Sciencemadness Discussion Board

Detonators and some other questions.

golfpro - 30-5-2013 at 17:21


So this summer I will be going up to a cabin almost every weekend and access to remote area where i want to do some detonations and tests with different materials. I have made TATP before once but I thought I would just skip over that one. I have been trying to think up a detonator that I can make fairly easily and readily and have a consistent procedure for it. I would probably use something along the lines of straw or pen case, one end sealed with epoxy or hot gun glue, each cut a few inches long, filled with HMTD, somehow pressed (don't know I would do this yet), fused and expoxied for sealant, I want to try things like ANNM, ANNMAL, ETN etc. Which brings my other question, is it at all reasonably possible to make inorganic primaries like Lead Azide without any access to lab chemicals or other fancy appuratis?

I'd also like to try some stuff with small amounts of ETN under 20grams and detonated with heat shock or no primary detonators. I have a lot of things I want to try and so many thoughts through my head that sometimes it hinders my thinking and don't really know where to start.


[Edited on 31-5-2013 by golfpro]

chemcam - 30-5-2013 at 17:40

Azides are not beginner friendly to synthesize. Well, if you have hydrazine or sodium amide on hand then an azide synthesis is trivial, but, I highly doubt you have those reagents. A nitrite is also needed but no irregular glassware is required.

20 grams of ETN is not a small amount, 1-2g is a small amount good for beginners, although, even that can severely disfigure or destroy your hands/ears/eyes.

I don't understand what you are asking? You want help with what?

[Edited on 5-31-2013 by chemcam]

golfpro - 30-5-2013 at 17:46

I have thought that ETN in too small amounts would not detonate or would be hard to detonate. Maybe not as much as 20g there. But wouldn't I need more to do a heatshock detonation or should I forget about that and just use a primary.

Just wanted peeoples opinion on if there is any safe way of using HMTD as a cap and what would this involve, does the HMTD need to be pressed if used in a straw?

chemcam - 30-5-2013 at 17:59

A single well-formed needle crystal, <5mg, of ETN in aluminum foil will detonate by heat shock with no problem. Without Al foil I have no idea, never tried. High-order would obviously need a bigger amount but 2-3mg rips open a soda can. -_-

I can't see any peroxide as being safe but there are smarter ways to go about using them if you absolutely have to. There are other primaries much safer you should look into. Depends what reagents and equipment you have though.

[Edited on 6-1-2013 by chemcam]

Ral123 - 31-5-2013 at 02:10

You want safety, reliability, performance, easy of making and all that with almost no reagents. I'll try to post a synth. of the pseudo primary Lead nitrophospite. I guess it will work for ETN.

Here is a relevant patent

Farnsworth - 31-5-2013 at 07:10

I came up with a detonator using this information a few years ago.

I made one minor modification by adding a little bit of lightly pressed ETN (~150mg) to the bottom of the cap as a booster. The main charge is (currently) 2.4 grams of a common lead styphnate/barium nitrate mixture. Use a strong metal confinement and beware of shrapnel.

For safety's sake I'll give you one warning - most supply sources for that mixture DON'T WORK, as they're contaminated with other chemicals. Go MSDS hunting - you want the lead and barium compounds and NOTHING ELSE.


Attachment: PATENT - Lead Styphnate Detonators GB139811A.pdf (175kB)
This file has been downloaded 669 times

jpsmith123 - 1-6-2013 at 14:56

Here's a patent on a CuO/Al/Si/Bi2O3 thermite based detonator, and also a paper on it.

Attachment: WO2011106803A1.pdf (253kB)
This file has been downloaded 683 times

Attachment: Ilunga_Effect(2011).pdf (595kB)
This file has been downloaded 632 times


I should mention that in several places in the text of these documents, the numbers are apparently mixed up; e.g., in the abstract of the paper the respective parts by weight of the several ingredients are backwards. Likewise for table 2 in the patent.

[Edited on 2-6-2013 by jpsmith123]

Rosco Bodine - 3-6-2013 at 21:28

Here is a link to a thread related to use of CuO / Al