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 Trip to California 
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Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2013 11:47 am
Posts: 15
Thank you for sharing the results of your tests Pinto. Your results are not surprising and are in line with what people like Arnie Gundersen are saying. Do you have any kind of radioactive samples to test and/or calibrate your devices?

I'm also interested in hearing what your measurements were like in Texas and Colorado. I'm currently at about 4200 feet in the Desert of Arizona (Sonoita/Patagonia area) and the radiation levels are pretty high here, often with wide variations from minute to minute and from day to day. So far I have not observed any patterns between the levels that I measure and those of the stations in the Tucson area or any other stations.

It's not uncommon for me to see some 10 minute averages around 72 (sometimes lower and sometimes higher) and I regularly see peeks that hit 160. Also, the radiation levels that I measure inside the house are about the same as outside, so I'm guessing there is alot of Gamma which can go right through the walls of the house.

These measurements were made with an LND7317 based geiger counter from Atomic Dave (GK6-Plus) . This is the same tube that the Inspector has.

I really don't have a clue weather the high background levels of radiation in the desert pose health threats. Certainly the air here seems alot cleaner than when I am in California.


Sat Mar 15, 2014 4:25 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:35 pm
Posts: 46
Tampabay1, sounds like a cool set up you have going on there!
I like the polimaster 1406 because it is a no brainer. Got it last year and I happened to have a German gram scale and it came in handy as you have to put the weight of the substance in grams when entering it into the test. I run it on "Unknown" as it is most accurate (but takes heaps longer- some tests are 2- 3 days long). I also run it on the Japanese allowed radiation level that allows up to 100 bq/kg. The reason is: if you have something that is over 10 bq/kg (the lowest setting) it will say "Contaminated" but you don't know if it was just 1 bq/kg over or 30 or 50 or whatever (diatomaceous earth was the highest thing and it was only 6 bq/kg +/- 4). I haven't come across any scary levels in food and I have tested a lot, esp from Calif. We eat organic and meat sparingly. Haven't tested meat because I don't want to waste it! I did test free range eggs, organic- fine. And ahhh, yes! I was going to pick up some salt substitute to test and check calibration. Think I'll do that now. Would love to have a particle identifier because we have snow and when it melts the gamma goes up but it is not cesium. What is it?


Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:28 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:35 pm
Posts: 46
jbird- I was referring to the EPA readings for TX and CO and thanks for reminding me about checking calibration!


Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:31 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:35 pm
Posts: 46
Thanks everyone for keeping my post here at netc and for not cutting and pasting it onto other sites. I was kind of scared to post my findings although I should not be. It's a crazy world.


Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:42 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:35 pm
Posts: 46
That was interesting. I bought some salt substitute to test calibration. 540 grams tested. Within 1 minute and 31 seconds it showed 20,102 bq/kg of natural, harmless Potassium 40. The polimaster is definitely working.


Sat Mar 15, 2014 6:26 pm
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:25 pm
Posts: 182
@jbird...

"I really don't have a clue weather the high background levels of radiation in the desert pose health threats. Certainly the air here seems alot cleaner than when I am in California."

:-)

That's cuz so many folks came here for the nice WX and fresh ocean breezes coming off the Pacific.
The not-so-clean-air is the result of their hydrocarbon emissions!

Those desert areas, and mountainous places to the northeast of us are where we go to mine.

Newest events may see the Pacific bringing us the same cause for that clean desert air!

Best
rc


Sat Mar 15, 2014 6:46 pm
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Joined: Sat Dec 14, 2013 4:30 pm
Posts: 14
Location: TampaBay FL
Pinto wrote:
Tampabay1, sounds like a cool set up you have going on there!
I like the polimaster 1406 because it is a no brainer. Got it last year and I happened to have a German gram scale and it came in handy as you have to put the weight of the substance in grams when entering it into the test. I run it on "Unknown" as it is most accurate (but takes heaps longer- some tests are 2- 3 days long). I also run it on the Japanese allowed radiation level that allows up to 100 bq/kg. The reason is: if you have something that is over 10 bq/kg (the lowest setting) it will say "Contaminated" but you don't know if it was just 1 bq/kg over or 30 or 50 or whatever (diatomaceous earth was the highest thing and it was only 6 bq/kg +/- 4). I haven't come across any scary levels in food and I have tested a lot, esp from Calif. We eat organic and meat sparingly. Haven't tested meat because I don't want to waste it! I did test free range eggs, organic- fine. And ahhh, yes! I was going to pick up some salt substitute to test and check calibration. Think I'll do that now. Would love to have a particle identifier because we have snow and when it melts the gamma goes up but it is not cesium. What is it?


Like you I'm doing scientific unbiased sampling.

Thanks for the info on the 1406, I'm guessing the software doesn't chart the spectrum decay graphs. Is there a means to save any results for history reference?

To test meat I would just put the 1406 and the lead shield in the fridge 24hr before adding the sample. The temp isn't freezing, so should be NP for the unit. Drop the usb out the door for the sampling time. ;)

Recalibrate, it's important to have the sample the same temp as the 1406 else you can have complete misses and false results.


Sat Mar 15, 2014 11:55 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:35 pm
Posts: 46
Thanks Tampabay1, I did not know that the temperature would affect the readings.

The polimaster gives you the option of saving the tests. It's good to write them down too or back them up somehow. I am using an old Windows computer and it crashed once and I lost all of my testing I had done up to that point.


Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:07 am
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Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:35 pm
Posts: 46
Tampabay1, no the polimaster 1406 does not chart decay or what other particles might be present. I wished it did!


Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:09 am
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