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Thread: Smoke generator

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Duke's Avatar
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    Default Smoke generator

    I want to test my bathroom and kitchen exhaust fan systems. I need a simple way to generate some white smoke in order to see if the exhausts are working properly. Any suggestion welcome.

  2. #2
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
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    You could contact your local fire dept. and see if they have one that they would be willing to come and smoke yopur kitchen with, if not maybe they know some one who has one you could rent.

  3. #3
    Rancher
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    Try a special effects supply house. I know there is a liquid chemical that is used by the HVAC design companies to check out their designs for proper air flow. It imediately becomes smokey on exposure to air.

    Rancher

  4. #4

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    Yeah, a fog machine, too bad, I got one sitting in my garage for Halloween. I am a witch. Some people might say ... !itch. lol.

    My fog machine makes a lot of smoke. Works well. If you have a Spencer's near you, that is where I bought mine.

  5. #5
    In the Trades Bob NH's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
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    Default Smoke-making compound

    Quote Originally Posted by Duke
    I want to test my bathroom and kitchen exhaust fan systems. I need a simple way to generate some white smoke in order to see if the exhausts are working properly. Any suggestion welcome.
    When I was an aspiring scientist, I learned the formula for a smoke-making compound.

    By weight:
    75% potassium nitrate
    15% powdered charcoal
    10% sulfur

    I could buy the sulfur and potassium nitrate at the drug store. I made the charcoal by heating some dry wood in a closed can with a little hole in the top until it burned off all of the volatiles; then powdered it.

    It works best if you mix it all up moist and then dry it in the sun. That gets the constitutents to mingle well and the charcoal and sulfur stick to the grains of potassium nitrate, which is also known as saltpeter.

    You can then VERY CAREFULLY use a wooden rolling pin on a wooden board or aluminum sheet to crush SMALL AMOUNTS AT A TIME into a powder.

    Then put a small pile of it, spread out well (try a little at a time in a safe place) and light it with a long match. It will make a lot of smoke.

    Be aware that what you are making is the same stuff that was used by the Minutemen at Lexington and Concord to fire "The shot heard 'round the world" on April 19, 1775. It was known as "Black powder".

    I made a good bit of it on the farm in the early 1950s. You could do all kinds of exciting things with it out in the country. Luckily, I still have all of my fingers and can still see out of both eyes.

    It would probably get the attention of ATF guys if you let it be known today that you were making it.

  6. #6

    Default

    I got you beat Bob, my husband and I when we were first dating would do that...but, then, we used a long conduit pipe and added a bottle rocket and shot it across the rivers, lol. and, ran like hell. lol. We had a blast, and never lost one finger, but, I seriously, would not advise anyone else to do it, lol. The barges were an added challenge.
    That was about 26 years ago.

  7. #7
    Rancher
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    Cookie, you're dating yourself, remember never tell them your age, then when they guess it right lie.

    Rancher

  8. #8

    Default

    ha ha, but, Rancher, the truth is, I worked very very hard to get to be this dang old...I am quite proud of it! Still look good...

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