How to make Black Powder
Pay attention to the danger of grinding the three ingredients all at
Potassium Nitrate NAO3
The web site sells in one pound increments, or 10 pounds. It is
cheaper in the long run to get 10 pounds. You would then need 1 pound of
sulfur and 1 pound of dextrin (and make your own charcoal). also:
They sell it by the pound. If you purchase 10 pounds Potassium
Nitrate, you will need 1 pound of Sulfur.
A sulfur-free black powder yields only a little smoke.
When it is used in a rifle, you see only a faint fog. When fired by a
percussion rifle, the ignition poses no problems. When fired by a flint
lock, you will get lots of misfires. So Sulfur lowers the temperature
needed for ignition. A good priming powder has a high sulfur
A binding agent to hold the granules to the size of the wire screen
commonly available replacement, liquid laundry starch will bind just as
well, if not better than dextrin. To substitute liquid starch for
dextrin, a solution of 50% liquid starch to 50% water by volume is used
to dampen in the same way pure water would be used for the same
application. Use about 1 tablespoon of starch water per 100 grams
of black powder.
Black Powder Chemicals Kit:
Skylighter's black powder
kit contains enough chemicals for making 10 lbs. of black powder. You'll
save about 20% vs. buying the chemicals individually. Its charcoal is made from
soft hardwoods. Tests have
shown that hardwoods can make very good powder. The
secret of a good black powder is the charcoal alone!
Ball Mill (at Harbor Freight Tools)
They carry a single 3 pound tub for $39 and a double for $49. I would
buy the double.
1 lb. Metal Tins and screw lids
This web site also sells different sized tins. Pint tins, 16 oz, are
commonly used for black powder storage. Quart tins would also be small
enough. Check your garage, you may have empty tins that once contained
solvents, cleaners, strippers, fuels, refinishing products, etc. I have
saved my empty powder cans, over the years. They sell for $10
each, on Ebay. also:
Black Powder Grades Size Chart
Black Powder Formula Calculator
This tool will help you determine the amount of each Black
Powder Ingredient you will need. Just type in the amount of powder you
want to make and it will break the ingredients down for you. Nice too.
Runs in Microsoft Excel and Open Office. To use
the Calculator, Enter the amount of powder you want to make .... in the
Pounds Box ..... then click on Calculate. Enter any amount in Pounds and
it will be converted to Grains, Grams, and Pounds.