Scouts-L Mail Archive for February of 1999: Re: Derby car weights
Re: Derby car weights
Steven G. Tyler
Thu, 25 Feb 1999 09:02:58 -0500
> Maybe someone knows the answer to this. A woman on another list (not
> scouting) is trying to get lead weights banned from pinewood derby because
> the weights "deteriorate" (her word) and may cause lead poisoning. My
> initial reaction was to pooh-pooh the whole thing, but thought you all might
> have some information on this.
Oh, fer the luvva . . . Unless your Cubs are in the habit of *chewing*
on their PWD cars after racing them, there's virtually zero chance of
lead poisoning from the weights. Metallic lead does not "deteriorate"
under normal household conditions, and unless and until it is chemically
incorporated into soluble lead compounds and ingested, does not form any
sort of health hazard.
In roughly decreasing order of importance, most lead poisoning comes
from old lead-based paint (which has lead compounds that are ingested),
lead compounds in gasoline (which are breathed into and enter the
bloodstream through the lungs), or lead joints in plumbing (which are
chemically leached over time into water standing in the pipes, and
ingested with the tap water). AFAIK, there's no concern with metallic
lead as such, which is used in fishing weights and the solder that
electrically connects the components in electronic gear, among other
Perhaps the best thing would be to ask her to document her concern from
an authoritative source. I suspect this will be the last of the issue.
YIS, Steve on Cattail Creek (Steven G. Tyler, Esq.) <email@example.com>
The Computer Counselor -- Technology Consulting for the Law Office
Advancement Chair and Webmaster, Troop 339, BAC, BSA