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Pinball prime


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#1 Sparky

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 03:57 PM

Hi all

I've seen a few references to pinball prime and the fact that it is awesome.


Pinball prime

Potassium perchlorate 75
Air float charcoal 15
Red gum 10
Dextrin + 5
Silicon +5

Is it really that great and do you think there would be any value in adding any pine dust to fluff it up a bit?

I'm focusing on smaller shells at the moment, even bombettes and I'm getting really nice but hard round breaks. However, my prime is not coping at all and if there was a great all round prime I cold use it would make my life easer. I've heard that pinball prime can even be used for flash based breaks and perchlorate metallic stars but I'm sceptical.

Your advice would be much appreciated.

#2 bangkokpyro

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 05:07 AM

Just my opinion but I find Pinball prime unreliable having seen it burn off fast and fail to ignite the underlying comp on many occasions.
I prefer Fencepost prime. Lights easily and requires no outer B.P layer. I use it for all my cut star comps with the exception of those requiring a step prime process.

K Nitrate 65
Airfloat Charcoal 15
Sulphur 10
Silicon 5
D.E 5
You can up the Silicon to 7 or 8 % of the total to light even the hardest to ignite high metal content comps.

#3 pyrotrev

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 01:05 PM

I use 70 parts BP meal, 15 parts silicon, 15 parts KNO3 with either a CMC or NC binder depending on what it's going onto, have yet to find any stars it doesn't light. If you want it as a general purpose prime for also coating fuse ends etc. replacing 5 parts of the silicon with 200 mesh MgAl (coated) gives good projecting sparks. I concur with Bankokpyro with the problems of using a KClO4/silicon prime, as I see it the only place you need a KP based prime is with AP oxidised stars anyway.
Trying to do something very beautiful but very dangerous very safely....

#4 Sparky

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 03:16 PM

Just my opinion but I find Pinball prime unreliable having seen it burn off fast and fail to ignite the underlying comp on many occasions.
I prefer Fencepost prime. Lights easily and requires no outer B.P layer. I use it for all my cut star comps with the exception of those requiring a step prime process.

K Nitrate 65
Airfloat Charcoal 15
Sulphur 10
Silicon 5
D.E 5
You can up the Silicon to 7 or 8 % of the total to light even the hardest to ignite high metal content comps.


Excuse the ignorance but what is D.E?

#5 Vic

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 07:53 PM

Excuse the ignorance but what is D.E?


DE is diatomaceous earth it is used in swimming pool filters
Freud. Artists, in this view, are people who may avoid neurosis and perversion by sublimating their impulses in their work.

#6 Sparky

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 08:30 PM

DE is diatomaceous earth it is used in swimming pool filters


Wow never realised that was used in pyro. What is its role? It used for chickens too as I keep chickens. It's red mite powder but I presume I need the purer one I can see available.




#7 Mumbles

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 05:07 AM

There are various theories on what it actually does. At the bare minimum it provides a nice rough surface to give better ignition. Some will claim that it holds molten silicon on the star surface, or that the micropores in it channel molten silicon to the star surface via capillary action. Believe what you will, but the prime definitely works.

#8 Sparky

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Posted 25 August 2012 - 11:35 AM

Just my opinion but I find Pinball prime unreliable having seen it burn off fast and fail to ignite the underlying comp on many occasions.
I prefer Fencepost prime. Lights easily and requires no outer B.P layer. I use it for all my cut star comps with the exception of those requiring a step prime process.

K Nitrate 65
Airfloat Charcoal 15
Sulphur 10
Silicon 5
D.E 5
You can up the Silicon to 7 or 8 % of the total to light even the hardest to ignite high metal content comps.


Hi, I got my self some DE now so am going to give this a try. Just out of interest do you ball mill everything except the silicon first? Or if it is fine enough is a good mixing through a screen ok?




#9 helix

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Posted 25 August 2012 - 02:21 PM

You don't have to ball mill it but Eugine Yurek - who came up with the prime, states that he normally mills the meal components for 20-30 mins then screen mixes in the DE and Silicon. If you don't mill it then ensure that the meal components are airfloat/ finely milled already.

#10 bangkokpyro

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:59 AM

I don't waste time ball milling mineand it works just fine. Just make sure your chems are around 100 mesh and run them through a 40 mesh screen a couple of times.

#11 Sparky

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:56 AM

Last question :-)

The formula doesn't have a binder (unless DE acts as one?) so do I need to add one?

#12 Vic

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:10 PM

Last question :-)The formula doesn't have a binder (unless DE acts as one?) so do I need to add one?


I made the mistake in the beginning of not using a binder the prime will just rub of with any handling. In the end I used dextrin and it worked fine.
Freud. Artists, in this view, are people who may avoid neurosis and perversion by sublimating their impulses in their work.




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