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How to Make a Smoke Bomb

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Smoke Bomb Materials
Photo of burning homemade smoke powder.

Photo of burning homemade smoke powder.

Timo Halén

The smoke bomb you would purchase from a fireworks store usually is made from potassium chlorate (KClO3 - oxidizer), sugar (sucrose or dextrin - fuel), sodium bicarbonate (otherwise known as baking soda - to moderate the rate of the reaction and keep it from getting too hot), and a powdered organic dye (for colored smoke). When a commercial smoke bomb is burned, the reaction makes white smoke and the heat evaporates the organic dye. Commercial smoke bombs have small holes through which the smoke and dye are ejected, to create a jet of finely dispersed particles. Crafting this type of smoke bomb is beyond most of us, but you can make an effective smoke bomb quite easily. There are even colorants you can add if you want to make colored smoke. In fact, this type of smoke bomb was used to craft the worldest biggest smoke bomb! Let's start out with instructions for the easiest/safest type of smoke bomb you can make:

Smoke Bomb Materials

  • sugar (sucrose or table sugar)
  • potassium nitrate, KNO3, also known as saltpeter (buy it online or you can find this at some garden supply stores in the fertilizer section, some pharmacies carry it too)
  • skillet or pan
  • aluminum foil

Once you've gathered your smoke bomb materials, it's easy to make the smoke bomb...

 

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