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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 9th, 2010, 1:06 pm 
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My last 2 cents on this.
All safety devices, whether bicycle helmets, safety rope, medicines and even bear spray, deteriorate over time and should be replaced at regular intervals.
For me, $13.00 a year for bear spray is good insurance. I've had a barren-lands grizzly walk through my camp in the Yukon. I didn't need the spray, but it sure felt good holding it.

ted

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 9th, 2010, 2:55 pm 
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ok, here's what I can find in the big ole internet:

caveat, bikers are notorious smart asses:
http://www.bikeforums.net/archive/index ... 76169.html

this one says the active ingredient isn't the issue so much as the propellant:
http://ezinearticles.com/?Does-Pepper-S ... id=2993203
this one concurrs that the propellant degrades:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index ... 551AAIAwEs
and yet more:
Q: What is in pepper spray?

A: The main ingredient in pepper spray is Oleoresin Capsicum(OC)which is derived from the oils of hot peppers.

Q: How do I measure the effectiveness of pepper spray?

A: The OC% of pepper spray tells how much OC is in the container relative to other ingredients. The most common OC% is 10%. However, the OC% is not the most important rating--the SHU rating is. The SHU rating measures Scoville Heat Units, which is actual heat of the pepper spray. The heat comes from the amount of capsaicin, which varies between manufacturers.

Q: Will pepper spray expire? How often should I replace my pepper spray?

A: OC does not degrade over time, but the container itself will degrade, causing failures when you actually need to spray. Also, the container may leak out the aerosol propellant over the years. For these reasons, pepper spray will have an expiration date, and you should plan to replace your spray after the expiration date.
It is a good idea to test your spray every 90 days. Of course, this will reduce the contents a little, but will give you piece of mind.

remeber that dilligent storing practice? heat and cool cycles, bumping the thing , stress fractures on the plastics in the release mechanism.....

Ted wrote:
Quote:
A good joke in the middle of anything but a funeral is enjoyed by all.


aux contrare.........was at a wake once where the rather large family consisting of many girls with a genetic predispostion to having rather large breasts...... now you can imagine the rocking to and fro buts a fair amount of stress on nerves and undergarments......
anywho, as the priest started the first round of hail mary's after the touching tribute to the guest of honor to which you could tell he knew......the family was quite distraught and the crying and rocking....... well be darned if an underwire didn't go flying through th air, rickochet off the brothers head and land at the priests feet....... after a silent delay the laughter was the best medicine
not a joke, life has humor and it often appears in the most unexpected places, often when needed by someone

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 9th, 2010, 5:51 pm 
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I normally just give the canister a shake once a year before expiry.
One of my regular tripping buddies has an electronic scale that he uses to weigh the canisters with. Even for me that a tad AR but he's happy.

I said funerals, not wakes. Wakes can be a hoot when the booze and stories start to flow. I had a canoeing buddy that thought wakes and family reunions were great places to "pick up chicks".

Ted

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Last edited by Ted on February 9th, 2010, 5:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 9th, 2010, 6:15 pm 
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Does anyone know of a good recent testing of the various bear sprays when it comes to distance, cone and SHU ratings?

I've been using and abusing the same product for years but have often wondered if there are better out there?

My experiments are really old and kind of useless.

tks Ted

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 9th, 2010, 7:03 pm 
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Joined: October 27th, 2006, 5:51 am
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Ted wrote:
Does anyone know of a good recent testing of the various bear sprays when it comes to distance, cone and SHU ratings?

Hi Ted,
I believe that what you are looking for is a CCR moderator, (any one will do). Put them on their knees, tie hands behind back, step back 2 paces and direct nozzle directly into the facial region. Let fly with a powerful jet of "juice". Make sure you wear a white lab coat and annotate your observations on a clip board, à la Gary Larson.

Then, slap knees, point, and laugh uproariously. :rofl:

Humor probably gets as much done in the world as coffee although in this particular instance I'll take a latté over pepper spray.

On a serious note, when I was charged by a grizzly that was running downhill at an incredible speed I really wonder how I would have managed to spray him in the face. ( Like a wimp, I threw myself face down at the last possible second).


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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 9th, 2010, 10:28 pm 
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Location: Kanata, Ontario Canada
apparently the o/c ratio is important too....too much o and the spray wont' be felt instantly.......
sABRE took a negative review from a zoo keeper on this; he liked fox better

another link: (wiki knows :P )
http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_the_b ... ray_to_buy

anyway, yes, agree with Ted in that recent head to head testing would be nice to see

jeesh Neil, frenchmen don't have much luck going down hill

not good on ice or snow :P
my eyes are still burning from the marg princess warrior image so no, I'll refrain from imagining Mods in a defence or offence postion thanks :lol: milton is a safe image.....want your red stapler back?

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 5:12 am 
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Ted, I didn't have time to reply yesterday, so what was with that now-missing mea culpa stuff? I assume it was the moderators that had the good sense to delete it. This is a BEAR thread. We are supposed to duke it out until there's blood on the floor, some innoccent declares they are leaving to never again grace CCR with their wisdom, and the moderators come in and lock the thread and maybe banish one or two of us for good measure. :D
I do like this idea of separating the threads instead of locking them though. And I don't really want to go there either, but I'll take my lumps if someone really feels the need to yell at me. (it was so hard not to write "emotional need" that I had to do it here, parenthetically. I'm just soooo weak). But OK then, if we are going to be all mushy and stuff, then maybe I took something from a comment that wasn't intended and I should have paid more attention to Mark's gentle warns.

Hiker Neil wrote:
On a serious note, when I was charged by a grizzly that was running downhill at an incredible speed I really wonder how I would have managed to spray him in the face. ( Like a wimp, I threw myself face down at the last possible second).
My brother, who is one tough dude, actually got the spray can out and pointed at a charging griz but it was so fierce and terrifyingly fast that he kinda froze and didn't actual push the button. Good thing the grizz was bluffing or I'd be brotherless. I don't carry spray here in the east, but grizzlies scare the heck out of me (even more than lightning) and when I've tripped through their house I've carried a firearm and a couple of cans of spray. New cans.

Now, to make sure this post is at least a little on-topic, it's all about risk assessment and mitigation. If you think the risk of bear attack is high and the risk of expired spray failure is high and you have sufficient resources you'll invest more to mitigate that risk. If you think the risk of both is low and/or you have few resources then you'll invest less. Chacun a chacun.
Cheers

edited to change the potentially offensive word "crappola" to the softer "stuff". I just couldn't resist the alliteration.


Last edited by Krusty on February 10th, 2010, 10:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 9:38 am 
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Location: Lethbridge, Alberta Canada
Gail R wrote:
A: OC does not degrade over time, but the container itself will degrade, causing failures when you actually need to spray. Also, the container may leak out the aerosol propellant over the years.


This is a valid point. A friend had an old can that sat in his travel trailer for years and one night the can failed and leaked fluid all over. He and his wife were in there at the time and it wasn't a slow leak!
He never said how long it was past expiry but quite a few years by the sounds of it.
Probably subjected to tempertuare fluctuations with the seasons as well - he had forgot it was in there


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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 10:31 am 
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario Canada
On a related topic, what *is* the shelf life of an average can of bear spray? I ask because I have no idea what to look for in an expiry date. I mean, if I see a package with a date 12 months in the future, I have no idea if it is already 10% into its life, 25%, 50%, 75%...

Knowing that items can sit on the shelves for some time, I'd like to know that I'm going to get the maximum lifespan out of my new purchase. (Assuming I don't use it in the first week on a too-friendly Ursus americanus.)

Anyone got any ideas?

--
Darryl


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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 10:49 am 
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Location: Kanata, Ontario Canada
I think it varies from brand to brand.
Fox has a shorter shelf life but recommends a short test fire each year.Other brands have 4 years but say only one test fire when you get it for quality assurance. Propellant and other ingredients are propriaitary with lots of fancy marketing like ingredients ensure the spray is felt instantaneously....is that like the nose starts closing over or sun burn feel?

I think it's one of those items you have to do the research, decide how AR you are going to be about mantience and what is important to you in terms of properties (cone shape, ease of use will render the bear instantly into a pile of wheezing biotic matter) on and then go and buy.

anyone have a favorite brand and why....oh and a list of properties from the can or website will be most apprciated :D

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 11:24 am 
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but grizzlies scare the heck out of me (even more than lightning) Nothing like a good morning :D to start the day. Cheers.

The cans that I use have an expiry life of 3 years. As I'm not sure whether the 3 year mark is from their products lab or their legal (cover your butt) section, I figure they're good for at least 4 before they start to decline. I won't buy unless there's a good 2 years left on the expiry date.

Krusty, I figure it's 70% risk mitigation and 30% that warm and fuzzy feeling. When I was a teenager in the '60s, I kept my food in my solo tent so the grizzlies couldn't steal it. Shake my head! So I wonder if we get smarter in our old age for just more conservative.

Interesting stuff you're digging up Gail. There are also different sizes of canisters out there as well to consider. I have both 8 and 10oz canisters from the same manufacturer at the moment.
I think that Backpackers did a test maybe 8 year ago, but that last one I've seen. I beginning to wonder if it's even possible to do an empirical test on this stuff.

cheers Ted

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 11:37 am 
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Ted wrote:
I think that Backpackers did a test maybe 8 year ago, but that last one I've seen. I beginning to wonder if it's even possible to do an empirical test on this stuff.

cheers Ted

Perhaps we need a bunch of us to request that Consumer Reports does an article and reviews a bunch of the various products?

Cheers,
Bryan
(with the expired extra large can of spray that he intends to hit a bear over the head with)

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 Post subject: Re: Expired bear spray
PostPosted: February 10th, 2010, 12:11 pm 
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Location: Kanata, Ontario Canada
Bryan :P :P :P
I'm on the hook for a letter to Vallue Village if some can get off their ass and send me a picture. Looked up Backpacker and they have a blog dedicated to asking a bear questions.......no shit....
askabear@backpacker.com.

If Cass the writer is lurking, we should pen a letter and submit it.
Dear Mr Bear,

what makes your eyes close and nose swell worse besides my hiking boots?

now I'm off to read the thread there about biodegradable wipes and packing it out....... finger whipeing......... and the boys in green here thought we could get into shit talk :lol:

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