There are concerns over Picric Acid in the fly fishing industry. Semperfli Picric Acid is laboratory manufactured for us specially and is safe for dying of fly tying feathers, furs and synthetics. We use Picric diluted 100ml (full bottle provided with 2 litres of water.
Picric Acid crystals or 2,4,6-trinitrophenol were dangerous and used for explosives, indeed the navy used this to fire canons pre 1916. It was first mentioned in alchemical writings of Johann Rudolf Glauber in 1742. The picric acid would form very sensitive picric salts within days of filling the shells and would often detonate from the shock of firing. Lacquering the insides of the shells and spraying them with a turpentine/starch solution neutralized the picric acid and prevented it from forming picric salts. Today we use diluted picric acid and store this in plastic containers. We do not use metals even for agitation and it is perfectly safe.
Usage: We use plastic bowls for dilution and use plastic tools to agitate the picric acid. We leave the materials in until they have visibly changed. Some materials like thick wings, grouse for example may take a couple of days for full penetration of the picric acid whereas pheasant tails can dye in 15 minutes to 1 hour. We use latex gloves as picric acid, although not dangerous does make your hand look like you have smoked 60 cigarettes per day for years we have found from accidental spillage when we first started working with the laboratory to manufacture the product. For safety with ALL dying, from picric acid dying to acid dying we use safety glasses and latex gloves.
Once the materials have achieved the olive color that you require simply wash off excess picric acid under running water. We then dry the feathers and furs with a drying cabinet (a hairdryer is an alternative!)
PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT - HAND PROTECTION Use protective gloves. The most suitable glove should be chosen in consultation with the gloves supplier, who can inform about the breakthrough time of the glove material.
EYE PROTECTION Wear approved, tight-fitting safety glasses where splashing is probable.
RESPIRATORY EQUIPMENT Self-contained breathing apparatus where high splashing is likely.
OTHER PROTECTION Provide eyewash station.
HYGIENE MEASURES DO NOT SMOKE IN WORK AREA! Wash at the end of each work shift and before eating, smoking and using the toilet. Promptly remove any clothing that becomes contaminated. Wash promptly with soap & water if skin becomes contaminated.
- 100ml Picric Acid Solution
- Full Safety Data Sheet
- Safety Gloves
You Will Need:
- Plastic Bowl
- Safety Glasses
- Plastic Utensil (for removing from dye bath and washing)
- Safe drying space