Instructables

Explosives

I'm looking to make explosives for some homemade fireworks. I want something to put in what I already have to give it a nice loud bang. I don't have a clue where to buy stuff like potassium or salt peter and all that good stuff. But if you could give me a few suggestions, that would be appreiciated.

2hot2hack2 years ago
nitro glisern bomb
Trying to make something to blow up beaver dams. So far I've read to use
Black powder and confine it in PVC and drill a hole for a fuse, is there anything I can add to the blackpowder for a more powerful explosion? That is available in Canada!
More Black Powder
thats a pipe bomb....thats illegal

You've been busy on the internet today - has it been raining outside, do you have a broken-leg or something..?

L
i had the day off school

Yes that would explain it...

L
busy with porn lol

It's bad for you man, indulge yourself in real people.

L
i will try but the dark side is strong
ilpug 2hot2hack2 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
2hot2hack ilpug2 years ago
lol you have been busy
Kiteman7 years ago
"Salt Petre" = "potassium nitrate" = "nitrate fertiliser". Ammumium nitrate is a perfectly acceptable substitute.

Explosive laws are (AFAIK) tighter in the UK that US/Canada, but you can still buy the basics for a form of gunpowder from garden centres and DIY stores.

Roguesci is a good resource to read, especially http://www.roguesci.org/megalomania/ .

Make sure you read the safety notes!
(removed by author or community request)
Different fertilizers have different mixes. Ammonium nitrate is just simple and cheap to make. Potassium nitrate (KNO3) is the one extracted from the seepings from manure or cellar walls.
AN is extremely hygroscopic, it wont work as a substitute.
what are you talking about? ammonium nitrate worked perfectly. it was used as the explosive in the Oklahoma city bombings.
totally different, it was used as a detonatable high explosive sensitized with nitromethane and aluminum powder and detonated with a huge charge of mercury fulminate. That and gunpowder are apples and oranges, incendiary powders must be dry to work in most cases, ammonium nitrate can't stay dry.
anfo can be made water resistant. guar gum is added and that makes the product "WR-Anfo" produced by Dyno Nobel. and anfo is still used heavily in quarrying and road construction, as it is the cheapest blasting agent made.
Being hygroscopic just means you need to keep it in an air-tight container. For home-scale use, a 35mm film cannister is perfect.
how would you ignite the AN just by itself? nitromethane doesn't need to be added if your just trying to do this at home for kicks. plus, ANFO is ILLEGAL where pure ammonium nitrate isn't.

Hit it with a shock-wave (blasting cap? firework? bullet?), or simply burn it under some containment.

Heating it will cause decomposition ("fwoosh" to a cloud of gases), which can be a runaway reaction, but not exactly an explosion.

thanks. I wanted to get magnesium powder and a fuse to detonate it in a tylenol bottle. it seemed like a good idea at the time until i figured the plastic would melt.
and to just contribute, get some mercury fulminate and some blackpowder, put it in a plastic bag and carefully throw it at the ground.
you need an det cap for a mix of AN and gas. are you talking about subing kno3 with AN?
what?? if you soak ammonium nitrate fertilizer in diesel oil and place a small detonator (bullets work very well), you can produce a very powerful bomb
can you just use gas? and, with some bp, can i make a small det?
sure, why not
how do i make the det?
2 ways: 1) marx generator 2) buy one. this is a much safer choice, as det failure is incredibly dangerous
marx generator? i am not buying a det. do you have an internet link? i will set it off with a camera cap and steel wool or estes rocket ignitors.
a rocket motor with igniter would be an ideal detonator
no, it will just catch on fire, you need to have it pop? why do you need a det?
you need a detonator to give the initial kick (impetuous?) to the explosive
ok, for my det cap. i am using bp in an airtight plastic pen tube. i will use jb weld to make sure the end caps dont come off. do you think that will work?
no. you need air for combustion
no, bp supply's its own oxygen. the oxidizer!!!!! i wont pack it but have it loosly in there. is the purpose of a blast cap to spread out the explosive so it burns faster?
if its not packed, it should work. the blast cap gives the initial impetuous that starts the explosion. its like the kick that send you sprawling. it starts the reaction. kinda like firing a slug of plutonium into a ball of uranium.
Regarding detonators for nitrate-based explosives.

You don't need them

Anything that will light a nitrate-based explosive will also detonate it.

Nitrate-based explosives (like gunpowder or fertilizer bombs) do not detonate - they conflagrate.

Detonation is a single substance braking down rapidly thanks to a high-velocity shock-wave passing through it, such as C4.

Gunpowder etc burn - two separate substances (a fuel and an oxidiser) chemically combine and generate a large volume of gas. If you do this in the open (light a pile on your workbench), it goes foosh and makes a large cloud of smoke.

Light the same amount of gunpowder in a confined space (such as a sealed cardboard tube, or a bullet cartridge, then the pressure builds up quickly and makes the bang.

Substances like this are called propellants rather than explosives, which is why rocket-motors are still legal (they aren't bombs).

Some ten years ago, I got the chance to play with some cordite (rifle-bullet propellant). Inside the cartridge, it will put a bullet through an infantryman at quite an impressive range. Outside the cartridge, you can hold an inch-long piece in your fingers, light the end, and have time to hold it in the air before you put it down.
Arano Kiteman3 years ago
Interesting... but amonium nitrate reacts different if you just heat it up (like as substitute for KNO3 in gunpowder) or if you give it a kick with a detonator...
reactions: 1. (NH4)(NO3)-->2 H2O + N2O... 2. 2 (NH4)(NO3) --> 4 H2O + 2 N2 +O2... ammonium nitrate is itself a detonable substance
bremac Kiteman3 years ago
you guys, black powder doesn't detonate nor does any other powder mixture. they just burn fast, its called an explosion. a detonation is the propagation of a shock wave travelling at several thousand meters per second, its not just a kick, its extreme heat and pressure, a sealed pen with black powder does not detonate. you guys really need to look up the terms and you'll have a better understanding cuz this is just the blind leading the blind. thats not an insult you just obviously haven't grasped the basics because so many people on here pretend to know what they are talking about but they obviously haven't done any of this stuff the guy above me here has it together, listen to him
some reliable detonators can be made from available materials. in a piece of 1/4 inch copper pipe with one sealed press in about a gram (thats lots) of one of: acetone peroxide, hmtd, mercury fulminate, lead azid, lead styphnate, a picrate or double salt. insert a fuze and gently seal it up. this will detonate lots of high explosives but not anfo. it will do picric acid, octagen, petn... for anfo you need a second stage in the cap so underneath the primary he from above press in about a gram or two of picric acid or petn, hexogen, octagen etc.. and seal it. Now you can det. TNT quite reliably as well as slurries and water gels. Still now you need a booster which is a larger charge of up to several grams of something like tnt. Another good booster is ammonium nitrate mixed with acetone peroxide or with mekperoxide soaked into it. there are infinite possibilites but anfo will not detonate without a shock wave. black powder in a co2 can will detonate stuff like nitroglycerin, egn, methyl nitrate.... methyl nitrate plastic is a great second stage or booster, it is the most brissant hexplosive in existance right now, more than c4, astrolite or picric acid.
no you cant' but you can make a big fireball. The only way to detonate gas is like in a fuel air bomb where a high explosive detonates causing the liquid gas to vaporize and spread out in all directions atomized then another high explosive charge detonates microseconds later when the correct fuel air composition would be acheived causing detonation of the gas. you can't detonate anything with black powder except primary highs and nitroglycerine and a few other low molecular weight nitrocompounds but they detonate if you fart near them.
Why would you use a alkaline metal salt to fertilize plants you do realise that pottasium nitrate is used to kill tree stumps ?
if you read the label, the potassium nitrate is allowed to soak into the stump. later, the stump is burned-the potassium nitrate being used as an oxidizer.
hahah true that i was told old horse crap then just soak in in 40%+ ammonia solution then other steps i have written down somewhere i really should do it sometime but i think ill wait till i start my BA chemistry course at uni that way i have the books and access to some chemicals and a lecturar who knows how its done :D
ahh i see i just thought it made the enviroment around it that alkaline that it died off none the less i still have to find a place to buy that stuff so i can make black powder or a smoke bomb
I'm just going by what's written on the side of the box in the garden centre. Presumably plants need traces of potassium to be healthy, just like we do.
jtobako Kiteman7 years ago
potassium is the third number in fertilizer (as in 10-10-10), the other two being nitrogen and phosphate.
urine, actually. usually mixed in with the manure. at one time, the urine of arch-bishops was said to be best-but that may have been an excuse to pay more for it as a sort of bribe/honorarium.
bremac Kiteman3 years ago
actually no ammonium nitrate is not an acceptable substitute for powder compositions, it isn't just a matter of the nitrate ion being there. Its highly hygroscopic and just doens't facilitate the fast burning desired. IF it is first dessicated then quickly used then it may work but store it for any period of time and its no good. usually you'll mix metal powders with ammonium nitrate or urethane/epoxies like for use in composite rockets, but no you can't use it to any degree of efficiency in a powder mix, it just doesn't work that well.
Kiteman bremac3 years ago
Then you'd better tell the mining, quarrying and demolition industries (not to mention various terrorist organisations), where ANFO is the explosive of choice.
bremac Kiteman3 years ago
i think you are confused between a secondary high explosive and a deflagrating mixture. Anfo does not burn, it detonates and requires a blasting cap with two stage booster. Secondary he's contain the oxidizer and fuel in one molecule, in a def.mixture they are individual molecules and ammonium nitrate is not suited to act as an oxidizer in one. i'd like to see you find a blaster who mixes their ammonium nitrate with charcoal and black powder and lights it with a fuze, you should try looking into things before coming off like you know everything. oh also anfo is no longer the optimum agent for blasting in most cases, it is now aqueous slurries and gels which detonate and pour/cast more efficiently. terrorists use nitrourea and urea nitrate, rarely do they use anfo because its not reliable. this i know for sure, i did improv explosive training in the army.
Kiteman bremac3 years ago
Then you need to have a word with who ever trained you. (I am a science teacher.)

The (tiny) batch I made went off with a match.
bremac Kiteman3 years ago
well congrats science teacher, you still don't know what we are talking about. Yes ammonium nitrate CAN be ineffectively used as an oxidizer if it is first dessicated, see ammonpulver but that is NOT what blasters use. They use a variety of ammonium nitrate based anfo's, gels and slurries that require a large cap and booster (usually tnt) to achieve detonation. IF you got a batch to "go off" with a match and it contained ammonium nitrate it was a deflagrating mixture not a detonating high explosive. It's apples an oranges. A deflagration is a fast burn, a simple explosion if confined, a detonation is the propagation of a shock wave through the material at speeds exceeding I think 1500m/s.
Please don't challenge my knowledge of chemistry with your status as a science teacher, just because i was a soldier doesn't mean I don't have extensive post secondary education in it. You don't need much chemistry to be a science teacher, well apparently you don't.
Lemonie can i get an amen on the difference between ammonium nitrate as a high EX and an oxidizer, i"m afraid this guy will misinform the future minds of your country.
Kiteman bremac3 years ago
ANFO is a mixture of fuel and oxidant. It burns. Whether it needs an energetic trigger to start the burn, or a fart from a passing midge, it's still a burn.

Shock-wave detonations involve the decomposition of larger molecules into simpler molecules.

The difference between "high" explosives and "low" explosives is not the difference between detonation and deflagration, it is the speed of the reaction. I don't know that boundary off the top of my head, I don't need to. You, obviously, do need to, so I would hope you can tell me.

The thing is, ANFO is 95% ammonium nitrate, 5% fuel oil. That ratio would be almost useless for burning, and I am almost sure that ANFO does not burn at all, rather it melts.
"Burn" here means "a fuel and an oxidant combine exothermically".

"Decomposition" (which is what the "high" explosives do) is when a (relatively) complex molecule breaks down into two or more simpler molecules.
Safety notes aren't needed-that's what healing is for! ;)
The explosives laws in the UK may be tighter, but now a lot of of compounds here are getting added to the drug laws, and the sentencing can be a lot worse.. products like Potassium Permanganate is not classed as an explosive but it is a scheduled precursor under the controlled drugs act , so if your just screwing around and adding a little glycerin to make a small fire you could get twenty years for possession of a precursor if caught.... (( I have a water Iron filter so I have a legal excuse as to why I have large amounts of it ))
thats incorrect actually, you are right it is on the precursor list but it is list two with threshold, the permanganate threshold is 50kg in a single purchase. I own a chemical supply company so i'm versed in these rules. I could sell you 49kg and not have to report it, I could sell you 1 kg the next day and not have to report that either, its 50kg in a single sale. and no, twenty years for a list two, not a chance unless you also are busted with the cocaine you made using it. The precursor laws apply online to drug production, you can't be busted with 50kg of permangate unless you use it for making drugs. Its not an illegal chemical. the only illegal chemicals are illegal drugs and prescription drugs without a script, phenyl2propanone, ephedrine, and those which are on the terrorist watch list at the descretion of health and transport authorities. the precursor lists are a guideline only for reporting and sentencing in the event you are using them for illegal purposes.
ishakook201 year ago
Do not used explosive at the people place
What the heck, clearly this will need a whole new lower level... Basically, grab some matchsticks, pulverize the red stuff on the match-heads, roll a piece of paper tight, seal off one end, put powder in the other, stick a fuse in, and here's the fun part... Get a roll of tape and just tape everything together. Make it tight and a bit thick (3 or 4 layers will suffice). Just light the fuse, throw, see what happens.

**use common sense, because if your hand gets blown off, no one here will be liable**
ilpug2 years ago
Natural selection, at work.
go to bombshock.com..... or maby .net? just serch it
YoungPyro192 years ago
Here are some energetic flash powder compositions.

34% KClO4/33% Mg/33% Al
60% KClO4/40% Mg
40% KClO4/60% Mg
58% KClO4/42% Al
25% KNO3/25% KClO4/45% Mg/5% S
60% KNO3/40% Mg
50% KNO3/30% Al/20% S +2% B(OH)3
50% KNO3/40% Mg/10% S
----------------------------------------
These here are sensitive, especially the ones containing sulphur.

43% KClO3/57% Mg
H3 - 75% KClO3/25% Willow charcoal
25% KClO3/25% KClO4/25% Mg/25% Al
43% KClO3/31% Al/26% S
get some potassium chlorate and petroleum wax. mix together for a plastic explosive. im not sure if this is illegal or not, but it requires a blasting cap, which ARE illegal. i dont plan on trying this, but im just putting it out there.
You don't need salt peter or all that good stuff. All you need are matches and a CO2 cartridge.

Take the match heads and put them in the CO2 cartridge.

Hay look you have a BOMB.
I've tried this and it becomes a rocket. Maybe if you could somehow plug the ends.
well most of the time it blows up, but you may need to put more matches in it. but if that don't work I don't know what will.
Use match heads, they have some good phosphorus which burns good and bright. If you dissolve this phosphorus in some water (just don't set the temp too high), then got the powder out, you can pack the powder into a thick paper cartridge then set it off and watch the fireworks! Or just cut the match heads off, stick them into a ball mill, then get the powder etc.
lucius1083 years ago
recipe for good fireworks 10%sulfur 15%charcoal 75%salt peter
Spartan 1177 years ago
oh i just thought of something fun if you can get your hands on iodine crystals and mix them with amonia and turn it cak to a solid you have made a touch explsive called nitrogen tri-iodide
thats an ignorant comment. ni3 is extremely dangerous and shouldn't be screwed with. i know that comment is old but someone may read it.
Mr.Devious (author) 7 years ago
I needed suggestions on explosive recipies and how to make them, not where to buy them.
I am also in canada. and i have looked at that united nuclear site but on their site is says.. only ships to USA so scratch that. You can buy saltpeter in the pharmacy. it comes in bottles. i don't know what people use it for. if you don't see any maybe go ask a pharmacist where it is and if they ask you what it's for. just say grandpa sent you for it. Also around my house (20 min drive) there is some indian reserves and some guy comes around halloween and canada day i think and sells fire works for a week. Other then that. hmm you can get dry ice from a local gas dealer that sells bottles of oxygen, acetelyne and lots of other gases for welding and medical stuff and crap. so maybe check out those leads
united nuclear now sells to canada
 s666666666666 i also live in canada do you know what stores exactly sell it?
please reply
 what kind of explosions are you looking for exactly?
do you want a big fireball, shrapnel flying everywhere or just  a huge bang or something else?
*purple guy*
Notice the date and the line through the username: long gone and banned I think.

L
 Thank Lemonie :) I'm really new to Instructables so i didn't really know ;)
*Purple Guy*
Look at some recent stuff perhaps:
www.instructables.com/community

L
 Thanks for that Lemonie :D
Yes you will find that lemonie is a like a stalker...but a nice one who gives you helpful tips....and candy..... XD
LOL.... I like candy
Nah, I just look at recent the stuff... But I do sometimes give patches. This one is not offering any more patches, but you're still welcome to add if you've got any ideas:
www.instructables.com/community/Toilet-humour-competition-patch/

L
www.roguesci.org read first, then ask questions or get your @$$ handed back to you for being stupid. it is NOT a polite group, but they have lots to offer.
Sorry to hijack this thread.;-) OK, I've been making what I guess can be called 'pipe bombs' for yrs. I use plumbing 3/4" CPVC pipe with pressure glued caps. I glue one cap on, drill out the center for a waterproof cannon fuse (hot glue around the base of the fuse), pack the thing with black powder, put a cotton wad over the end, use hot glue to seal the end and then glue the last cap on. They are 100% waterproof and a lot of fun. Pretty terrific bang/power etc. I'm using real black powder that we use for black powder guns. FFG, FFFG, FFFFG etc...I can see no different results in the different grade. There is another grade available without and 'dust', I'm told. My query then is; how can I make these bombs louder? Is there anything I can mix with the gunpowder that's stable enough to assemble safely? Any ideas?
There are a couple powders you may want to try although the other gentleman is correct with his comment on the strength of the pipe, ABS may be stronger for this purpose but don't use metal. the powders i'm referring to since i'm sure you aren't going to use flash in a pipe bomb, are golden powder and yellow powder. Properly cooked golden is a trip and as fast as any metal based flash, and it is very brissant. Yellow burns three times faster than black. i'm sure your black may benefit from a little iron oxide, maybe one or two percent to bring up the burn speed, make it a little sharper, addtion of any other fuel will do nothing as black is oxygen balanced already by design, just a catalyst if anything. plus, unless you use really coarse black don't pack the pipe right up, give it a little room in there for space between granules for flame propagation, maybe an inch of head space on a six inch pipe. i've used cooked golden in co2 containers for air guns for blasting with remarkable success *(tree stumps, loosening large boulders in hard pan etc) it is really powerful stuff.
I'm unclear on your "golden" and "yellow" powder comment. Are these forms of black powder that I'm not familiar with? And if so, how do you "properly cook" golden powder? I've been packing the gunpowder into the pipe, followed by a wad and then preliminarily sealed with hot glue. I'm using threaded SCH 80 plastic pipe/caps (and glue), to seal the ends. As I said earlier, I've never found the remnants of a bomb where the ends failed. I put hot glue directly on black powder (on my bench), to check safety and it does not ignite BP. The bombs ignite fine with a cannon fuse...are you saying to leave a small amount of space for better ignition, or better report?
golden powder is not black powder at all. It is a mixture of approximately 65% potassium nitrate, 35% ascorbic acid and a touch of sodium carbonate. the actual numbers are available online. Its incredibly powerful. To cook it, which is what you want to do for explosives, the uncooked is for rockets, you mix all the powders then put them in a saucepan with enough water to make a muck, it doesn't have to all dissolve, individual particles will transiently dissolve allowing intimate mixing. On lowish heat reduce the water until its dry and hard upon cooling. YOu can then granulate with a rolling pin or something. This is a flash powder and should behave almost like a weaker metal flash, contained it creates a very sharp brissant report. I like it because its much easier and quicker than black powder to make well. yellow powder is potassium carbonate, potassium nitrate and sulfer i think, i've never bothered with it but apparantly it will burn 3 times faster than black powder.
Loudness is all about the pressure of the expanding gas. You presumably don't need a higher powered explosive if you're using commercial BP, just a better sealed pipe. Try gluing it together with PVC cement rather than hot glue- the hot glue will be a weak point and the ends will presumably "pop" off rather than the whole thing explode.

(If you do do this, I accept absolutely no responsibility for anything. Making bombs is dangerous, if you don't take adequate precautions it wasn't because of my that you didn't)
I do glue the joints with CPVC glue. The things stay perfectly intact and usually blow out of the pipe itself; therefore the glue joints hold. I only use the hot glue gun to seal the powder inside. I'm going to resist using metal pipe because of the shrapnel issue. I can go to even thicker plastic pipe like SCH 80 and the corresponding glue/caps, or even use threaded SCH 80 and threaded caps-if that would make a difference? GP is considered a low explosive versus like Nitro RC fuel mixed with ammonium nitrate-which is high explosive. I was reading about that, but nothing says how stable that stuff is and if you can store the extra etc. There was also another way to boil down the Nitro racing fuel and then add 6% ammonia by weight. I don't know about boiling that stuff down, even outside-sounds a bit frightening to me? Adding the powered ammonium nitrate to the RC fuel sound pretty safe to me. It's just the 'after' part I'm worried about-handling/storage etc? All this stuff is easily available here in the States-we're crazy after all. :-)
Punkguyta7 years ago
Hmm, well I Was looking at making thermite, and btw, I'm mr devious and didn't get all your posts, as they locked that account
Thermite, eh? I've made a usable form by mixing aluminium powder (I made this by taking foil and shredding it against a cheese grater, then putting it through a sieve) and iron oxide II (I hooked up a nine-volt with two iron nails, inserted both into a cup of salt water, waited 10-12 hours, and filtered out the remaining solution). All thermite, except Thermate, have these and only these chemicals. My homemade stuff works, but it isn't very fine. A sparkler or a magnesium strip is used to light it. Assuming you're not willing to buy the stuff on eBuy. Hope it helped.
Can you light it with a butane torch? Like not a pocket torch, a handheld one.
messmaker4 years ago
pottasium nitrate - Ebay
suplhur - DIY shop
Charcoal - Art shop (willow charcoal sticks).


A jar or something with a bit of petrol in the bottom,
get a conventional gas tank and spray gas in there (slowly) and then seal
as much gas as u can in there.

then put bluetack on the lid and drill a hole through it.
make sure to keep as much gas in there as u can. no stick a sparkler through it and light it.

AND RUN LIKE CRAZY!!!!
kablamo5 years ago
in some hot/ cold packs, the reactant is ammonium nitrate. open it up and there it is! also herbicide is a good bang. potassium nitrate is a good smoker.
Aeshir7 years ago
I'm in the same boat as you are, in Canada you can't buy anything that makes loud noises or flames that you shouldn't use for cooking food (including saltpeter), the god of homemade explosives. I need a recipe to make something out of LEGAL ingredients.

Coffe Mate makes a good flames, but not an explosion unfortunately. It's the edible oils in it. My sister told me about that (off all people...).
Aeshir Aeshir7 years ago
Correction: Coffee Mate
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