Gunpowder into a Paste


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Nick93
May 13, 2012, 08:49 PM
Hi everybody ! this is a rare question but what kind of solvent or liquid can I use to make some of my gunpodwer into a paste ?

I ask because I found a gunpowder that can explode upon impact(quite high impact) so if I find a way to make it a paste I can fill a cup to use as a primer

I have tried with water and alcohol in a Mortar but have no luck so far...

BTW the powder its foreign but if anyone wonders its called A-22-C made by FM that its quite fast, designed for the 9mm Luger

Thanks in advance of any response :)

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Jim Watson
May 13, 2012, 09:00 PM
I believe the factory solvent for nitrocellulose is alcohol and ether.

Y'all be careful, now, you hear?

T Bran
May 13, 2012, 09:04 PM
Try some acetone but please be careful and wear good eye protection.

kimbernut
May 13, 2012, 09:09 PM
I used to make my own primer and bullet sealer with a mixture of acetone and powder. It worked well for that purpose. The powder totally dissolved into the acetone to a smooth consistancy that sealed primer and bullets with less than .0005 thickness. I just imagine more powder would result in a paste but whether or not strong enough for a priming mixture I have no idea. I would be interested in your results.

BeerSleeper
May 13, 2012, 09:10 PM
There are easier ways to win a darwin award.

Lost Sheep
May 13, 2012, 09:15 PM
I read through your posting history (just to make sure you were not crazy) and see that you do have a head on your shoulders. I hope this paragraph heads of readers who would make that assumption.

I did not determine if you have a background in chemistry or not. Trying to find the chemical components of the powder you have might be a good idea, if only to rule out solvents that might produce violent reactions upon mixing. You wouldn't want a facefull of toxic or caustic fumes. Full face shield and good gloves should go without saying.

All the cautions aside, what do you hope to gain for all this effort? Curiosity? Independence from components manufacturers? Better accuracy? If you use up all your powder in determining how to do this and succeed in your quest, can you get more?

You might try to find a copy of The Chemistry of Powder & Explosives by Tenny L. Davis.

Many smokeless powders are based on an ether-alcohol colloid of nitrocellulose (source: Wikipedia), so I might try ether as a solvent to make your paste, but test to see if you have changed the chemical properties of your powder when you get done with it.

I suspect you will get a lot of criticism for toying with this idea, but I will not disparage you for thinking about it. But without knowing anything else about your goals and experience, my first conclusion is that you suffer from one of two maladies. You have entirely too much time on your hands or you have entirely too much of this powder on your hands.;) Either way, I wish you good fortune.

I have read that there is a way black powder shooters can make their own percussion caps from aluminum beverage cans and caps from toy guns. I am not sure if that gives you any other ideas, but I though it might pique your interest, so use the information if it does.

Lost Sheep
Edit: when I started this post there were no replies posted. I got to learn to type faster.

gamestalker
May 13, 2012, 09:58 PM
I've actually tried soaking several different powders in acetone before (296, RL22, HS6, and Longshot) to see if they will break down, and they didn't break down at all. But I would imagine not all powders are created the same?
Just be careful, as already mentioned.
GS

Walkalong
May 13, 2012, 10:59 PM
Paint thinner will work. Mineral spirits.

I do not think it will work as priming compound, but hey, I could be wrong.

Y'all be careful, now, you hear?
Yep.

Jeff H
May 13, 2012, 11:03 PM
I saw this McGyver episode 20 years ago that did something similar.....

JLDickmon
May 13, 2012, 11:16 PM
priming mixture is different than any paste an inexperienced chemist would be able to make..

someone with enough expertise to actually do it isn't going to tell you how over the internet..

T Bran
May 13, 2012, 11:24 PM
Please keep us updated as I would love to up grade my survival weapons from flinters to percussion. [I also want to be secure in your continued survival lol]
T

Nick93
May 14, 2012, 12:40 PM
Thanks to every for the replies !

and specially to Lost Sheep to clarify that im not crazy (for now :P) and give me good info

I did not determine if you have a background in chemistry or not

I have the basic chemical knowledge of an Industrial engineer meaning basic inorganic chemestry

what do you hope to gain for all this effort? Curiosity? Independence from components manufacturers? Better accuracy? If you use up all your powder in determining how to do this and succeed in your quest, can you get more?

I want to get more knowledge about ammunition manufacture because its getting really expensive to shoot here and recently my lazy government directory decided to cut the imports in this country to avoid the economy to hit the bottom of the toilet and most of firearms related products are from USA and Europe, plus the gunstores are stealing us with the prices ,for example a box of el cheapo Wolf primers (SP) are about 10 U$D

I can get this powder because its produced nowadays ...

my first conclusion is that you suffer from one of two maladies. You have entirely too much time on your hands or you have entirely too much of this powder on your hands.

I suffer from both LOL !

Nick93
May 14, 2012, 12:52 PM
Paint thinner will work. Mineral spirits.

I do not think it will work as priming compound, but hey, I could be wrong.

IŽll give a try to paint thinner because alcohol doesn't produce much of solvent proprieties after being in contact for 12 hours

As far as priming compound, here there is a Factory who sell brass washed steel primers with no paper to avoid humidity to get in the priming mix (the box also says that they are lead free) this primers are the most inexpensive I can buy and it seems that the manufacturer uses gun powder as a priming mix because it has the same colour, heat of explosion and density as the gunpowder A-2 and since the manufacturer its making the huge effort to reduce the inversion at the very least amount of money it might be quite probable

moxie
May 14, 2012, 02:00 PM
Friend of mine went down that road. We called him Stumpy.

788Ham
May 14, 2012, 02:54 PM
Sounds like you might want to start going to church again, if you're not already going!

GLOOB
May 14, 2012, 09:12 PM
Ive dissolved smokeless powder in acetone. Turns it into a paste alright. Problem is i doubt ull get the requisite ignition from a pellet of dried paste. The resulting solid block of power burns very slow.

OTOH if ur powder ignites by percussion it could be a different animal altogether.

MachIVshooter
May 14, 2012, 10:29 PM
If it's reconstituting primers you're after, there's an easier way. Perchloride is the impact sensitive chemical that composes the white top on a strike-anywhere match. Cut that tip off with a razor blade, smash it into powder, and then CAREFULLY compress it into your disassembled and reconditioned primer cup. Gently press the anvil back in and Viola! Remanufactured primer. They do work, I've used them in 9mm pistols. Each small primer takes about 3 match tips (Large primers will take 4-5), and it is an extrememly time consuming process. IIRC, it too me about 3 hours to "reload" 100 primers, and I had 3 or 4 pop in my face while seating the anvil (not really dangerous, just scares the crap out of you).

It isn't really a feasible or cost effective thing to do, but it's nice to know you can.

moxie
May 15, 2012, 09:17 AM
Where do I get "a Viola"? Midway doesn't seem to carry them.

Nick93
May 16, 2012, 12:39 PM
Update

the acetone make the gunpowder into a paste in a matter or seconds ! thanks for the data !

So far I have no luck to turn the paste into a hit and explode mixture ... this propriety is lost when I add the acetone and became a paste but maybe with other quantities I can get what I'm looking for.

Ill keep you guys updated

The resulting solid block of power burns very slow

Yep it seems you are right

mdi
May 16, 2012, 01:32 PM
priming mixture is different than any paste an inexperienced chemist would be able to make..

someone with enough expertise to actually do it isn't going to tell you how over the internet..
I'm sure if match heads can be used for priming compound, a home chemist would be able to come up with a "paste" that could work. Careful of ATF or Homeland Security...

moxie
May 16, 2012, 02:06 PM
Mach IV,

I think you're still striving for Voila! (Not Viola)

danweasel
May 16, 2012, 03:25 PM
I'm proud of you. Subscribed.

And just in case it hasn't been mentioned yet, be careful, hahaha.

Owen
May 16, 2012, 05:28 PM
Did you let the paste dry?

Lonely Raven
May 16, 2012, 05:43 PM
I understand what you're trying to do, and I commend you for it.

Very cool, keep us posted!

Cosmoline
May 16, 2012, 05:46 PM
Why would dried smokeless paste explode on impact?

Have you considered making your own more primitive mercuric priming agents using fulminate of mercury? Those have been around since the early 19th century.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury%28II%29_fulminate

Watch your fingers, eyes, etc of course. And don't eat it ;-)

brickeyee
May 16, 2012, 06:09 PM
Have you considered making your own more primitive mercuric priming agents using fulminate of mercury?

The perchlorates would be easier to make.

MutinousDoug
May 16, 2012, 09:35 PM
Umm...
Standard, modern priming mixes includes lead syphnate or potassium perchlorate. Not so much nitro cellulose or nitro-glycerine.
The priming mix is used to ignite the powder by sending sparks of hot metal (lead or potassium) to ignite the nitro-cellulose gas generant (AKA: the propellant).
The priming mix is ignited by friction (like striking a match, as mentioned above). The propellant is ignited by heat.
Making (effective) primers is as dangerous as making black powder in bulk and not to be approached casually.
As an aside, when I worked in ordnance, we used hexane to de-sensitize our priming mix while in storage or assembly and cooked it off afterwards at about 120f in very controlled conditions. While we had "Incidents" we had no injuries while I was there (but we gave up the effort of providing primers to the Gov't as un-profitable [and scary])
YMMV

doug

Nick93
May 16, 2012, 10:20 PM
I know the compotition of modern standard primer but to get the lead syphnate is quite difficult and more dangerous to make than I would like...

In fact I know a "survival" non corrosive priming mixture but I dont really know how to mix it yet ... (i know it need to be wet lol)

Quote:
Have you considered making your own more primitive mercuric priming agents using fulminate of mercury?
The perchlorates would be easier to make.

Yes those are fairly easy to make but one its toxic and the other worst... corrosive! lol

My plan B are the mercury fulminate mix

But I have to wait until the weekend to have some time ...

Nick93
May 16, 2012, 10:36 PM
Doug

you seems to have some knowledge about priming mixtures ... where did you work? Can you explain something more detailed about making priming mixture ? like where did you get the components? Cost of components ? How much mix would be necessary to blow my house?(not a joke) and if a make my mixture in a limited qualitative for example for 500 primers what kind of danger I'm facing?

I have made some black gunpowder in the past but just for experiment since I don't have a muzzle loader...

MutinousDoug
May 17, 2012, 01:17 PM
Nick,
I worked for an outfit called OEA which stood for: Ordnance Engineering Associates. As you might guess, we made ordnance devices for mostly the Gov't but also contracted directly with aircraft manufacturers, etc. Most of what we built were small sequencing devices or single use devices such as time delays, pin pullers or various acuators. One of our subsidiaries specialized in detonation cord and shaped charge cord for cutting escape hatches on aircraft like the F-15 or F-111. We made the gas inflators for many commercial airliner escape slides.

From time to time we were contracted to manufacture ordnance primers like the M-24 for devices such as ours. Many of our devices used off-the-shelf propellants (many however not available [or useful] to the general shooting public) and some we had to manufacture or mix ourselves, such as delay and priming mixes.
I was more involved with the mechanical side of device and machine design, while the propellant mixes were the purview of our chemists and chemical engineers so my knowledge of energetic materials is not first hand.
Mixes and propellant that was considered a class I or II explosive was handled whenever possible in a slurry of hexane to desensitize it from friction and static electricity. Hexane is of course flammable but at least when it ignited, the operator had a few second to evacuate the station before the hexane burned off and the mix went high order.
All work was performed behind steel or plexiglass shields so that exposure was limited as much as possible.
The operators were never exposed to more than a few hundred primers or equivalent mix (probably less) at a time. When one batch was completed, it was pushed through a panel before a second batch was introduced to the assembly station.

When we got into making initiators for automotive airbags, where we made 10,000+ initiators a day, we had an incident and fire that resulted in about 5 lbs of zirconium potassium perchlorate (inappropriately stored in a work bay) go up. Even though the bay had only 3 concrete walls (the roof and back wall being a tin "blowout" panel). It cracked the 24" reinforced concrete side wall. Damage to the wall was from the shock wave produced by detonation and occurred before any pressure reached the blow-out panels which bulged but didn't actually blow out.
The operator had about 90 seconds to evacuate and was on the phone reporting the fire when the mix went high order.

Cosmoline
May 17, 2012, 01:36 PM
Yes those are fairly easy to make but one its toxic and the other worst... corrosive! lol

Worse than that. If you screw up you don't have hands anymore. Maybe eyes either. So the potential toxic effects of mercury or corrosive effects of perchlorates are the least of your worries. This sort of experimentation calls for a maximum of safeguards and a minimum of novelty. Other folks have already lost their fingers over the last 200 years. So it's not a bad idea to copy as precisely as possible, in as small a batch as possible, the conclusions that have already been reached regarding the best way to do this. It's not as fun as playing around with smokeless powder in the hopes of unleashing its inner nitro demon, but it's a lot safer. Really, it's the only way to go with this sort of thing.

Nick93
May 17, 2012, 02:42 PM
Thanks Doug for the answer

When we got into making initiators for automotive airbags, where we made 10,000+ initiators a day, we had an incident and fire that resulted in about 5 lbs of zirconium potassium perchlorate (inappropriately stored in a work bay) go up. Even though the bay had only 3 concrete walls (the roof and back wall being a tin "blowout" panel). It cracked the 24" reinforced concrete side wall. Damage to the wall was from the shock wave produced by detonation and occurred before any pressure reached the blow-out panels which bulged but didn't actually blow out.
The operator had about 90 seconds to evacuate and was on the phone reporting the fire when the mix went high order.

That sounds really impressive I might need to work with extremely low quantities

Nick93
May 17, 2012, 02:57 PM
Quote:
Yes those are fairly easy to make but one its toxic and the other worst... corrosive! lol
Worse than that. If you screw up you don't have hands anymore. Maybe eyes either. So the potential toxic effects of mercury or corrosive effects of perchlorates are the least of your worries. This sort of experimentation calls for a maximum of safeguards and a minimum of novelty. Other folks have already lost their fingers over the last 200 years. So it's not a bad idea to copy as precisely as possible, in as small a batch as possible, the conclusions that have already been reached regarding the best way to do this. It's not as fun as playing around with smokeless powder in the hopes of unleashing its inner nitro demon, but it's a lot safer. Really, it's the only way to go with this sort of thing.

I know that I'm facing a huge risk trying this that's why I'm going to limit my components to the very less minimum possible, Ill start with just enough to fill 10 or so primer to be in a safer manner

Do you really think that making the priming mix using mercury fulminate its safer than trying to make a paste from gunpowder ? I decide to start with turning the gunpowder into a paste because I knew that it explodes upon impact(also have quite a lot of it) and I though it would be more safe also since it seems to be less sensitive than most priming mixes...

PD: Before Many other people star to advice about the danger I'm taking here, please note that I'm aware of it :)

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