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Micro Containers


vespax
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I am into micros these days for the fun of the hunt, not needing to leave anything behind, and low impact on the environment of the site.

 

So where do people get these at? And where do you find the best prices? Or do you do home made jobs?

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I am into micros these days for the fun of the hunt, not needing to leave anything behind, and low impact on the environment of the site.

 

So where do people get these at? And where do you find the best prices? Or do you do home made jobs?

If the "low impact to the environment" is important to you, please make sure you have very good coordinates, and please include a detailed hint.

 

I searched in vain for more than half an hour for a cache two weeks ago in an area with a huge oak tree, boulders, brush, and poison oak. :P

 

Unfortunately, when I got done, it looked like a whole herd of Geocachers had been there because the cache hiders did not include a hint . . .

 

As for containers, I use empty pill bottles. You might be able to get those for free from a nearby pharmacy. Covered with black or cammo duct tape, they are difficult to see.

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You can get waterproof match containers at WalMart for $.86. They are bright orange, but a can of flat black or green paint will run you only $2.38. One can of paint works for... a lot of them (haven't run out of paint, and I've painted 20 or so, and still got paint in there).

 

You can get really tricky and purchase the fleckstone paint, too, that gives texture cammo to your micro that is pretty effective.

 

For a real kicker, you can get gorilla glue ($2-$5) and cover your match container (after painting first) with and cammo for great kicks. Anything from bark to moss to whatever works great. One cache I placed I used the epoxy, then smashed up some very prevalent local rock (a sedimentary type that grinds up easily) and rolled the container in the smashed rock debris. I put on a coat of fleckstone, spritzed a few more close colors to the rock, did another layer of epoxy/smashed stones, spritzed a little more fleckstone, and coated it with a sprayable flat finish. The dadgum thing looks so much like a rock I could throw it amongst rock rubble anywhere in this area and it would blend in. You can read the logged finds (the early ones) where the cammo was talked about.

 

The point is, there's some really cheap micro options such as this at your local Wally World. Heck, there may even be a cache in the parking lot (hint: look at lightpoles) you can log! :blink:

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The 35mm film canisters are not as waterproof as other containers, so keep that in mind when you are using them.

He is absolutely correct. As film canisters are repeatedly opened, they stop keeping out water. Also, some kinds of film canisters are more waterproof than others. In my opinion, the kind where the top snaps into the bottom seals better than the one where the top is just a cap.

 

If you put the log in a baggie, however, you should be ok.

 

I've had one of my fake rocks out in the field for about six months and it hasn't leaked, yet. Still, its best to use a tiny ziplock.

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I am into micros these days for the fun of the hunt, not needing to leave anything behind, and low impact on the environment of the site.

 

I guess this means they are going to be urban hides so that geocachers do not have to destroy any plant life to find them.

 

You can get film cans free for the asking at any photo lab

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I am into micros these days for the fun of the hunt, not needing to leave anything behind, and low impact on the environment of the site.

 

If low impact is an issue for you, micros are NOT the answer. Being that they are harder to find, they promote impact. Searchers are at the site longer and being that micros can be concealed in many places, the search area is much wider. To reduce impact a full sized cache hidden in a spot that is obvious to geocachers is a far better choice.

 

That being said, you asked where to find them. Pretty much anywhere. Waterproof match containers are cheap and widely available. You can find them at Walmart or any place that sells campling supplies. Bison capsules are a bit more expensive but are durable and work very well. They are available mail order from Bison Designs or from REI. I think GC.COM also sells one with their logo. The 2 oz. Nalgene Straight Jar makes an excellent micro container. Though I hate to mention them (because I generally dislike them) Hide a Keys are available in nearly any hardware store. They aren't waterproof however so something has to be devised to keep the log dry. Same goes for the common Altoitds tins, which are free, but have leakage issues. Used film canisters, though popular and widely available, also have iproblems with leakage.

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As for containers, I use empty pill bottles. You might be able to get those for free from a nearby pharmacy. Covered with black or cammo duct tape, they are difficult to see.

But they don't seem to be waterproof. I used one, it wasn't long before I was getting "wet log" complaints.

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I just bought a two-pack of Hide-A-Keys at Dollar General (where everything costs $1). So, 50 cents for each, and they come with a built in magnet. Not sure how water resistant they are, but it looks like they seal pretty well. And they're big enough that a ziploc bag to protect the log isn't out of the question anyway.

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I just bought a two-pack of Hide-A-Keys at Dollar General (where everything costs $1). So, 50 cents for each, and they come with a built in magnet. Not sure how water resistant they are, but it looks like they seal pretty well. And they're big enough that a ziploc bag to protect the log isn't out of the question anyway.

I got mine at walmart...$1.93.

 

I have seen 35mm film canisters - i am told they are free, just ask at walmart/ritz etc that develops film.

 

I have seen mini m&ms tubes.

 

I need to know where to get the magnets!

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How do prescription pill bottles work?

Prescription bottles generally keep out water for a little while and then leak. Most have cardboard seal.

 

I am starting to be a big fan of nalgene chryogenic tubes. That's what I use in my golf balls. I've had one outside for about two months now. We've had some pretty bad storms around here, but the log has remained dry.

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I test all my cache conatiners by wadding up a few pieces of kleenex and placing them in the container with lid. Then I put them in the shower/tub with drainer plugged. I shower for 5 - 8 minutes or so as the water rises (cold water only!). while showering it - I turn it over a few times with different sides down. (many will float). Then I take the container and place it in a plastic bag with some water and a few soggy paper towels - shake it up and place in chest freezer for a few hours - take out and thaw in bag. Dry off the outside and open it up. Reddily apparent if it has leaked when you look at the contents. All my caches save one have passed this test and that one only allowed a few drops in.

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I am starting to be a big fan of nalgene chryogenic tubes.

 

I can attest to the quality of the Nalgene cryogenic tubes. I'm a lab researcher, and we use those to store samples in liquid nitrogen. We rarely have any of those leak, even under these conditions. They produce a small variety of different types, too, so you can probably find one to suit your needs.

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I am starting to be a big fan of nalgene chryogenic tubes.

 

I can attest to the quality of the Nalgene cryogenic tubes. I'm a lab researcher, and we use those to store samples in liquid nitrogen. We rarely have any of those leak, even under these conditions. They produce a small variety of different types, too, so you can probably find one to suit your needs.

I just bought a few bags on eBay.

They do make good micro containers. Watertight and inexpensive.

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I just bought a two-pack of Hide-A-Keys at Dollar General (where everything costs $1). So, 50 cents for each, and they come with a built in magnet. Not sure how water resistant they are, but it looks like they seal pretty well. And they're big enough that a ziploc bag to protect the log isn't out of the question anyway.

These are the ones I use and I've never had issues with a wet log.

 

I would, however, advise against the ones where the little black tab slides out so the key can fall out - I opened one of those and the entire thing had been holding water. The log sheet was so wet I couldn't remove it to trash it out.

 

Just remember this - if you're using cheap/free containers, always be prepared with a few extra so when you do maintenance you can replace them if the seal looks like it's given up.

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I am starting to be a big fan of nalgene chryogenic tubes.

 

I can attest to the quality of the Nalgene cryogenic tubes. I'm a lab researcher, and we use those to store samples in liquid nitrogen. We rarely have any of those leak, even under these conditions. They produce a small variety of different types, too, so you can probably find one to suit your needs.

Too bad ependorf caps snap off so easily. They'd make micros from hell :ph34r:

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This thread reminded me of a container that found me the other day.

 

I've been selling containers on ebay for a little while. I was running out of containers for my tiny magnetic nanos and fake acorns (same container) so I ordered some more. When I received them, I found that I has screwed up and purchased the wrong thing. The containers I received were a little less than half as tall as the nanos and about half as wide.

 

I'm not quite sure what I am going to do with them, but its going to be evil. :o

Edited by sbell111
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Instructions to make a Palatka micro.

Purchase business card magnets (about $20 for 100) at Office Depot

Purchase craft baggies about the size of a business card (less than a $1 for 100)

Purchase some duct tape (have fun with a variety of colors!) while at Wal-Mart.

Remove adhesive cover from magnet and attach baggie (as if attaching a business card) and cover plastic section with duct tape (choosing appropriate color to match surroundings).

Approximate cost per micro: 22 cents.

Watching people complain about these ultra-thin magnetic micros that they have a tough time finding (mainly because they look right past them) and then complain about micros on forums: priceless.

 

These are a very low cost way to have magnetic micros. The only thing cheaper than that is film canisters. While at Office Depot, print out a cache info sheet, copy it and cut it like this.

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Then you are set for a fun day with the kids. (Yes I made Agent K cut and staple her own logs....)As far as the durability of film canisters. I've had one film canister velcroed to the top of a wooden sign exposed to the elements for the last 8 months. If you wonder about how exposed it is, note that people have seen this cache from the road. One of the first logs asks "How long will it last?". This is the severe thunderstorm capital of the world. It's been through 50+ mph winds on multiple occasions. I've yet to maintain or replace the canister. The log is still dry. Film canisters do work (as long as you put the log in a sandwich bag :o ).

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If you buy the orange Wal-Mart match containers for .86, they are very durable, and are the perfect size for a micro or a redirect to a another stage. And, a 1" spade bit is the ideal size for drilling into wood limbs ot insert these containers. Drill into a the end of a weathered limb or stump about two inches and insert the closed end. :o

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