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Thermite

DashApple

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Thermite can be made with just magnesium , the reduction metal has to be more reactive than the metal in the oxide so with magnesium it would be more energetic .

Both iron oxide and copper oxide thermite will work with magnesium but they will happen much faster .

My favourite thermite is tin dioxide based , with a sand mould I made a nice amount of tin from it once :p
 
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Jmillerdoc

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Be careful with that stuff its really dangerous. If you do want something to make a nice display tanerite works great. It will really "blow" your audience away hehe

I love Tannerite! I still have about 40 pounds of this stuff I bought at a gun show a few years back. The most I've done at one time was a little over 5 pounds. Placed it into a knot hole in an old dying Sweetgum tree with a diameter of around 30". It obliterated the tree about 3' above and below the charge, completely removing about 6' of wood and turning it into toothpick sized rubble. Great fun and really safe in its binary form, both mixed and unmixed. Just requires a projectile traveling 2000 f/s or faster to set it off. I think it's estimated one pound is an equivalent of 1 stick of dynamite. Legal to use with a few obvious exceptions.

There is a good YouTube video of a guy who went to jail for setting off something like a few hundred ponds of this stuff in the back of a dump truck or similar. He did it from several hundred yards away with a 50BMG I believe. It was such a huge blast it set off seismic sensors in a nearby (several miles) nuclear power station. I don't think he actually went to jail for the explosion though. I think they got him on some sort of firearms charge because he was on parole and in possession of a gun.

Maybe mixing some magnesium powder into some of my Tannerite would result in a good display. Need to check on this.
 

Jmillerdoc

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Thermite can be made with just magnesium , the reduction metal has to be more reactive than the metal in the oxide so with magnesium it would be more energetic .

My favourite thermite is tin dioxide based , with a sand mould I made a nice amount of tin from it once :p

So what would you recommend mixing with this pure magnesium?
 

DashApple

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So what would you recommend mixing with this pure magnesium?

Well for thermite related , iron oxide ( red or black ) and copper oxide ( black ) will both work with just magnesium , but it will be a more fierce and fast reaction over the aluminium based thermite .
 

Jmillerdoc

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You should quit wasting good fine Aluminum on this and use it to make some good flash, then you can wake all the neighbors at 01:00 in the morning :crackup:

It wasn't me and you can't prove it !!!
Jeff, we really need to talk soon. I forgot about you and your experience with pyrotechnics. I'm certain you can help me find trouble with my supply of magnesium. Possibly even find some trouble for you too.....
 
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Jmillerdoc

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Well for thermite related , iron oxide ( red or black ) and copper oxide ( black ) will both work with just magnesium , but it will be a more fierce and fast reaction over the aluminium based thermite .

Which is better (more explosive) red or black? I don't want to just fiddle around here, I want the best possible release of energy possible. Would it be explosive? IIRC the finer the particles and uniform the mix, the more explosive the reaction.

Can this red or black oxide be easily obtained, like on eBay? Need to check on this as well.
 

Seoul_lasers

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A very good friend of mine in Duncan, OK has a machine shop that does almost entirely custom work for the oil and gas lateral drilling industry, Halliburton being one of his biggest customers. He recently received a custom order for a few hundred parts turned from pure magnesium. They are some sort of plug, about 4" in diameter, and the turning process resulted in about two 55 gallon drums full of, you guessed it, pure magnesium shavings.

He gave me a small box, about the size of a large flat rate USPS mailing box, full of these shavings. He's a bit of a science / experiments nut like me and he is keeping this stuff for some fun down the road and I can get more if I want.

I just bring this up here because it seems relevant. I haven't had the time to pursue anything fun with it yet, planning to hunt on YouTube for some cool things to try. Just curious if anyone here had some good ideas on how to have some good old fashion dangerous pyrotechnic fun with this stuff.

I am an avid ammunition reloader and have an idea I am going to try. I've got some Hornaday projectiles that are FMJ with the ass end Un-jacketed and the lead exposed. I was going to heat these up and melt the lead out, grind some of this magnesium to a powder, mix it with a good oxidizing substance that will result in a fairly stable compound if possible, replace the lead with it, and recap the end with something like JB Weld epoxy. It will result in a projectile much lighter than the original (currently I have 150gr 30cal and 55gr 223cal) possibly 90gr and 30gr respectively. Elevation will need to be accounted for but I have a great app on my iPhone that easily makes the calculations. Basically I'm attempting an incendiary round. This is just one of hundreds of cool things that could be done with pure magnesium....

Anyone with some cool ideas on what else could be done with this stuff please speak up. I'm open minded to any cool and potentially dangerous experiments....who knows, I may even share a little with someone who comes up with something that would make a great YouTube video.

Lastly, is there a form of thermite type material that uses pure magnesium? It seems like a good material to start a thermite / thermate reaction.

Yes, actually Magnesium can be substituted for Aluminium as the two metals behave in very similar manners, with the more active of the 2 naturally being Mg.
I have tried Mg powder with CuO and Fe2O3, and the results are an increase of reactivity and sensitivity. The more dangerous obviously being the Mg+CuO which is VERY explosive.
I'll caution you that Incendiary rounds if not made properly can ignite inside your gun, rather than at the point of impact not to motion that the by products are corrosive as heck. I have seen some recipes calling for KClO4/Mg and or NaClO4/Mg. (KClO4 + Mg is commercial flash powder for use in squibs and flash bangs )
and is dangerously sensitive to moisture.
Other chemistry points to the use Sodium Peroxide and Magnesium which is EXTREMELY
sensitive to moisture.

WWI and WWII the chemistry of the day called for White Phosphorus.
Good luck getting that nowadays. ;)

A round containing finely milled Mg+Fe2O3 or CuO+Mg might be something to try?

:thinking: New experiment.?? ?:)

Hopefully I have shed some light, not pun intended on the subject of making
exotic ammo ...

Obtaining Mg powder must be done through
http://www.skylighter.com/mall/chemicals.asp

there is a serious declaimer for anyone
purchasing from them.

Mg powder is quite dangerous as it can ignite easily.

Fe2O3 is red iron oxide and will work for miking thermite,
magnetite balck iron oxide or Fe3O4 is useless for this.
 
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DashApple

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Which is better (more explosive) red or black? I don't want to just fiddle around here, I want the best possible release of energy possible. Would it be explosive? IIRC the finer the particles and uniform the mix, the more explosive the reaction.

Can this red or black oxide be easily obtained, like on eBay? Need to check on this as well.

Well I have tried Copper oxide with flash grade aluminium and that's goes off .. fast , with magnesium it would be faster but fine grade magnesium is better but it would be much more sensitive ( static mostly ) and dangerously explosive ..


Glitter fountains are more fun to make than thermite nowadays :p
 
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The Lightning Stalker

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I've heard that a rock tumbler with a few ball bearings inside works great for powdering metals. There is a
perfect one at the local Goodwill right now, but they want $40 for it! Of course a little iron oxide will get in
there as well which is not necessarily a bad thing in this case.
 

DashApple

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I've heard that a rock tumbler with a few ball bearings inside works great for powdering metals. There is a
perfect one at the local Goodwill right now, but they want $40 for it! Of course a little iron oxide will get in
there as well which is not necessarily a bad thing in this case.

That's what I ended up using , rock tumbler and 12mm lead balls , only cost £25 for the lot .
 

Atomicrox

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You're one lucky bastard :beer:

Have you tried burning it in water?
burn magnesium water - YouTube

Also you can use it to make sodium metal from NaOH:
Making Sodium Metal - YouTube

I wouldn't try grinding it at home to make powder, the explosion risk is too high..


As for Fe2O3 for the thermite, you can either buy it or use electrolysis to make a piece of iron rust completely in a few hours/days. I have a video of thermite with home made oxide somewhere in this thread. It was quite explosive even with Al.


Edit: ionlaser555, what's a glitter fountain?
 
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Sigurthr

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Mg fine turnings and powder mixed with Potassium Chlorate KClO3 and table sugar makes a nice incendiary mixture. You can vary the ratios to get different effects; from flashbang to glitter fountain. I used to make them in my youth. A good starter ratio is 15g KClO3, 7g sugar, and 8g Mg powder.

Red iron oxide can be purchased in bulk from pottery supply depots for very, very cheap.
 

Down with Umbrella

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It's about time to update this thread!

Today a friend came over to discuss our projects and compare note!

I mixed up some thermite, Al CuO + Fe2O3
I spent all day working on different per portions and finally settled on this
10g- CuO
6g- AL
2g-fe2O3
Today's recordings are at the beginning of this video, the rest is a mix of tannerite, shooting, methanol + boric acid, more thermite, essential oil distillation.
Everything in the video was purchased legally, proper gun safety was followed and no persons or animals were hurt!
Music-Against me! Baby I'm an anarchist
My soundtrack choice does not necessarily reflect my political opinion. (Ok mom?!)
I feel like you have to state this stuff when posting on public forums..
I digress.
 
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Sigurthr

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Very nice! We you going for an overly oxidized reaction? Heh. Stoichiometric ratio is somewhere around 3:1 oxidizer to fuel. I actually almost spent my xmas money on some thermite supplies but decided to put it towards something more permanent; finishing my radiography unit.
 

Down with Umbrella

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Starting out I only had 300grams of 500mesh aluminum powder. I have plenty of Fe203 and CuO.
Lacking magnesium ribbon ignition was a challenge. I used some slow burning stick gun powder and a fuse. Meh. I kept mixing batches with different ratios to achieve the lowest ignition point. Moderate success. After buring through expensive IMR 4895 powder(not ment for this application) it hit me... Dum dum. Use sparklers!

After that I had no problem with ignition but was running very low On AL powder. I went heavy with the oxidizers.
I liked the woosh of the CuO but wanted to make it slightly more stable. That's why I added the Fe203. I must have mixed 20 separate batch with varying degrees of success before deciding on this one.
This was open powder on a plate. I made NO attempt to pack it or contain it.
 
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