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Beginner bottle rocket questions


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Hey y'all, I've made plenty of fountains (kind of), sparklers, and star mines in the past and I'm thinking about getting into the bottle rocket side of pyrotechnics but I'm not really sure where to start. I figured I could buy the tooling and start small with 2 oz rockets.

I have about 4 years off and on of pyrotechnic experience and I'm not sure if I'm even "qualified" enough to start a project like this. If y'all feel like this is above my level just make sure and tell me. I'm fully confident I can make them safely, I just want to understand the dangers and make sure I'm doing everything in my control to prevent injury. Anyway, here are some questions I have...

Would a mallet or a dead blow hammer be better for ramming the rocket?

What should the diameter and length of the stick be?

How should I go about attaching the shell casing to the rocket?

What diameter should the shell be?

how much black powder should the burst charge be?

What size stars should I use?

Edited by TXpyro
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A dead blow hammer will work much better than a rubber mallet. A rawhide or lead mallet will work also work better than a rubber mallet. For ramming bounce is the enemy.

Since you are talking about 2 oz rockets, for the sticks, I would probably just try using those bamboo kebab skewers with the pointed end cut off and see how it goes from there.

I use hot glue to fasten the shell casing to the rocket. I then put a couple of layers of gummed tape to further secure it.

Further than that I don't have much info to give you besides relatively small for shell size, small stars, and maybe a flash based burst charge since the smaller shells are fairly difficult. (I mostly fool around with 1 lb. rocket motors with 3" headers which do work well with even relatively weak burst.)

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