow from a point source will actually rip fractured crystals (sputtering action) rather then ions from the electrode.

The use of air bubblers is fine IF bubbles are ducted and thus kept awayfrom the electrodes. Trev started to comment on this approach but long after we were on the market. Do not use a bubbler stone, as many suggest, or tiny bubbles remain in suspension and then bubbles attach and grow on the electrodes, reducing surface area and thus productivity. Further, electrode area reduction increases current density and it is not constant current that controls quality but instantaneous current density.

We introduced bubblers in our Collgen2 model over 7 years ago, after designing our generator to work in a standard plastic gallon water jug. By inserting the bubbler hose into the hollow handle, a steady pumping action is obtained from the center of the jug to the top, without any bubbles attaching to the electrodes! Well drillers use this same air injection technique to develop a water well.

The final point is to establish the optimum circulation level for the electrode/container configuration and then select an air pump (or stirrer)
to accomplish that. In our design we use a large area silver ingot yet are able to space them 3/8" apart, by using optimized circulation, while consistently yielding a 100% ionic solution.

[ We felt a great way to end this document was the following dissertation by Bob Lee 04/08/99 ]

Greetings most wondrous of the brewers art, colloidal silver that is,

Way back on February 22 of this year, 1999, being 3rd after leap year and 223rd year of American Independence; S. Y. did write that her colloidal silver brew did stir itself before her very eyes. And S. is indeed correct, having seen the same phenomenon with my own eyes.

Phenomenon: Any fact or event which can be described and explained in known scientific terms. Websters Dictionary. If its not explainable it could be a miracle.

Having seen what S. saw, I became intrigued and began a series of experiments to determine why the water was self stirring, without any weird theories. The first time I saw self stirring water was at the church making up coffee and hot tea water before the members arrived ( we take turns doing that ). I have seen this over a period of several years.

Here are my findings, which you may repeat yourselves:

First lets get a little earth physics in our minds. As the earth rotates a force called *Coriolis Force* will cause fluids to move in curved lines instead of straight lines. Fluids being gasses and liquids. Second, fluids will move toward a point of LOW pressure and away from a point of HIGH pressure. Now let's look at some everyday examples of these TWO earth laws, sometimes called principles.

The sun heats the air and it rises to create a dome of air, called a high pressure area. The air will flow away from this high pressure area to a low pressure area. As it flows the earth is rotating and the air travels in a curved line over the surface of the earth. The air curves to the right since the earth is moving from west to east. That is a CLOCKWISE rotation. Remember; a high pressure gets clockwise rotation. If we cool the air it will form a LOW pressure area at the center and the air will flow into the low pressure area, with air moving COUNTERCLOCKWISE over the surface of the earth. Remember; a low pressure gets counterclockwise rotation.

1. High pressure gets clockwise rotation.
2. Low pressure gets counterclockwise rotation.
3. High pressure, fluid flows away.
4. Low pressure, fluid flows toward.

Now go flush the toilet and watch the water rotate counterclockwise in to the LOW pressure at the center. Water draining down creates a low pressure. Our friends down under will have the opposite effect of the northern hemisphere. Now fill the sink with water and pull the plug, water will rotate counterclockwise as the water drains down (a low pressure). Take a water hose and set the end upright (tie it to a brick) in a wash tub, fill the tub with water so the water will appear to *well up* in the center of the tub. Now we have a high pressure in the center and the water will rotate clockwise as in flows outward from the center. The same laws apply to water as to air (any fluid) moving over the surface of the earth.

Back to our brew. A pot of water being gently heated in the center and not on the outer edges will create a high pressure in the center and the water will flow outward from the center in a clockwise rotation. Watch out now, if we heat the whole area of the pot's bottom there will not be a central high pressure area. In that case the water will move as a toroid in a vertical rotation (like a donut), without horizontal rotation. Also if the pot should be slightly tilted, so the heat is concentrated in one spot a high pressure will occur with resulting rotation. I saw that with a hot water pot for tea, which was not replaced into the center of the heating element. How easy this is to observe will depend on several things. The size of the pot in relation to the size of heat source, depth of water, amount of heat applied (low heat works best for these tests). Shape of pot also comes into play. I have found if you put a drop of vegetable oil on the water in makes a thin film and you can more better see the water movement.

An interesting test was to put a heating wire (pipe heat wire) around the lower outer edge of the pot. This heated the outer edge and left the center cooler than the outer edge. We now have a low in the center of this warm water and the water flowed into the center of the pot with counterclockwise rotation. If the water becomes too hot there may not be enough temperature difference to create a low or high in the center of the water, and no water movement will be noticed, or at the least very difficult to observe.

Thank you S. for bringing this interesting phenomenon to our attention. This was a fun thing for me, even if I did make a mess in the kitchen. :-)

[ Comments by ]

In summary:

Constant stirring is a critically important concept toward the refinement of the colloidal silver generation process. The two most prevalent methods are implemented easily: thermal heating and mechanical stirring. The easiest mistake to make when implementing either is over-stirring/overheating.

Small, efficient, affordable motors can be used that slowly circulate the water, dispersing the emerging silver more uniformly into the water, breaking the "ion stream" between both electrodes. This process reduces the sludge and "tree" formations on the electrodes, providing a cleaner method to produce colloidal silver, and allows the silver, as it is being deposited in the water, to achieve greater hydration.

Most mechanical stirring devices are designed where the motor is secured above the the brewing container, and the stirrer reaches in between the electrodes, stirring toward the top surface of the water. In the end, a more successful design may be a structured rod that reaches deeper into the brewing container, and stirs from the bottom which may reduce any change in the surface conditions of the brewing colloidal silver.

In any event, slow circulation is preferred above rapid stirring, unless, perhaps, proper polarity reversing is implemented.

In thermal heating, one can easily command the type of circulation that occurs by regulating where the heat is applied to the bottom of the container. Any type of heat suffices, be it from a light bulb, a table top "coffee warmer", or even a cleverly devised stovetop setup. It is important to remember that the amount of heat applied need not be excessive to achieve excellent results. Applying a small amount of heat that is specifically targeted toward the middle-bottom of the brewing container provides excellent circulation. Another method is to allow heat to rise around the container - each method changes the pressure which results in water circulation.

A pump may be employed to stir water as well, although one should carefully review the design to be certain one is not contaminating the water or adding unnecessary variables to the colloidal silver equation.

As Brooks Bradley and a few others across the span of years have noted, bubbling is a successful method that produces a fine colloidal silver. However, it should be noted that one will not likely be able to achieve the most supreme results possible through such employment. Using a bubbling system, one is not able to strictly control all variables in the production process.

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