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Author Topic: Coca-Cola, so ... useful?
Zanney
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Hours of vainless searching has prompted me to ask this of all you ST-ers:

Has anybody ever heard before the "myth" that coca-cola is an effective engine cleaner/paint stripper/corpse degrader/what have you?

I've heard it before, and I would like to know two things:

a) is it actually true?
b) where can I find reputable evidence of this?

I'm doing a health report-y thing and it would be very useful if it were true. And as you know, you can't take too many precautions with what you include in factual documents.

Any pointing-in-the-right-direction would be appreciated

Rose-Anne


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entropie
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For a start, check out the Cokelore page on snopes.com
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melimelo
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there's not a website about it, but it's my personnal experience (well, my grandpa's personal experience).

my grandpa used to drink lots and lots and lots of coke. also, he had stomach pain pretty much all the time. someday, he decided to go see the doctor about it.

the doctor tried to find what the problem was, and among other questions, he asked my grandpa if he drank coke. since my grandpa did, the doctor told him to switch to pepsi.

my grandpa was skeptical, but he thought it wouldn't hurt to give pepsi a try. ta da! stomach pain went away. now, if you see my grandpa, you know there is some pepsi not far.


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-Jill
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We had a bottle of Coke with a nail in it (I can't remember if it was galvanized or not) in a science class a few years ago. The Coke ate the nail. We never tried it with any other kind of cola but that was more then enough to get me to stop drinking it. (Not to mention the atrocious taste.)
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Gumdrop Girl
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Coke is made of the same ol' crap that goes into other sodas. The only variation is in the flavorings they use (which include lime juice, vanilla, some kola nut extracts, but no more coca). Other major ingredients include water, carbon dioxide (which incidentally dissolves into the water and forms carbonic acid), and several different forms of sugar.

Yes, soda can cause stomach discomfort for anybody who has problems of acid reflux or excess acid output in their stomach. And it might even take the rust off a nail. And yes, it might even dissolve an iron nail? Why? because it is acidic. however, it is weakly acidic. That's why is can dissolve iron and not aluminum (certain metals are more reactive than others -- iron is far more reactive than aluminum).

Want more resources, than I'd first read a chemistry text on reactivity and then read up on solubility. And maybe brushing up on your knowledge of acids and bases will help out beaucoup.

Me, I'm pepsi drinker

------------------
"I am so smart, I am so smart, s-m-r-t....I mean s-m-A-r-t." Homer J. Simpson
"Mmm ... floor pie!" Homer J. Simpson


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DarkChild717
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Yes, a friend of mine did use Coke to clean a battery, or something with one of his MANY cars.

That's okay. I still drink it. I like the stronger taste, but I don't drink much. Maybe a can or two every couple of days.


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DrQuack5
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Why doesn't it eat through the can?
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Olive
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quote:
Originally posted by Gumdrop Girl:
however, it is weakly acidic. That's why is can dissolve iron and not aluminum (certain metals are more reactive than others -- iron is far more reactive than aluminum).


Did that answer you Question Mr. Quack?


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Voostra
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Coke will eventually eat through the can - the physics dept at my high school had one for a density demonstration that was maybe 20 yrs old, and you could see it was close to eating through.
Along with the dissolved CO2 giving carbonic acid, often there is citric and phosphoric acid present in colas as well, all which help to make it acidic. If you need proof that it can dossilve stuff, leave a tooth in the stuff for a week or so. If not a tooth, try and egg, it's a pretty easy way to remove the shell. Seeing as its acidic, it probably can clean stuff pretty well, don;t know if it would be strong enough to stip paint though. In terms of batteries, you can use it to make a battery. Car batteries, commonly "lead-acid" batteries use sulphuric acid, but coke will do in a pinch.

Oh yah - another site that can help with these type of questions (any sciencey questions): http://www.madsci.org/

[This message has been edited by Voostra (edited 09-15-2002).]


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Gumdrop Girl
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yes, phosphoric acid, one of the 4 *strong* acids (along with hydrochloric, hydrofluoric, and nitric acids). If you are at risk for osteoporosis, definitely give up the soda and drink milk instead (or eat broccoli if you don't dig dairy). The phosphoric acid you consume can leech the calcium from your bones!

------------------
"I am so smart, I am so smart, s-m-r-t....I mean s-m-A-r-t." Homer J. Simpson
"Mmm ... floor pie!" Homer J. Simpson


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lemming
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Also, the inside of a Coke can (and I use "Coke" widely, as I'm Texan ;] ) is shielded; the aluminum isn't right up against the soda, there's a coating on the inside of the can. Anyway, that's what my science teacher told me.
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Dark_Wolf
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I have read three rather disturbing facts about coca cola...
1.)regular coke is a 98% effective spermicide and diet coke is 100% effective...makes you think doesn't it??
2.) Coke can disolve a t-bone steak in three days flat.
and finally 3.) the people who deliver coca-cola often use the concentrated coca cola syrup..(the stuff they use before thay add all the water) to strip their engines.
I don't believe the last one as a rule but I do have a little bit of advice on coke.
*NEVER sip it, always gulp or swallow quickly as your teeth are more at risk when you sip the coke and leave it hanging around your gums for long periods of time.
* DRINK WATER. it does more good than harm - coke is the opposite.

(I also heard that coke, when drunk in large quantities in a short period of time, can turn you pee clear...this put me right off..lol)


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vball girl12
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quote:
Originally posted by Dark_Wolf:
(I also heard that coke, when drunk in large quantities in a short period of time, can turn you pee clear...this put me right off..lol)

Actually, that goes for any kind of beverage drunk in a large quantities in a short period of time--your urine turning clear is a result of it being dilute, so it has nothing to do with the Coke. I've had clear urine after drinking a lot of water in a short period of time.


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Gumdrop Girl
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quote:
3.) the people who deliver coca-cola often use the concentrated coca cola syrup..(the stuff they use before thay add all the water) to strip their engines.

Au contrere mon frere! The syrup is not the corrosive component of Coca Cola. In fact, it's just heavy sugar syrup. The corrosive part of soda is the actual soda. The fizzy stuff! If anyone uses Coke syrup to clean an engine, they'll only get a very sticky engine.

Here's the chemical reaction spelled out:

H2O (water) + CO2 (carbon dioxide) --> H2CO3 (carbonic acid)

when you add gas to water to make it fizz, the gas dissolves and makes acid. The liquid fizzes because the acid breaks down into water and gas again when pressure falls (when you open a can or bottle).

Also scroll up to see what Voostra said about phosphoric acid.

And one more thing, if it's too strange to believe, it's probably some sort of urban myth. The same ppl who tell you Coke syrup cleans engines will probably tell you "gullible" isn't found in the dictionary.

------------------
"Things are only fragile till they break."


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Dzuunmod
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quote:
Originally posted by Dark_Wolf:
(I also heard that coke, when drunk in large quantities in a short period of time, can turn you pee clear...this put me right off..lol)

Actually, I've found that many beverages can do this, if you drink enough of them. I also understand that clear pee is a good sign. It's dark yellow foggy stuff that's bad. Try drinking water all day, and you'll probably get a similar result.

------------------
"Isn't it amazing what you can accomplish/when the little sensation gets in your way/no ambition whisperin' over your shoulder/oh, isn't it amazing you can do anything"
-The Tragically Hip, Fireworks


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Zanney
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Hey, thanks for the replies everyone. I found a great analysis done (local one, actually, which was even better), and the results were quite scary indeed!

I've never been a huge fan, but what that stuff does to your teeth has got me off it for life!

(And I think, given the amount of cola drunk around the world, dentistry is the gold-mine profession of the future!!)


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mnsouthpawjr
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I've heard the myth that Coke is an effective spermicide. However, everything I've seen prove the opposite. I'm curious where the following stats came from as the cokelore webpage, indiciates NO stats. If this is so effective as a spermicide then why isn't it marketed as spermicide?

quote:
Originally posted by Dark_Wolf:
1.)regular coke is a 98% effective spermicide and diet coke is 100% effective...makes you think doesn't it??

[This message has been edited by mnsouthpawjr (edited 10-11-2002).]


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Gumdrop Girl
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Coca Cola is NOT an effective spermicide.

please, don't make me explain this one.


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lemming
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Oh, come on, Gummy, please explain it.

I know it's not, and I know putting anything sugary in there isn't a good idea, but give us your sexy formulae and explanations. ;]


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Gumdrop Girl
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okay, just for you lemming, but you probably already knew this...
http://www.scarleteen.com/forum/Forum2/HTML/000342.html

Mophead said it first, and I had a pretty good reply.

Add to that, all the sugar in Coke, as lemming was alluding to, is food for hungry bacteria and yeast. Want a nasty, yeasty, bacteria-laden infection? douche with Coke. *shudders* and all the fizzing on and in your genitals can't be very comfy either.

So please, the important things about Coca Cola have been said. Its properties are the same as pretty much any other soda, and they've been explained pretty thoroughly. So if people are going to use this thread to propagate potentially dangerous urban myths, I'm gonna have to close it.

------------------
"Things are only fragile till they break."


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kiqass
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wellllll...... coke is really good if u haf a bad sore throat... mix it wid salt and drink it..... it has helped me thrice
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