A nitration experiment carried out showed that a solution of half diluted sulfuric and nitric acids would turn the submerged cottons into a gooey substance. The remnants of the cotton balls did not flash as nitrocellulose would have.
On the other hand, cotton balls submerged in a mixture of fuming nitric acid and fuming sulfuric acid remained intact and were nitrated, producing nitrocellulose.
What I'm really curious and confused about is how the dilution not only interferes with the nitration itself, but also affects its dissolution.
Any guidance is appreciated.