Potion Bottle Bubble String Lights: Decorate Your Tree With Chemistry

Apparently, decorating Christmas trees with little vials of methyl chloride was extremely popular in the 50s and 60s. Because methyl chloride has a low boiling point, a small bulb can generate enough heat to produce bubbles inside the vial, creating a mesmerizing effect. These "bubble lights" were a little before my time, but I can certainly appreciate the idea of a potentially dangerous but decorative chemistry experiment being repurposed for the needs of a modern, super nerdy Christmas tree. Enter potion bottle bubble string lights.

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(Photo: ThinkGeek)

Its actually a brilliant idea. A string of potion bottles bubbling away would be the perfect anchor for a gaming-themed tree. They can be ordered here for $24.99 each. Each string only contains seven potion bottles, so putting together enough to decorate an entire tree might be an expensive undertaking. Throwing some of these D20 string lights into the mix might be a good idea. The complete list of specs for the potion bottle bubble lights is available below.

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• Potion Bottle Bubble String Lights
• A ThinkGeek creation
• A string of seven bubbling potion bottles
• Perfect for your favorite potions master
• Science: the tubes contain methylene chloride, CH2Cl2
• Clips on the lights' bases allow you to arrange them so they're upright
• 5 Watt max candelabra base bulbs
• Outlet at the end so you can connect them end-to-end
• Connect up to 12 strings end-to-end (which gives you 84 potions)
• Materials: Plastic, glass, methylene chloride
• Care Instructions: Be careful not to break! Instructions are included with the lights for how to safely clean up the substance if the glass cracks.
• Imported
• For indoor and outdoor use
• Dimensions: 5 1/2" tall base to tip, 4 1/4" total bottle height, 11 1/2 ft. long cord
• Equipped with overload protection fuse and replacement fuse (125V 5A max)
• 120V 60Hz 0.29A 35W Type A polarized plug
• Includes string of lights, replacement fuse, and instructions for neutralizing methylene chloride spills
• Ages 14+
• Note: Do not swallow methylene chloride. Avoid skin and eye contact. Do not use near gas or electric heaters, fireplaces, candles, or other sources of heat. Do not use as a nightlight in a child's room.