The reason to test this experiment was to determine whether
copper(II) chloride was used or copper(III) chloride.

Materials Needed:

2 100 mL beakers copper(II) chloride
wash bottle 2 iron nails
stirring rod 1 M hydrochloric acid, HCl
crucible tongs distilled water
centigram balance
10 mL graduated cylinder


1. Be sure to have your safety goggles and laboratory apron before you
enter the lab station.

2. Using the 100 mL beaker, make a solution with approximately 2
grams of copper(II) chloride and 15 mL of distilled water.

3. Use a stirring rod to stir the solution so that all of the copper(II)
chloride crystals have dissolved in the distilled water.

4. Acquire two dry and clean nails. Be sure the two nails can rest easily
on the bottom of you beaker.

5. Gently drop the nails in the copper(II) chloride solution. Leave the
nails in the solution for approximately 20 minutes. Do not shake or
disturb the beaker or the nails. Observe the formation of copper in the

6. Use tongs to remove the nails one by one from the beaker. Shake
the nails with the tong to get some of the copper off. Use the wash
bottle to rinse the remaining copper from the nails before removing
them completely. You can use the stirring rod to scrape the extra
copper off as well. After collecting the copper, leave the nails on a
paper towel to let dry.

7. Decant (separate) the liquid from the solid. Pour the liquid into
another beaker. If any solid is poured out of the beaker, decant again.

8. Decant the solid from the liquid AT LEAST four times with
approximately 15 mL of distilled water. Make sure the copper ends up
in its original beaker so that the measuring results are accurate. When
pouring in the distilled water, shake the beaker gently so the copper
gets thoroughly washed.

9. After decanting with distilled water, rinse the solid with
approximately 10 mL of 1M hydrochloric acid. Decant again. When
decanted, rinse again with 15 mL of distilled water. Keep decanting
about 2-3 more times.

10. Place the beaker in the assigned section on the back wall of the
laboratory. Put your name and your partner’s name to identify your

11. Place the decanted fluids in the “waste” containers. NEVER pour
them down the drain.

12. Clean up all materials and wash your hands before you exit the lab.


1. How many moles are present in a sample of 34.0 g of iron metal?

34.0 g-Fe 1 mol
= 34.0/55.847 = 0.61 mol-Fe
55.847 g-Fe

2. What is the mass, in grams, of one mole of copper?
In one mole of copper, there are 63.54 g-Cu.

3. Why is the washing of copper necessary in this experiment?
The washing of the copper is very important because it affects the
accuracy of the measurement taken. It separates the copper from the
solution and the chloride. The copper is needed to be separated from
any other substances so it can be measured.

4. Define “decant.”
Decanting is a process in which the solid is being separated from
the liquid. To decant, the liquid should SLOWLY be poured into another
beaker, leaving the solid on the bottom of the original beaker. If some
of the solid becomes transferred into the other beaker, the liquid needs
to be poured back with the rest of the solid to avoid losing any of it.

5. How were you able to determine the mass of iron lost from the
nail during the reaction?
To determine the mass of the iron lost from the nail, I subtracted
its mass before the reaction from its mass after the reaction.

6. Write the formula for iron(II) chloride and iron(III) chloride.
iron(II) chloride = FeCl2 iron(III) chloride = FeCl3

7. Based on the result of your experiment, which form of iron
chloride was produced in this reaction? Explain.
Iron(II) Chloride was used in the experiment. This is proven by the
one-to-one molar ratio in the data table.

8. Write and balance the chemical equation of this experiment. Be
sure to include the physical states of each of the reactants and
Fe(s) + CuCl2(s) ---> FeCl2(aq) + Cu(s)

9. Could the same reaction be obtained by reacting some small
pieces of copper with some iron chloride solution? Why or why not?
No, it copper with iron chloride will not give the same reaction as
iron with copper chloride. Due to single replacement, copper with iron
chloride will have no reaction because the iron is more active than the

10. Why does the reaction of iron and copper chloride occur?
The reaction occurs because iron is more active than copper
chloride, therefore, it will react.