Picture of Fuse

This instructable describes how to build a simple fuser to quickly and efficently make hundreds of feet of pyrotechnic fuse. It requires very basic materials and construction skills, and the entire process only takes a matter of hours to get hundreds of feet of fuse.
I would like to give credit to both united nuclear and pyro universe, because this design improves on and modifies both of their ideas and techniques. This project will have much use in my other projects requiring fuse, and as every pyrotechnic knows you can never have enough fuse.

This fuse burns at appx. 1 in. / sec
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Step 1: Parts list

The parts for this project should be relatively cheap because most of the items can probably be found around your house. The black powder (gunpowder) is the only thing you might have a problem getting your hands on, but it shouldent be too hard if you know where to look.


1. Old tupperware container (medium sized)
2. Black powder (Can either be bought at gun stores, with proper id, or made in my tutorial )
3. 1/4" Wooden dowel at least 2 feet in length
4. Dextrin, A powdered pyrotechnic glue (Can either be bought on e-bay, or made, Ive never made it but the good folks at pyro universe say "To make dextrin, spread an entire box of corn starch out on a cookie sheet and cook it in the oven at 400° for about 2 hours, stirring it every 20 minutes or so with a spatula to keep it from burning. When it's done, it will be light yellow/gold in color.")
5. Scale
6. Rubbing Alcohol
7. Devcon weldit all purpose glue
8. 1/4" and assorted smaller drill bits and a drill
9. Old clothes (or some type of overcoat), latex gloves, and eye protection (Optional)(This project is messy)
10. (2) Spools of cotton twine, make sure it has nothing else in it wax, etc. (to do this take a sample 3 in. piece of it and burn it, if it contains wax or something else it will drip, if it dose not drip when burned it is good)
11. Old scrap wood, a 3 foot long 2x4 would be good enough
12. Saw
13. Hammer and nails
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Gnomie.4 days ago

also looking at a few of the other comments I think I will add a better description of how to make potassium nitrate which either by itself or combined with the black powder would make a smoother burn and able to burn trough tight spaces. Simply put take NaNo3 (sodium nitrate) which is a food preservative and very easy to obtain, and KCl (Potassium Chloride) is aqueous solutions. Just type that into google and you will find many ways to make Potassium Nitrate, or you can buy it.

Gnomie.4 days ago

if you then soaked the fuse in paraffin wax it would be water proof, unless it already is but I doubt it. Once soaked in wax you wouldn't have to worry about moisture in the air degrading the fuse and it should still burn at approximately the same rate. Excellent instructions

Haven't tried this before, would these fuses be rigid? Trying to do a set up that requires me to tie a bunch of fuses together.

I know I'm late to the party and all, but if you start with a finer string coat it with your formula an then weave the string into a cord you will have a much better burn in tighter areas.
I always wander a rug like that! My step-brother had one and I was always so jealous.
But aside from that, nice instructable, very enjoyable.
jpoopdog3 years ago
i want to know how well this fuse burns, aka, can it burn in the total absence of external oxygen?
such an environment may be found in the highly confined hole that a fuse must burn through to reach the insideds of a firecracker

also, have you ever just used potassium nitrate for the fuse, with dextrin? and if so , what are portions you should add inorder to aquire a a fuse that is capable of supplying its own oxygen source for burning.

so far i have not been able to make a fuse, other than with matches ( with the fuse being about as dense as the actual match heads due to the large amounts of match powder used), that could burn through confined holes, and thus have wasted alot of precious resorces in making these fail matches.

This might be helpfull to more people than just you, but you are the only one asking this question it seems.

Most (If not all fuses) covered here and in anarchy cook books follow this or similar method. The problem with these methods is that it just burns on the surace, thus when pushing it trough a tight hole, burning will stop at the hole. The two strings twisted together is about as close to a solve I have seen...

The method I use is simple:

Get some rice paper and cut to length if you prefere, but keep it a few centimeters wide (An inch or two wide).. Now coat the ONE SIDE with the blackpowder-water mixture as mixed in this instructable (it works) and roll the rice paper up as tightly as you can keeping the blackpowder in the inside of the roll (Much like roling a joint)...

Now coat the exterior with the blackpowder mix aswell if you deem it necessary. Hang to dry..

You can also use that thin material used to cover up wounds before a bandage is applied. Just remember to use a single layer, this seem to work the best.

Hope this helps some of you folks. Cherz
sir if this was a question, you would have gotten the best answer!

i cant believe i overlooked that!
gameboy7oa7 years ago
hehehehhehehehhe i took gunpowder from some bullets and mixed it all up im a bottle cap (with match heads so it lights easier) but i mixed it with waser so i was woundering if it will still light?
If you let the mix dry, yes.
once the water is gone yes. and which type of bullet did you take the powder from? this is important information so i can tell if it will work in a way which will allow you to keep all your fingers.
lol yes I do still have all nine(jk I have 10) of my figures on my hands. I used 22 long rifle bullets the same kind I'm going to use for one of my Instructables.
thats it? im using a WHOLE m1 garand clip of blank 30.06 rounds. and the primers are still unused.
yah but all i had lying around were the 22s so thats what i have to deal with maby ill be adle to get something stronger when im not 13
look foward to 21.(or if parents will let you 16 ish) soon parents are going to let me get a mosin nagan and theyl sign the part of the application forum which will allow me to get my own FOID.
yah so now i just have to count down the days 2682 days 64371 hours 3862307 minutes 231738462 seconds
why do i have the feeling that mist of those numbers are random? (dont answer that)
um actualy I used a count down generator so it actualy is correct numbers from the time I posted the comment
don't tell me youvve never heard of the the anarchist cookbook! what kind of stupid teen are you!?!? i've had a copy under my pillow scence i was twelve (ok it was a print out) that was five years ago.

anywho, explosives galore
Hey, so do I!!!!! but i have made my own and added it to the original so it is over 700 pages long... (I keep it on a flashdrive)
mosin nagan... that would be a sick hunting rifle if im thinking of the same gun, the sniper rifel from call of duty 5 (or 4 i cant remember) but what's a FOID?
its a card that u have to have to buy guns and ammo from a legitamate arms dealer, i think it stand for firearms owner identifacation
Removing the bullets from .22 shells is hella dangerous. The Rim Fire primers can be triggered by compression, like if you had the shell in Pliers or a vise. Just make Black Powder it's safer.
striker955 years ago
can any one tell me where I can find a print out version of the anarchist cookbook?
Nowadays, most people get it online and print it out or just use it on a computer.....
Why are two strings required? Can one string with loose fibers absorb the mixture and the mixture then squeezed into the fibers as it is drawn out of the hole? Can the fuse be made flexible so that it can be wound onto a spool? Your response is appreciated.
CamWaite4 years ago
YoungPyro194 years ago
Hey, I remember that rug when I was like what, in the 3rd grade. lol
Nice =)
Mad Cat4 years ago
 Could I substitute black powder for flash powder (by slowing it down) or sparkler powder?
paultorres4 years ago
i am looking for a visco machine to make a fuse but i like your fuse i will like to make a visco machine post me a comment
sas2234 years ago
can you use pyrodex ? thx in advance 
I have a rug like that!
Mig Welder5 years ago
oo is that the wintergreen rubbing alcohol?? lol it smells kinda wierd
Mig Welder5 years ago
out of curiosity, why do the strings have to stick together? is it a kind of test to see if it has enough dextrin or is it neccessary?
Nice Carpet :), i remember that in my room when i was around 4 years old.
That's  Tetranitrate's room? Lies!
Mattrox5 years ago
Adding red phosphorus make blackmatch (This type of fuse) work nicer but I think it might make them a bit more dangerous
I have that rug in plastic form, it'd be so much cooler in carpet... I used to crash cars into the shop window and then send a convoy of fire trucks and ambulances to rescue the crash victims and destroyed shoppers. Sometimes these incidents happened at the school, resulting in many squashed kids or at the lunatic asylum (the big manor-type thing if I remember correctly). Oh! And I used to combine micro machines with regular sized cars and have chases! There were probably Playmobil people in there sometimes too... I've had many fun times with that mat. I think yours is the same as mine... It's been a few years though.
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