Leaking DEC VR201 monochrome monitor?

Swift Griggs swiftgriggs at gmail.com
Wed Jun 22 10:42:32 CDT 2016

On Wed, 22 Jun 2016, william degnan wrote:
> I picked up a DEC VR201 display today, it was leaking a highly corrosive 
> brown liquid.  So corrosive it burned my skin painfully / immediately 
> and I had to wash hands thoroughly.

PH test it, if you can. If it's caustic, then I'd suspect condensate mixed 
with electrolytic capacitor gunk. If it's acidic, I'd suspect either an 
industrial cleaner or again condensate that had mixed with acid from 
solder flux, then partially evaporated, leaving a concentrated acid ready 
to burn you. That's my cockamamie theory. 

If it tests acidic, put on some gloves and eye protection and pull the 
boards out you can, leaving just the (discharged) tube and the case. Then 
flush everything with a mix of water and baking soda. If it's caustic, 
clean it out with vinegar (ie.. 3% diluted acetic acid). Then flush the 
whole thing with purified water, clean the boards, and reassemble it. It 
might be a lost cause if that stuff has got down into the flyback 
transformer or ate all the solder mask off your logic board.


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