Balcony Shoot #8 - Pinwheel Driver Composition Test

Date: 2003-09-21


Testing a fairly traditional "Catherine Wheel" driver composition:

17 Potassium Nitrate

6 Iron (-100 mesh)

4 Charcoal (airfloat)

3 Sulfur

Mixed by passing through corse sieve a few times and tumbling in jar with a some lead balls for a few moments to break up the sulfur lumps, followed by a good shake. The Iron was added last.

Tube was 6 mm ID unchoked, several layers of kraft taped, no pasting, rather like a lance in design. This test was mainly to see if it spat out sparks and produced any thrust unchoked as required in a traditional wheel. Tube was 50 mm long, 40 mm of powder filling.

Fused with a meal/NC on paper strip fuse, folded over once and stuffed in the end of the tube.


Nice mini-gerb performance.

All orange sparks and a soft rushing sound. No dividing sparks were observed, but the iron is fairly pure, not a high-carbon steel like sparkler steel powder.

Would make a nice traditional gerb composition, probably a reasonable driver or even a nice core-burning rocket propellant. Definately a cinch to make, just sift until homogenous.

I forgot to take a pre-test photo, sorry!

I'll have to try building a wheel with it, once I work out how to wind the tube around the hub without it splitting or tearing.


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