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Copper wire will grow glistening pure Silver metal crystals in a Silver Nitrate solution.
To make a more impressive Silver Tree, use a larger container like a beaker and cut a length of heavy copper wire bent into in the form of a Christmas tree.
The Copper reacting with the mixture in turn causes the solution to turn blue.
Copper Wire (solid, heavy gauge, #10 or #12)
1. Mix a 4% Silver Nitrate solution ( 4 grams of Silver Nitrate in 100 mL of distilled water ).
2. Strip the insulation off of some heavy gauge Copper wire. Standard 10 or 12 gauge 'Romex' solid copper house wire works very well. The Copper needs to be clean, bright & shiny. Old, oxidized Copper wire will not work.
3. The wire can be simply left straight or bent into a coil by winding it around a pencil, or a more elaborate design can be made depending on the size of the container and amount of solution you wish to prepare.
4. Simply place the Copper wire in the Silver Nitrate solution and leave it undisturbed. The slightest vibration will knock crystals off as they form and ruin the experiment. Pure Silver metal crystals will start to grow in under an hour. Ideally, the container should be left alone and undisturbed overnight.
5. Once the crystals have completely formed, the liquid can be carefully drained off leaving the Copper wire form completely coated with pure glistening Silver crystals.