Introduction: Jolt Egg Timer Detonator

Picture of Jolt Egg Timer Detonator


The Jolt egg timer detonator is pyrotechnic detonator that will give you a Jolt of fun. It is a very eggciting project that will make you egg cream your pants.

Bad puns aside though, the egg timer detonator is a great project for many reasons:

Its cheap: The materials will cost somewhere between 0 and 20 dollars.

Its simple: I designed it so that almost any analog egg timer should work, and construction should take less then an hour.

Its useful: Ever need a 0-60 minute delay on a pyrotechnic mixture. I didn't think so.

Its inconspicuous:

TSA Agent #1- "Hey why does that can of soda have an egg timer on top of it?"

TSA Agent #2- "So people know how long it will stay carbonated after opening ... duh."

TSA Agent #1- "Then why is it duct taped to the wing of that plane?"

TSA Agent #2- "Haven't you ever seen the Twilight Zone. Messing with William Shatner is thirsty business."

TSA Agent #1- "Ohh, interesting. Hey, is that little old lady over there clipping her nails?"

TSA Agent #2- "It would appear as though you are right." ::whips out shotgun:: "DIE TERRORIST SCUM!!!"

Just in case you need more convincing though, here is a video.

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

Odds are you have most of the materials for this project already.

Metal can - I used a Jolt can because I liked the design. Any metal can about the same diameter of the egg timer should work.

Egg timer - The only requirement for the egg timer is that it is set by rotating. One part should stay stationary as the other part is rotated to set the time.

Syringe Tips - Can be found in ink cartridge refill kits.

Wire - Cheap speaker wire from radio shack works fine.

Capacitor Charger - Oh Snap! I just slightly validated that project.

Step 2: Prepping the Egg Timer

Picture of Prepping the Egg Timer

The directions for this step will vary for different types of egg timers. I tried to make the instructions as specific as possible while still keeping them general enough to apply to different egg timer designs.

The goal of this step is to separate the egg timer into two separate parts - the stationary part and the rotating part. The stationary part will then be cut down to a size appropriate for attaching to the can.

The pictures are more descriptive then any directions I could ever write. Look at them if you're not sure what to do.

Step 3: Prepping the Can

Picture of Prepping the Can

Like the egg timer step, this step will be general to try and encompass any different type of can designs.

1. Rinse the can out. A clean can is a happy can.

2. Cut the can to a size that will fit the egg timer.

3. Find a way to attach the stationary part of the egg timer to the can. I cut holes in the can just below the rim, and put the stationary part of the egg timer in there.

4. (If you are using this for smoke bomb) Put some holes in the can for the smoke to escape.

Step 4: Wiring the Egg Timer

Picture of Wiring the Egg Timer

The goal of this step is to create two pairs of contact points on the egg timer. One pair will be on the rotating part of the egg timer wired to the syringe tips, and the other pair will be on the stationary part wired to some steel wool. Once the timer is set the capacitor will be plugged into the syringe tips, and when the time reaches zero the two pairs of contact points will be touching each other completing the circuit. This will dump the entire charge of the capacitor through the steel wool, igniting it and any pyrotechnic mixture in the can.

(follow the photos, they are each worth one thousand words of instruction)

1. Cut down the plastic tops of the syringe tips, so that when the capacitor is inserted the leads will be touching the metal.

2. Drill two holes around the "0" on the egg timer. The holes should have the same diameter of the syringe tips, and spaced apart the same distance as the leads on the capacitor.

3. Use hot glue to attach the syringe tips to the egg timer.

4. Use some heat shrink tubing and more hot glue, to attach short lengths of wire to the bottom of the syringe tips.

5. Use some hot glue to attach a pair of wires to the stationary part of the egg timer.

6. Strip the ends of the 4 pieces of wire, and bend them so that when the timer reaches zero the 2 pairs of contact points will touch each other. (The last picture)

Test it:

1. Put a small piece of fine steel wool between the two wires coming off of the stationary part of the egg timer.

2. Set the egg timer.

3. Insert a charged capacitor into the syringe tips.

4. Rotate the egg timer to zero. The results should be similar to what happens in the video.

Step 5: Loading the Can

Picture of Loading the Can

For demonstration purposes I used smoke powder. The smoke powder was just a standard 50:50 mixture of potassium nitrate (stump remover) and sugar ground together in my makeshift mortar and pestle.

Put a piece of paper or coffee filter inside the can to prevent the powder from spilling out the holes on the side.

Pour a bit more then half the mixture in the can. Attach the stationary part of the egg timer to the can, and place the steel wool and wires into the mixture. Pour the rest of your pyrotechnic mixture on top of the steel wool. Attach the rotating part of the egg timer on top of the stationary part, and you're done.

Step 6: Setting

Picture of Setting

Place the can where you plan on detonating it. Rotate the timer to the amount of time needed.

****Only insert the capacitor after the time has been set****

Insert the capacitor.

The egg timer detonator is now armed.

When the timer reaches zero the contact points will touch each other, igniting the steel wool, and igniting whatever pyrotechnic mixture is in the can.


The Guardian 2 (author)2015-04-07

The mixture at the end of the instructable, with matches and stump remover, does that make a smoke grenade composition or more of an explosive composition?

volquete (author)2008-12-31

nice ible, but wtf was up with the word 'penis' at the end of the vid?

omnibot (author)volquete2008-12-31

Durden ;)

volquete (author)omnibot2008-12-31


omnibot (author)volquete2009-01-02

I know :) Clue: -The movie "Fight Club".

volquete (author)omnibot2009-01-02

oh yah tyler durden...but what does that have to do with the word 'penis' at the end of his video?

omnibot (author)volquete2009-01-03

*sigh* I refer you to DEFDOM DELTAs answer further down in the comments:

If you've seen the movie Fight Club; the same song is used at the end of the movie. It is titled and produced by, "Where is my mind?-- The Pixies". At the very end of Fight Club, right before the credits start to roll, a picture of a penis flashes on screen; thus the inspiration for the instructable video-clip.

volquete (author)omnibot2009-01-03

okay...i haven't seen the end of fight club. thanks for clearing it up!

omnibot (author)volquete2009-01-04

No worries :)

ilpug (author)omnibot2011-10-04

Don't talk about Fight Club.

volquete (author)omnibot2008-12-31

i dont get it...

Stone Age (author)volquete2010-07-15

yeah wtf is right

MediocreNinja (author)2010-05-16

 Now THAT looks safe

Where could i get stump remover

m1keo (author)Hades di Angelo2010-08-22

I bought mine in Lowes and its called Specticide Stump Remover

I've heard of some people finding some at Wal-Mart, but I couldn't find some myself. But any home gardening store would do, like Lowes, Home Depot, Art Knapps and for us Canadians, Canadian Tire

tatok (author)2010-01-27

Sangat atraktif sebagai praktek dasar ilmu fisika.....

the mechanical engineer (author)2009-03-16

huh. capacitor? steel wool? seriusly? get some nichrome on ebay and hook it to a 9 volt. alot cheaper and easyer.

Erm, I think battery+fire=baaaaaad :P

 wel cybot if you dont want to wait then grab a 9 volt from your "scrap drawer" and some copper wire from your scrap drawer and use thin copper wire
easy as lemon meringue pie

yeah, but that takes time for things to arrive from ebay, looking in a your scrap drawer is intsant.

Colonel88 (author)2009-11-27

So is the smoke powder mixture generating alot of smoke? I like pyrotechnins but I don't like to blow of my fingers... Does the Smoke pixture pose a risk of xploding? ANd does any stump remover work? Nice job by the way.

belphegore (author)2009-10-17

 Could you apply this to anything else, like a pipe, with some BP in it?  Also where would you get and charge a capacitor?  This is for purely scientific research of course!  >_>  I think I hear the feds coming BRB!

dla888 (author)2009-10-09

I loved this I dreamed about making something like this as a kid, My dreams are coming true.

zajako (author)2007-09-08

Coulnt you just use a 9v battery on top of the timer instead of the "charged compasitor" thus avoiding the need for the compasitor charger? :P

misanthrope13 (author)zajako2007-09-08

No. The battery wouldn't have enough voltage. (330v as opposed to 9v)

Actually 9 volts is enough to ignite very fine steel wool, so to answer the original question yes you can use a 9 volt battery instead of a charged capacitor.

ilikebombs (author)Tetranitrate2008-01-07

yeah but one why waste a battery, and two do you want a battery full of acid type liquids on a bomb? i woulden't.

i would

mazeka.14 (author)ilikebombs2008-12-09

I would the point is an explosion after all;-)

idiotjohn (author)ilikebombs2008-04-08

Anyway - only car batteries and lead-acid batteries actually have acid in them... AAA, AA, 6v, 9v and most other batteries are all made of a black powder of some type - does anyone know the name of it? So, there isn't actually any liquid in batteries at all...

mannys9130 (author)idiotjohn2008-07-09

thepowder shold be in solid form, but it is carbon. the carbon should be in rods, but anyway.. I do not think you mean black powder as in the low explosive, because in that case you would be wrong, but I do not think that you meant that =)

jah32 (author)ilikebombs2008-04-28

just have wires that lead from the 9V to the egg timer and place the 9V like 3 feet away, thin speaker wire is flexible enough to move with the timer.

Pbyrd (author)ilikebombs2008-03-07

Well if you were trying to blow someone up, why would acid type liquids matter?

ya, i was at a party and i showed the guests how to make an easy campfire with steel wool and a 9 volt battery

you show survival techniques at your parties?

Ok. Shutting up.

jimbo112 (author)misanthrope132007-09-16


Daddio_UK (author)misanthrope132008-02-14

unless you charge the cap off 330v, you wont get 330 volts. it charges to what ever voltage you apply, but, you might get a lot more current as the cap will discarge quite quickly. All the charge you put in over a few seconds will be released in a lot less time.

winman2000 (author)2009-04-09

Does anyone know if TrueValue stocks stump remover? If so, what brand do you recommend of the brands they stock?

jonathanblack (author)2008-06-19

one question im 13 and iv ben thinking about this why do you need a relay y cant you hook the wires that go to the speaker right up to the steel wool or why cant you hook it up to a batterie and from the battery go to the steel wool im confused

killer77 (author)jonathanblack2009-04-07

13yr old with explosives..... not the best combo ever

rippinblaise (author)2009-03-23

you could hook up the charger circuit where you put the steel wool and put the capacitor in backwards and when the timer is at 0, the cap will blow.

pyromaniac2 (author)2009-02-27

u could use that as a firestarter or smokebomb

sadunpererarules (author)2009-02-19

"theres something on the wing....something...on...the...wing" legend twilight zone. haah without it we wouldnt have this amazing detonator

eranox (author)2009-01-02

Bad guys use these to blow us up here in Iraq. Fortunately, it doesn't work very well, as trying to set a 60 minute timer for the exact time that a convoy passes by is virtually impossible. Anyway, this is pretty damb cool! One question, though--could you run a length of speaker wire from the timer to the can so you won't blow up your carefully modded egg timer each time?

wenpherd (author)2008-12-19

can you buy the timer from walmart

yuckzee (author)2008-10-12

lol, did fight club inspire you to become a rebel to

mannys9130 (author)2008-07-09

why does it say penis at the end. I saw that! :P

DEFDOM DELTA (author)mannys91302008-07-10

If you've seen the movie Fight Club; the same song is used at the end of the movie. It is titled and produced by, "Where is my mind?-- The Pixies". At the very end of Fight Club, right before the credits start to roll, a picture of a penis flashes on screen; thus the inspiration for the instructable video-clip.

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