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How do I powder aluminium?

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Unread postAuthor: frankrede » Sun Feb 17, 2008 2:04 pm

hubb017 wrote:This topic may just be on the lines of those "illegal discussions" talked about in the rules. We might just want to take it easy and answer the original question.
Seriously, the rules say no solid propellants.
When you find a weapon that uses thermite as a propellant, tell me.
Good luck with that.
All this topic was about it simply aluminum powder, nothing wrong with that.
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Unread postAuthor: roughboy » Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:25 am

I have made thermite before and this is how i made my aluminum powder. there are two ways one is buy a coffee grinder and aluminum foil then crumble up small balls of aluminum foil then grind it. it takes a long time for the aluminum foil to turn into fine power. and the second option is to go into a paint shop and buy aluminum powder.
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Unread postAuthor: goose_man » Mon Feb 25, 2008 9:33 am

I bought Al powder (back when I was into that kind of stuff) at a large art supply store. I guess it was maybe 325 mesh bright flake- definately fine enough for thermite.

As for a ball mill, you'd need pretty hard mlling media so it didn't get eaten up and worn down very fast. Most hard metals are sparking so they cannot be used. Ceramic media should work. I've always wondered about ceramic pie weights.

Also, I read somewhere that you want to open up the milling jar every so often to allow the Al's surface to oxidize. If you wait to long and open it at the end, there will be so much more surface area then before that oxidation will happen too rapidly and this could cause bad things to happen.

If your jar is slanted while it's rotating (as it often is in some ball mills) then maybe you could put a large hole in the center of the lid and attach two screens with a bunch of cotton squished between so air can flow but not the Al powder. This is just a thought though- no garentees.

-goose_man
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Unread postAuthor: )DEMON( » Thu Feb 28, 2008 9:49 am

Well Guys, I know I haven't been active for a while, I have just been busy with my final year in high school and my paintball team.

I managed to quickly mod my wood lathe into a ball mill and it works well. It only took about ten minutes and no dought I will improve upon it. I am going to try it out tomorrow, I just have to get some lead balls from an angling shop and I will mill down lots of saltpeter (lots of smoke devises to make!).

Pics tomorrow!
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