expiration dates & sample sizes

Submitted by Sherrie on 1/27/05 at 12:33 PM. ( Flyin-W-Escort@centurytel.net ) 209.206.155.66

I thought to post here in hopes of the suppliers seeing.
Can some expiration dates be put on packages of things that have limited shelf life? or at least comments as what to look for that would suggest that the items need to be chunked?
I am always getting different things to try, glues, tans, etc. Sometimes, I try one and don't like the way it works for me at that particular moment. I may not decide to experiment with a customer mount and wait until I can use some of my own hides.
Thing is, label states, "limited shelf life". So how do I know if I can still use it without waiting to use it on my own mounts. And with all the problems I have, I don't want to redo them either.
Can we get some info on how to tell without having to call, or post or
or just chunk it because we are not sure?
For instance, if anyone knows,
Krowtann: black stuff floats on top and not disolving, shook it up good, temp was warm.....do I chunk it?
Glues (not sure at the moment), is bubbly looking now, stirs, bubbles disappear, not dried up.......is it still good?
Epoxies: chemical reaction, Right? as long as they heat up and still mix well, they are good?
Oils: always good? as long as they flow?
And how about a few sample sizes of the new things, instead of having to buy a whole gallon or a 10# bag. Lots of things I would like to try, but won't because of too much money just to see if I like something. I may not be for me.
And nobody needs to tell me to take it or leave it, or any negative stuff. It is just a suggestion and a question. Plus, there are enough people telling me that my way of thing is crazy anyway and they don't need anymore help! :)

Help appreciated!
Sherrie

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Well I can answer for epoxies!

This response submitted by Steve Steinbring/Epo-Grip on 1/27/05 at 1:36 PM. ( ) 206.251.198.18

Sherrie,

For the most part if you can get an epoxy mixed it will work. Epoxies do tend to dryout after awhile. Generally nuking them in the microwave will help get them loosened up to mix easier. The problem is that nobody makes a container that doesn't leak. Just take a look at paint stored in sealed cans after extended periods of time. There are other problems like what are your storage conditions, they vary from customer to customer.

We have a pretty liberal policy because our products have a pretty long shelflife. Far exceeding what we tell folks which is one year from date of purchase if stored properly. Hopefully if your busy product shelflife should not be much of a problem, because your using the material at a good rate.

If you've got problems give your manufacturer or distributor a call, believe it or not they do want help. If you have any concerns about Epo-Grip Products call me at 800-888-2467.


More!

This response submitted by Steve Steinbring on 1/27/05 at 1:48 PM. ( ) 206.251.198.18

Sherrie,

I forgot to answer about samples. Samples and small sizes are a problem. One because making them is labor intensive, two you don't make any money for the effort, and three todays freight makes it prohibitive. About four years ago we offered a free sample of an Epo-Grip product as a promotion. The cost of the freight to residential locations was a killer and exceeded the cost of the material in many cases. If we gave away free samples for all the requests we get we'd go broke in a hurry. Seldom does the customer want to share in any of the expense of "free samples". Its not just the material, its the labor, packaging, labeling, paperwork, and cost of shipping.

I'm sympathic to what you are saying, but don't have an answer.


Sherry

This response submitted by cur on 1/27/05 at 2:29 PM. ( ) 4.225.175.24

What Steve said is true, at least about his products. Most perishible materials give shelf life times under specific conditions, mostly temperature. For instance the shelf life may be six months at 72F, more at cooler temperatures, less at higher. Some items may not be frozen, that would be colloids and polymers like acrylics.

Most branded items list specific storage data. Samples may not, because of what Steve outlined above. It has always been my policy not to request a sample unless I planned to use it right away. First of all, I am not a sample collector, and only request a sample when I want to test a product prior to investing money in quantities. Secondly, sample batches are usually too small to do much more than run tests, and should not be considered as shelf inventory.

Goods that are relabled or bulk down packaged may not contain full details regarding storage or shelf life. We Beta test some goods for our manufacturers and it has always been my policy to utilize those products immediately to insure they perform as intended. Most quality goods include the data you requested on the label, or in the MSDS, or technical descriptive........When all else fails, call the manufacturer.

I do not know what you mean by "oils", but it is my experience that few oils or emulsions age beyond utility....That would include Linseed oil, petroleum and synthetic oils, siccatives and the like. I generally use argon or another inert gas to charge containers prior to sealing and then tape around the lid for additional protection.


not a free sample

This response submitted by Sherrie on 1/27/05 at 5:13 PM. ( Flyin-W-Escort@centurytel.net ) 209.142.136.97

Not to ask for free samples or to collect, got to much stuff collected as it is. I understand the cost and I know some folks that would take just because of FREE, use it or not. Just a sample, like enough to do one item, like one WT shoulder mount or coon size lifesize.
So, as far as the keep, say keep it in the walk in cooler, about 40-45, everything should keep better?
Busy part, I have a hard time letting go of trying to get everything "perfect". And I am a FAR cry from that. This is the first year to do anything for the public.
But, I did reach the goal I wanted for the first year and the hack down the road has a few less deer. But it will not make up for the loss of one of ours he sold, without letting us know it was ready.


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