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binary exploding targets

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Tex4426, Mar 31, 2012.

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  1. Tex4426

    Tex4426 Member

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    found this on a website and wanted to share it with my pyrotechnic friends who like to shoot things that blow up...this stuff is safe as long as directions are followed..i have not tried it yet but will this summer..have fun and use responsibly

    The below information is for educational purposes only. I take no resposibity of its contents. I am not a lawyer or an expert. So if it doesnt work, or you get in trouble with the law its your own fault. Do not email me questions about this.

    Well after a week of people begging me to post the recipe to a "reactive target" I decided to type this up. I was going to have pictures and suppliers listed but the demand for me to post it has prevented me from finishing what I had planed.

    This reactive target is very similar to a name brand version already popular to the shooting community. They share some similarities and some differences. My version does not produce as much smoke and only works in enclosed containers of about 10 ounces or more. The trade off is that mine produced a bright flash, which looks cooler.

    This reacitive target is similar to the popular commercial version in that it's a binary explosive. Which means its made up of two parts, and why it is legal to own.

    You must follow all the below rules or else you will be in violation of the law.

    Rules:
    1. The two parts must be stored and transported separately (in different containers).
    2. Once you mix them together you must use them immediately. You cannot mix them together and then drive to the shoot site or store them. This is why its legal to use this mixture. When the two parts are stored and transported separately it is legal. However once you mix them together it is an explosive and must be used on site.
    3. Use of the explosive must not harm any one or any thing(except for targets at the shoot site) or be used in any way that is unlawful.

    Ok now that's out of the way below is the mixture.

    95% AN 5% AL by weight

    AN = Ammonium Nitrate
    AL = ALUMINUM POWDER

    AN can be found online or at a local agricultural/fertilizer store. It comes in a 50lb bags at about 0.27-0.33 cents a pound. Very cheap. Make sure you get the bags marked as

    34-0-0

    and NOT urea nitrate.

    When you purchase the AN in this form its coated with a some stuff that allows it to release slowly so you must prepare it for use. This is very easy to do.

    Go purchase a cheap blender (actually buy 2) at Wal-Mart for $13 bucks.

    Next fill the blinder about halfway and turn it on. Grind the stuff up until its about the consistency of about table salt. Since every blender is different you will have to experiment with the correct setting to get it correct.

    Since AN is actually pretty stable until around 840 degrees Fahrenheit the heat generated in the blender will not set it off. But to be safe do this in a well venlated area with NO open flames.

    Once its ground up I recommend you purchase some of those re-sealable paint buckets sold at Wal-Mart for a few bucks that are air tight.

    Store it in this because it is hydrosorbic meaning it sucks up the moisture from the air. You can tell if its absorbed moisture from the air if it is clumped together in hard clumps. If this happens break the clumps apart and dry it out.

    Now the AL is just as easy to prepare. You can find it online really cheap at about $7.00 a pound. You want to purchase it in 300-600 mesh but you can save some money by purchasing it in meshes less then 300 and grind it up your self with the second blender you purchased.

    It's a good idea not to use the same blender you used for the AN because it can cause contamination.

    To grind up the AL fill the blender up about half way. You want to get it to a very fine powder like flour. Since every blender is different you will have to see what power setting works the best.

    Once its ground up I recommend you purchase some of those re-sealable paint buckets sold at Wal-Mart for a few bucks that are air tight.

    Store it in this because it is hydrosorbic meaning it sucks up the moisture from the air. You cant tell if its absorbed moisture from the air if it is clumped together in hard clumps. If this happens break the clumps apart and dry it out.

    Now that you have your two containers one with AN and the other with AL its time to go to the range. Once there to mix it together you are going to need a kitchen scale. You can find these at Wal-Mart cheap.

    Start with the following to make sure it works:

    100g AN mixed with 5g AL

    Using a 20-ounce coke bottle with screw on top works best. Pour the amounts into the container and shake them up until they are mixed together. Remember once you mix them together you must use them at the site. You cannot drive or store the stuff mixed together.

    Also remember the formula for mixing:

    X * 0.05 = Y

    X = Weight of AN

    Y = Weight of AL to mix with that amount of AN



    50 pounds of AN = 22,679.6185 grams

    so using the above formula

    22679.6185 * 0.05 = 1,133.980925

    1133.980925 grams = 2.5 pounds of AL

    So for every 50lb of AN you purchase you will need around 2.5lb of AL.

    Now once the stuff is mixed the only way you can set it off is by shooting it with a .223 or above rifle or a number 8 blasting cap. Don't try setting it on fire, it makes a big gooey mess and around 840 degrees Fahrenheit nasty things can happen.

    Once you have the stuff at the place you want to shoot it get back about at least 100 yards.

    Have fun.


    Ok below are some places I found to get the materials online.

    E-bay has lots of people selling Aluminum Powder, this is probably the best place to get it.

    Ammonium Nitrate can be hard to find locally if you don't live in a state that is primary agricultural. I found it was best to call around to local farm supply stores and ask. If they don't carry it, ask them if they know any one whom sales it. So long as you are not purchasing the stuff in huge amounts most people pay no mind.

    You can purchase the stuff online, but shipping can be expensive to some areas.

    This place has the stuff, the link goes to 50 pound bags for like $12, there online order cart didn't work for me. But you can call and order it that way with a credit card. Remember you want bags of 34-0-0 fertilizer.

    https://www.horthippo.com/control/p...oduct_id=740100
     
  2. JLDickmon

    JLDickmon Member

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    pics or it didn't happen
     
  3. ole farmerbuck

    ole farmerbuck Member

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  4. dbarnhart

    dbarnhart Member

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    Around here it goes by the name 'tannerite' though there are several brands:

    http://www.tannerite.com/

    They are a lot of fun.
     
  5. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Let us know if .gov comes around asking about the Ammonium Nitrate purchase.
     
  6. flashhole

    flashhole Member

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    I'm watching too. Interesting post.
     
  7. Tex4426

    Tex4426 Member

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    You can get ammonium nitrate fertilizer from a local store as long as you don't by obscene amounts they wont ask questions...yes it is the recipe for tannerite
     
  8. kingmt

    kingmt Member

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    Ammonium Nitrate is legal to purchase in any amount. It is the people selling it that gets hassled by ATF. Those people are like a plague. If you only buy a bag then they probably won't even look at you until your neighbors call the cops. Another helpful thing to know is that cops don't know the law so a print out of the codes would be helpful to have on hand.
     
  9. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Member

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    Our club had to ban the exploding targets after some bales of straw were set on fire, so be careful with this stuff. Sometimes there are unintended results.

    Hope this helps.

    Fred
     
  10. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Our club does not allow exploding targets either, both for fire hazards and the neighbors. They like us right now, but the exploding targets are really loud.
     
  11. dbarnhart

    dbarnhart Member

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    A few months ago I had a friend from the UK here for a visit. Took him out into the desert and let him blow up some tannerite with my .308. I don't think he's had more fun in his entire life.
     
  12. biga972

    biga972 Member

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    tag for later
     
  13. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    They will be watching.:D
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2013
  14. themaninblack

    themaninblack Member

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    You couldn't start a fire with Tannerite, there is no fire involved. The explosion is a chemical reaction and the smoke you see is I think actually water vapor if I remember right.

    The stuff is really fun. One of my favorites was dropping a pint in a half full gallon of paint then putting the lid back on and shooting.
     
  15. RustyFN

    RustyFN Member

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    It's not a problem. We have a couple of guys that make the explosives for our machine gun shoot. I know they buy it in large quantities because everything at the shoot blows up. I have seen car hoods go 150 feet straight up.
     
  16. Samari Jack

    Samari Jack Member

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    Agree. Our airpark routinely buys 500 pounds at a time to put on the Bermuda grass on our runway. In and of itself, it is just fertilizer. Only dangerous if mixed with other stuff,especially to the mixer.
     
  17. joneb

    joneb Member

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    Can Mg be substituted for Al, or use with ?
     
  18. David Wile

    David Wile Member

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    Hey folks,

    Back in 1968 I was transferred from the Harrisburg, PA area to work in the Clearfield, PA area. At that time, Clearfield county was a mostly rural area where the main industry was probalby strip mining of soft coal. My wife and I rented a house outside the town of Clearfield an up the side of the mountain a few miles. Before long, we made friends with our neighbors who had some interesting shooting habits. Since mining was very common at that time, buying dynamite and blasting caps was simply a matter of paying for it at the local hardware store. No licence required then - just cash to pay for it.

    My new friends took me to an abandoned quarry where they introduced me to the fine art of shooting pieces of dynamite a hundred yards away. They simply used a knife to cut a 1 inch thick piece of dynamite of a stick of dynamite and placed it on a rock down range. If you hit the target with your center fire bullet, you would know it. I found it good sport.

    From my experience with farmwork where I grew up, I had already had some experience with using dynamite and fused blasting caps. I was also familiar with using ammonium nitrate for fertilizer as well as for adding fuel oil to make a cheaper explosive than dynamite. When we had a need to blow things up on the farm, we used a charge of fertilizer/fuel oil with just a few inches of dynamite and a blasting cap inside. The blasting cap set off the piece of dynamite which then set off the fertilizer and fuel oil mix. This was a cheaper method than using dynamite by itself.

    After the first time going out and shooting dynamite pieces, I decided to give them a little boost by filling a small cloth bag with fertilizer/fuel oil. We put a piece of dynamite in the middle of the fertilizer bag, and I told the fellows to aim for the middle of the bag to hit the piece of dynamite. After a couple of misses, someone hit the piece of dynamite and set the fertilizer off with a much bigger blast than they ever realized. So, after the Cearfield boys taught me about shooting dynamite, I was able to teach them about using fertilizer and fuel oil. Sometimes life can be a lot of fun.

    Before anyone gets excited about personal safety, please note this was done in a large quarry from safe distances, and no one was ever hurt. Also, no alcohol was used at any time while shooting in the quarry. Sadly, we could never do such a thing today. Sure you can still mix fuel oil and fertilizer, but you need dynamite to set off the fertilizer and fuel oil. Just try to legally get dynamite these days. You have to have multiple licences and who knows what else.

    Oh, I forgot to mention those boys also thought it was good sport to catch Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes and do some scary things with them before killing, cleaning, and cooking them for dinner. While I was comfortable with the blasting materials, the whole thing with rattlesnakes was light years beyond my comfort zone, and I never did try eating same. This behavior on my part was considered as being something of a sissy city boy by the backwoods boys.

    A lot of years have passed since playing with those Clearfield boys, but I still have fond memories of those guys up in the backwoods of Clearfield County.

    Best wishes,
    Dave Wile
     
  19. Seedtick

    Seedtick Member

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    Cool story Mr. Dave! Thanks for sharing it with us.

    Seedtick

    :)
     
  20. Tex4426

    Tex4426 Member

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    setting a field is not a real big deal for me...i know it doesnt make fire but when strapped to a can of gasoline it does(lol):evil:...anyways my grandma has 100's of acres and its plowed most the time or has very short grass and i will have a fire extinguisher on hand just in case...i recommend being 75 yards back for 3 pounds or less if you go bigger like i know most of you will..2-300 yards may be in order

    P.S. it only takes about 15 pounds to blow up a car..check out youtube...one guy used 50 pounds...it really blew the hell out of that car

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgH8o_WgU8I&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Ly93UOFbUU&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hxl6nAVCHvU&feature=related


    just a few videos of the 100's there are..remember use responsibly and follow the laws
     
  21. Tex4426

    Tex4426 Member

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    @JIBJAB...i couldnt answer that question but i was told it had to be aluminum powder..you can buy it off ebay..10-15 bucks a pound
     
  22. CaneCorso85

    CaneCorso85 Member

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    I've had a chance to play around with this stuff. It makes a pretty gratifying boom.
     
  23. flashhole

    flashhole Member

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    FERTILIZER TYPE CHEMICAL FORMULA & FERTILIZER GRADE(S):
    Pounds of Nitrogen per 100 pounds of fertilizer % N % P2O5 % K2O
    Urea CO(NH2)2 45-0-0 to 46-0-0 45 46 45 to 46 0 0
    Ammonium Nitrate NH4NO3 33-0-0 to 34-0-0 33 to 34 0 0

    I wonder if Urea would do the same as ammonium nitrate?
     
  24. Tex4426

    Tex4426 Member

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    Supposed to get 34-0-0 with no urea and grind in a blender I believe
     
  25. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    I have a video of a water bottle container duct taped to the base of a cedar tree, that blows it into, I'll have to find it.

    This is what it looks like if you prop up a 55 gal drum over a small container of the stuff.

    [​IMG]

    Video (warning for potty mouth guys)

    [​IMG]
     
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