200A and 202 reproduction
frames back
in stock.

Someone mentioned in another thread about the history of the mantles Coleman produced.

Here is a copy of a letter from Coleman introducing the new "Gold Top," mantles, dated 2/91.  Interesting the chemistry involved and the claim they were co-developed by NASA!  Yttrium replaced Thorium to avoid the radioactivity.  The phenomenon of candoluminescence is also explained, or the scientific explanation of why mantles glow and produce light.  I found this letter in the bottom of a 200a box, with a new Gold Top package attached.  The 200a was one of my first finds and have no idea why this letter was included.  The 200a was dated much earlier.  Perhaps the PO ordered some mantles, and received the letter, or perhaps responded to an offer from Coleman for some "free," mantles to test.  I've posted this before on the forum, and no one has yet to say they've seen another example of this letter.  Since there are new members, perhaps someone has also seen this, or at least find of interest.

Coleman letter pg1.jpg  coleman letter pg2.jpg
My understanding was that thorium was dropped in favor of yttrium for cost savings, not safety. Peerless still used (and possibly still does use) thorium until recently.

If the Gold Top mantles are "four times stronger" than an HD Silklite, I must be treating them five times as roughly.
It's priceless until someone puts a price on it.
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Below is a link on wiki, FWIW, but rather detailed on the history of the mantle.  At the very end, it mentions the switch from thorium to yttrium was probably due to a lawsuit filed against Coleman.  However, it also states that the amount of radiation is extremely low, and thorium mantles are still legal in the US.  The biggest concerns are exposure to the people working in the factories, and the residual amounts left in the ground at the site.

Interesting letter.  Too bad the marketing hype about the durability improvement is just that-- BS.
I can't imagine getting away from thorium due to cost savings, but rather the scare about radioactivity back around the early 80's, and the potential lawsuits regarding it being a concern.  Thorium being radioactive and having a half-life of 500,000 years is probably what scared manufacturers in this country. 

I don't know exactly what my town had to do with thorium, but suspect that a local chemical company back in the day made the thorium solution for mantles, and maybe even shipped it to the Welsbach site in south Jersey to make mantles.   As far as I know, the Welsbach facility is still considered a superfund site, not to mention the money spent remediating thorium in the soil in my town.  When I first moved here, I didn't know where to go vote, so using a search engine, searched 'vote Maywood NJ'.  This liked to an article about a town in Colorado taking a vote on whether to accept 470,000 tons of radioactive waste from Maywood New Jersey.   There used to be major mounds of soil that supposedly contained thorium located at a large retailer's distribution center.  That in itself wasn't an issue, but some contractors helped themselves to it for use as fill dirt.  Those locations needed to have the soil replaced as a result.

A Peerless exec explained on the forum a few years ago that the reason they stopped using thorium was simply that they could no longer source it.   Due to a major purge of the forum, that thread no longer exists.   It's not that thorium itself doesn't exist.  There's plenty of it at nuclear plants, but it needs to be in a form usable for mantles.


Flammable liquids, open flame, what could go wrong?

I've missed you!  But I'm reloading.
Those that have been around this forum for awhile, know about the "radio active Boy Scout," the kid who tried to make a nuclear breeder reactor out of various sources of radio active materials, including Coleman mantles, which he was somewhat successful creating a neutron source.   That was in the mid 90's, and perhaps Coleman knew the end was coming being a corporate target if they produced the thorium mantles under their name.
If you don't breath it at burn in or eat one - you have many long years ahead of you. 
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