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my kids want to restore an old hand tool made of mostly iron. I've choosen electrolysis as method for rust removal. We used Natron to enhance the conductivity of the water. The process worked so far and we get as expected some chemical side products swimming on top of the solution. We have brown stuff (iron) and from the wires some blue (silver or copper), and we have back stuff. The solution was pretty black afterwards as well as some scum swimming on top of it. I don't want my kids to come in contact with (too much) lead. Is there an easy way to determine if the hand tool has lead in it?

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closed as too broad by Mithoron, A.K., Todd Minehardt, Jon Custer, Soumik Das Mar 13 at 16:20

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • $\begingroup$ there are consumer lead testing kits available at most hardware stores $\endgroup$ – A.K. Mar 11 at 23:11
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Add the information regarding the composition regarding the electrodes. However lead is very heavy it would not like to float on the top. Secondly, lead compounds are mostly white with an exception of oxides (yellow/ red) and iodide (yellowish). Most likely the black floating scum is carbon in iron. Wear gloves, and wash your object with a mild abrasive such as a baking soda, and it should be fine. After all it was meant as a hand tool. It will not become "toxic" after a brief electrolysis.

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