I'm wondering what, if any, desiccants people use around their tools
and in their tool boxes and stuff like that. Sure, it's prudent to oil
or wax tools, but a desiccant should also help.
Any suggestions for a desiccant natural or otherwise?
On Jan 4, 8:44 pm, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I was just reading (and I forget where...) that some kitty litter is
actually a dessicant. Check the brand, but the picture that was with
the article was the "clumping" kind of kitty litter. I know not if
that is the difference between bentonite and dessicant kitty litter.
If it is a dessicant, you should be able to "recycle" it by placing
in an oven for a bit. I don't know if a microwave will allow the
humidity to escape or not, but a regular old-school oven should have a
Best of luck!
Locally here in Finland we have a cat litter brand that is made from silica
gel. Very useful as a dessicant and not liked by cats. It is large whitish
crystals and can be regenerated in oven (temperature 120 C, 2 hours, vent
open). Unfortunately it doesn't have moisture indicator (cobolt cloride) so
the regeneration must be done more often.
On 01/04/2010 11:44 PM, email@example.com wrote:
I live in a relatively dry climate, but if necessary I'd use the silica
cat litter for closed containers, and a dehumidifier for the shop in
No matter what desiccant you use, it will be most effective in an
Silica gel. If you don't want to fool around with the kitty litter
suggested by others, this site sells various size bags of it.
Reactivation of the packets (by heating) is also covered at that site.
Most equipment that you buy from China comes with little bags of the
stuff, and I keep them for uses such as you suggest. When I go out
demonstrating blacksmithing, it often seems to rain on my parade, so I
try to put my tools away in plastic bags or pails and use those bags of
silica gel (both the freebies and some from Jake's) to keep thing rust free.
Personally, I prefer to maintain a non-condensing environment in my
shops. It's not just the hand tool in tool boxes, its the tools like
the table saw, engine lathe, etc., etc., that need to be protected, too.
If I could not keep the shop warm and dry, I think I'd use small
light bulbs inside my main tools. Even keeping them just a couple of
degrees above the ambient temp means that condensation, which occurs
when the temp drops, goes someplace else.
We just got the cheapest stuff from Walmart. If you spend any more than $2
on enough to handle a 50# bag of salt, you might as well just buy the salt
when you need it. (It was a lb or two.)
I'm tempted to say it was a long grain white rice.
I always use uncooked white rice in my salt shakers, same thing as my mother
and my grandmother used...
I can tell you from my cooking experience that white rice absorbs water *much*
more readily than brown rice. I'm not sure why -- I assume that's because
there's no bran on white rice -- but I know that it takes three to four times
as long to cook brown rice as white. After simmering for fifteen minutes, a
potful of white rice is done cooking, with all the water completely absorbed,
but it takes 45 minutes to an hour for that to happen with brown rice.
On Jan 4, 9:44 pm, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
The old-fashioned solution was a block of camphor (like moth
balls, it made an odor and dwindled, but it outgassed and made
a moisture-repelling film on the nearby objects).
Dessicants are good for a short period of time, until they reach
their full moisture saturation (then, they're in need of
Calcium sulphate (white granules) with indicators (probably
of the cobalt chloride type, blue-purple when dry, turning pink
when saturated) is the best solution; bake it dry when it
Like lots of folk, I operate a dehumidifier; it can remove 50 pints
or maybe per week?) and only needs occasional emptying. When my
humidity-indicating weather gizmo shows 60 percent relative humidity,
I empty the dehumidifier (the full-tank condition shuts it down, so
it never operates more than a day or three from when it's emptied).
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