DIY Water Bath
A laboratory water bath is a tool used to maintain a very stable temperature much like an incubator. It is used to give indirect heat to the chemicals or bacteria and maintains that temperature. Water baths can hold often temperatures within a tenth of a degree Celsius; the water is often circulated. Sometimes beads are used as a waterless option. We use it to give bacteria heat shock thus loosening its cell wall. Our experiment needs a waterbath constant at 42°C so the maximum temperature of the waterbath.
You will need,
6. Boiled Water
How our water bath works
Our water bath uses a simple aquarium heater who's thermostat is hacked to cutoff at 42°C. A simple bucket is used as the container for the water bath as it does not allow the heat to escape.
To make a water bath,
1. Remove the glass casing of the aquarium heater without breaking it.
2. Unscrew the connecter screw and use it to pull out the thermostat adjustment. Be careful not to break it, just bend it slightly.
3. With sand paper file the tip of the thermostat adjustment. Be careful as every mm that you file off increases the temperature greatly.
4. Keep filing and checking till the right temperature is achieved. (In our case it was 42 C. and was achieved after about 5 tries.)
5. Once the temperature is achieved seal off the heater the same way you opened it and place it into the glass casing and properly seal the edge so that there is no chance of water seeping in.
6. Next clean the bucket with detol and half fill with boiled water.
7. Attach a lid to the bucket to reduce heat loss.
8. Make a small hole on the lid for the thermometer. It is important that the thermometer is dipped in the water.
9. Stick the aquarium heater in the bucket and make shure that the heating element is completely submerged. For safety do not put the opened side underwater.
10. You can make the float using thermocol with holes bog enough for the vials to fit into. Your water bath is ready.
1. Try not to crack the outer casing while opening it for the first time. I know it is difficult but try.
2. Never let the water touch the circuit or the heating element
3. Do not dip hot glass in water it will crack and the circuit will burst.
4. Do not touch heating coil after use.
5. Be careful to not file the thermostat adjustment too much or you will have to shut it down manually every time it goes above the required temperature.
6. Only half fill the bucket so that water doesn’t touch the open side of the circuit.