After watching mythbusters' "towering inferno" methane bubble feat. I wanted to recreate this project. however I lacked methane so I turned to the next best thing -- after noticing that there were two full tanks on the oxy-acet torch at my folks place. this bucket bomb sent the neighbors into panic a quarter mile away (just like they used to when I was in high school and had lots of free time on the farm). The first question out of my uncle's mouth after he came running from a quarter mile away was "where did you get the dynamite from"
Step 1: Materials
5 gallon bucket
2 gallons water (any amount will work, just so the the bucket is about half full
oxygen/acetylene gas & torch head
Step 2: Method
filling the bucket about half full of water, add about 6-8 oz of dish-soap (can use more or less... I havent tried this enough times to get the perfect ratio). Next set the torch head into the soap/water mix, open the valves, and watch bubbles start to form. its best to not open the valves all the way, it blows bigger bubbles, and the bigger bubbles pop easier -- resulting in lost flammable gas.
I only filled the bucket with bubbles about 3" from the brim.. there could have only been 10 or 12" of bubbles, but it was more than enough
Step 3: Ignition
Ok, so weve got the bucket, half full of water, 1/3 full of acetylene and oxygen filled bubbles, and no lid on the bucket... this next step is the tricky part...
maybe I should have suggested no smoking in the last 2 steps... acetylene is a very flammable gas, when surrounded by oxygen, it makes for one heck of a KABLAM so no smoking would be a great idea...
my ignition system was very primitive. I ripped off a piece of cardboard lit it with a lighter, and tossed it over the top of the open bucket. I was standing about 4 feet away when I tossed it, and when it went off, (Im not sure if it was instinct or force but) I found myself on the ground.
I would like to point out a few things...
first off, depending on what kind of bucket you use might have some bearing on if the hospital can see via X-ray if you have foreign matter in your person. I have been told PVC and plastics dont register with a lot of lower-grade Xray machines... something to think about... Metal obviously shows up, but its not always a good idea for metal shrapnel
to go flying through your neighborhood
Secondly.. you may want a really really remote area to do this in, like I said, the neighbors came running
thirdly... I had no idea that the blast was going to be so furious... I was thinking it was going to be a small little fire-ball, and instead it wound up blowing my bucket to shreds... also the bucket was placed above ground and left a pretty good sized crater... DO NOT DO THIS IN YOUR GARAGE!!!
Finally Wear helmets, goggles, Kevlar, or anything you can get your hands on... I was deaf in one ear all day, and could barely hear out of the other... it was an extremely fun experiment but like I said, even if you gotta use a rubber, wear protection..