[LMB] Fwd: Fwd: Re: What’s needed

Pat Mathews mathews55 at msn.com
Sat Feb 1 00:14:48 GMT 2020

If you all want detailed discussions and descriptions of what it takes, Eric Flint's 1632 series goes into great detail, at least on the balloons. Check out a story called Upward Mobility, I think in one of the Ring of Fire anthologies.

BTW, pulp is indeed a way of making paper, and cheaper than rags. But have a look at an old (maybe ca. 1880?) rag-paper book and compare it to one of your old mass market (many c. 1979) paperbacks. Pulp as a medium drives historians mad. Though compared to digital, where much, much data had been lost because nobody can read the medium any more not reconstruct the gadget that could, as, frex, at NASA... nobody thought to save that stuff in archival quality paper!
From: lois-bujold-bounces at lists.herald.co.uk <lois-bujold-bounces at lists.herald.co.uk> on behalf of Baur <baur at chello.at>
Sent: Friday, January 31, 2020 9:16 AM
To: Discussion of the works of Lois McMaster Bujold. <lois-bujold at lists.herald.co.uk>
Subject: [LMB] Fwd: Fwd: Re: What’s needed

Am 31.01.2020 um 16:32 schrieb Aruvqan:
> On 1/31/2020 5:50 AM, Baur wrote:
>> paper is the prerequiste for printing .. as long as we are limited to
>> vellum, that is a major bottleneck .. Gutenberg printed only a few of
>> his first run of bibles on vellum, most on linen paper
>> this in turn points on the prerequisite of the availability of large
>> amounts of linen rags for paper making - damn, i start to sound like
>> Burke in Connections)
> Well, you don't actually need rag for paper, you can make quite adequate
> paper from just trees, the pulp has to be pounded quite finely

can that even be done? - i would have assumed you still need a grinding
stage before the pounding, and that would mean very large water powered
grinding wheels / mills ..

 > the
> bleaching process is the pain in the fundament - though I suppose that
> the sunlight/lignin yellowing makes sunlight bleaching impossible. I
> would have to doublecheck my processes, on sodium hypochlorite making
> not from modern techniques but period ones.

thanks for checking on that  - saves me the work of running these
processes down

> Hm, modern version:
> While I could do this with confidence [wouldn't recommend it to amaturs
> offhand]I don't see them really generating electricity in either world.
> Winding copper cores isn't particularly difficult, and spinning it up is
> easy with a water wheel, I don't really think so.

not seeing any processes with electricity- not for a long time (too much
missing in the basis)

> Hmmm - doable:
> *1792*
> In France, Claude Louis Berthollet, Napoleon's scientific expert, noted
> that chlorine gas added to a solution of potash created a powerful
> bleach. The idea made the rounds of Europe, but putting the exact amount
> of each component into the mix was difficult. And potash was pricey.
> *1799*
> Scottish chemist Charles Tennant took Berthollet's chlorine idea,
> substituted limestone for the potash, and made a bleaching powder
> (calcium hypochlorite). In decades, bleaching powder spread over Europe,
> whitening not only clothes but also other products, especially writing
> paper. But because the powder contained so much chlorine, it still was
> expensive.
> from
> One generates chlorine by running hydrochloric acid through a bed of
> activated charcoal ... you crack salt by heating it in porcelain
> crucibles. OK, doable.

frankly, processes with largeish amounts of hot, elemental chlorine in a
medievloid tech level setting make me nervous - see a good number of
dead alchemists

> Reasonably small batch could be more easily made
> somewhere with large salt deposits, woodlands [for burning into ash to
> make the potash] or near limestone deposits. So in the equivalent of 5G
> Austria. WGW being roughly shown on page 6 of
> I know personally of the
> salt deposits in western NY - been down in the mine actually, it is in
> Geneseo NY. I don't offhand know of the ones in Ohio, I just know they
> are there. Limestone is available in Ohio -
> https://ohiohistorycentral.org/w/Limestone_Rocks
> OK, so bleaching of paper is very doable if they can figure out the
> process of bleachmaking.
> now my brain hurts =) off to breakfast =)




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