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Aerosol Flamethrower Answered

I've searched almost all words associated with "Aerosol flamethrower" on instructables, yet I see nothing of the sort. Where I come from in England, they're very common, has anyone else ever made one and would the subject be to easy to make a whole instructable out of it. (even if other ways of using them were included?)

I've established it IS a bad idea, but also just to clarify:
~Spray~ can flamethrowers will NOT randomly blow up unless (to my knowledge)
You hold it the flame so it burn the nozzle.
You pierce the valve.
You douse it in <flammable liquid> and light or chuck it in a fire.




10 years ago

Well, seriously there's nothing to it. to start off you might like to light a candle and then spray your WD40 in the direction of the candle, and then use a lighter for portability. Generally it only makes a little ball of flame around 8-14 inches depending on aerosol, Hair spray, Deodorant, Lubricant-WD40 all work pretty well. About flames going to the can, after "throwing" the flame just make sure it's properly out, maybe by blowing at the nozzle.

I'd say that the flame can't go inside the can as there is no oxygen within them to allow the fuel to combust. Anyone got any ideas on this?

thing is.. the chemical in aerosols doesnt need oxygen to burn.,. therefor.. an easy BOOM

What's most likely to happen is the heat of the flame melts off the spray-nozzle, releasing the contents in one big pressurised whoosh, which is probably as near to an actual explosion as most people would honestly want to be.

That is certainly possible if the nozzle is held down mechanically. That reminds me of one time I had a blow torch go up in my hands. The cylinder wasn't seated properly against the torch and the leaking gas eventually reached the lit burner. WOOF! a ball of flame engulfed the torch and my hand! I dropped it like a ... well like a flame engulfed blow torch. My hand was pretty warm and there was the fragrant smell of burnt hair but luckily I didn't get burned. When you have had your fair share of lucky escapes (and I certainly have) you realise it's a bit foolhardy tempting providence further by playing with the obviously dangerous e.g., aerosol flamethrowers. Pat Pending

Nope you don't you say you do but you don't, we as people never learn, ever I've had more close escapes than that one pigeon who dares to dance with the tyres of big rigs but never have I learnt anything other than how to be better at narrowly escaping...

Hah...you should see some of the burns i've had, except they were mostly from failed cannons n' stuff. Well, I should say used to - I rarely play around with fire nowdays. It's all fun and games until you get burned.

Kiteman: That's one of the favored things to do with an spray can where I come from :p Pierce it with a skewer (the spray nozzle), then laugh at the tit who just got maced . Obviously, the spray isn't lit whilst you're piercing it...

Hmm.. seems possible, but does it really count as the flame "going inside" of the can?

No, but you stop to watch what happened?

I agree. There is no way a flame could get down the jet of the nozzle, through the valve, down the internal pick-up tube and into the can. However, that doesn't make it a safe thing to do! I would only ever use this technique if I was trying to kill a tarantula that had been placed in my bed by a foreign spy. Cheers, Pat Pending (000) - license to drill

they are? i thought they used propane. i dont suppose it makes a differnce though. remeber the good old days when they used cfcs? so much safer.

yeah northern ireland so similar territory, smoking and deo flamethrowers always made a great lunchtime spent in the bogs...

but that doesn't make it prone to explosion, meant for fire or not it is impossible to achieve combustion without a sufficient amount of oxygen

thats completely impossible, just because no fuel is coming out, does not mean there is air going in, aerosol cans will never explode as a result of the flame traveling down the valve, it will explode if you throw it into a fire, but that is because it weakens the can and adds pressure to it, and when it bursts the fuel will ignite.

Actually, it can't happen. I have a typical aerosol can in front of me now. The nozzle has a pinhole jet slightly thicker than a human hair! The internal diameter of the spout without nozzle is about 1.5 mm. this is followed by the valve assembly. attached to the valve assembly is a pick-up tube which goes to the bottom of the can about 18cm long and 1.5mm to 2mm internal diameter. There is absolutely no way that you can maintain a flame along that tube. If what you said was true then every blow torch would explode when the gas cartridge got near to empty (they don't). If you are curious why this doesn't happen you should look into the principle behind the Davy Lamp; which, incidentally was first tested just fifteen miles from where I live. Cheers, Pat Pending

I guess your not curious then (oh well, I tried). It doesn't matter what something is "meant to be " what matters in this case is what it is and the way it's being used! A pressurised container, with flammable contents fed by a tube through a valve terminating in a nozzle - the description fits both so they have a number of significant similarities (particularly with respect to what is being discussed). "Shows how much you know" LOL that little comment shows a lot but it's not about me ;-) Cheers, Pat Pending

We can't spell airosoll--er, aeriosul, er, arosol! It's not our fault! Hey, you spell color with a "u." What's with that? :-)

Evidently you missed the sarcasm there...we Americans have our own stupid little dialect...It came in the same box of dumbness as our lovely piece-of-crap measurement system.

Yeh, it used to be ours as well, except you changed the size of a gallon? And the number of ounces in a pound? Anyhoo, it was about as internationally-idiosyncratic the zloty.

Just curious, over here air conditioners and heaters are rated in BTUs (British Thermal Units). How are they rated in England/Europe? Do you use joules?

I think they're dual-rated now. They were rated in BTUs when I used to sell them, but that was <<deleted for security reasons>> years ago.

You would carry heaters up and down streets, your back must of hurt alot. you didn't need to delete the stuff.

Er, that <deleted...> bit was a joke about me being old. I turn 40 before the end of the year :-(

Kiteman you are not old, 90 is old :P old is a state of mind.

Hold a contest for the best birthday gift Instructable! L

... and anybody who includes a zimmer frame gets a slap!

You beat me to it. I was going to say a Knex Zimmer frame. Cheers, Pat. Pending (who is also in the same timezone and I don't mean GMT)

I know, thats okay my dad is 46 i think and he pretends hes 36

What's an air-conditioner and what would use one for? Cheers, Pat Pending

An air conditioner is defined as any unit that modifies the qualities of air, by heating, cooling, humidifying, dehumidifying, filtering, or otherwise changing the properties of the air that passes through it. Usually, however, the term air conditioner is only used to describe a device that actively cools the air passing through it, generally for the purpose of cooling a building of vehicle.

I think I understand, but I can't think of any practical use for such a machine. Here in england if we want it cool we wait for Summer. It's the height of Summer now, it's been raining for two days and the temperature is cool. If we want it cold we simply wait for Autumn, Winter or Spring. Cheers, Pat Pending

Here in Topeka, Kansas, USA, the high for today is supposed to only be 100 degrees F(37.8 dC). That is down from the past few days. With the high humidity added, the heat index is around 110 F(43.3 dC). People literally die from the heat, due to dehydration and overheating.

Tend to use Watts/Kilowatts and Kw Hours. The Watt being the SI derived unit of power, and Kw Hours being a quantity in Joules. There used to be a gas energy unit called a Therm (100000 Btu), but gas is Kw Hours these days (I believe). You also find engines rated in Watts as well as horsepower, or instead of (more usually diesels). L

The measurement system was created by a king, based on his body. The foot was the size of his food, inches was part of his finger, etc. I don't seem to remember America ever having a king..

As far as i know, the american language (american english) was created A) To give america more independance from england and B) To make the english language simpler. You can think of reasons why it was needed to be made simpler ;P

Because, against popular opinion, using more complicated language because you think it makes you smarter, doesn't. Work smarter, not harder. And where is all this American's not using the word aerosol coming from? I, and plenty others use and spell it correctly all the time.

CameronSS, when I started HTML for the first time I had SO much trouble trying to work out why I couldn't get a bgcolor attribute to work :P

Sandal Man, In my experience they have never exploded...but I have heard people say it before, and I have tried to get it myself. :s It probably wouldn't contribute alot so I wont make it.


10 years ago

Yes many people do but you can't make an instructable out of it because all you do it put a lighter to a spray can and squeeze both triggers. People made real flamethrowers on here that shoot farther then 3 feet though.