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#1 Josh1986

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 08:13 AM

Hi my name is josh I just got in to the hobby and really need the tools I do not have tons of money and was wondering if any one has anything that thy would like to sell at a good price thank you all and have a great day my email is chiekajosh@gmail.com

#2 Arthur

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 11:16 AM

Lots of the tooling that you think you need can be found by clever looking at other items and carefully repurposing things. Notably star making tools can be made from assorted sizes of plumbers pipe, a mill can be started in a rock tumbler.



#3 Baldor

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 01:03 PM

I made my first coreburner rocket tooling with some big nails and a little bit of round wood. Only 12mm rockets, but they flew high. The ball mill, I made with an old sewing machine motor (bad choice, it has brushes), 10mm threaded rod, bits of copper pipe as bearings, and some wood I had lying around. The big pulley was made of wood using a hand drill as a lathe, and the transmission belt was made of rubber bands. It still works, but I don't mix live compositions in it. (I have to change the rubber bands after about 20 hours of work, but rubber bands are cheap)

 

With a little ingenuity, you can make the tools you need to start with very little money, and reading the forum and asking, you can avoid some of my mistakes, like using a brushed motor or using glass marbles as milling media.



#4 mikeee

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 06:04 PM

It really helps to be a jack of all trades when delving into pyrotechnics when you have limited financial resources.

Basic wood working and metal working equipment will provide the means to build many of your tools.

If you can focus on a few basic pyro items to build you can get by with a minimum of pyro tooling and equipment.

It helps to make a list of the tools needed for each process and item you want to produce.

As you accumulate the tooling and equipment you will expand the variety of pyro items you can build.

If you don't have a well equipped shop you could join a builder club and have access to a well equiped

shop to build needed tooling and pyro equipment if you have one in your area.

 

A cheap wood lathe and cheap metal lathe will pay for itself in making pyro tooling.

A table saw and drill press will also pay for themselves in making pyro equipment.



#5 OldMarine

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 06:21 PM

My first tools were wooden dowels I used to ram charcoal gerbs and different window screens for mixing and grading along with a Harbor freight rock tumbler with hand poured .50 cal balls for media. I was lucky enough to have a retiring pyro give me his chemical stash so I started out with a pretty decent selection. I've made what I can, such as a full set of stainless screens and drying racks and worked extra hours to buy those things I can't make on my own. I bought some awesome case formers from Mikeee, a ton of rocket and other tools from Caleb, Wolters and Steve Laduke. It was easier for me to work at my specialty than to try theirs!


Come on! Name one other hobby in which you cheer as your money and hard work go up in smoke!

#6 DavidF

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 12:33 AM

Yup, get yourself paid for what you do, and let the pyro toolmakers get paid for what they do. My attempts to get around that have cost me more money, in the end. I must say that scanning these forums daily for ideas has been of great value to me. 

 

Josh, if you had an idea of what you want to make and told us, you would get better answers.



#7 starxplor

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 01:40 AM

If you don't have a well equipped shop you could join a builder club and have access to a well equiped

shop to build needed tooling and pyro equipment if you have one in your area.

 

Also called 'hackerspace' or 'makerspace'. One I have used on occasion in the northern metro Detroit area is called i3Detroit but they are all over the world in various cities/towns.



#8 Baldor

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 12:13 PM

 

A cheap wood lathe and cheap metal lathe will pay for itself in making pyro tooling.

A table saw and drill press will also pay for themselves in making pyro equipment.

Unless you get a DUD as I did, and expend one month back and forth with a China based customer support, when I though I was buying from a Germany based importer. XD (The lathe is great, but have some machining/finishing flaw that I cant solve with my tools, and the vendor only reply is to offer me a pittance and repair it myself. Leason learned)



#9 Baldor

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 12:19 PM

Making your own tools when you are starting could be very gratifying, David, specially if you are strapped for cash, and you will learn a lot I learnt more from my wood and nails rocket tooling that I could have learned purchasing a tooling kit.  You could do a lot with a little ingenuity. Later, when you are sure you want to continue with the hobby, you can decide where to expend your time, and where your money. Just my 2c.



#10 mikeee

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 05:41 PM

Most of the "hackerspace" and "makerspace" facilities also have 3D printers which also

come in handy for making many specialized items for the pyro world.

If you post items you are looking for you may get lucky and find a member who is thinning their tool collection.

Several times a year you will find tools and chemicals for sale from individuals that can no longer build. 



#11 OldMarine

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 10:15 PM

To reference Mikeee's post: I just purchased an Star Shade Cutter (rocket tube cutter) for  $50 shipped from a fellow pyro. It had been completely cleaned and painted and only requires the new blade mod to be ready to go. Always check the marketplace and Agora on forums because things come and go almost daily there.


Come on! Name one other hobby in which you cheer as your money and hard work go up in smoke!

#12 Josh1986

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 06:53 AM

I need all the things for rockets I do you have an harbor freight rock Tumblr and a 1 ton press what do you guys suggest for me to get into rockets and I was wondering what tou guys think the best things to buy for just starting out

#13 OldMarine

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 06:13 PM

The 1 ton press will do ½" BP rockets and possibly whistles. I've hand rammed ¾" BP rockets that flew very well. 


Come on! Name one other hobby in which you cheer as your money and hard work go up in smoke!

#14 mikeee

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 06:16 PM

You can hand ram smaller black powder rockets, for this you need a good dead blow hammer.

For larger rockets and other types of fuels you want to use a powered press with a pressure gauge.

There are several websites that list the pressures recommended for each type of fuel and type of

rocket tooling being used. Decide what size of rockets you want to build first and then source good

quality cardboard tubes and the tooling that will work with the cardboard tubes you source. There are various

sized cardboard tubes and some of these have different wall thicknesses. For fuels other than black powder

you will also need a tube support while pressing the fuel grains into the tubes. You can build your own or purchase

a quality tube support, but you need to determine what size of rocket motors you want to build and get the proper

sized tooling for the tubes and the proper sized tube support for the cardboard tubes you plan on using. There are

several creative solutions that people have developed for tube supports over the years that work. Or spend the money

on a good quality tube support which will last forever. Spend a few hours looking at the pyro tool websites and you

will see the variety of tooling available on the market, this may point you in a direction. Several of these sites have a

wealth of information and tutorials on making the fuels & using the tooling.



#15 Josh1986

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 07:43 PM

I really want to make a 3lb rocket do u think my harbor press can handle that? I am milling black powder right now 75/15/10 is that a good mix for rockets? I really love this hobby but it just seems like when I start to figure things out all goes to hell! Them I am reading about how I need to add alcohol to the mix and screen it can u guys please send me in the right direction to get a good bp set for a good price? And today I just tried to make r candy and some how I meat that up ! Do u need a tool to center the hole so the thrust shoots it straight up?

#16 Baldor

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 01:46 AM

75/15/10 ball milled will probably cause a CATO if you are making a core burner, you could start with 60/30/10. But it all depends on a lot of factors.

 

You don´t need to add alcohol to the green BP for a rocket. Just a little moisture and pass it through a fine  strainer.

 

You can make your own tooling for little to no money. You will toss it after learning a little, but then you will have found your first roadblocks, and know what you really need.

 

When your rockets fly reliably, you could start with some payload, and learn a little more. At this point, you will be sure you want to keep advancing in this hobby, you will have some modest results to show yourself, you will have read a lot more and know a lot more than today, you will have spent money only on chemicals and some cardboard tubes, and have the knowledge to decide and prioritize on your tooling purchase.

 

I'm following this path, and noticed that for me, making tools is as fun as making fireworks, so, instead of spending money on tooling for making fireworks, I'm spending money and time in tools for making tooling. Your case could be different. Maybe you decide you prefeer to make mortar shells instead of rockets, and money spent on rocket tooling will be wasted.



#17 Mumbles

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 03:15 AM

Rockets seem to lead to a little bit of confusion at first.  There are a lot of little subfields that all come with their intricacies.  

 

End burners - As the name implies these burn from the end, typically with no or very small core.  These have a clay nozzle.  These tend to use as strong of black powder as possible.  If your BP is fast burning, this would be a good choice.  A lot of this will depend on the charcoal you use.  Commercial airfloat tends not to make great black powder.  Some specialty charcoals are more useful here, but often require cooking it yourself.

 

Nozzleless core burners - These use a core through the fuel to increase the surface area and thus burn speed.  Without a clay nozzle, there is little risk of over pressurizing the casing.  At the same time, without the clay nozzle, there is not much to help build up pressure.  These also tend to use as hot of charcoal as you can make.

 

Nozzled core burners - These use a core and a clay nozzle.  Due to the nozzle, a slower fuel is used.  Too fast of BP will overpressurize and may lead to what is known as a CATO (Catastrophe at takeoff).  For this a typical starting point is 6:3:1 Nitrate:Charcoal:Sulfur.  7:2:1 is also popular and a little hotter burning.  Other mixes are around, but these two are good starting points.  Often the fuel for this is just screen mixed.

 

Tooling is useful for all three of the above rockets, but more required for core burners.  It ensures the core is straight and well formed.  End burner tooling is helpful, but you can get away by hand drilling nozzles a little bit easier.  

 

Anyway, for as large of rocket as a 1" ID rocket, an arbor press will not be strong enough nor does it have enough space between the ram and base or table to accommodate such a large rocket.  You'd have to ram them, or get a larger press.

 

You'll also want to look into good cardboard tubes.  Hand rolling can be done of course, but is a bit easier with smaller tubes.  There's just more room for error, and rolling shorter tubes is easier to get right.  Please resist the urge to use PVC or plastic.  It's not very ecologically friendly, and in the event of a CATO can result in dangerous shrapnel.  


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Just so you guys quit asking, here is the link to the old forum. http://www.xsorbit2....forum/index.cgi

The sky is my canvas, and I have 2,113 pounds of powdered paint in the workshop.

#18 Josh1986

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Posted 18 August 2017 - 03:59 PM

Thank you guys for the advice I just bought the tools to make a cohete rocket what is your input on that? I am using a 75:15:10 mix but I screwed up a little and spilled som of my comp I hope I don't have to trash it and start all over

#19 mikeee

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 01:09 PM

Another option is R-Candy "Sugar" rocket motors that can be easily made.

There are a number of video's that show several ways to make the fuel and cast the motors.

This process is more towards the model rocketry hobby but does not require tooling.

This is one of the cheapest easiest motors to make with basic chemicals.

Most Pyro rockets are usually BP, Whistle, Strobe and a few other hybrid type fuels,

but many Pyro rocket builders started out with R-Candy rockets when they first got the bug.





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