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Potasium chlorate recomendations


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#1 Aspirina

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Posted 09 January 2020 - 02:36 AM

Hi all,

 

I have 1 kg of potassium chlorate since year ago, I dont use it for the reasons that we all know and because finally with a lot of difficulties I have perchlorate but is very expensive...

For Fallas I want to make some firecrackers just flash powder, but Im little afraid to make them with chlorate... The idea is 7/3 + 1% boric acid and some titanium.

 

I must forget the idea? is good or bad idea? any advices or recomendations?


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#2 SharkWhisperer

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Posted 11 January 2020 - 05:40 AM

Aspirina, I'm going to operate under the assumption that you have been in pyro for awhile and have experience with perchlorate-based 7/3. If this is not the case, then please do not even consider making potassium chlorate-based flash. In addition to enhanced friction sensitivity vs perc, chlorate mixtures are also much more sensitive to shock (e.g., dropping) than perc mixtures.

 

That said, potassium chlorate was used for quite a long time before the safer perc became available. I have made potassium chlorate-based flash before, primarily to get rid of my chlorate stock. You need to appreciate the dangers involved and protect yourself accordingly. Or just don't do it.

 

Regarding stability, I haven't stored chlorate-based flash, but others, on this site included, have reported no loss of functionality after months or perhaps a year in storage.

 

Now please explain the addition of boric acid, because that is confusing me. Boric acid is typically added to nitrate/aluminum mixtures to reduce the possibility of unwanted/unanticipated heat generation due to the reaction between aluminum (generally more common with flake vs spherical) and nitrate, or alkaline impurities in KNO3, that generate an exothermic reaction. I cannot see any benefit of adding boric acid to a chlorate- or perchlorate-based 7/3 flash, for either functionality or storage purposes. That said, I of course do not claim to know everything about every formulation--like everybody, I am continually learning new things. This might be the case here, too. So please clarify the reason for the boric acid inclusion.

 

Take-home message: Be very careful, please. And fully understand the role of every single chemical in any given pyro formulation--if you cannot, then it is premature for you to be working with that formulation.

 

Be safe,

 

SW


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#3 kingkama

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Posted 11 January 2020 - 12:30 PM

In a spanish book i find often the recommendations of add boric acid to all alluminum composition to prevent the reaction of alluminum and moisture, Imo add an acid to a chlorate composition is useless and risks adding

#4 Aspirina

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Posted 11 January 2020 - 04:50 PM

Aspirina, I'm going to operate under the assumption that you have been in pyro for awhile and have experience with perchlorate-based 7/3. If this is not the case, then please do not even consider making potassium chlorate-based flash. In addition to enhanced friction sensitivity vs perc, chlorate mixtures are also much more sensitive to shock (e.g., dropping) than perc mixtures.

 

That said, potassium chlorate was used for quite a long time before the safer perc became available. I have made potassium chlorate-based flash before, primarily to get rid of my chlorate stock. You need to appreciate the dangers involved and protect yourself accordingly. Or just don't do it.

 

Regarding stability, I haven't stored chlorate-based flash, but others, on this site included, have reported no loss of functionality after months or perhaps a year in storage.

 

Now please explain the addition of boric acid, because that is confusing me. Boric acid is typically added to nitrate/aluminum mixtures to reduce the possibility of unwanted/unanticipated heat generation due to the reaction between aluminum (generally more common with flake vs spherical) and nitrate, or alkaline impurities in KNO3, that generate an exothermic reaction. I cannot see any benefit of adding boric acid to a chlorate- or perchlorate-based 7/3 flash, for either functionality or storage purposes. That said, I of course do not claim to know everything about every formulation--like everybody, I am continually learning new things. This might be the case here, too. So please clarify the reason for the boric acid inclusion.

 

Take-home message: Be very careful, please. And fully understand the role of every single chemical in any given pyro formulation--if you cannot, then it is premature for you to be working with that formulation.

 

Be safe,

 

SW

 
SharkWhisperer you have the explanation about boric acid, thanks KingKama
 
Im not a chemistry expert, Im only make "standard" formulation for pyro, that is the reason of this topic Im very conscius about the dangerous of potasium chlorate I read a lot of pyro security im not a expert but not treat me like a noob just take a look on my content and youtube chanel. I make my flash powder with perclorate and aluminium plus boric acid, the reason of this topic is just replace chlorate for preclorate because for me is very complicated and expensive get it, in Spain is illigal all type of self made pyrotechnics and oxidicer like perclorate...
 
"I must forget the idea? is good or bad idea? any advices or recomendations?"
I think the intention of this topic is very clear, dont make innecesary alarms, I get it, no chlorate firecrackers....

Edited by Aspirina, 11 January 2020 - 04:52 PM.

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#5 kingkama

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 05:41 AM

Chlorate has a bad reputations, it's more reactive but not so much more than perchlorate, the hard point is the sulfur, if you add it you lower the ignition temperature and the reaction with some kind of sulfur and moisture can generate sulfuric acid that will decompose chlorate in chloric acid. I often used shimizu chlorate report because i knows my sulfur is acid free, but a simple mix without sulfur will make a very nice report. IMO use 1% of barium carbonate is better than use 1% of boric acid.
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#6 Aspirina

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 10:22 AM

I would to make valencian style firecrackers, then, is a safe idea build these one by the method of "inside mixing"? Valencian style firecrackers like caramelle is only paper and cord, if I fill it with the chemicals separadly and then when the firecracker is closed make rotations on them for mix the chemicals? (only chlorate and aluminium)


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#7 kingkama

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 01:35 PM

I don't see big problem in what you like to do, may be a good plus add some rice hull or bran but no more of 1/5 so mixing will be easy. Pay attention, the forum rules are not friendly with the bulding of this kind of device, in US are strong forbidden and a lot of young guys can use this information for loose thumbs and eyes. I know your works and i know that this kind of toys don't show big difficulty but pay attention easy task are often the more tricky.
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#8 MinamotoKobayashi

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 02:57 PM

For my salute shells and maroons I usually use this mix:
 
58 Potassium Perchlorate
42 Aluminium German Dark
 
I never used other flash compositions because this one seems to be much less sensitive: I have tried to scratch and hit a very small amount of comp
between a rammer and a anvil and the flash never exploded.
I suppose that this kind of mix will be less powerful of the classical 70/30 but I prefer to be as safe as possible.
Hovewer the explosion is very loud and very bright due to the presence of more metal compared to the other formula.
Instead diapering method I put both the individual chems inside an hemis, then I add some rice hulls on the top and close the shell with the other hemis.
Then I proceed to paste the shell as usually.
The pasting procedure will mix the chems inside very well and in the safer conditions.
Of course You must screen the perchlorate alone before to put it into the shell to eliminate possible clumps.
 
 

Edited by MinamotoKobayashi, 12 January 2020 - 04:12 PM.

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#9 Aspirina

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Posted 13 January 2020 - 02:41 AM

I don't see big problem in what you like to do, may be a good plus add some rice hull or bran but no more of 1/5 so mixing will be easy. Pay attention, the forum rules are not friendly with the bulding of this kind of device, in US are strong forbidden and a lot of young guys can use this information for loose thumbs and eyes. I know your works and i know that this kind of toys don't show big difficulty but pay attention easy task are often the more tricky.

 

mmm..... I have not taken this point into account, I have written to mumbles to close this topic....

Thanks Minamoto for the advice.


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#10 SharkWhisperer

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Posted 19 January 2020 - 12:29 AM

SALUTES/FLASH: One last opinion before this thread gets closed, please.

 

I do not concur. Yes, let's cover our butts legally, but: 1) the recipes for flash et al are EVERYWHERE online (here, too...obviously); 2) some kids are going to make "boom-boom", just like you did; and 3) we are in a unique position to educate these kids on how to mature and convert a whimsical love of "boom" into a safe and more thoughtful (can't think of a better word...) hobby of pyro, which can include "booms".

 

Perhaps I'm a dissenter, but I used to be one of those kids. Made NG at age 12. Learned quick about container material effects on shrapnel. Not cool. But we all survived. My mortar n pestle "gunpowder" was predictably horrible. Flash was a cinch. And a blast!!! And much more dangerous than I appreciated. Fun.

 

Seems we're weighing the legalities (maybe even possible future legal costs for "liability")? Only in America. Tough to imagine for this website unless somebody directly and explicitly encouraged/promoted/facilitated bad acts (my attorney). But the benefits of openly sharing complete education/experience/advice, and maybe teaching a kid that loves the "boom" (who didn't?)  to appreciate the endless nuances of envisioning, creating, troubleshooting, and enjoying....learning how to sketch (or blow) absolutely beautiful patterns and holes in the sky. That's worthwhile.

 

Is it possible to discuss flash and it's many uses in legitimate pyro without discussing flash? Of course not. Is it possible to discuss flash and M-80s without correlating the two? Of course not. The kids can read it all--it is a matter of what they choose to interact with: 1) YouTube video describing flash manufacture and how great it is at blowing shit up (simple to find, formulations and sources included); or 2) Flash as a basis of  doing even cooler/better pyro stuff with shell breaks and salutes etc !!!

 

Kids are always gonna mix oxys with metals. Period. And most won't know what they're really doing (some are kinda dumb, most kinda smart. some are smart and risk-takers). And they'll often use crappy fuses in their experiments...

 

We've got a responsibility to project our hobby/sport in a positive light, as a (cautiously) safe endeavor, undertaken by bright individuals who both understand the chemistry and appreciate the potential outcomes. And who stay within the legal boundaries. Jail ain't summer camp. And MANAGE RISKS. We also have a responsibility to be available to or to try to connect with younger folks (usually but not always boys) who like to blow shit up because it's fun (Hey! Maybe let's put a "warhead" on this Estes...."). They were the same as many of you were years ago (still?).

 

Primary take-home message, actually it's just an opinion...

 

Appreciating that we NEVER promote illegal activities, we can identify kids/newbies/individuals whose first post might be about firecracker/flash mixes and related queries. It both to our benefit and also I think, our absolute responsibility, to identify these people and engage them. The goal isn't injurious--the goal is simply to acknowledge their interests, and to hopefully ultimately expand those interests, so they eventually (safely) make a better rocket than you or me, or approach your shell skills when painting the sky! With all their fingers.

 

Let's try hard not to confuse the seriously curious and ambitious youngsters from the truly disturbed/worrisome youngsters. The info is already out there. The criminals/disturbed will locate that information and do their thing without our assistance. But yes, it's wise to tread gently with open eyes in discussions with Newbies of salutes, flash, etc. But let's not allow paranoia and (possibly overblown) worries of litigation damper our exchanges with Newbies on basic (legal) pyro topics. They already know how to make an M-80... Let's mentor them on developing their interestes, probably beyond what they first envisioned, legally and safely.


Edited by SharkWhisperer, 19 January 2020 - 12:48 AM.

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#11 Aspirina

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Posted 19 January 2020 - 11:07 AM

I have talked to mumbles and I have said nothing out of place, the post is going to still open
I have spoken with Spanish pyrotechnics and the only thing they have told me has been the same as Kingkama has said, as long as you do not mix with sulfur and the mixture is only Chlorate and aluminum, the only thing you have to keep in mind is that the composition is more sensitive than that used with perchlorate, so you have to double the safety when handling these chemicals.
 
On the other hand I feel a little offended by you to lead this "lesson" against me or to publish it in this thread.
First of all you are considering amateur pyrotechnics in the context of the United States talking about legal and illegal pyrotechnics, in my country that does not exist, any type of pyrotechnic device is illegal including what you say "to paint the sky", here only what you can buy in stores is legal. 
 
Secondly you should know that Fallas (Valencia) is a holiday in which the pyrotechnics is almost all noisy, therefore, I see nothing wrong with opening a post in which ask some way to make firecrackers in a way economic, and that this post is intended, to do things well done with safety and quality I do not dedicate myself to "blow up things" as you say, keep in mind my content in the forum and my youtube channel.
 
Thirdly, I have been practicing rocketry since I was kid I am a member of Tripoli (SpainRocketry), after I started to build shells (not bombs) you don't have to give me any safety lesson, on the other hand I understand the concern of the children but you yourself said it, the potential to harm is in all internet, in this thread it is not the case therefore I think you are being a little paranoid.

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#12 SharkWhisperer

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Posted 19 January 2020 - 03:26 PM

My friend, my response was absolutely not directed at you, nor was it intended as any type of "lesson". It was solely a response to the suggestion of closing this thread, which I considered premature. Please do not take this as a personal insult or a degrading lesson--it was neither. I do not for a second question your experience or qualifications--my response was simply because I have observed that some are quicker than others to immediately relegate a thread related to flash, which contains very useful safety information especially useful for Newbies, to the HE section or to closure. I think it's an important topic to discuss responsibly. Apologies for any misinterpretation. I absolutely did not intend to offend you.


Edited by SharkWhisperer, 19 January 2020 - 03:31 PM.

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#13 MinamotoKobayashi

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Posted 20 January 2020 - 06:25 PM

Personally I prefer to stay far away from flash (and whistle mix) as much as possible, because the major disasters in the history, especially in the amateur field, was due to these chems.

Actually I made my salute shells using 58 Potassium Perchlorate and 42 Aluminium German Dark, but sometimes I prefer to use the classical granulated KP mix

as I describted in my tutorial:

 

https://www.amateurp...e-very-fast-kp/

 

A little more quantity of granulated mix and doubling the pasting thickness will match the flash behaviour in term of noise.

I tried to light the granules simulating the worst conditions: ramming as a desperate some granules bewteen a big rammer and an anvil, scratch the granules

between the floor and a shoe sole, cutting a granule between the sharp blades of a scissor .. nothing happens!

This is what ia can call "be safe as much as possible"  :P


Edited by MinamotoKobayashi, 22 January 2020 - 06:26 AM.


#14 Aspirina

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 06:18 AM

My friend, my response was absolutely not directed at you, nor was it intended as any type of "lesson". It was solely a response to the suggestion of closing this thread, which I considered premature. Please do not take this as a personal insult or a degrading lesson--it was neither. I do not for a second question your experience or qualifications--my response was simply because I have observed that some are quicker than others to immediately relegate a thread related to flash, which contains very useful safety information especially useful for Newbies, to the HE section or to closure. I think it's an important topic to discuss responsibly. Apologies for any misinterpretation. I absolutely did not intend to offend you.

Then sorry for my confusion, sometimes the traduction especially in long text can be confused...


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#15 Aspirina

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 06:24 AM

Personally I prefer to stay far away from flash (and whitsle mix) as much as possible, because the major disasters in the history, especially in the amateur field, was due to these chems.

Actually I made my salute shells using 58 Potassium Perchlorate and 42 Aluminium German Dark, but sometimes I prefer to use the classical granulated KP mix

as I describted in my tutorial:

 

https://www.amateurp...e-very-fast-kp/

 

A little more quantity of granulated mix and doubling the pasting thickness will match the flash behaviour in term of noise.

I tried to light the granules simulating the worst conditions: ramming as a desperate some granules bewteen a big rammer and an anvil, scratch the granules

between the floor and a shoe sole, cutting a granule between the sharp blades of a scissor .. nothing happens!

This is what ia can call "be safe as much as possible"  :P

Thanks for the advice, I think that if you make these compositions with the correct humidity and warm conditions and you make the mixture with the correct chemicals and only with paper and wood tools nothing bad can happend IMO all the compositions have risk, one less risk others more risk but this is pyrotechnics... Take respect not fear.


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#16 SeaMonkey

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Posted 15 February 2020 - 11:48 PM

As a kid in rural Iowa back in the '50s I made my firecracker mix

from Drug Store bought Potassium Chlorate (10 cents per oz.)

and Charcoal powder also from the Drug Store.

 

The 70-30 mix was pretty close to what we (Science Club) used.

We didn't use Sulfur at all and at that time we had no idea what

Aluminum Powder was used for.

 

The Rocket Club did use a mix of Zinc powder and Sulfur for

rockets.

 

Our fuses were made with the standard Black Powder formula

by mortar and pestle and rolled into tissue paper.

 

It worked well.  Not a flash powder by any means though.


Edited by SeaMonkey, 15 February 2020 - 11:48 PM.





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