Introduction: Visco Fuse Bottle Rockets

Picture of Visco Fuse Bottle Rockets

This instructable will show you how to make your own bottle rockets using Visco fuse as propellant. Visco can be purchased at many online stores. I buy mine from the local firework wholesale shop. I am not taking any credit for this design, I have just modified it. The changes I've made have been mostly weight reduction. I have made changes to the bamboo skewer, the crimping method, the crimper spacer, and the amount of computer paper used. In my first test, I noticed that the rocket did not shoot straight up but off to the side. This could have been due to a few different reasons but when I reduced the overall weight and crimped it a certain way, it seemed to fix it. This was also posted at as well and originated from a book written by Lancaster.

***Just a quick side note: I do not take any responsibility for your actions while constructing this firework, or any others presented to you, by myself. ***

Step 1: Gather the Required Materials

Picture of Gather the Required Materials

You will need:
(1) Hot Glue Gun
(1) Drill with 1/8 inch bit
(1) 1 in X 3 in strip of masking tape
(1) Glue Stick
(1) 2.5 in length of Visco Fuse
(6) 1 in lengths of Visco Fuse
(1) 1.75 in X 5 in strip of computer printer paper
(1) Ballpoint pen **Make sure it has a slightly rounded end
(1) Length of twine or string
(1) Bamboo Skewer
(1) Pair of scissors

Various powdered metals, such as Zinc, Aluminum, or Titanium

Step 2: Making the Crimping Spacer

Picture of Making the Crimping Spacer

The crimping spacer will allow you to crimp the nozzles of these rockets a whole lot easier. The original design was published in a newsletter from and used a wooden dowel rod. I did not have a dowel rod handy and decided a pen would work great.
First, start off by measuring 1 inch from the end of the pen and cut it off. Next, drill a 1/8 inch hole into the end and make sure the fuse fits in nice and smooth. Lastly, wrap some tape 3/8 of an inch down from the end cap until it is about 1/4 inch thick.

Step 3: Rolling the Engine

Picture of Rolling the Engine

Start off by laying your 3 inch long piece of masking tape down on a smooth surface, sticky side up. Lay the long piece of Visco fuse 1/4 inch from the bottom followed by all six of the small pieces. Before you roll it up you can add some metal shavings or powder to color the tail of your rocket, but it's only optional. Start from the bottom and roll it up as tightly as you can. You want to get the long fuse in the middle surrounded by the six smaller fuses. Usually, you will have to reposition the longer fuse to get it just right. After you have it all rolled up, lay down your computer paper strip and cover it with your glue stick. Place your fuse package about 1/4 inch from the top. I use my crimping spacer to make sure I have enough room for the crimp; about 1/4 inch as well. Roll it all the way up and squirt a bit of hot glue on the top to seal it. You have to make sure you have no holes for the pressure to escape but also keeping in mind that you do not want too much glue, as it will weigh down your rocket.

Step 4: Crimping

Picture of Crimping

This step is key. If the crimp is not tight enough or is not correctly done, the rocket will just burn. It may be a bit complicated but after you do one and see what I'm talking about, it should come easier. Start off by inserting your crimping spacer, feeding the fuse through the hole, until the masking tape stops it from entering any further. Next feel around for the space that is created between your spacer and the bottom of your fuses and work it around and squeeze it. You want to make it weaker than the rest of the tube so it will fold easily. Now firmly grip the top of the rocket with one hand and the spacer with the other. Slowly twist and push until the paper folds down nicely. To finish it off, tie a knot around it with your string to keep it from unfolding.

Step 5: Attaching the Guide

Picture of Attaching the Guide
For this you will need a bamboo skewer. In order to reduce the weight of the rocket, we are going to cut the skewer in half as shown. Smear a bit of hot glue on one end and stick it to your rocket. And that's it! Your Finished! I have yet to experiment with payloads and such but I assume that you would be able to put a firecracker on top of there. I'll post anything regarding payloads as I fool around with it.

I've included two videos, one with zinc fillings and the other with aluminum. They look pretty much identical to me though :/




witherslayer77 (author)2016-04-17

Ok this is pretty cool, but I have a few things to say. First, making a nozzle is easier if you just fill in around the ignition fuse with hot melt glue, and I know that it will melt, but trust me it works. You can get a really cool slow mo rocket with only 5 fuses, instead of 7. Next, If you have any super skinny cardboard tubing or some paper to make a cardboard tube, use like 12 fuses and wrap them up in tape as tightly as possible, and then wrap them in a mixture of paper and glue. Shove this into the cardboard tube, and let it dry in there before taking a small washer and using epoxy, glue it into the tube just in front of the package of propellant, letting the ignition fuse go through the hole in the washer. This is a better way to make a nozzle than crimping paper. The end of the cardboard tube can be filled in with hot melt as normal. This design works way better than the other design, I have gotten it to go close to 500 feet.

Great ideas! Thanks! It's been quite a while since I've made any rockets. I've since moved to a city area, so not much room to mess with rocketry unfortunately. Next time I get the chance, I'll definitely implement some of these suggestions for improved performance!

:D that's too bad, rockets are fun!! hope you can find a place to make some again :)

ChrisH23 (author)2015-03-18

if your having trouble finding the visco fuse checkout

Logan Hanssen (author)2015-02-14

What do you think rust will do to the color?

Iron oxide should produce orange sparks trails.

Thank you!

fancypants23 (author)2014-11-12

only problem is im running out of fuse fast and im a poor man, but will give it a try someday!:)

suberk (author)2013-02-18

Very good idea.

BCSTechie (author)2013-02-17

I've got some fuse, (+100) which burns REALLY fast, like 1 sec/ft fast. Will this still work? Or will it just blow up the paper casing due to the extreme pressure? Has anyone tried this with this kind of fuse?

Dandeman321 (author)BCSTechie2013-02-17

Hrm, yeah, that may blow up. Might as well try! If it does you just have a nice firecracker.

bjc4073 (author)2013-01-01

greatness! mine do circles and i love it

Toga_Dan (author)2012-09-04

Is the crimp a restricted nozzle?

Dandeman321 (author)Toga_Dan2012-09-05

Yup! It provides the directed lifting thrust needed for the rocket to launch. Once it's flying, the nozzle will burn away but the burning fuse is enough to keep it in motion.

toezar00 (author)2012-09-04

Cool....Very Cool

thebutler (author)2012-08-22

thank you so much this is awesome i made one and it works awesomely and i love it

Dandeman321 (author)thebutler2012-08-24

Glad to hear it!

Dguy42 (author)2012-07-06

could you use 3mm chinese visco that burns at a rate of 28second per foot

Dandeman321 (author)Dguy422012-07-06

Yeah that sounds like it would work. Light a test piece and put it on a hard surface. If it starts shooting around and moving quickly then you're good to go. If it just sits there and burns without movement, it probably wont work.

Dguy42 (author)Dandeman3212012-07-06

what kind of fuse would u recomend

Dandeman321 (author)Dguy422012-07-09

I just used the kind that the local firework store carried. Any type of fast burning cannon fuse should work. I don't have specific details on what type I used. It just came in a clear package labeled cannon fuse.

Dguy42 (author)Dandeman3212012-07-06

thanks, i just ordered some from Lets hope it works

airgunguy123 (author)2012-06-12

could you make it from cannon fuse

Dandeman321 (author)airgunguy1232012-06-12

Yeah, I believe cannon fuse is the same as visco. For a quick test, take an inch or two of your cannon fuse, lay it on the ground, and light it. If it starts spinning around and going all over the place, it should produce enough thrust to be used for these rockets.

airsoftdominator999 (author)2011-01-25

could you also use flying fish fuse for the 1 inch pieces? i want to make these with color but i dont wanna use metals

I'm not entirely sure... I've never used any flying fish fuse so I don't know if it would work. It looks similar to visco so the thickness would be about the same but I don't know how much thrust it will put out. Give it a go! That's a good idea!

well, it said on the site that it put out a TON of thrust, so i think it should be fine, maybe even better.

K cool! Give it a go! Let me know how to works!

tomass1996 (author)2010-11-28

does anyone know wher to buy this that will ship to new zealand??

C1hrisin123 (author)2010-11-13


lockpick (author)2010-07-05

I'm not allowed to buy stuff off the internet so where can I buy disco fuse in the bay are?

firefighter1333 (author)lockpick2010-07-16

lol, you're not allowed? and wtf?! DISCO fuse?

lockpick (author)firefighter13332010-07-17

Yeah I'm not allowed. My parents are really strict about what I do I proabably should find a beter hiding place for those F rocket motors in my closet. And curse the typo god about the disco.

thorpenny (author)2010-07-10


PyroMaster007 (author)2009-02-08

Great idea. my parents won't let me buy fuse though, they know how much of a pyromaniac i am so they don't trust me with fire. lol, nice job though.

Haha yeah my parents weren't too thrilled with my hobby. Thanks!

how'd you get them to let you? right now i pretend i am into model rocketry so i can get rocket engines (which i crush up and make powdered fuel from). it'd be niice to come outta hiding.

Hah well it depends on your age. When I was younger I had to hide it. Later, my parents just saw that I was being responsible about it. I also assured them that I wasn't making anything destructive like m-80s. I like the display aspect of fireworks rather than the blowing stuff up. I don't know how you are.

well, i have to agree. i have to hide it all. i convinced her to buy lighter fluid by offering to cook dinner.

Haha nice.

I know right... here come the fireballs... I also convinced her to buy me lighters by saying i need them for a boy scout camping trip (to light fires) that worked too!!!

lockpick (author)PyroMaster0072010-07-05

Exact same way I got my lighters

toogers (author)PyroMaster0072009-07-13

she could just be humouring you.

Ha we weren't allowed to bring lighting to our camping trips... or electronics.

i wasn't either, but i brought eight of them anyway!

Tissue paper soaked in gas

codongolev (author)PyroMaster0072009-08-17

so.... your parents won't let you buy the only pyrotechnic device specifically manufactured to save people from burns/explosions/death? hm... I need to get my hands on some visco.... there's so many things to do with it, and I don't have any.

cowgomoo (author)codongolev2009-08-17

hobby shop??? they usually have fuse.

cowgomoo (author)PyroMaster0072009-08-17

painters tape and black powder are my fuse hahahah!!!

fireball9919 (author)2010-06-30

What is the thickness in the fuse that your using? does it matter??

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