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Roskoe 03-29-2006 03:46 PM

Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
Our local fire chief is also an avid shooter. I was at his house over the weekend, and noticed that he had maybe 50 pounds of powder sitting on the shelf in his reloading room. Some of it was black powder substitute - like T7 and Pyrodex. He said the only powder he is worried about, in terms of a fire hazard, is real black powder. He said he stores that in a fireproof box along with some important personal documents. He didn't think the black powder substitutes were anywhere near the hazard of real (Goex) black powder. Anyone out there want to comment on this? I thought the substitutes were still fairly explosive - at least compared to smokeless. Thanks. Roskoe.

sabotloader 03-29-2006 04:19 PM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?

I thought the substitutes were still fairly explosive - at least compared to smokeless.
It is my belief that they can be... the subs...

I do believe the real BP is a lot biggger problem than the subs. BP will go up under compression or heat a much lower heat than is required to start the subs. Subs are normally stored in a container that will not allow a great deal of pressureto build up before they rupture, so the explosivness of them is somewhat reduced.They will ignite and they will burn rapidly but most often they will not blow up as will BP.


Underclocked 03-29-2006 04:35 PM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
My wife got pretty nervous when she learned I had 22 pounds of powder under the bed.

Made me move it. ;)

cayugad 03-29-2006 05:10 PM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
Black Powder is much more of a concern I would think then the substitutes. Actually any powder would be dangerous but in the event of fire, any of them would be a concern. I admit I am concerned about my stockpile and take safe guards to keep it and myself safe.

Pittsburghunter 03-29-2006 05:35 PM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
For what it is worth I have a "friend" who tried using subs to make fireworks but none worked well at all. Blackpowder is explosive. No if an or buts about it.

I would have an issue storing a bunch in one strong box because if it touches off we are talking fragmentation device. I store my bp in tool boxes I use for range use with the right powder for the arm the box is set up for. They are scattered about so one wont blow up the next and they are in plastic boxes that wont take down a building.

My subs I store in the same boxes or the locked draw I keep my smokeless in.

I fear bp being in a box that does not let it expand and go boom instead building up pressure enough so that when it does boom so does the room it is in.

Just my two cents and it is probably worth just that. I would rather a fire than a bomb.

PA Bow/Flinter 03-29-2006 05:54 PM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
Why would you put explosives in the same spot as important personal documents? If the powder goes boom...then don't the documents go boom too? I thought the point of a fire safe box was to keep the fire out? Granted, yes if the BP is in a fire box then hopefully fire won't reach it, but what if it heats up enough during a fire to explode ? Theninsteadof the paper only beening singed by the heat, it would be all gone from the explosion.

Just my thoughts...

Underclocked 03-29-2006 08:25 PM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
That was my reasoning for keeping powder under the bed. :D

alleyyooper 03-30-2006 07:39 AM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
That's the biggest reason it is hard to find a place local that sells BP any more. It has to be kept in a different building for the most part and just a small amount on display and then only for the day. At night it must be in the out building. Subs are not subject to the same local fire codes.

No powder should be stored in such way as to become a gernade in the event of a fire.

txfireman 03-30-2006 08:28 AM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
I'm a firefighter and Black Powder decomposses at a much faster rate than powder substitutes. Black powder is the most unstable. Black powder that is kept in storage for too long (10+ years) can become shock sensitive and possibly explode. Any old powders should be disposed of saftely. All of those regardless of the product should be stored in a cool dry place. Having been in fires where ammo and components have cooked off, it's a definate surprise. I would definately have it all in the same place so that in the event of a fire, firefighters can be notified where it all is and it can be removed before flame impingement happens. If the whole thing is burning then it doesn't matter. Structure fires can reach 1000 plus degrees inside and once the contents reach their auto ignition temperatures, everything burns. In the garage would be a adequate place for storage in a container out of reach of children. Do not put it in the attic. Too much temp fluxuation.

QTompkins2005 03-30-2006 10:48 AM

RE: Fire Hazard of Black Powder Storage?
better hope violent concusions won't set that powder off underclocked [8D]

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