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From: MVinquist
Date: Sun, 6 Jan 2002 21:10:52 EST
Subject: [CB] Allergy to Nickel

May father was a dermatologist.  He diagnosed me with nickel allergy, and
told me the following:

Nickel allergy is common.  You get it not so much by handling nickel coins as
by repeated contact at a particular spot on your skin.  He saw it most often
in women with pierced ears who used inexpensive earrings with nickel posts.
In my case, it appeared on areas of my fingers that rubbed against nickel
plated clarinet keys, such as the side of my right index finger at the
knuckle, where it rubbed against the trill keys.

Nickel allergy is progressive.  Once it appears, you are sensitized, and it
only gets worse.

The diagnostic test is to tape a nickel coin to your upper arm and leave it
there for 3 days.  When you take it off, wait 5 minutes and then look for a
white ring around the edge of where the coin was.  If it's there, you have
the allergy.

Fortunately, my allergy is mild, and I can play my all-nickel-plated Leblanc
contrabass clarinet without discomfort.  If I played it for a living, I'd
have to have the thing gold plated.

Best regards.

Ken Shaw

Date: Mon, 7 Jan 2002 10:56:24 -0800
From: Grant Green
Subject: Re: [CB] largest smoke stack would toot

According to, the actual height is 1250 feet, resulting in a frequency of 0.4096, still about Ab-6, assuming standard temperature and pressure. An extra 12 feet of length would bring it into tune, or we could lop off the top 58 feet, and bring it up to A concert...  ;-)  I wonder if this is within the hearing ranges of elephants or whales?

Actually, for a vertical bore that tall, we may have to account for the change in air pressure and temperature (not to mention the  possible density variations of gasses in the stack)...

The same website notes that the stack was built in response to a governmental requirement that the smelter reduce air pollution: the stack reduced *local* air pollution by spreading it out over a much wider area...


>I understand the smokestack in question is 1/4 mile tall. Since 1/4 mile =
>1320 feet, using the approximation f = 512 / L (where f = frequency in
>Hz and L = length in feet) yields a frequency of 0.387 Hz, a slightly
>sharp G, 7 octaves below the lowest G on a standard piano.

Grant Green
Sarrusophones, contrabass reeds, &
other brobdignagian acoustic exotica   
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