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Blaf

Powder Die

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Have look at this...

One of my friends has made a powder die that I required to make my BP cakes. This idea came from Mr. Dan Williams site but I have to admit in public right here that my friend blasphemously used a beer bottle of 0.33 L as a starting point which miraculously enough matched plastic piston I've had!!! OK then, the powder die is simple – there are two plastic sleeves (portions of plastic tubing) with longitudinal cuts. The basic idea is that smaller one fits inside larger one with cuts on oposite sides. There are two thick round plastic caps that snugly fit into smaller sleeve etc. See image...
<a href=http://members.pyroforum.nl/Blaf/DieDis.JPG target=_blank><img src=http://members.pyroforum.nl/Blaf/DieDis.JPG width=360 border=0></a href>

The whole setup works as follows:
You take 50 grams of meal, wet it with 50/50 mixture of alcohol/water (legend has it – 2 grams of liquid approx), mix it well so it becomes just slightly crumbly. Set one of those two caps I mentioned before in the bottom of inner sleeve ad pour your meal onto it. Then put the second plastic cap on top and appropriately sized piston over it. Outer rim of the larger sleeve has to be reinforced somehow, and I do that with three large chromed hose clamps. Whole setup is then transfered onto working plate of my press, the handle on my jack is then pumped until piston reaches the top plate. Here things become tough. I pump the handle until my press "squeeks" (I know, there should be some measuring device...) and leave whole thing pressed for a minute or so. Mr. Dan Williams told me there's no need to keep it longer. Now, open release valve on the jack, die could be taken out and disassembled now and BP cake looking like hockey puck is removed. It is now nice black coloured, a bit heavy and should be left to dry for a few days. If you tap it with wooden stick it produces low "click" sound. When cake is completely dry the sound becomes of little higher pitch. Now see this one...
<a href=http://members.pyroforum.nl/Blaf/DiePucks.JPG target=_blank><img src=http://members.pyroforum.nl/Blaf/DiePucks.JPG width=360 border=0></a href>

Cake (those two harmlessly looking on the right) can be crushed now and sieved for desired particles. I use two main sieves for preliminary sieving (measures are in mm and mesh) 0,100mm-150 mesh and 0,080mm-180 mesh. What passes those two screens, later gets sifted through (do not laugh on this one...) a suitable piece of pantyhose stretched over wooden frame. The size should be around 0,030mm-400 mesh and what passes this is very fine granulated BP mixed with some powder.

Any comments? Don' tell me it's off season...

Blaf

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Hay Pirate!

Regarding main piston - I found it at a small shop selling roller bearings, shafts, screws and similar mechanic harware. Salesman told me its made of Polivynil Ethilene and it comes in different diameters & lenghts and a few basic colours. I picked black one as it looks the most businesslike. Those white plastic tubes were made of epoxy rosin and it's tough like Hell but you could find suitable tubing where water drain pipes are sold or perhaps plastic gas pipelines. So they say, eventhough I couldn't find any of those anywhere.
Hope you have better luck than humble me.

Blaf

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Hey Blaf

Ok, now I have an idea where to search for the stuff. Thanks again.
And you're right, black is indeed the most businesslike altough yellow also would have been nice :D
The plastic drain pipes won't be such a problem. I think I know a couple of shops where I can get them but the piston is gonna be more difficult. I do know a shop where they sell bearings and stuff so I'll ask there and lets hope they have it.
And you found the right stuff for your press so you had a bit of luck so I hope I'll be as lucky as humble you :wink:

Pirate

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Pirate you really keep me going, don't you?
I dropped by several shops selling those drain pipes but they wouldn't cut it to your specific lenght and always but always try to sell you entire piece of some 4m in lenght!!! Not to mention constant question why someone would use such a short piece of tubing...I'm sick of that.
Hope you won't have to dig as deep as I did.

Blaf

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Pirate you really keep me going, don't you?


I'm trying :D
You know a lot of pyro and build your own tools so if it doesn't bother you too much I'm trying to learn as much as possible :wink:
And you do have a good point that those shops will try to sell a couple of meters instead of a small piece.
Lets hope I find something.
Maybe in a plumbers shop, there I've bought a couple of shorter pieces before but they where about 5 cm in diameter. Maybe they also have bigger ones.

Pirate

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I've got another question - how do you crush the cakes? Probably a stupid question but I don't know the answer for sure so its better to ask then to experiment, right.
Do you put them in a box of some kind and beat them with a rubber hammer or something or is it more complicated?

Pirate

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I crush it with pestle in a small ceramic mortar. You can see it in Fuse Burning picures.
I have a question for you Pirate - Do you ever sleep? (ha, ha, ha...)

Blaf

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Ah, ah, with a pestle and mortar, learned something again thanks :wink:

Euh, sleep :roll: once in a while, I also need to do that :D
No I just start working pretty early and I have to sit behind a pc when I'm not driving around with the company car so I have a lot of time to surf the net.

Pirate

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Lucky you Pirate. On my work I do have access to PC and Net as well and I admit, I'm much more active from there than from home. Meanwhile, I thrown a hook with small bait to Exhile....we can expect him to show up and clear up your doubts about solvents and KNO3 crystallization soon.

Blaf

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Pirate my friend...
Do not mention this any more. We should say all the best about our bosses. They pay us after all. As for me, I break my spine every day at work and really earn my money. So, no comment about this any more, please. This is Pyro forum, not the Union board session, OK?

Blaf

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Hey Blaf, my compliments on the press! It's awsome material, I think I might actually make one too once I have the time for it.

But I was wondering if you could perhaps show us a little burn test of your home pressed BP, that is if you've got the ability to film it...

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Hi Blaf!

Do you use a Hydraulic press ?
If you you do, can you make some pics of it, please?

Many thanks!
Duvel

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Hello Pk!

I'll do a short BP burning test clip in a week or so and then ask Gamekeeper how to post it...check BP blues topic from time to time.

Duvel, if you look just a bit harder, you should see the "Simple hydraulic press" topic somewhere here...he, he, he.

Blaf

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