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#16 blueflame

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Posted 22 October 2004 - 06:00 PM

Thanks Big G and chemicalwazi, Skylighter it is then.

#17 blueflame

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Posted 25 October 2004 - 06:37 PM

I brought this book from Skylighter. It is worth every penny. It takes you through basic projects, right through to advanced. What you learn from the first project you take on to the next, and there are plenty of formulas for all aspects.

As BigG said "indespensable"  :D

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ok i want this book, i have just been to the site and have also converted the us dollar into the pound and was a little shocked to find the total price including shipping

$74.69 USD
United States Dollar
1 USD = 0.5433 GBP = 40.5759 GBP
Great Britain Pound
1 GBP = 1.8408 USD

I know its a good book but ?40 quid :unsure:

#18 Richard H

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Posted 25 October 2004 - 08:00 PM

Can you put a price on knowledge? Lancasters book costs ?80, but it's material is invaluable.

#19 blueflame

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Posted 28 October 2004 - 08:59 PM

hmmm * rubs chin * out of interest has any one got either of these two books and what did you think of them if you have ?

1 Chemistry of Fireworks - Russell, M.S. Price: ?19.95


2 A Professional's Guide to Pyrotechnics Understanding and Making Fireworks price: ?15.99

#20 Phoenix

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 08:08 AM

I have both. The first is in no way a "hands on guide" - it does not contain any instructions for making fireworks, and only a few compositions and very basic descriptions of the construction of the fireworks discussed. However, it does, as you would expect, go into a lot of depth on the chemical reactions that occur in fireworks. For example, it explains how and why certain metals produce coloured flames, and discusses the mechanism behind the burning of black powder. It also contains mathematical formulae for estimating the height a rocket or shell will achieve, but I have found these to be of limited value. I think that this book is an interesting read, but by no means a "must have."

The second book is a little on "the dark side." It is purely a discussion of and instructions for making (mostly large) salutes. The discussion of chinese firecrackers may be of practical value, but the rest focuses on M-you-know-whats, Cherry B*mbs, and even impact actuated salutes. This is interesting reading in a morbid sort of way, but not really the kind of firework making that many of us encourage. I also find some of the authors comments about how this or that salute should "terrify the local citizenry" quite disturbing, since he is apparantly a knowledgable and safety conscious pyrotechnist. Despite this, this book is not aimed at kewls, and does emphasise safety at all times. I think that whilst the book does discuss a darker side of pyrotechnics, it does it in the best possible way, save a few flippant comments. The procedures given are the safest possible, and I think that if anyone did want to make large ground salutes (and I guess that some people always will), it would be far better for them to do it as instructed in this book than some kewl crapbook. Overall, I would give this book a positive rating, as it deals with the content in a well meaning and responsible way, and is accurately and clearly written.

#21 BigG

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 09:35 AM

I have both as well, and I agree with Phonix remarks, altough I really consider the second book very advance projects. Both books are really not begginers books.

There are books at this price range that are more suitable, but they are rather old, and some of the formulation presented at them is no longer popular - Prigrin book is really the only one that thinks "begginers" from the outset.

#22 blueflame

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 03:23 PM

I have both. The first is in no way a "hands on guide" - it does not contain any instructions for making fireworks, and only a few compositions and very basic descriptions of the construction of the fireworks discussed. However, it does, as you would expect, go into a lot of depth on the chemical reactions that occur in fireworks. For example, it explains how and why certain metals produce coloured flames, and discusses the mechanism behind the burning of black powder. It also contains mathematical formulae for estimating the height a rocket or shell will achieve, but I have found these to be of limited value. I think that this book is an interesting read, but by no means a "must have."

The second book is a little on "the dark side." It is purely a discussion of and instructions for making (mostly large) salutes. The discussion of chinese firecrackers may be of practical value, but the rest focuses on M-you-know-whats, Cherry B*mbs, and even impact actuated salutes. This is interesting reading in a morbid sort of way, but not really the kind of firework making that many of us encourage. I also find some of the authors comments about how this or that salute should "terrify the local citizenry" quite disturbing, since he is apparantly a knowledgable and safety conscious pyrotechnist. Despite this, this book is not aimed at kewls, and does emphasise safety at all times. I think that whilst the book does discuss a darker side of pyrotechnics, it does it in the best possible way, save a few flippant comments. The procedures given are the safest possible, and I think that if anyone did want to make large ground salutes (and I guess that some people always will), it would be far better for them to do it as instructed in this book than some kewl crapbook. Overall, I would give this book a positive rating, as it deals with the content in a well meaning and responsible way, and is accurately and clearly written.

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Phoenix you have given your opinion both books, your reply seems honest and unbiased, an exellent well detailed reply to the question.i also liked what you said quote " it would be far better for them to do it as instructed in this book than some kewl crapbook" unquote and i could not agree more. it is far better to share good
infomation and help the novice learn the safe way,rather then being on a high horse ! as the beginner might then resort to seeking help from the kewl crapbooks or links.

#23 BurlHorse

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Posted 01 November 2004 - 06:29 PM

Phoenix you have given your opinion both books, your reply seems honest and unbiased, an exellent well detailed reply to the question.i also liked what you said  quote " it would be far better for them to do it as instructed in this book than some kewl crapbook" unquote and i could not agree more. it is far better to share good
infomation and help the novice learn the safe way,rather then being on a high horse ! as the beginner might then resort to seeking help from the kewl crapbooks or links.

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I'll Second That!! Well Done!!

Stay Green, Bear
There are old pyros, and there are bold pyros, but there are not very many old, bold pyros....

Check Out My E-Bay Auctions !!

#24 broadsword

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Posted 16 November 2004 - 12:50 AM

I have made my first few batches of BP and have found that I keep getting a deposit left over, it is a sort of greeny/white waxy stuff that gets spat out of the fountains (if you can call them that!) please can some one tell me what this stuff is? Is it because I am using Flowers of Sulpur?Will it affect my BP in future projects?

When people end with 'Stay Green' is this in relation to green meal? And also what is green meal?

And what are 'Drivers' and how do I make them?

From a question in the tread i started: I think this must be an on-going struggle for you people that understand this to explain to people like me who don't understand! I am very confused about the whole family of 'perchlorates'. I see they are used in many mixes and was wandering where I could purchase some or how to make it (if it is fairly easy or not to advanced) and again I have searched these forums about all these subjects but I can't seem to understand them!

Thanks for any help, Ian

Edited by broadsword, 16 November 2004 - 02:25 AM.

Broadsword Calling DannyBoy....

#25 BigG

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Posted 16 November 2004 - 08:31 AM

I have made my first few batches of BP and have found that I keep getting a deposit left over, it is a sort of greeny/white waxy stuff that gets spat out of the fountains (if you can call them that!) please can some one tell me what this stuff is? Is it because I am using Flowers of Sulpur?Will it affect my BP in future projects?

When people end with 'Stay Green' is this in relation to green meal? And also what is green meal?

And what are 'Drivers' and how do I make them?

From a question in the tread i started: I think this must be an on-going struggle for you people that understand this to explain to people like me who don't understand! I am very confused about the whole family of 'perchlorates'. I see they are used in many mixes and was wandering where I could purchase some or how to make it (if it is fairly easy or not to advanced) and again I have searched these forums about all these subjects but I can't seem to understand them!

Thanks for any help, Ian

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You will need to supply more information about the procedure of making bp that you use in order for us to help you, altough I think there is alot of information about making bp in this forum (try searching for making blackpowder rather then BP)

Stay green refers to the safety used by the "green men". Those were people holding fire that were walking in front of paredes. Search for "green men" on the forum, or even better - on the internet. When you say to a fellow pyro friend "stay green" you basiclly say "stay safe and in good health".

Drivers are fountains with small chocks. They are the motors that are used in rockets and wheels (as well as some more advance items) to generate movement. Excellent referance is available in tom's book which you should really buy if you are a begginer. Drivers projects are also explained on the forum.

Perchlorate are oxidizers (much like nitrates) that release ALL of thier oxygen during burn. As such, they are capable of generating the tempurture that is required for colour production. They are VERY difficult to make, and Very hard to get if you are not licensed. This means that many begginers go and use Chlorates, which have many incompatebilities and should be used only if you understand what you are doing. Chlorates are still the reason for a large amount of accidents in chinese factories every year. Perchlorates are safer, but as mentioned - hard to get.

Please search the forums and read carfully. All of those items were explained in the past.

#26 broadsword

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Posted 17 November 2004 - 02:37 PM

I have just been to my local garden centre and they had Sulphur powder :D but no KNO3 or nething like it :angry: I have also been to the city and they also did not have any ANYWHERE! :angry: :angry:
I did buy some Sodium Niteate though. I have searched and I see it can be used in stars but what else can I use and what problems can i encounter? How hygroscopic is it?
Also would 'Sulphate of Potash' be any good?

Thanks, Ian
Broadsword Calling DannyBoy....

#27 Creepin_pyro

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Posted 17 November 2004 - 03:07 PM

Sodium Nitrate is used in yellow stars, but I've never used it. I think it is one of the most hydroscopic pyro chemicals. IIRC, it is used as a replacement for Kn03 in a blasting type BP.

Potassium Sulphate will not be very much use, as it is not widely used in pyrotechnics. Only thing I can think of is trying to use it in a strobe composition.

#28 Guest_wwwsimondorncom_*

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Posted 17 November 2004 - 03:15 PM

I remember the days when you could buy Kno3 in the chemist. Then around 1994 you couldnt buy it anymore. Its been that way ever since. :( I dont have any supply problems with Kn03 as I have some. :)
To buy it you have to be a legitimate business that has a use for it or a lab. How do I get it? Well I know someone with a business that uses it. :D I am not sure how other people on here buy it. :wacko:

Edited by wwwsimondorncom, 17 November 2004 - 03:15 PM.


#29 broadsword

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Posted 17 November 2004 - 03:24 PM

I did just ring up another small garden centre and they said they can order it in for me :D:D So i need lots for my Tomatoes next year :P

Should I just give the Sodium Nitrate away or keep it for when im a bit more advanced? What is blasting BP?For blasting what?

Edited by broadsword, 17 November 2004 - 04:06 PM.

Broadsword Calling DannyBoy....

#30 Phoenix

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Posted 17 November 2004 - 08:55 PM

For blasting rock at quarries (not that BP actually finds much use any more anyway). I have heard of cheap chinese shells using sodium nitrate based BP as a lift charge.

It is a less energetic oxidiser than potassium nitrate, so compositions made with it burn slower. However, it does make nice stars, and has a few other uses in rocket propellants.

There are several places for an individual to buy KNO3. Searching the forum will find them.

I have some potassium sulphate for "mopping up" barium - either spills or when I wash my tools after using it.




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