Thread subject: :: Naphthalene good or bad?

Posted by ChrisR on 17-05-2009 22:21

A lot of my boxes are old so still have some smell of napthalene (or similar chemicals) but in the recent past I have used little Vapona blocks ... and now I try not to use anything and I do what museums do and freeze the boxes/drawers regularly. I just put the box in a plastic bag, remove as much air as I can and then leave it in a freezer for at least 2 weeks :)

You get different opinions about napthalene - some say the problems are exaggerated and of course there are a lot of people who have worked in museums with no problems (and any that did get cancers might have other factors like smoking that would have a greater cause). At the Hope collection they used a detector on 1 guy and he did a day's work looking into drawers etc and it registered 7 units ... when something like 50 units is the government recommended maximum for adults. But another entomologist told me that it is an accumulative poison so a few exposures isn't a problem but if you worked with it every day then it might be an issue.

For me I prefer to work without chemicals - if for no other reason than I don't want me, my clothes and my whole house to smell of moth-balls ;)

Edited by ChrisR on 17-05-2009 22:23