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More concerned, really, that some dumpster diver** might not know what it is and open the bag and inhale a faceful of powder.

JackM
 

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I may be wrong, but I don't think that casual breathing of diatomaceous earth dust is a serious health problem. Where silica dust has been a real problem has been in the digging of tunnels through sandstone. My understanding that working underground with poor ventilation and no dust masks is a real problem. I once read about a water tunnel that was drilled through a hard sandstone in southern West Virginia and many of the miners developed silicosis and some died.

People breath silica rich dust from many casual, nonemployment, situations. In March, Nancy and I spent the night in Monument Valley. While we were there the wind was quite strong and occasionally there was so much dust in the air that we couldn't see the Monuments. We were outside and breathing the dust, along with many other tourists.

Chuck
 

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Domer;

One other source that I have not seen mentioned yet is a roofing supply company. I have read that some of these supply houses sell colored sand or gravel fines in various colors to roofers, and may also sell to the public. Be prepared for this item to only be available in 50 to 100 pound bags. Depending on the size of your layout, a single bag will probably do the trick - with product left over for gondola, hopper, and ballast car loads!

Best wishes,
David Meashey
Hi David,

I had the idea years ago of using black roofing granules for coal (it's made here in Little Rock) but found (in my opinion) it was too fine & heavy for G Gauge. I found a bunch leaked on the tracks so loaded a couple pails. When it did not work for me I packed some in bags & took it to a train show. At about 50 cents for a 5 pound bag I did not sell a single bag:confused:

I may still have that bucket or I may have thrown it away.

Oh well.

Jerry
 

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I never would've learned about the dangers of diatomaceous earth if not for this discussion. So please pardon this slightly off-topic question: I have a bag of d.e. (I don't want to have to spell it again) in my garage. I don't recall why I bought it, but it sounds somewhat risky to dispose of. I wouldn't want someone to pick it out of a trash pile and use it for cat litter or something.

Can I just toss it in my trash can or should I take additional precautions?

JackM
Just place it in a plastic trash bag, tie it up and place it in the regular trash. Most people use it to control crawling insects In the garden.
 

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I've just started research for my indoor ballasting so this might be of interest to you.
Matte Medium for Ballast - Model Railroader Magazine - Model Railroading, Model Trains, Reviews, Track Plans, and Forums - matte medium vs white glue
In going thru the archives of old posts I was especially interested in this post that Matte Medium NOT being dissolved with water after setting up, but that White Glue was EASILY dissolved by water after setting up, because I am building a 16mm INDOORS Live Steam Railway. The little fire dragons constantly dribble water and a bit of oil all over the roadbed and I do not want the ballast work to be washed away. Thanks for the info!!
 

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steamhostler:

I settled on using 'Oil Dri" with white glue and I'm quite happy with results. While the glue will be dissolved with water it does take a bit of time and it should/probably set up again as the water evaporates. I would recommend making a small test section and try to duplicate your running environment.

Also, you might do a search for something like "dissolve white glue".

Plant Track Wood Railway Metal
 

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Thanks for the info, I've got a 5 gallon bucket of Oil Dri in the garage right now. But my Light Railway doesn't rate such nicely ballasted track, so I'm thinking of using sifted sand/dirt to fill in between the ties...
You model 32mm track 2 ft narrow gauge too? We must be part of the very few few over here!
 
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