It wasn’t me

Yes, this is within my range of operations but I didn’t make the device:

An Army Ordnance disposal team destroyed a homemade explosive device Friday morning along a busy on-ramp to U.S. Highway 12 just north of Yakima.

The device was described as a plastic beverage bottle with shotgun-shell powder inside. The bottle was wrapped with electrical tape and a metal chain.

While I’m sure with enough shotgun shell powder such a device would be “interesting” Boomerite is much cheaper per unit of fun.

And if you are going to play with things that go boom don’t put metal near the explosives. The rule we use is that we don’t put anything between the explosives and your body that a surgeon or the medical examiner might have to remove from your body.


5 thoughts on “It wasn’t me

  1. Perhaps I’m just ignorant, as I’m not a reloader…but is shotgun-shell powder different than…say…pistol cartridge powder or rifle cartridge powder? Is there an obvious visible difference that gives it away? I know there are different types of powders and shapes that those different powders are formed into…but is one type or form specific to shotguns? And is the difference obvious by looking?

    The identification of the substance as “shotgun-shell” powder just struck me as odd.

  2. Many shotgun powders can be used in a pistol.

    Pistols and shotgun powders are frequently thin disks or very small spheres. Rifle powders are frequently cylinders or spheres larger than that used for pistol and shotgun powders.

  3. That’s a good question. My first thought was that they had some information suggesting that the powder had been extracted from shot shells. Othwewise it would be hard to tell, as Joe says, unless someone very savy in the powder world had identified a specific brand and type, such as “Clay Dot”. There are plenty of published loads for pistols that use the same powders often used in shotgun shells, and powder makers list several popular pistol powders under shot shell powders.

  4. The common Alliant powders used in shotgun shells have identifying color dots mixed in with the powder. The powder is in the form of flat round flakes and the color dots are the same size and shape. Pink dots are found in Red Dot, Blue dots in Blue Dot, etc. Pretty easy to identify.
    And yes, the common shotgun powders are often used in reloading pistol cartridges- I use Red Dot for my .45 ACP and Blue Dot for the magnum calibers. It reduces the types of powders I have sitting on my reloading bench, always a good thing the way my organizational skills (don’t) operate.


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