Pest Pistol (R) Mini Duster
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- Works great for Diatomaceous Earth
- Easy to Use
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Sturdy and easy-to-use, the Pest Pistol shoots powder right where you need it. Dust nearly invisible cracks and crevices or shoot clouds of powder into huge voids. It allows you to eradicate, not just control pests. Saves time, helps you kill more bugs with wide, thorough dispersion of insecticide dusts.Versatile. One-hand operation for light crack and crevice dusting. Press with both hands for effective dusting of large voids, even drop ceilings. Shoots up to 8 feet. Quality US Manufacturing
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There's nothing really fancy or complicated about these little (really only mini compared to the professional sized one which holds a half-pound of DE, etc.) puffers. It's a well-made, well-designed plastic accordian unit fitted with a screw-on cap which has a plastic "straw" applicator narrowing to an attached nozzle with a tiny hole in the end. The underside of the cap has a small built in "sifter" to keep a large quantity of powder from clogging the applicator as you "puff."
The pest pistol can be used cap facing up or down or angled, depending on your target. I personally found it very useful to practice my skills in the garage before dusting the carpets, nooks and crannies, and cats. There is a slight learning curve depending on your technique. Heavy-handed puffing will result in the "blob" outcome noted by more than one reviewer here. This didn't seem like a big deal to me. I just brush the blobs down into the carpet, or vacuum up the excess.
Once you get the hang of things, there's little effort involved. Again, a little practice beforehand will pay dividends. And don't overfill the cannister (two-thirds is fine for me). This works like a little bellows and requires air to function. It may be necessary from time to time to tap the container to loosen the contents a bit. Bakers among you will understand--it's like rapping your flour sifter to clear it.
There is, as others have noted, no way to make the pest pistol air-tight when storing DE in it. I think this is a very minor issue. In the mid-south, land of high humidity, I simply store my pest pistol in a large zip-lock bag and it's ready to go at any time. I don't fool with funnels or other gagetry to load the container. I simply spoon DE into the opening with a standard soup spoon out of the silverware drawer. It works fine. (Granted, I might want to find a less casual method if I were using a toxic product. But for food-grade DE? Nah.)
Aside from dusting the environment, I have found the pest pistol perfect for dusting my cats. The little applicator can be slid into their fur and "poof," they're puffed. Just be sure the business end isn't actually touching the skin. The end hole in the applicator is super tiny and easily blocked. Just get as close as you can under the fur, without touching skin, give the pistol a squeeze, and then distribute the DE with your hands. I can "do" a cat with about 12-15 strategically placed puffs. A big dog would take more time, but still so worth it. What I love about DE and the pistol application is that even if I overdo things, the surplus DE is distributed by the animals in the places they frequent and gives even more protection from those rascally fleas. Plus it's not a powdered neurotoxin, as most insecticides are, so if it's on the furniture, or the vanity, or my bedsheets, I don't care.
The Pest Pistol and diatomaceous earth go together like "love and marriage." I can't imagine one without the other.
We turn it upside down, shake a little to fill it up and then turn it on it's side, and go steadily but slowly around all cracks, corners, behind whatever we can reach etc. Do not push too hard or do it while it's upside down or you will get blobs of powder all over the place. Very important to go slowly and not just smash it down, almost an exaggerated slow.
Attached a few photos - hope they help - would recommend it and a good price at $10, less than similar items. Just go slow! :)
UPDATE about 6 months later: STILL going strong and 3 neighbors have borrowed it :)
One day my home became infested with ants. Thousands upon thousands of ants marched through my home. Armed with 20 pounds of food grade diatomaceous earth, I was able to simultaneously cover my home with white powder and eliminate my ant problem. Unfortunately, it looked like a cocaine bust gone bad afterwards with white powder everywhere! Fun times.
I ordered Diatomaceous Earth and this Pest Pistol (sounds like the name of a rock band!) and went to work. One thing I learned is that 5 pounds of diatomaceous earth if a LOT. Unless I come up with some other uses for it, I'm sure it'll last me a couple of lifetimes.
This Pest Pistol mini duster is pretty easy to use. Just remove the plastic lid, add some powder, make sure that the tube nozzle is securely pushed into the lid, and give a squeeze to the plastic accordian duster. It's probably obvious when you look at the duster, but in case there's any doubt, you squeeze top and bottom together to deflate the accordian ridges rather than squeezing from side to side.
For my purposes with the electrical outlet, it worked perfectly. I simply removed the electrical outlet cover that the ants were coming from, stuck the tip of the spray nozzle a couple of inches into the wall opening, and gave a few good squeezes to the duster while pointing it in different directions inside the wall. Most of the diatomaceous earth puffed into the wall space, with minimal dust coming back out of the uncovered outlet hole. Since it was so simple and quick to do, I went ahead and did a bunch of other outlets just in case. It completely got rid of the ants.
While the duster did great with puffing into the wall space, I would have been less thrilled with it if I was using it in an open space -- like in treating carpet or area rugs for fleas. I tried a few sample dustings on an area rug and found that it didn't create anything like a uniform dusting of powder. Instead, it left a heavy concentration in spots and missed others.
It's fairly easy to squeeze when operating it. I found that it worked better for me to use both hands. Also, don't fill it all the way or it can't depress enough to puff out the powder.