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Moldy tool roll

Old 11-16-20, 08:00 AM
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Rage
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Moldy tool roll

Hi guys,
So I pulled out the tool roll I carry in my work-bag to discover that there was some white mold growing on the waxed canvas material. It’s the Blackburn Wayside tool roll. Had it a couple years. Really like it. It’s been sitting in my unused work-bag in the basement for a couple weeks because I’ve been furloughed from work since April, I think? All of the other stuff in the bag is/was fine.

But I have removed and cleaned everything else that was in the bag, just in case.

Anyway, I’m wondering how to remove this mold. And if it’s even okay to keep it. I kinda like it so would like to keep it but I’m not sure what the deal with the mold is, if it’s dangerous or whatever.

So, any thoughts on this and/or recommendations about how to clean it are welcome.
I tried wiping away with a shop cloth but that leaves some faint mold residue.
If I can’t clean it, or if it’s unhealthy to have that mold around, I have no problems tossing it.
Thanks, in advance, for any recommendations!

Last edited by Rage; 11-17-20 at 08:10 AM. Reason: Run-on sentence
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Old 11-16-20, 08:24 AM
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I'd throw it out and get something made from polyester (not nylon, as that too tends to get mouldy very quickly).

It's almost impossible to completely remove mold - not least when the fabric is waxed.
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Old 11-16-20, 08:45 AM
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Soak it in vinegar, which kills mold at the roots. Should dry w/o staining.
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Old 11-16-20, 09:48 AM
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Scrub it with some diluted bleach and a nail brush to remove the growth, leave it out in the sun to dry, then use it. You're never going to remove or inactivate mold spores - they're everywhere. The world is awash with mold spores. All you can do is generate conditions that discourage their germination. Start by not storing your tool roll in a cool dark possibly damp basement. Light and ventilation (ie low humidity) are mold spores' worst enemy. I wouldn't consider this a health issue either - we're not talking about black mold growing behind your drywall - the only time you interact with the tool roll is likely at the roadside in the open air. When you tramp through the woods, you're up to your ankles in mold, but no-one's concerned about the health effects of that mold exposure.
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Old 11-16-20, 10:47 PM
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I know this mold.

Not presuming anything, but how amd where we store stuff is important.

I've seen tools ruined by rust stored long in damp places.

Camping gear can be ruined by this white mold.

​​​​​​Yeh, kill the mold and scrub and rinse it out.

Sprays found in hardware stores for mildew work well. Most of them are bleach based. Be careful with these powerful chemicals
The tool wrap is not as important as the tools. Hope they are okay.
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Old 11-17-20, 07:09 AM
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Thanks for the responses, guys.

So, I used a combination of the suggestions above to clean it. I did a vinegar scrub and then I hung it to dry on a clothesline outside. But the smell of the vinegar was so potent I was afraid that if I ever became employed again my work-stuff might pick up some of the vinegar smell.

I let it line-dry, took a whiff and decided to hit it with my garden hose on the “jet” setting to get some of the smell off. I left it to line-dry overnight and it’s looking pretty okay this morning. The wax coating might be mostly gone now, though.

I’m hoping that takes care of the mold.
If not, I will go with the bleach on the second try.
Jeeze, I’m cheap lol. Should just replace it. Paid like twenty five bucks for it years ago.
Thanks again for the suggestions, you guys. And for setting my mind at ease about the mold. Because I was afraid it might be toxic or something. Washed and cleaned everything that was in there, including the tools, to try and get off as much of the spores as possible. Also washed the bag. And will not leave it in the dank basement for weeks or months again, that’s for sure.

Last edited by Rage; 11-17-20 at 08:09 AM.
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Old 11-17-20, 11:20 AM
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The white stuff you saw was probably mycelium growing. This is the vegetative state of a fungus and not spore-forming. Basically some airborne spores land on a suitable moist environment (your tool roll) and start growing waiting for the time when the environment changes enough to start producing spores. I'd say that your treatment was entirely effective in stopping any additional growth, although the smell may persist for a while. Just keep the roll dry by airing it out in the sun every once in a while and you'll be fine. Consider re-waxing with something like this. I have used a home-brew mixture of beeswax, turpentine, and linseed oil, which works well too.
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Old 11-18-20, 11:37 AM
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Thanks, Moe! That otter wax is just what I need.
I also have all the ingredients to your home-brew mixture and would be happy to try and mix some up if you post the proportions.
Because just like you said, the smell lingered a bit and I hit it again with the hose and whatever wax was left on there is definitely gone now. But so is the smell. So that’s pretty good except the canvas is now just about bare of wax. It handles like denim now.
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Old 11-18-20, 06:42 PM
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The recipe I used was 2 parts beeswax, 1 part turpentine, and 1 part boiled linseed oil. The turpentine thins out the wax and the linseed oil works with the wax to waterproof, although it does make the fabric a bit stiff. The stuff brushed onto the fabric pretty easily and then is followed by a hair dryer or heat gun to distribute it through the weave. I use this mixture to waterproof a canvas bucket for my boat and it worked great. The canvas was 24 oz duck, which is a very heavy fabric, and the bucket ended up a bit stiff. Lighter weight canvas would end up more flexible. For your tool roll, which doesn't have to be absolutely waterproof, you could probably skip (or reduce) the linseed oil.

To make it, you first melt the wax in a double boiler, then thin with turpentine, and then finally add the linseed oil. When it cools it will have the consistency of peanut butter.

Good luck.
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Old 11-18-20, 06:47 PM
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I'd go against the trend and say that you should use non-biological stuff as it will keep mold at bay better than linseed oil, natural wax and what have you. You don't want to actually feed the mold.
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Old 11-20-20, 04:46 PM
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Regarding molds and/or fungus.

When handling or cleaning anything moldy or with a fungus on it PLEASE use a good quality mouth and nose covering. Why? Because if mold or fungus spore get into your lungs it can cause a lot of problems. Doctors will not treat for mold or fungus unless you tell them you've been exposed t o it.

Take care.

Cheers
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Old 11-20-20, 10:07 PM
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Waitaminnit! I thought I was all-clear as far as toxicity?
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Old 11-20-20, 10:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Rage View Post
Waitaminnit! I thought I was all-clear as far as toxicity?
Too late. You already cleaned it off.
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Old 11-21-20, 07:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Regarding molds and/or fungus.

When handling or cleaning anything moldy or with a fungus on it PLEASE use a good quality mouth and nose covering. Why? Because if mold or fungus spore get into your lungs it can cause a lot of problems. Doctors will not treat for mold or fungus unless you tell them you've been exposed t o it.

Take care.

Cheers
so if I’m cleaning some moldy cheese out of my fridge I need a mask? There are molds and there are molds
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Old 11-21-20, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Rage View Post
Waitaminnit! I thought I was all-clear as far as toxicity?
No worries, mate. The thing to keep in mind is that your tool roll was affected by common environmental fungal spores that floated in and found a suitable environment to grow. These same spores are present in huge concentrations outside and these concentrations can be magnified by such activities as raking leaves, mowing grass, or just rustling down a path. Despite what some say, mold-related illnesses are infrequently more severe than allergic reactions.
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Old 11-21-20, 07:59 AM
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Thanks again for putting my mind at ease, Moe.
I don’t know anything about molds, spores and fungi and I kinda flipped my wig when I discovered the mold on there.
I just hope you are correct. I’m sure you are.
Hope hope!
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Old 11-21-20, 08:32 AM
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Oxyclean
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Old 11-21-20, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Litespud View Post
so if I’m cleaning some moldy cheese out of my fridge I need a mask? There are molds and there are molds
Don't be ridiculous. Actually, to be really safe, YES you should wear a mask when you're exposed to any mold. It's not the mold that's the hazard it's the spore it gives off if disturbed. We're talking about molds on materials. FYI, if the mold in your refrigerator is stringy then it's a real bio-hazard. It's your lungs.

Cheers
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Old 11-21-20, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Don't be ridiculous. Actually, to be really safe, YES you should wear a mask when you're exposed to any mold. It's not the mold that's the hazard it's the spore it gives off if disturbed. We're talking about molds on materials. FYI, if the mold in your refrigerator is stringy then it's a real bio-hazard. It's your lungs.

Cheers
your kneejerk “OMG its Mold!!! Run for your lives!!!” reaction is the only ridiculous thing here. You go through life covered in spores. Yes, there are pathogenic fungi out there, but they’re not growing on your moldy canvas tool roll
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Old 11-21-20, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Litespud View Post
your kneejerk “OMG its Mold!!! Run for your lives!!!” reaction is the only ridiculous thing here. You go through life covered in spores. Yes, there are pathogenic fungi out there, but they’re not growing on your moldy canvas tool roll
BAH! I've worked around a lot of molds and fungi. I've also seen what can happed to a person who inhales mold or fungal spores and doesn't get the proper treatment for it. Hint, it's not pretty. My reaction is not a "kneejerk" reaction. It's a warning to people who may not be aware of the hazards of mold and/or fungi.

Don't take precautions if that's your cup of tea. I've warned about mold and fungi spores hazards and now I'm done with useless arguing about it.

Cheers
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Old 11-21-20, 12:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
BAH! I've worked around a lot of molds and fungi. I've also seen what can happed to a person who inhales mold or fungal spores and doesn't get the proper treatment for it. Hint, it's not pretty. My reaction is not a "kneejerk" reaction. It's a warning to people who may not be aware of the hazards of mold and/or fungi.

Don't take precautions if that's your cup of tea. I've warned about mold and fungi spores hazards and now I'm done with useless arguing about it.

Cheers
your earnest, if a little misguided, service to the community is noted and appreciated 👍
you’re right, of course - untreated fungal infections are bad, but that’s like saying untreated shark bites are bad. They are, but that doesn’t mean that every fish you encounter in the ocean is going to take a chunk out of your leg - the vast majority won’t, just as the vast majority of fungi one encounters in the wild are harmless, and even then, must fungal infections occur in the context of some underlying immune deficiency.
PhD in Microbiology, 3 years teaching Medical Mycology (ie Fungi) in a state medical school, 15 years’ lab research on airborne pathogens

Last edited by Litespud; 11-21-20 at 12:40 PM.
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