Making Mercury Thermometers

The COVID pandemic has certainly made thermometers part of everyday discourse. Once upon a time, the mercury-filled instrument was the only home-friendly device available. I was not even sure you could buy one these days, but Amazon sells several "liquid-filled" devices. Here is some info from the vendor at the Amazon link.

     Posted By: Paul - Mon Jun 15, 2020
     Category: Body | Diseases | Health | Technology | Twentieth Century

Mercury + thallium would be a nice mixture for a mouth thermometer. In leaded glass, I assume.
Posted by Virtual in Carnate on 06/15/20 at 11:46 AM
I remember old comedy bits where the thermometer would become a snack. Mmmmm, glass and mercury, what a combination.
Posted by KDP on 06/15/20 at 12:02 PM
If you're of a certain age, you remember playing with the mercury from broken thermometers.
Posted by ges on 06/15/20 at 04:15 PM
If you’re of a certain age, you also remember rectal thermometers. Yikes!!
Posted by Brian on 06/16/20 at 08:56 AM
@ges, yep...rubbing pennies with the mercury to change their color.
Posted by Steve E. on 06/16/20 at 02:08 PM
Yes, I remember playing with the mercury out of a broken thermometer, fascinated that it was a solid that was also like a liquid (or vice versa).
Posted by Judy on 06/16/20 at 04:02 PM
Our family dentist would give me mercury. He once showed me how rubbing it on a quarter makes it "shine" and have that liquid feel to it.
Posted by Virtual in Carnate on 06/17/20 at 11:30 AM
I remember one 'street recipe' for fulminate of mercury (for blasting caps) specifying how many thermometers you had to break open.
Posted by Phideaux on 06/18/20 at 01:15 AM
Brian: if you're of a certain age, you'll remember the joke asking how you tell the difference between an oral and a rectal thermometer. And the joke about the nurse who asked a colleague why she had a thermometer behind her ear.
Posted by Richard Bos on 06/20/20 at 09:26 AM
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.