Wednesday, August 31, 2016

This Is What Happens When The Dogs Get To Your Glow-Sticks

Nope, I'm not about to tell you that my dogs ate the glo-sticks and now glow, sorry no pics like that either. At least one of them though, and there are 6 culprits here tonight (our 4 and my daughter's 2), got to a glo-stick and started to chew on the packaging.

What was left of the wrapper.
 My basement is a mess in the middle of a mini-renovation, and shit stuff is everywhere. Anyway, the package got chewed up and torn open and when I picked it up to look at it I saw this particular one had a rating for 30 minutes of light and an expiration date of 02/06,  in other words - February 2006. This particular glo-stick was given to me in September of 2001 at work as I recall, right after 9/11 as part of an emergency kit. I have had it ever since.

It gave a nice eerie glow to my lemonade and tequila.
Being it was way past it's expiration date, I decided to give it a go to see if it still worked. I shook it vigorously, snapped it and voila - light. It was an eerie green glow, the same sort of a green that used to be in the display on automobile dashboards back in the 50s and into the 60s. It has been glowing brightly now over one hour. Well, it's been glowing brightly enough to help one see in a very dark place or to act as a safety or distress beacon in the dark of night.  My bet is it will last a couple to few more hours.

Note to self, don't believe all the things you see written on a package about when a product  expires because my guess is they tell you it expires in a few years or so to get you to restock with new ones every so often. You know why they do that, right? It's to keep the economy strong! Seriously, why ever the do it does not matter to me, what matters is that I can give this product no better praise than to say it is working better than it was rated (which was for 30 minutes of light) and is doing so 10 years after its expiration date! 

I am pretty sure this one was in with some survival stuff I carry in a day pack whenever I go hiking or take a flight (then it's my carry on). I probably last had it with me on our trip to Alaska. Don't know how it got on the basement floor so that one of the dogs got to it but with all the moving back and forth of stuff I have been doing while painting a wall at a time down in the basement, it is no wonder one of them found it. At last now I know these things can last a good long time.

Since I know they last a good long while, I may have to buy some more of them from the same company, that is if they are still making them. Luckily the name of the company was still visible on the wrapper: OmniGlow Corporation. The part number was on the back too.

That being said, I did some online research on OmniGlow Corporation and when I Googled it, I got results for Cyalume Corporation. Since their site shows they have been in business for 40 years and have a plant On Windsor Avenue (used to be Street but now shown as Avenue) at the same numbered address as on the wrapper, I guess it is the same company. Apparently they changed the name to Cyalume Corp but as you can see the product I had was called a Cyalume Safety Stick so it is not that much of a change.

They sell direct to the public and offer a decent variety of light sticks - both industrial grade and military/tactical grade and others. The thing is though, the military grade snap lights they sell have only a 4 year shelf life, give 12 hours of light and are more expensive that the industrial grade. The industrial grade not only costs less but has a longer 5 year shelf life. Maybe I am missing something or maybe it is just the typical way that DOD allows for companies to label things as military grade. Anyway, I plan to buy some but am not sure if I will buy a few ten packs at $12.00 per ten or go for a pack of 100 of them for $99.00. I wrote the company an email praising it and, who knows, maybe they will send me a discount coupon. I think I'll wait a few days to see if they reply and if they are feeling generous before I order any.

By the way, this particular one, 15 years old and 10 years past its expiration date, has been glowing now for over two hours (I started writing this about an hour after I snapped it, and yeah I have been writing and researching for another hour or so)!

All the best,
Glenn B
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