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KMnO4 is Potassium Permanganate. It is a strong tanning agent, like
formaldehyde, but also is a staining SOB. Its primary function is to
crosslink molecules of organic matter, but it turns most such matter an
ugly brown. The aqueous solution is such a pretty purple, the muddy
brown stain can be a real surprise.
Our litiguous friends of the Bar have made it essentially unavailable
at most drugstores in the US. Agricultural or chemical suppliers are
the main sources, now, if you can find it at all.
Wright Huntley (408) 248-5905 Santa Clara, CA USA huntley at ix_netcom.com