Thin Layer Chromatography TLC

TLC Plate Cutting Procedures

Conditioning & cutting tips to ensure performance from plate to plate, lot to lot and chemist to chemist.

TLC plate prepping, conditioning and cutting will help you save time, money and maintain consistency of performance. By prepping and conditioning your plates, you will avoid having to rerun your sample or risk the decomposition of your compound. Cutting TLC plates enables you to run any size sample you want. By purchasing a large box of TLC plates and cutting them to spec., you can save money, use less solvent, and customize your plate sizes. For prepping and cutting TLC plates, follow these quick and easy steps:

  1. Always pre wash your TLC plate with either methanol or methanol/chloroform. Let plate sit overnight in a vent hood.
  2. To extract the prewashing, use the solvent system of choice for your sample and let this develop to the top of the plate. Again leave in a vent hood overnight.
  3. Next dry in a vacuum oven at 110°C for at least an hour. Let plate cool in vacuum oven until it reaches room temp. If not for immediate use, place plates in a desiccator to preserve.

Cutting plastic or aluminum backed TLC plates:

  1. Keep plates as dry as possible before attempting to cut.
  2. Use sharp scissors and cut at a 45 degree angle leaning outside. So for instance, if you are right handed, tilt the scissors to the right.

Don’t tilt scissors to the left – tilt scissors to the rightNotice the layer flaking on the left and on the right you can see a sharp edge rather than a jagged edge.

Notice how crooked the plate is to the left, where the plate on the right has a nice, clean edge.  
Glass plates: Use a
Sorbtech TLC plate cutter (Cat#TLC-CUTTER)
to enable a perfect cut every time without losing coating and eliminating waste.

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