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I would like to create a copper mirror on a plate of sandblasted glass.

I know that a reaction exists:

$$\ce{CuSO4 + N2H2 -> Cu + N2 + H2SO4}$$

I know that such a plate of copper is very weak. Therefore, I would like to use sandblasted or laser etched glass.

My question(s) are:

  1. Would laser etched glass be sufficient to retain the deposition? I.e. if I plate a complete glass slide, part of which is etched, and part of which is smooth – can I safely wipe off the smooth part from deposited copper, while the etched part provides a good adhesion to the deposited layer?
  2. Is there a way to replace the hydrazine? I read that fructose could work – but is not reliable. I also know that $\ce{Zn}$ and $\ce{P}$ also work as reducing agents. But they work at an elevated temperature. Is it possible that we can do this at room temperature with an easily available, less poisonous or explosive (possibly from the drug store or the hardware store) agent?
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  • $\begingroup$ Zn works at room temperature just fine. The resulting Cu won't stick to glass, though. $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Jan 17 at 8:12
  • $\begingroup$ You will find a lot more recipes for silvering a glass surface. Once you have a thin silver layer, just electrodeposit the copper on top? $\endgroup$ – Karl Jan 17 at 10:57

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