Sciencemadness Discussion Board

Det Cap Strategies

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Laboratory of Liptakov - 22-10-2021 at 11:03

https://www.dipolnet.com/self-amalgamating_tape_pib_scapa_25...

Fulmen - 22-10-2021 at 14:50

I haven't seen the videos, what's the gasoline for? I just soaked the tape (any self-amalgamating tape should work) in xylene for a few weeks, decanted and precipitated it with acetone. I'm sure toluene is better but xylene works too.

Laboratory of Liptakov - 23-10-2021 at 01:26

Xylene is good for extraction PIB from self-amalgamating tape. OK. Good message. But beware. PIB = Poly Isomere Butylene rubber. At this material is pretty important the long of isomers chains. Respectively midle (average) long of isomers chains. Therefore, not every tape can have a same long of chains. But due to the globalization of everything, it can be assumed that the tapes will have the same PIB chains around the world.

ManyInterests - 24-10-2021 at 19:43

Quote:
Xylene is good for extraction PIB from self-amalgamating tape. OK. Good message. But beware. PIB = Poly Isomere Butylene rubber. At this material is pretty important the long of isomers chains. Respectively midle (average) long of isomers chains. Therefore, not every tape can have a same long of chains. But due to the globalization of everything, it can be assumed that the tapes will have the same PIB chains around the world.


Good, so I can dissolve PiB in xylene instead of gasoline? That will make things easier. Xylene is available at almost every hardware store where I live (But I need to make a special order for toluene).

I think that while Scapa2501 is a good brand. Maybe a self-amalgamating tape brand where I live is also as good? It'll need to be tested. But that's the fun part!

Edit: One last part. When building a blasting cap/detonator, is it best to put everything in and press only at the end, or press at every addition? Like pour the ETN, press, pour the NHN, press, etc etc?

[Edited on 25-10-2021 by ManyInterests]

katyushaslab - 26-10-2021 at 02:41

Pressing at every addition is what I would recommend, that way you get better control of the densities of different regions. Having a high density "output side" of secondary is good, but you want a lower density region between it and the primary to ensure a good transition, if that makes sense.

Laboratory of Liptakov - 26-10-2021 at 08:22

Exactly, all was said katyushaslab

Fulmen - 26-10-2021 at 10:41

In addition you can only press so much before the top material will bind to the casing and prevent the bottom part to be properly compacted. I would recommend a height (after pressing) of no more than one diameter at a time.

MineMan - 27-10-2021 at 23:06

I would recommend pressing every .25mm. Ok just kidding.

Laboratory of Liptakov - 28-10-2021 at 01:14

Just press the height the same as the inside diameter. My grandmother always pressed it normally in a vice. And then she just squeezed the other segments by hand. Finally, Grandma hammering some BP a like the plug. Normally by hammer. And then she went to blow it to the pigs, to the barn. A like child, I remember, all pighs was totaly deaf....:cool:

ManyInterests - 11-11-2021 at 10:51

That's one interesting story!

So I finished my first ETN synthesis. I used granular erythritol and not powder, because I read a long time ago that that was better than powder. Now my end product (it is drying) appears to be more granular/crystal than powder. Is it safe to gently crush a few micrograms at a time with a rubber spatula?

I need to find a way to put the cap in my sawdust bucket to press it safely. The reason why is that pressing it might result in the cap being pushed further into the dust instead of the ETN and NHN being pushed further.

Also one thing I am thinking. While I did manage to ignite black powder in some test caps, I am not sure if I really trust my black powder. Would using ground up match heads in addition to my electric match be sufficient to ignite the explosive train?

katyushaslab - 11-11-2021 at 11:53

I'd not advise crushing when there are far, far safer ways to do it (recrystallize). I answer this in the other thread: https://www.sciencemadness.org/whisper/viewthread.php?tid=11...

Adding something as inconsistent and sensitive as ground up match heads to your firing train will likely make it less reliable (and more likely to go pop at the wrong time, killing you). Instead, work out what is wrong with your black powder and fix that. Could you outline the process by which you are making black powder? We can probably help you out there...

[Edited on 11-11-2021 by katyushaslab]

MineMan - 11-11-2021 at 14:37

Quote: Originally posted by Laboratory of Liptakov  
Just press the height the same as the inside diameter. My grandmother always pressed it normally in a vice. And then she just squeezed the other segments by hand. Finally, Grandma hammering some BP a like the plug. Normally by hammer. And then she went to blow it to the pigs, to the barn. A like child, I remember, all pighs was totaly deaf....:cool:


I want your life.

Brightthermite - 11-11-2021 at 15:49

Dont know where you are located but if you can just purchase black powder that would be best.

Us a pie pan or something full of sand as your base. Its firm enough to keep the cap from pressing right up against the inside of the container.

ManyInterests - 11-11-2021 at 16:09

Quote:
I'd not advise crushing when there are far, far safer ways to do it (recrystallize). I answer this in the other thread: https://www.sciencemadness.org/whisper/viewthread.php?tid=11...

Adding something as inconsistent and sensitive as ground up match heads to your firing train will likely make it less reliable (and more likely to go pop at the wrong time, killing you). Instead, work out what is wrong with your black powder and fix that. Could you outline the process by which you are making black powder? We can probably help you out there...


I have a batch of gunpowder that I tried to make using the wet method, but I think I botched it somehow. What I did was take the usual proportions of potassium nitrate, sulfur, and charcoal, grind them as finely as I could, mix them in a makeshift shaker (using two paper cups taped together to seal them) and then I poured 99% isopropyl alcohol until it didn't appear to absorb anymore and I tried to arrange it into a cake of sort.

The problem occurred is when it didn't form the granulated cake that I could use to breakup using a sieve. I waited for the alcohol to evaporate before I put it through a sieve anyway and it still ended up as a very fine dust.

When I try to light it using a barbeque lighter the flame just washes atop it and does nothing. If I use a small jet cigarette lighter it does burn, but does not have that 'poof' characteristic that I've it have in videos where people made it using the wet method. It burns that way, but takes a bit. If I put it in a paper tube and burn the tube it does burn once the fire reaches it. Ditto if I put an electric match (I just tested it right now).

But it's just the barbeque lighter thing that is what gets me to doubt it even if it does reliably ignite every where else. When I put it in a pen body, it burned like a fuse instead of popping like a firecracker. (the same pen body popped quite well when using potassium chlorate/sugar mixture).

Would putting in chlorate/sugar or a wad of nitrocellulose work as well for the igniter? I made a cap that was filled with just nitrocellulose (my 'bad' batch. I have a much better batch) and it quite vigorous in its pop. My 'good' batch of NC burns even faster with very little residue.

edit: My only hesitation in using nitrocellulose is that earlier this year I had made a pair of batches and I left them unused for several months. While one remained as good as I left it, the other one degraded quite badly and basically turned to goo. I think it might have been the fact that I didn't wash out all the acids or wash it correctly. My fear is that if I need to store my cap for any period of time, I don't want my cap to either turn into a dud or spontaneously pop due to some unforeseen degradation.

[Edited on 12-11-2021 by ManyInterests]

MineMan - 11-11-2021 at 16:38

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  
Quote:
I'd not advise crushing when there are far, far safer ways to do it (recrystallize). I answer this in the other thread: https://www.sciencemadness.org/whisper/viewthread.php?tid=11...

Adding something as inconsistent and sensitive as ground up match heads to your firing train will likely make it less reliable (and more likely to go pop at the wrong time, killing you). Instead, work out what is wrong with your black powder and fix that. Could you outline the process by which you are making black powder? We can probably help you out there...


I have a batch of gunpowder that I tried to make using the wet method, but I think I botched it somehow. What I did was take the usual proportions of potassium nitrate, sulfur, and charcoal, grind them as finely as I could, mix them in a makeshift shaker (using two paper cups taped together to seal them) and then I poured 99% isopropyl alcohol until it didn't appear to absorb anymore and I tried to arrange it into a cake of sort.

The problem occurred is when it didn't form the granulated cake that I could use to breakup using a sieve. I waited for the alcohol to evaporate before I put it through a sieve anyway and it still ended up as a very fine dust.

When I try to light it using a barbeque lighter the flame just washes atop it and does nothing. If I use a small jet cigarette lighter it does burn, but does not have that 'poof' characteristic that I've it have in videos where people made it using the wet method. It burns that way, but takes a bit. If I put it in a paper tube and burn the tube it does burn once the fire reaches it. Ditto if I put an electric match (I just tested it right now).

But it's just the barbeque lighter thing that is what gets me to doubt it even if it does reliably ignite every where else. When I put it in a pen body, it burned like a fuse instead of popping like a firecracker. (the same pen body popped quite well when using potassium chlorate/sugar mixture).

Would putting in chlorate/sugar or a wad of nitrocellulose work as well for the igniter? I made a cap that was filled with just nitrocellulose (my 'bad' batch. I have a much better batch) and it quite vigorous in its pop. My 'good' batch of NC burns even faster with very little residue.

edit: My only hesitation in using nitrocellulose is that earlier this year I had made a pair of batches and I left them unused for several months. While one remained as good as I left it, the other one degraded quite badly and basically turned to goo. I think it might have been the fact that I didn't wash out all the acids or wash it correctly. My fear is that if I need to store my cap for any period of time, I don't want my cap to either turn into a dud or spontaneously pop due to some unforeseen degradation.

[Edited on 12-11-2021 by ManyInterests]


I appreciate your caution and thought. But, I think you are viewing this in a very OCD way. Why not just combine ETN and NHN together. Seal it off and be done with it. Forget black powder. Use kno3 and sugar. Don’t worry about ETN size. At this point, you will learn much more by having failures then asking questions.

ManyInterests - 11-11-2021 at 16:51

I am autistic, not OCD. I also have an anxiety disorder. As weird as it sounds, my interest in energetics is one way of conquering anxiety. Handling highly dangerous stuff like this is correctly and safely has surprisingly had a very good effect on my anxiety. I mean I don't anyone who ever has any idea what hydrazine is or WFNA does can look at me and say 'dude! You made that and just like... used it?'

I view this in a highly methodological way because that's the only way to safely do it. I also really like the challenge of doing it. It's part of the fun. Like making nitric acid was trickier than I thought, but when I finally had a usable batch it felt amazing.

so just mixing ETN and NHN in a mixture is sufficient? They don't need to be put in separately? I probably don't need the black powder anyway. NHN is very flame sensitive and the match will reliably set it off.

Edit: Long story short. I don't mind having failures as long as those failures don't result in injuries or other major problems. Also I think I should also be planning on my first NHN synthesis.

[Edited on 12-11-2021 by ManyInterests]

[Edited on 12-11-2021 by ManyInterests]

katyushaslab - 12-11-2021 at 05:06

The "wet" method of black powder production is frankly, rubbish IMO. I've tried it, the product is always inconsistent.

Milling it for a while (a cheap rock tumbler and non sparking media such as lead fishing weights will work fine), followed by spraying on some isopropyl alcohol, pressing into a cake, and pushing through a screen (corning) to break it up into granules will give you a much better product. There is plenty out there on making good black powder.

Your charcoal source is also very important - lump charcoal or briquettes for BBQ's are not going to give you a good product. Making your own charcoal using a paint tin with a hole in the lid, and some willow cuttings is optimal.

Doing things in an "OCD" way is actually a massively good thing when it comes to energetics (or other chemistry), btw.

karolus28 - 12-11-2021 at 13:16

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ol9wuQO5v-A

This one is quite cool for making black powder. The milling, putting in a jar with some alcohol and milling again gives quite good results

MineMan - 12-11-2021 at 13:57

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  
I am autistic, not OCD. I also have an anxiety disorder. As weird as it sounds, my interest in energetics is one way of conquering anxiety. Handling highly dangerous stuff like this is correctly and safely has surprisingly had a very good effect on my anxiety. I mean I don't anyone who ever has any idea what hydrazine is or WFNA does can look at me and say 'dude! You made that and just like... used it?'

I view this in a highly methodological way because that's the only way to safely do it. I also really like the challenge of doing it. It's part of the fun. Like making nitric acid was trickier than I thought, but when I finally had a usable batch it felt amazing.

so just mixing ETN and NHN in a mixture is sufficient? They don't need to be put in separately? I probably don't need the black powder anyway. NHN is very flame sensitive and the match will reliably set it off.

Edit: Long story short. I don't mind having failures as long as those failures don't result in injuries or other major problems. Also I think I should also be planning on my first NHN synthesis.

[Edited on 12-11-2021 by ManyInterests]

[Edited on 12-11-2021 by ManyInterests]


I say this because I have OCD tendencies. I look back at my career of energetics and I see a lot of anxiety that killed the fun. And a lot of over thought. You have to approach it from knowledge of how your brain works. But, there are energetics where you don’t have to have anxiety at all! Very safe compounds. Tho, it will still exist as our mind will not believe.

I posted a topic about a very safe non primary detonator, it has been third party tested and works well. Check it out.

But yes, in a sealed container or cap NHN with ETN will work. As for pressing it. Make it simple. 3D print a plastic box with various voids and press the cap on there. If it goes off it just splits it. You don’t even have to press it.

As you can tell. I am against over thought because that’s my tendency and it is what has killed the fun.

Anyways. There is a discord where you can discuss this for faster answers. And there are primaries which are almost as insensitive as ETN. I have an idea for a detonator that is completely insensitive. If you want to be the first to make it, I can give you some of the credit. I am confident it will work. You need hydrazine to make it. It will also be the more powerful detonator in the world thus far. Just shoot me a PM, but it will be easier than you think, and pressing would be very safe. It’s built around DDT of a very stable energetic, more than RDX

ManyInterests - 12-11-2021 at 21:56

Quote:
Your charcoal source is also very important - lump charcoal or briquettes for BBQ's are not going to give you a good product. Making your own charcoal using a paint tin with a hole in the lid, and some willow cuttings is optimal.


Yes I am aware of the importance of the charcoal. What I did is I went to an art supply store where they sell very soft willow charcoal drawing sticks and I ground them up to a fine powder before mixing. I hope that the art grade charcoal was good enough for that.

Quote:
But yes, in a sealed container or cap NHN with ETN will work. As for pressing it. Make it simple. 3D print a plastic box with various voids and press the cap on there. If it goes off it just splits it. You don’t even have to press it.


What I plan on doing is getting a foam block, make a hole in it, and put it in a bucket full of saw dust, then use a home made hydraulic press to do the pressing. I will need to manually pull out the dowel and add the next bit of energetics manually as well, but the toughest part, the pressing, will be done with me in another room (and looking through a crack in the door).

Quote:
Anyways. There is a discord where you can discuss this for faster answers. And there are primaries which are almost as insensitive as ETN. I have an idea for a detonator that is completely insensitive. If you want to be the first to make it, I can give you some of the credit. I am confident it will work. You need hydrazine to make it. It will also be the more powerful detonator in the world thus far. Just shoot me a PM, but it will be easier than you think, and pressing would be very safe. It’s built around DDT of a very stable energetic, more than RDX


That sounds extremely interesting. I'll give you a PM.

ManyInterests - 2-1-2022 at 17:53

After doing much practice with my lousy black powder (and running out of sugar chlorate mixture... but thankfully still having potassium chlorate to work with) I finally found a satisfactory way of constructing a detonator and sealing it properly with epoxy (that actually hardens quite well) and make a pair with the full ETN/NHN combo. This is after I made a very small cap using only NHN (around 0.15 grams or 0.20, I forget) that detonated with a nice pop inside my detonation bucket.

I made two, one with a combination of .5 grams of ETN and 0.23 grams of NHN, the other one is 1 gram of ETN with 0.40 grams of NHN. The smaller one has the electric match not quite touching the mixture, but it isn't so super compacted and I am certain that the flame will touch it when I power it up. I very gently pressed the ETN and NHN seperately, but I did tamp very gently to make sure it went all the way down. I hope I did not dead press them.

I'm not going to lie. I am VERY nervous about setting these things off. I wanted to put some shrink wrap on top of the epoxy seal by I am too scared to put any form of flame on this thing. I am also looking at any and all batteries as if they are the devil at this point... I use some powerful battery packs and I fear that that the slightest touch of anything will set them off... my fears aren't unfounded since that is what usually happens when I use my batteries to fire up electric matches.

I checked them both to make sure that they have a complete circuit with my multimeter and both of the electric matches have home made NC lacquer on them. I hope I got me a pair of winners!

Det1.jpg - 1.4MB Det2.jpg - 1.4MB

[Edited on 3-1-2022 by ManyInterests]

Laboratory of Liptakov - 3-1-2022 at 12:22

I am curious on witness plate....:cool:

ManyInterests - 3-1-2022 at 14:46

WOWOWOWOOW!!!

I used the smaller one by inserting it into a solid block of wood. Actually it's two blocks of wood that I fused together with gorilla glue and drilled a hole to insert the detonator in it and poured hot glue to secure it in place.

I want to make it clear that the wood blocks aren't plywood. They're solid blocks of very hard, very tough wood...

I put it in the middle of my bucket and covered it with sawdust, top and bottom. Look at the pics! There's nothing left of it. It shattered it to pieces and I still think there are more bits of wood in the bucket. I put some weight on the bucket top to try to keep the lid on, and it threw off all the stuff on top of it. Thankfully the bucket is still intact and I put it on a platform so it doesn't damage the floor if it blew through the bottom.

If this is the 'small' detonator I made with 0.5 grams of ETN and 0.2 grams of NHN I do NOT want to set off my overpowered detonator in the bucket, because I am certain that it will blow it apart!

The small detonator, from my research into military and civilian detonators, is as powerful as a military blasting cap, so it should be sufficient for tough explosives like RDX/C4 or military dynamite. The overpowered one was done to the specs of the Improvised Munitions Handbook and I can understand why they wanted to make improvised detonators so powerful... they want positive detonation of any explosive.

I also made a third detonator (1 gram ETN, 0.43 grams of NHN) and there is some odd discoloration between the NHN and ETN layer. I am not sure what is happening there...

Block1.jpg - 2MBBlock2.jpg - 1.5MB

Gargamel - 4-1-2022 at 01:09

Did you read what Doc Liptakov wrote?

That wood test - it looks impressive, but I'm not convinced.


Laboratory of Liptakov - 4-1-2022 at 07:09

Unfortunately, I know from experience that wood shows basically nothing. Even if it was for 100 pieces. A similar test with a similar result as in the picture is necessary.

Berta No.8.jpg - 1003kB

ManyInterests - 4-1-2022 at 07:40

I did read it, but I did not have a metal plate like that. I don't think that test would work in a saw dust filled bucket. I will get a small sheet of metal and when I am able to find a properly secluded spot to test it outside I will do so.

Did you glue the detonator head into the plate to keep it in place, BTW?

Edit: The steel sheer, what kind was it? Weldable, galvanized?

[Edited on 4-1-2022 by ManyInterests]

[Edited on 4-1-2022 by ManyInterests]

Laboratory of Liptakov - 4-1-2022 at 09:11

Classic construction steel, weldable, maybe galvanized with some color on surface. Shortly normal ordinary sheet 2 mm. For stick used paper tape 2 - 3 layer from both sides. Zero distance from sheet is important and perpedicularity. Maybe it will less loudnes than with two part of wood. And mainly it will credible - Clearly telling Good luck....:cool:

[Edited on 4-1-2022 by Laboratory of Liptakov]

ManyInterests - 4-1-2022 at 09:28

Ok I saw your video on youtube about 'The Cavity' (where you make a blasting cap out of a steel tube) and I saw the aliexpress link you gave. I wish I knew about it earlier! Those tubes would be perfect for am amateur blasting cap. More than a pen body is (albeit NHN goes DDT very easily even in a cardboard tube, which mean I believe the whole thing will detonate even if unconfined in wood).

I also found this bit of sheet metal on Aliexpress: https://bit.ly/3JKjxQi

I think the 2 x 100 x 100mm would be perfect. What I will do is clue the detonator from around the side (but not the bottom) to the sheet to hold it in place, and in order to stabilize it in my bucket. I will get another wooden block, stick the sheet to it, place it around the bottom of my bucket and fill the rest with sawdust to muffle the sound. This should allow an accurate test.

It will take a bit for me to get all the necessary stuff, but when I do and perform the test. I will post the results in this thread.

Laboratory of Liptakov - 4-1-2022 at 12:44

OK. It doesn't matter what looks assemble. Detonator must be perpendicular to the plate. The irony is that I'm also looking for a 2 mm plate. I smashed everything to pieces....:cool:
Once upon I also started with plast cavities. But proffesional cavities are often from metals. Pressing on high density is much easier.

ManyInterests - 4-1-2022 at 17:35

Well given that I found those metal tubes on aliexpress I think that I will make caps from them in the future. Plastic pen bodies are good, but after getting some practice I can probably do them without necessarily being able to see what is inside...

But speaking of which. I did make a 3rd blasting cap and there is something up with the ETN. I am not sure what or why it happened, but there is some discoloration that just appeared.

The other cap I made with similar quantities of ETN/NHN does not have this discoloration. What could it be?

det.jpg - 3.6MB

Brightthermite - 4-1-2022 at 18:42

I got a feeling it may be hard to see results on a metal witness plate with the plastic body of the pen case in-between. If you have any heavy walled cans like for Freon or Fixa-Flat they work great. I have done lots of testing with them using High and low explosives in order to be able to identify a det vs a def.

Tape the cap to the side of the can. 1/2-1 gram of ETN should punch a hole right through and throw stuff out the other side. A deflagration will just dent the can.

ManyInterests - 4-1-2022 at 19:49

NHN has a tendency to go DDT with even the most minimal of confinement. It was noted to set off RDX even in a cardboard tube. Again I will need to test it to see if it'll make a nice hole in the witness plate or not. I might go scrounging around some junkyards or trashbins for something suitable to use. You mention a Freon or Fixa-Flat cans? I'll see if my local hardware stores have some recycling containers with those that I can maybe scrounge.

But I will need to do it in my bucket. This will have a different effect as it will mean it will add confinement more to the situation... or maybe I will just find that secluded spot and test it there.

That being said I will reiterate my original question... what is up with the ETN between the NHN and other ETN? I don't know why it got discolored like that. The epoxy clearly couldn't have touched it? It looks weird.

Laboratory of Liptakov - 5-1-2022 at 12:38

Nothing is recognized from photo as change of color.

MineMan - 5-1-2022 at 13:59

The odd color! You could have acid left in your ETN reacting with the NHN??

Brightthermite - 5-1-2022 at 14:18

Ive used the cans both outside in the open and in a container similar to what you are describing and the results are pretty much the same.

I myself are pretty confident your caps are going DDT. Idk if you have seen the videos of Wesson, but when he tested his cardboard caps he had to remove the hot glue end in order for the witness plate to be damaged at all.

As far as the color who knows. I had some turn yellow on me just one day out of the blue, maybe Bi carb left in?

ManyInterests - 5-1-2022 at 19:03

Quote:
Nothing is recognized from photo as change of color.


There is a bit of light brown color in the ETN between the snow white ETN and the NHN.

Quote:
The odd color! You could have acid left in your ETN reacting with the NHN??


Quote:
As far as the color who knows. I had some turn yellow on me just one day out of the blue, maybe Bi carb left in?


I checked my ETN supply in the tupperware where I keep it. It is still quite snow white. I would be surprised if there was any acid left. I washed out the ETN from both of the batches I made (that I store together) very thoroughly and I did add bicarbonate into the water to neutralize any acid washed out, but there was none there. I also did add baking soda to the water that I dumped the solution into.

This was before I recrystalized them, too. Which I did for all my batches and I used large quantities of distilled water in both cases. I am pretty confident I got rid of all the acid. Of course it can't hurt to give them another wash, even just spraying them with bicarbonate water.

That being said, I kept the other two detonators I made and they did not develop that discoloration. My other cap containing the same amount of ETN and NHN has no discoloration. Maybe it was an issue with that one very specific blasting cap?

That being said, I am now glad I used transparent pen bodies for the detonator. Since there is no way I could have noticed if it was in a metal casing.

markx - 7-1-2022 at 03:05

Not only acids are responsible for the breakdown of ester compounds....bases do the same.

XeonTheMGPony - 7-1-2022 at 03:37

if you store you must add acid scavenger, I use .01% by weight of urea in my recrystallizing step (I precipitate directly out of the alcohol and do not use a second water step) to stabilize the higher density crystals for storage

But for water step add .3% urea by weight to coat crystals on drying to act as scavenger

MineMan - 7-1-2022 at 18:16

Quote: Originally posted by XeonTheMGPony  
if you store you must add acid scavenger, I use .01% by weight of urea in my recrystallizing step (I precipitate directly out of the alcohol and do not use a second water step) to stabilize the higher density crystals for storage

But for water step add .3% urea by weight to coat crystals on drying to act as scavenger


.01 percent of the ETN or the water and ETN weight??

ManyInterests - 7-1-2022 at 20:59

That's an interesting thing I will do for an ETN synthesis in the future.

I took another picture of my detonator. Is it just me, or is the brown part eating my ETN?

det2.jpg - 1.5MB

Laboratory of Liptakov - 8-1-2022 at 05:11

Is it clear. NHN eating the ETN. Also ETN eating NHN....:D

ManyInterests - 22-2-2022 at 08:53

OK, so those detonators I mentioned? I set them off a few days ago. Their power was quite mediocre compared to the first one that I did (that completely annihilated that wooden block and sent the lid of my bucket flying). They made a pop, consistent with NHN, and a nice colored flash, but it was not what I was expecting.

The ETN completely turned this sawdust-brown color, I had washed my NHN with ethanol (95%) and water to clean it up and took a pH reading. The liquid was neutral, or mostly neutral. I didn't wash the ETN again. The ETN that I had kept seperate in a container was still snow white, but it seems like when I loaded it into the pen body there was something up with it that caused it to degrade. It could that there are acids or something that's left that makes it degrade when it touches the NHN (And starts a chain reaction that causes the whole thing to die eventually).

Or... it could be a reaction with the plastic? No, that can't be it. I kept the ETN in a plastic tupperware that I don't think was a different type of plastic than the Bic pen body.

At this point I suspect it may be something with the ETN synthesis that went slightly awry? When I get back to this, I will make it a point to take especial care to make sure that the ETN is pH neutral.

On a plus note, I am kinda glad that the detonator went off reliably after being in storage for more than a month. The other interesting is that the match that I used in it was completely intact (I burned it with a lighter after) and it was purely the nichrome wire that set off the charge.

XeonTheMGPony - 22-2-2022 at 16:47

Quote: Originally posted by MineMan  
Quote: Originally posted by XeonTheMGPony  
if you store you must add acid scavenger, I use .01% by weight of urea in my recrystallizing step (I precipitate directly out of the alcohol and do not use a second water step) to stabilize the higher density crystals for storage

But for water step add .3% urea by weight to coat crystals on drying to act as scavenger


.01 percent of the ETN or the water and ETN weight??


of the ETN.

MineMan - 22-2-2022 at 18:22

I think LL just gave you the answer in another thread. It boggles my mind people still make NHN, lead azide and SADS after his contributions. His work mimics the work forever hidden by nuclear powers to produce insensitive detonators.

ManyInterests - 22-2-2022 at 19:57

Quote:
if you store you must add acid scavenger, I use .01% by weight of urea in my recrystallizing step (I precipitate directly out of the alcohol and do not use a second water step) to stabilize the higher density crystals for storage

But for water step add .3% urea by weight to coat crystals on drying to act as scavenger


OK so let me see if I understand you correctly. After the nitration is complete, I prepare the beaker/jar of distilled water with bicarbonate and urea added in, then pour the nitrating mixture inside and filter as normal? And after drying, after dissolving all the ETN in warm acetone, I also add a touch of urea to that as well?

I didn't make large batches of ETN. so adding 0.01% and 0.3% by weight seems really minuscule. Maybe next time I'll make one somewhat large batch (like 30 grams?) to make the urea addition easier to weigh?


Quote:
I think LL just gave you the answer in another thread. It boggles my mind people still make NHN, lead azide and SADS after his contributions. His work mimics the work forever hidden by nuclear powers to produce insensitive detonators.


NHN is still a fairly new thing when it comes to amateur chemists. It's also the first of the fairly 'safe' primaries out there.

I only made one NHN synthesis (out of three. My other two failed due to the fact that my attempts at freebasing hydrazine were unsuccessful because my hydrazine sulfate synthesis was unsuccessful). I do want to try to make a few more once I get back into the amateur chemistry thing. It isn't because I am so convinced of the superiority of NHN that I think it is better, but simply because I want to get more experience in making it. It's still a very good primary and as long as it doesn't degrade when added with an ETN booster it should set off any explosive charge. My first blasting cap had no degradation and it was unexpectedly powerful. The degraded ones were quite weak.

I absolutely will make CHP and even try to see if I can have a go at making LL8. I said it in another thread.

However I do want to figure out what I did wrong here and try to rectify it. That's part of the challenge of this hobby.

Laboratory of Liptakov - 23-2-2022 at 01:22

I basically agree. Each researcher's path is lined with a series of failures. A new researcher will gain a complete overview of energetic materials (and experience) only after several years of study. And also after hundreds of attempts. Which are often unsuccessful....:cool:

ManyInterests - 23-2-2022 at 15:10

Quote: Originally posted by Laboratory of Liptakov  
I basically agree. Each researcher's path is lined with a series of failures. A new researcher will gain a complete overview of energetic materials (and experience) only after several years of study. And also after hundreds of attempts. Which are often unsuccessful....:cool:


Yes. Making NHN was a psychological hurdle that I just wanted to get over. When I did successfully synthesize it (you remember!) I was feeling a tremendous amount of elation and joy. Of course the synthesis could have been much better, as despite adding dextrin it was chunky and needed grinding. I also had some issues with filtration that made washing difficult, so I didn't give it an ethanol or water wash.

Making ETN seemed successful until I realized the degradation issue when using it in a blasting cap. I think it is the ETN more than the NHN (because I did wash the NHN later, but not the ETN). I was thinking of paper and how acid-free paper was made because when wood pulp was used to make paper much of the acid remained, and it caused the paper to degrade quite quickly.

When I do it next, I will use a much larger jug with a vast excess of water AND sodium carbonate + urea in the mix, then rewash everything afterward before recrystalization (with also a dab of carbonate and urea). It'll be a long process, but if it clears up the issue and I can have a cap that does not degrade immediately after making then I would call that a success.


Edit: Also I will be looking into getting lab grade ammonia, a cup-type crucible, and a heat gun. I will need it to make CHP, which I did promise MineMan I will make. Who knows? Maybe I will say to myself that I should have went with CHP instead of NHN! Also I will be getting lithium chloride to make lithium perchlorate for that Lithex that you made (I download most of your videos, BTW).

[Edited on 23-2-2022 by ManyInterests]

XeonTheMGPony - 23-2-2022 at 15:23

I never use carbonate.

I just wash the crude till no detectable acid in it, then dry, dissolve in methanol, add .3% urea, then crash in a water .01% urea mixture, filter and dry

Laboratory of Liptakov - 23-2-2022 at 16:19

ManyInterests:
That's nice news. CHP works as a mono material. The outlet pressure is lower than ETN, but CHP is strong enough to initiate anything. This allows you to get rid of compatibility problems with 2 or more substances in one cavity. I recommend CHP first. When wet, it has a beautiful blue, monochromatic color. And he's non hygroscopic. Every success in the field of energetic materials causes a strong emotional experience. As a bonus, it's knowledge of precise procedures that few people master.
Which is a big advantage in case of war...:cool:

MineMan - 23-2-2022 at 17:10

Quote: Originally posted by Laboratory of Liptakov  
ManyInterests:
That's nice news. CHP works as a mono material. The outlet pressure is lower than ETN, but CHP is strong enough to initiate anything. This allows you to get rid of compatibility problems with 2 or more substances in one cavity. I recommend CHP first. When wet, it has a beautiful blue, monochromatic color. And he's non hygroscopic. Every success in the field of energetic materials causes a strong emotional experience. As a bonus, it's knowledge of precise procedures that few people master.
Which is a big advantage in case of war...:cool:


Yes, but in the case of war we are talking about IR drones that can track you and tanks with 1meter of armor. War is no longer a place for amateurs. The Taliban only succeeded because we let them, petty politics you might.

ManyInterests - 23-2-2022 at 19:20

Quote:
I never use carbonate.

I just wash the crude till no detectable acid in it, then dry, dissolve in methanol, add .3% urea, then crash in a water .01% urea mixture, filter and dry


OK so THAT'S what you mean. I can work with that. I didn't want to use carbonate because using that caused the ETN to form into a fluff thing that was really annoying to get rid of. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who wants to avoid carbonate with ETN cleaning.

And you used methanol. Would acetone work just as fine? I can use methanol if it is better, or just because you used it to greater effect.

An unrelated question: When recrystalizing urea from cold packs, is using methanol as good as ethanol during the process? Is methanol the same as methylated spirits?

Quote:
ManyInterests:
That's nice news. CHP works as a mono material. The outlet pressure is lower than ETN, but CHP is strong enough to initiate anything. This allows you to get rid of compatibility problems with 2 or more substances in one cavity. I recommend CHP first. When wet, it has a beautiful blue, monochromatic color. And he's non hygroscopic. Every success in the field of energetic materials causes a strong emotional experience. As a bonus, it's knowledge of precise procedures that few people master.
Which is a big advantage in case of war...


That's also good. A mono material is good because if I only needed to use one thing, then I would not have to worry about degradation. The ETN that I made did not degrade at all when I left it in storage, only when it came in contact with the NHN. I will still make ETN because it's fun to make and a decent energetic on its own. For CHP I need a whole different set of materials. But your videos are very clear and I only need a little more equipment. The hardest thing will be making ammonium perchlorate. The only chlorate I made is potassium chlorate, but I will make sodium chlorate as soon as the weather gets good in my area.

I also totally feel you with the emotional experience. One of the reasons why I wanted to get into energetics is to conquer some anxieties that I have (I have an anxiety disorder) and I have to admit, just handling dangerous chemicals, producing them, and experimenting with this stuff really boosted my confidence. I will need to gain more confidence in using the blasting caps in the 5 gallon buckets to make sure they go off correctly.

I still do want to make NHN/ETN caps, only because I discovered a problem that I absolutely want to fix. Or at least give it my best to fix. It is fixable because I am not the only one to use NHN/ETN together, but I am the only one who mentioned a degradation of the ETN. It is possible that I am the only one who noted that because I am the only one who didn't use the cap right away after making it, or the only one who used a transparent pen body so you can see what is happening inside.

But just one question. NHN is known to have a detonation velocity of 7000 Meters per second (same as TNT, but it has a O-balance of -5). You did mention the blast pressure in your LL8 thread, but would a 1 gram or 1.5 gram cap of pure NHN be sufficient to set off something like TNT or RDX?


Edit: You said CHP is not hygroscopic? I thought you said it was in one place (I forgot where). That was actually something I found concerning about it. But if it is not hygroscopic then... well, that's cool!

Edit2: I saw your CHP video again. I noticed you used 25% ammonium hydroxide. I might be putting an order of 28%. when using it, should I use a little less? Or the same amount? Would a large amount of 6% ammonium hydroxide (household ammonia) work as well?


Quote:
Yes, but in the case of war we are talking about IR drones that can track you and tanks with 1meter of armor. War is no longer a place for amateurs. The Taliban only succeeded because we let them, petty politics you might.


Don't get me started on the Taliban and the Afghan war. I can go on forever about how the whole situation sucks.

But I will mention one thing. Being an 'amateur' energetics maker is only useful in a war if you have an entire large group working with you. Making a dozen grams or three of energetics for fun and giggles and intellectual curiosity is one thing. Making many, many kilograms or tons of the stuff is something else entirely. You've seen how nitric acid is made on an industrial level... they have the distillation columns so big they are bigger than the building I live in. (pictured below).

I mean to make a 1.3 kilogram block of ETN based plastic explosive you'll need 1 gallon of 68-70% of nitric acid and even more of sulfuric acid. I made these calculations based on the proportions I used in making my ETN. Can you imagine how much time it'll take to make that? Or the difficulty in one go? Imagine something going wrong, like a runaway... with that much acid.

When the Taliban used IEDs they used far more commercially made explosives, or at least massive amounts of 48-0-0 ammonium nitrate (which is a controlled chemical where I live and cannot be obtained easily) as well as potassium chlorate (also a controlled chemical) when they tried to control the ammonium nitrate. They didn't make it either, they bought it from Pakistan by the ton(s). This is also not considering the sheer amount of UXB (unexploded ordinance) that was in the country from decades of war that was repurposed for IEDs.

War fantasies are fantasies. Nice to have a fantasy of being Rambo or John Wick or whatever every once in a while, but in reality I would rather just be boring old me doing a boring day job and doing my other hobbies. I used the usename ManyInterests because... well, I have many interests! Energetics is just one of them.

external-content.duckduckgo.com.jpg - 56kB

[Edited on 24-2-2022 by ManyInterests]

[Edited on 24-2-2022 by ManyInterests]

B(a)P - 23-2-2022 at 20:31

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  


Is methanol the same as methylated spirits?



No, methylated spirits is generally ~95% ethanol and ~5% water it also contains a little denatonium benzoate, methyl isobutyl ketone and fluorescein as denaturant. However, that is just in my neck of the woods, in other parts of the world it does contain methanol at varying concentrations, but to my knowledge methanol is never the majority of the product. Check the SDS of the local brand available to you.

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  


I might be putting an order of 28%. when using it, should I use a little less? Or the same amount? Would a large amount of 6% ammonium hydroxide (household ammonia) work as well?



Don't use household it is likely to contain other undesirable compounds. Why not make it yourself? React sodium hydroxide with ammonium sulfate or urea and direct the generated ammonia gas into deionised water.

[Edited on 24-2-2022 by B(a)P]

Herr Haber - 24-2-2022 at 11:36

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  


OK so let me see if I understand you correctly. After the nitration is complete, I prepare the beaker/jar of distilled water with bicarbonate and urea added in, then pour the nitrating mixture inside and filter as normal? And after drying, after dissolving all the ETN in warm acetone, I also add a touch of urea to that as well?


[Troll]
Yeah, pour your nitration mixture in baking soda... Share pictures of the aftermath if you do
[/Troll]

Dissolve your crude product in acetone. Pour the hot solution in cold water with stirring.
It is THAT cold water where you add urea or NaHCO3 (with lots of stirring)
You can also add a pinch of baking soda directly in the flask with acetone if you've left a bit of water in your crude product.


ManyInterests - 24-2-2022 at 19:53

Quote:
No, methylated spirits is generally ~95% ethanol and ~5% water it also contains a little denatonium benzoate, methyl isobutyl ketone and fluorescein as denaturant. However, that is just in my neck of the woods, in other parts of the world it does contain methanol at varying concentrations, but to my knowledge methanol is never the majority of the product. Check the SDS of the local brand available to you.


I see what you mean. OK that one is available in my area. It's mildly annoying to find since it isn't at most pharmacies, but I did manage to get several bottles of 95% ethanol (denatured) that I did use in the past for urea recrystalization and hydrazine freebasing, as well as cleaning lab equipment. I am well stocked for now.

Quote:
Don't use household it is likely to contain other undesirable compounds. Why not make it yourself? React sodium hydroxide with ammonium sulfate or urea and direct the generated ammonia gas into deionised water.


I originally wanted to do that, but looking at videos of people doing it had me think i needed more distillation gear that I didn't have. But then I did see someone with a normal distillation setup and just hooked up a tube to the vent near the receiving flask and connected that one to a water-filled flask in an ice bath to capture the ammonia gas. He ended up with a nice quantity of around 25% ammonia.

I think after seeing that I will have a go at it. It'll not only help in making CHP, but I think I'll try a hydrazine sulfate synthesis with a different method than the Hoffman degradation of urea.

You mentioned using urea and sodium hydroxide. How much of each (proportions please!) Do I need to add water to the mix? Will urea that comes directly from the cold pack suffice, or do I need to recrystalize it first?

Quote:
[Troll]
Yeah, pour your nitration mixture in baking soda... Share pictures of the aftermath if you do
[/Troll]

Dissolve your crude product in acetone. Pour the hot solution in cold water with stirring.
It is THAT cold water where you add urea or NaHCO3 (with lots of stirring)
You can also add a pinch of baking soda directly in the flask with acetone if you've left a bit of water in your crude product.


I did that once... I should have shown the picture! It was frothier than a milkshake! That attempt was also me using KNO3 and not HNO3 to make the nitrating mixture. I am not doing that again.

OK that is very clear. The next time I make a batch of ETN I'll do it that way. As well as wash the ETN with as much distilled water as possible before hand. I usually dry my ETN as much as I can first, but I never touch it with my bare hands, so I don't know how dry it is to the touch, but it did have the consistency of fine powder and didn't clump or stick.

Also... acetone or methanol? Which would you recommend in this case? Also when heating it, I assume it is to a mild 50C? It only took a few drops of room temp acetone to dissolve my ETN, but that was because I made tiny little batches.


In other news... I did some thinking on how to solve the degradation problem of my NHN/ETN caps if it did turn out that they'll degrade no matter how pure they are... I was thinking of maybe putting a small layer of plastic film between the ETN and the NHN in the cap? One that is so thin that it won't impede the explosive train, but still prevent them from touching one another and possibly having that effect. Or another idea: Using a cap within a cap. Since I am using pen bodies, I noticed that some pen caps can fit easily in other pen caps. So I could have the ETN in one cap and insert a cap of NHN in it. The NHN would already detonate and set off the ETN, completing the explosive train.

Or even putting the NHN in a squib, like a Christmas light and putting a thin layer of tape on top to hold it in. I would need a little more practice in making Christmas light igniters because they never seem to work for me.

What do you think?

[Edited on 25-2-2022 by ManyInterests]

B(a)P - 24-2-2022 at 22:01

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  


You mentioned using urea and sodium hydroxide. How much of each (proportions please!) Do I need to add water to the mix? Will urea that comes directly from the cold pack suffice, or do I need to recrystalize it first?

[Edited on 25-2-2022 by ManyInterests]


Configure your setup.
Add water, urea and sodium hydroxide in the following ratio 20:9:12 by weight into your reaction vessel. Almost no ammonia will be generated until heat is applied. Keep the vessel receiving the ammonia in an ice bath.
To help you work out your yield ect the reaction is
CO(NH2)2 + 2NaOH --> 2NH3 + Na2CO3
Urea from a cold pack is fine, I wouldn't bother with recrystallisation.


katyushaslab - 25-2-2022 at 01:33

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  

Or even putting the NHN in a squib, like a Christmas light and putting a thin layer of tape on top to hold it in. I would need a little more practice in making Christmas light igniters because they never seem to work for me.

What do you think?

[Edited on 25-2-2022 by ManyInterests]


The filament in incandescent Christmas tree bulbs is absurdly fragile, and completely unsuited for safety critical applications such as initiation systems.

Wire-wrapped/crimped nichrome is far superior in terms of reliability.

You can even solder nichrome to copper with a good acidic flux (to remove the oxide layer), though that is a complete pain in the ass. Phosphoric acid based fluxes are what you want for this.

XeonTheMGPony - 25-2-2022 at 03:55

I was building a dedicated spot welder for my bridge wires, it got back burnered with the coming of winter and a new power plant getting built, really need to finish that thing!

Herr Haber - 25-2-2022 at 12:01

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  

OK that is very clear. The next time I make a batch of ETN I'll do it that way. As well as wash the ETN with as much distilled water as possible before hand. I usually dry my ETN as much as I can first, but I never touch it with my bare hands, so I don't know how dry it is to the touch, but it did have the consistency of fine powder and didn't clump or stick.

No need to use distilled water unless your tap water is weird. ETN is not going to react with anything in it.
Also, by wet I mean straight out of the filter paper. You need a bit of water to dissolve the NaHCO3. This implies you cant weight your product just yet since it contains water.

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  

Also... acetone or methanol? Which would you recommend in this case? Also when heating it, I assume it is to a mild 50C? It only took a few drops of room temp acetone to dissolve my ETN, but that was because I made tiny little batches.

When crashing in water use acetone. It is not "too good of a solvent" in this case since you can litterally use as much water as you want: ETN is insoluble in water.
Heating is probably not necessary with acetone.
If you are playing with crystal size / shape by letting cool a solution of ETN in solvent, methanol will be more comfortable but there's no point of doing that to ETN that hasnt been properly freed from acid by a couple of recrystallizations from acetone / water.
Lower 50's are your target because of ETN melting point. Avoid some butt clenching moment by thinking ahead carefully.

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  

In other news... I did some thinking on how to solve the degradation problem of my NHN/ETN caps if it did turn out that they'll degrade no matter how pure they are... I was thinking of maybe putting a small layer of plastic film between the ETN and the NHN in the cap? One that is so thin that it won't impede the explosive train, but still prevent them from touching one another and possibly having that effect. Or another idea: Using a cap within a cap. Since I am using pen bodies, I noticed that some pen caps can fit easily in other pen caps. So I could have the ETN in one cap and insert a cap of NHN in it. The NHN would already detonate and set off the ETN, completing the explosive train.

If you look at cutaways from military fuzes and ordnance you'll see a lot of cardboard, bakelite, copper or brass washers used even when you'd think there is no chemical incompatibility so that's probably a good idea anyway.
You could preform Al foil and use it as a capsule to lower your NHN in your pen body or something along those lines.
In your case I'm really curious about what's happening. Is it real degradation of the product or could it just be the mixing of two relatively loose powders that give your that impression ?
In short: is it a chemical reaction or just a visual effect ?

electric ignitor

Laboratory of Liptakov - 26-2-2022 at 02:34

For the electric ignition, an ordinary wire from internet and a wire scourer for the dishes are enough. It is made of flat wire. The core is steel and the surface is nickel. Resistance is cca 0.2 Ohm. And it works absolutely reliably. The voltage is usually 12 V / 10A. It can only be 6 V / 5 A. Or 10 V / 20 A. Reliable function is not affected and works in large range of voltage and current. Everything else is in the picture.

scourer.jpg - 819kB

ManyInterests - 26-2-2022 at 09:16

Quote:

No need to use distilled water unless your tap water is weird. ETN is not going to react with anything in it.
Also, by wet I mean straight out of the filter paper. You need a bit of water to dissolve the NaHCO3. This implies you cant weight your product just yet since it contains water.



I use distilled water as a matter of principle when doing any chemistry stuff. It is really cheap. I don't think there's anything up with my tap water, but you know what I mean.

Also how I do it is when I wash out the ETN and dry it, I keep it on a waterproof surface (plastic wrap, styrofoam plate, etc) put paper towels below the coffee filter holding the ETN and more paper towels over it to both absorb the water on top and to prevent any dust from coming onto the ETN. I keep it like this for a day or so until the water evaporates. After that I weigh the produce and commence with recrystalization.

Quote:

When crashing in water use acetone. It is not "too good of a solvent" in this case since you can litterally use as much water as you want: ETN is insoluble in water.
Heating is probably not necessary with acetone.
If you are playing with crystal size / shape by letting cool a solution of ETN in solvent, methanol will be more comfortable but there's no point of doing that to ETN that hasnt been properly freed from acid by a couple of recrystallizations from acetone / water.
Lower 50's are your target because of ETN melting point. Avoid some butt clenching moment by thinking ahead carefully.


Gotcha. I'll continue to use room temp acetone then. Now that I think about it I think there might have been acid left over in my ETN because I kept filtering the ETN until the coffee filter became saturated and then took it away. I think next time I will only filter little bits of the ETN at a time and just wash it with water until I am confident that that bit is acid-free before replacing the coffee filter.


Quote:
If you look at cutaways from military fuzes and ordnance you'll see a lot of cardboard, bakelite, copper or brass washers used even when you'd think there is no chemical incompatibility so that's probably a good idea anyway.
You could preform Al foil and use it as a capsule to lower your NHN in your pen body or something along those lines.
In your case I'm really curious about what's happening. Is it real degradation of the product or could it just be the mixing of two relatively loose powders that give your that impression ?
In short: is it a chemical reaction or just a visual effect ?


It is definitely a chemical reaction of some sort and not a visual effect. It started out a little bit but eventually all the ETN turned into the sawdust-brown color you see. When I detonated my first cap that had all-white ETN the power was significant. When I set off a second one (with equal amounts ETN and NHN) it was barely noticeable. Also when I detonated a large cap with 1 gram of ETN and 0.4 grams of NHN, the ETN was fully brown and the power was near non-existent. Something is up.

I don't think it is the ETN alone. Because when I disposed of my current supply of ETN, it was still very snow-white.

I need to mention that when I made my NHN, the nickel nitrate that I used was slightly acidic. I discussed it with someone in another thread and showed the litmus paper reading. After diluting it slightly I did see an improvement, but still slightly acidic. The guy said it was OK. My NHN synthesis was a success, and while I didn't have the chance to wash the NHN with more water and ethanol (95%) I did get around to doing that later. But giving the NHN a water and ethanol wash didn't really change much.

For my next attempt in the coming fall I will be washing out the NHN with water and alcohol the first time around. Several washes and filter only bits a time so the paper doesn't get clogged like my first attempt.

After I clean the hell out of them, I want to make one cap with both powders touching and another with some kind of separator (I will need a bit of practice with things like sugar and flour to make sure I get it right before loading up a cap with energetics) and monitor them for a month. If neither degrades then I think I got me a winner synthesis. If he unseparated one degrades regardless, then I'll just have to make caps with separators.

I did see videos from WW2 showing the production of military explosives that did show detonators and boosters being made separately and put in separate containers. I think I also did see that in some cutout that had the booster in a separate cup-like container

Quote:
For the electric ignition, an ordinary wire from internet and a wire scourer for the dishes are enough. It is made of flat wire. The core is steel and the surface is nickel. Resistance is cca 0.2 Ohm. And it works absolutely reliably. The voltage is usually 12 V / 10A. It can only be 6 V / 5 A. Or 10 V / 20 A. Reliable function is not affected and works in large range of voltage and current. Everything else is in the picture.


Quote:
The filament in incandescent Christmas tree bulbs is absurdly fragile, and completely unsuited for safety critical applications such as initiation systems.

Wire-wrapped/crimped nichrome is far superior in terms of reliability.

You can even solder nichrome to copper with a good acidic flux (to remove the oxide layer), though that is a complete pain in the ass. Phosphoric acid based fluxes are what you want for this.



I've become pretty adept at making electrical matches from my own design. I use wires that I got from an electronics supply store. I experimented extensively with nichrome wire of various thickness. I used 0.04mm 0.08mm 0.1mm and 0.25mm (I ordered 0.20mm but it hasn't arrived yet)

My verdict is that the 0.25mm is the best of the bunch. I managed to light up a match (an actual match) using 2 AA batteries. So a simple 9v battery would be sufficient for most applications, while a 9v battery using 6 AA batteries (they sell those packs) is all but guaranteed to light it up, I use 12v AA battery packs or even a C-cell battery pack which is overpowered, but that is a good thing (I have 12V D-cell batteries, but that is going too far I think).

The 0.04mm is beyond worthless. When lighting up the nichrome wire that is attached to the battery will burn out almost immediately and not carry the current to the match to the ignition mixture. The 0.08mm can work, but it needs more care. I need to cut out a large length of wire, much more than the 0.25mm and it is very bouncy and moves around. I noticed that to make a more reliable match I need to use paper matches (as opposed to a single wooden match with 0.25mm) and put the wire between them first before wrapping it around. Even then it can still come loose and have reliability issues.

The 0.10mm is better than the 0.08 because it is slightly thicker, but still runs into the same problem.

None of the matches that I used and inserted into my caps failed to go off, so I know they work. I also coated them with homemade nitrocellulose lacquer (I dissolved some NC in acetone and coated the match head with it to fix the nichrome in place). The last cap I set off was interesting in that the actual match did not burn, but the NHN immediately went off when the wire started to heat up.

I agree that Christmas lights are basically worthless. The only advantage of a Christmas light is that it needs next to no voltage to work. I did make a test squib with ground match heads in it and I lit it up with a CR2032 battery.

Also I got something to show off. I found metal tissue box at a discount store. Would this make for a good witness plate? It is really thick and very solid metal.


Box1.jpg - 1.5MBBox2.jpg - 1.5MB

Laboratory of Liptakov - 26-2-2022 at 15:37

Is it steel ? Looks a like plast. Thickness I estimate on 6 - 6.5 mm according hands. Is it too much for any charge 300 - 1000mg. I recommend
pour into cavity the lead of high 30 - 40 mm. After you will have good target for relativey exact measurement of charges 300 - 1000mg of any EM. The surface can be used for 5 test craters. And after heating again and again repeatedly. Good test box. For direct penetration is this box too thick. Is nonsense destroy it. I'm still waiting for your holes or craters ...:D
I haven't seen one yet ....:D

ManyInterests - 27-2-2022 at 12:28

Yes it is steel! But you won't be seeing any holes or craters for a while. Like I said, I've put aside the chemistry kit and it will be months before I return to it. While I do post on a frequent basis (for now) I'm just gathering info for the moment.

I will drop you a PM (in several months or even in a year at most) once I finally return to this and start blowing holes into the steel box I got). I think I will have a much better setup in the future to blow holes while also muffling the sound.

Quote:
Configure your setup.
Add water, urea and sodium hydroxide in the following ratio 20:9:12 by weight into your reaction vessel. Almost no ammonia will be generated until heat is applied. Keep the vessel receiving the ammonia in an ice bath.
To help you work out your yield ect the reaction is
CO(NH2)2 + 2NaOH --> 2NH3 + Na2CO3
Urea from a cold pack is fine, I wouldn't bother with recrystallisation.


That sounds good, so 20 grams water, 9 grams urea, 12 grams sodium hydroxide adjusting upwards of course.

This is how my setup would look like. https://youtu.be/LiJ3Z8a6Ld0

Basically a simple distillation setup, but the gas is routed to another water filled flask in an icebath. the only condenser I have is a long Alihn consender, but it shouldn't affect it much (or maybe even have a better effect.

Rakunin - 15-3-2022 at 23:52

How much Mercury Fulminate will be equivalent to a No. 8?

katyushaslab - 16-3-2022 at 01:17

Quote: Originally posted by Rakunin  
How much Mercury Fulminate will be equivalent to a No. 8?


> No. 8 test caps contain the equivalent of two grams of a mixture of
80 percent mercury fulminate and 20 percent potassium chlorate

source: https://www.nps.gov/parkhistory/online_books/npsg/explosives...

Rakunin - 16-3-2022 at 01:51

Quote: Originally posted by katyushaslab  
Quote: Originally posted by Rakunin  
How much Mercury Fulminate will be equivalent to a No. 8?


> No. 8 test caps contain the equivalent of two grams of a mixture of
80 percent mercury fulminate and 20 percent potassium chlorate

source: https://www.nps.gov/parkhistory/online_books/npsg/explosives...


Thanks for the quick response and elaborate source.
Will it be sufficient to detonate AN, ANFO or UN, UNFO - or is a booster necessary?

katyushaslab - 16-3-2022 at 06:57

Probably won't set off ANFO, you would want a booster. Might set off urea nitrate though, or an Ammonal mix.

Why would you mix urea nitrate with fuel oil though? I don't think I have seen that done before.

B(a)P - 16-3-2022 at 16:53

Quote: Originally posted by Rakunin  


Thanks for the quick response and elaborate source.
Will it be sufficient to detonate AN, ANFO or UN, UNFO - or is a booster necessary?


Are you sure you mean UNFO? UN is already OB negative. Urea is sometimes introduced into ANFO to help with its stability in damp or hot environments in the hard rock metal sulfide ore mining sector, maybe this is where the confusion lies?

Rakunin - 16-3-2022 at 23:16

Quote: Originally posted by katyushaslab  
Probably won't set off ANFO, you would want a booster. Might set off urea nitrate though, or an Ammonal mix.

Why would you mix urea nitrate with fuel oil though? I don't think I have seen that done before.


Quote: Originally posted by B(a)P  
Are you sure you mean UNFO? UN is already OB negative. Urea is sometimes introduced into ANFO to help with its stability in damp or hot environments in the hard rock metal sulfide ore mining sector, maybe this is where the confusion lies?


No, you're right. I do not know why I wrote it, it was a mistake. Actually, I was more interested in the first one. I have never had problems with commercial det caps and AN mixture or ANFO, but have often used a piece of detcord of approx. 10 cm to be sure, but without has worked fine. But thanks for the reply and sorry for the confusion.

But now I will try to try with the above cap. I will come with an update and result.

[Edited on 17-3-2022 by Rakunin]

WAHEXAN

Laboratory of Liptakov - 17-3-2022 at 01:51

A very sensitive AN-based compound was once developed at the Liptakov Laboratory. Partly resistant to moisture, sensitive to only 300 mg HMTD
With a critical diameter of only 20 mm. The preparation requires a fairly long process. The ideal density is around 1.0 g / cc.


WAHEXAN.png - 1.5MB

B(a)P - 17-3-2022 at 02:39

Quote: Originally posted by Rakunin  


Actually, I was more interested in the first one. I have never had problems with commercial det caps and AN mixture or ANFO, but have often used a piece of detcord of approx. 10 cm to be sure, but without has worked fine. But thanks for the reply and sorry for the confusion.

But now I will try to try with the above cap. I will come with an update and result.

[Edited on 17-3-2022 by Rakunin]


Please do report back, I would be curious to know. I have had limited exposure to ANFO, but when I have seen it used it is with a TNT primer or det cord.

ManyInterests - 31-3-2022 at 20:39

Quote:
Thanks for the quick response and elaborate source.
Will it be sufficient to detonate AN, ANFO or UN, UNFO - or is a booster necessary?


Is UN urea nitrate? What is UNFO.

I am not experienced with ANFO, but I do believe that ANFO is fairly insensitive and that a booster is necessary. The commercial caps you used, are they no. 8s or compound detonators?

While I have no interest in ANFO, I am still curious about your results.

MineMan - 1-4-2022 at 02:46

Quote: Originally posted by ManyInterests  
Quote:
Thanks for the quick response and elaborate source.
Will it be sufficient to detonate AN, ANFO or UN, UNFO - or is a booster necessary?


Is UN urea nitrate? What is UNFO.

I am not experienced with ANFO, but I do believe that ANFO is fairly insensitive and that a booster is necessary. The commercial caps you used, are they no. 8s or compound detonators?

UNFO is made up

While I have no interest in ANFO, I am still curious about your results.

Herr Haber - 1-4-2022 at 12:53

Usually the same companies that deliver / manufacture AN based explosives for mining also sell boosters that are quite big.
16 grams of plasticized PETN will certainly help set off anything I can think of.

ManyInterests - 8-4-2022 at 20:07

Quote: Originally posted by Herr Haber  
Usually the same companies that deliver / manufacture AN based explosives for mining also sell boosters that are quite big.
16 grams of plasticized PETN will certainly help set off anything I can think of.


Yeah, that sounds about right. I did hear about some compound detonators that did have 14 to 16 grams of PETN as a booster.

But I did think about something earlier. As a plasticizer for energetics. Would the rubber used to manufacture chewing gum also work as a plasticizer?

There was a thread on this forum from 2006 where someone did talk about it, and I did do some research into gum bases. While most chewing gum manufacturers use a different polymer for their product (if you chew gum from several makers and notice subtle differences, that's why) and they tend to guard their exact composition jealously.

Would they work?

Also when shopping, both in hardware stores and online, most self amalgamating tape I see (except for the Scapa 2501) is silicone. I am guessing that silicone is not PiB? Would it work to plasticize energetics? I also read about lithium grease being used to that effect as well, but I am not sure.

Herr Haber - 9-4-2022 at 07:23

There are several threads on the forum and videos on Youtube about extracting PIB from gloves or self amalgamating tape.
But yeah, I too thought about chewing gum. It's probably a great idea. Washing the sugars / polyols / talcum from the surface is easy.

I've only heard of PIB used in chewing gums (but havent looked into it seriously). I guess freezing the tablets prior to crushing them into small pieces would help the solvent a lot.
It would be worth documenting if someone tried extracting PIB from chewing gum.

ManyInterests - 9-4-2022 at 09:02

I would like to see those videos where the PiB is extracted from gloves, because I haven't been able to find them. The only PiB extraction video I have seen is from Liptakov's video where he extracts it from the tape.

Would the process be similar? Because if it is. I can get some gum and petroleum distillate (zippo lighter fluid) and try it in the next couple of days. I will also need to wash or at least chew the gum in order to remove the flavoring and sweeteners and stuff before washing it and trying it.

ManyInterests - 9-4-2022 at 11:38

I found this on Amazon. Turns out I should have also searched for polyisobutene in addition to polyisobutylene. I found that lip gloss base is basically made of almost pure PiB. I found these two products on amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/MakingCosmetics-Polyisobutene-1200-4-... (currently unavailable).

https://www.amazon.ca/PARAMISS-glossier-plumping-lipstick-ma... (available).

I looked through the ingredient list. I noticed that not only do they contain Polyisobutene, but also styrene. I did see videos from Liptakov where he dissolves styrofoam with toulene and acetone and then binds perchlorates to it.

Would that mixture work as is with a softener like bar and chain oil or 5W50 synthetic motor oil? I need an experienced opinion before shelling out cash!

MineMan - 9-4-2022 at 17:16

Wesson smith seemed to find the simplest solution

ManyInterests - 9-4-2022 at 17:20

Quote: Originally posted by MineMan  
Wesson smith seemed to find the simplest solution


True. I remember he made a plasticizer out of lithium greas... or was it titanium grease? I do believe during WW2 the Japanese had their own plastic explosive that was plasticized with wheel-bearing grease.

If that is all what is needed I can do that (with the lithium grease). Do I just add the grease dropwise and mix until the powder is all plasticized? Would a hair dryer or some mild heat source be needed to evaporate off some of the solvents in the grease be needed?

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