Fire Extinguisher System Questions

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Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by gregbenner on 5/17/2017, 3:24 pm

Like many, I reload in my garage, have lots of powder/primers/bullets Evil or Very Mad . I do have a fire extinguisher, but that will only help if I am there if something happens.  Has anyone done any research into some type of a home garage system, which would self actuate in case of fire? Price would, of course, be a consideration. Ideas? Thought?

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/17/2017, 3:54 pm

A interesting thing I seen was a guy put a shelf above his powder that was made so that flames could go up through it.  Then he loaded that shelf with 1gal plastic milk jugs full of water.  The powder we use burns very hot and would melt the jugs dumping the water on the fire.  Will this work I don't know.

I put my powder in the top drawer of a fireproof filing cabinet, but not sure that was a good idea as powder is in a metal enclosure so would this cause a explosion?  

Most reloading safety manuals says don't store primers and powder in the same area.  That I don't do.  I to am looking forward to so ideas you get on this post. Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by LenV on 5/17/2017, 4:36 pm

Not sure you can melt a plastic jug with water in it. I know you can boil water in a paper bag with direct flame on the bag. Interesting experiment to try someday.

Len
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/17/2017, 6:54 pm

LenV wrote:Not sure you can melt a plastic jug with water in it. I know you can boil water in a paper bag with direct flame on the bag. Interesting experiment to try someday.

Len
Have you ever lit off a small pile of powder.  In my much younger days, early 60s,  I loaded thousands of rounds of trap loads and a lot of hunting loads.  If I had a crimp failure I would pull the wad and dump the powder charge into a clay pigeon I had sitting on my reloading bench.  When it would get about half full i would take it out to the driveway and light it off.  Intense fire for sure.  I have a baby food jar on my workbench now with a mix of powder and a milk container so tomorrow I will test this idea.  If you guys don't hear from me after the test you will know something went wrong.  Hey watch this Bubba.  Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/18/2017, 8:22 am

Test ran this morning.  Filled a tuna can half full of mixed powder as that was all the trashed powder I had.  Put the can on a shelf in my smoker and a milk jug of water 3 inches above it and lit the fuse.  Wow intense fire but no melting of the bottom of the jug.  That fire went stright into the bottom of the jug then up and around the jug filling the whole smoker and out the open door.  I don't know who came up with this idea in the article I read but it don't work.  LenV was right.  Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by STEVE SAMELAK on 5/18/2017, 8:43 am

Do you still have your eyebrows?
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/18/2017, 9:00 am

STEVE SAMELAK wrote:Do you still have your eyebrows?
Steve I used a long fuse and stood back plenty far.  Still the heat was intense.  I have burned powder before and knew what to expect.  Sure figured it would put a hurting on that milk jug but I was wrong on this one.  Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by zanemoseley on 5/18/2017, 9:53 am

Are you really concerned with spontaneous combustion of your powder? Primers are much more volatile but even they will need an external influence to be a problem.

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by MarkOue on 5/18/2017, 10:46 am

I store my powder in original containers inside large military ammo cans.
I close the top of the ammo can but do not close it's latch.  Unlatched it should pop open if pressure builds inside allowing the pressure to vent rather the can turning into a grenade.

This isn't perfect but it adds a layer of protection for the powder.  I store primes in the same type ammo cans.

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by LenV on 5/18/2017, 11:05 am

I did the best I could with what I had. Fire resistant safes and had a big sign made for my back window. I couldn't find one made the way I wanted. Sign warns of ammo and reloading materials. I don't want any fireman getting hurt. I would rather let it burn before I see anyone get hurt. I also have ADT security with smoke and motion alarms but that won't stop a fire. Just lets you know when its time to didi mau.
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/18/2017, 11:22 am

zanemoseley wrote:Are you really concerned with spontaneous combustion of your powder? Primers are much more volatile but even they will need an external influence to be a problem.
No the concern is if your house catches fire the 30 or 40 pounds of powder is going to burn real hot and the fireman are not going to be real happy when it starts to burn.  Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by gregbenner on 5/18/2017, 11:44 am

Damn, this is funny:face:  Don, your idea definitely fit one of my parameters, cost.  However, i will admit I was thinking of something a bit more "high tech" (lol). My bother in law is a recently retired Fire Department Captain, and will be visiting from Prescott next month.  Hoping he may be able to help.

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/18/2017, 2:28 pm

gregbenner wrote:Damn, this is funny:face:  Don, your idea definitely fit one of my parameters, cost.  However, i will admit I was thinking of something a bit more "high tech" (lol). My bother in law is a recently retired Fire Department Captain, and will be visiting from Prescott next month.  Hoping he may be able to help.
I just got my new Liberty gun safe Tuesday and looking in the catalog that comes with it they have a ammo safe.  They show storing powder on the top shelf.  It is not a fire proof safe they say but has a inch of fire board all the way around the inside.

Hey you could mount a Halon system like you can get for a inboard marine engine compartment that would activate it's self.
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by LenV on 5/18/2017, 4:10 pm

I use Halon in a marine vessel. Pretty important to be able to shut off all air sources. I suppose the high tech way of doing it would be the ability to monitor the room and have system close off all air and activate halon. By calling it in, activate automatically or have "Alexa" do it for you. My son has his house 100% programed.  I am sure he could program a suppression system. Oh, and phone fire department at the same time. The nice thing about Halon is that all you have to do is air out the room and nothing is damaged and no clean up. The bad thing is you can't breath it and live. Not poisonous, just displaces the oxygen.

I use one like this. 273.99 plus freight

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Fireboy-CG20100227-Automatic-Discharge-Fire-Extinguisher-System-100-cubic-feet-/272559959517?hash=item3f75d6eddd:g:K8oAAOSwWTRWwX7B&vxp=mtr
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Virgil Kane on 5/18/2017, 6:20 pm

You guys can still get Halon?

It's banned here.  I use to have it in my business because of all  the electronic equipment I had.  Gosh it's got to be at least 20 years since I could get it.

And a question.  Does smokeless powder need oxygen? I though it created it's own fuel source once lit but then I failed HS chemistry. LOL


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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by LenV on 5/18/2017, 6:23 pm

They are not calling it Halon.

HFC-227ea
https://www.chemours.com/FE/en_US/assets/downloads/pdf_fm/k23261_FM-200_PUSH.pdf
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/18/2017, 6:27 pm

The electronics shop next to the cal lab I worked in on the aircraft carrier had a Halon system to flood the whole shop.  When the alarm went off you best move your fanny fast.  Ya Virgil that was 30+ years ago.  Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by sharkdoctor on 5/18/2017, 7:01 pm

And recall that smokeless powder burns in a confined environment.  Eliminating oxygen via halon will have minimal effect.

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by LenV on 5/18/2017, 7:11 pm

I suppose it depends on where the fire starts. Sure if the powder goes off first then I can't imagine anything that would help. But if the fire started in almost any other spot it could be a real room/home saver.
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by gregbenner on 5/19/2017, 11:42 am

LenV wrote:They are not calling it Halon.

HFC-227ea
https://www.chemours.com/FE/en_US/assets/downloads/pdf_fm/k23261_FM-200_PUSH.pdf

I like this stuff!  Will check into it more.

Thv

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by CR10X on 5/19/2017, 1:05 pm

Please do not store your smokeless powder in closed and sealed container like an ammo can.  The powders are called "progressive" for a reason.   Most powder storage cabinets are required to have a vent and they let the powder burn at atmospheric pressure.  Yea, it will burn fast and hot.  But you really don't want to see what happens with the other storage method mentioned.  And the weak link for an ammo can is the hinge side and the lids can travel a good ways....

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/19/2017, 1:15 pm

CR10X wrote:Please do not store your smokeless powder in closed and sealed container like an ammo can.  The powders are called "progressive" for a reason.   Most powder storage cabinets are required to have a vent and they let the powder burn at atmospheric pressure.  Yea, it will burn fast and hot.  But you really don't want to see what happens with the other storage method mentioned.  And the weak link for an ammo can is the hinge side and the lids can travel a good ways....

That is what I was thinking after I put my powder in the fire proof filing cabinet after I took mt handguns out and put them in the new safe.  I guess the powder is going back into the wooden storage cabinet it has been it for over two years.  I felt that it being a fire proof filing cabinet that would protest important papers the powder would be safe.  Going to have to rethink this.  Don
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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by bdas on 5/19/2017, 5:15 pm

Here's a link to some useful information from Alliant about smokeless powder, including how it burns, and suggestions for safe storage. http://www.alliantpowder.com/getting_started/safety/storage_handling.aspx

Of note for this discussion, the section at the bottom seems to strongly suggest (and in some cases require) using storage cabinets made of wood that is at least 1" thick.

I'm thinking that a cabinet made of wood that has been treated with a wood fireproofing treatment might be a pretty reasonable approach.  Examples of an interior wood fireproofing treatment would be FX LumberGuard  or Master Flame

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Rich/WIS on 5/20/2017, 10:33 pm

Not sure where he got them but the neighbor has  sprinkler heads attached to PVC pipe run through the area in his basement around his furnace.  Will open automatically in case of fire.  Would go with copper or steel to ensure pipe stayed intact if a gas explosion, but is a simple and relatively foolproof method fire suppression.

I store my powder in a wood box with hinged lid, although it is a nominal 1 inch (3/4) as opposed to a full inch of wood.  Excess to my immediate use is in an old electrical cabinet, holes in top where the conduit entered are taped with electrical tape and will easily vent.  Although closed and latched the cabinet is not sturdy enough to hold in any excess pressure.

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Re: Fire Extinguisher System Questions

Post by Magload on 5/21/2017, 8:44 am

Drywall has a fire rating witch depends on its thickness.  When I was running network cabling in schools we had to run cables through it and refix the holes closed with the proper thickness ans then seal with firestop which was a special calk.  I would think one could build a chest with 2 or 3 layers thick with a hinged and not latched top.  Drywall is a lot cheaper then plywood anyway.  You could hold the door tightly closed with magnets which would releases under pressure.  Don
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