Analysis of the Boston Bomb

Joe takes a look at the explosion and concludes it may have been a deflagration rather than an explosion. He has more direct experience with this explosives than any other gun bloggers I know, so I’d trust his analysis. Reports coming out in the media about it being a gunpowder bomb fit with what Joe has said. I don’t want to even think about the new restrictions on civil liberties the powers that be will dream up in response to this one.

17 thoughts on “Analysis of the Boston Bomb”

  1. From my experience in the Re-enacting Community and the Flame/Smoke and Sound on some of the Videos, I’m agreeing with Joe, but I’m thinking there was a lot of Blackpowder/Pyrodex used in those IEDs.

    Which will probably result in Obama issuing an Imperial Decree Banning Reloading Powder.

  2. My understanding is that black powder is an explosive even without being contained, while smokeless powder will only explode when contained. In either case, both can only produce a low order explosion. And from what I understand, even a high explosive such as ANFO or Peroxide can conflagrate rather than detonate depending on the method used to set them off.

    1. Black powder and smokeless powder will only explode if contained. I have a misspent youth that involved may tests of this statement prior to them being against federal law.

  3. Oh, and Obama doesn’t have to ban reloading powder. The stuff is impossible to find anyway!

  4. I think banning or limiting access to powder (black or smokeless) would be counterproductive to the anti-freedom cause at this point; just another way to fire up the pro-freedom side. Doesn’t mean they won’t do it, but it would graphically demonstrate the need to speak up before they chose for whoever’s next.

  5. Purchase/Use of Black Powder already requires an LEUP from the BATFE with an exception granted for being for sporting, recreational or cultural purposes in antique firearms.

    1. And the exception being for small quantities (typically 5 pounds or less). State level restrictions on smokeless powder vary because it isn’t considered an explosive.

    1. Another person, who was a Vet who served in Iraq, said it smelled like cordite…..don’t know if that is similar to sulpher.

      1. “it smelled like cordite”

        Has cordite even been used for anything for like 60 years? Or maybe for loading ammunition for double rifles regulated for it?

        Of course, people still use “cordite” as a generic term for any nitrocellulose based propellant, but in most contexts, I take the use of the word as an indicator that the person speaking doesn’t know much about what they’re talking about.

  6. Fox is reporting it was likely a home-made explosive with ingredients that could have been available from a home center or even a grocery store and it was likely in a pressure cooker type pot.
    It seems to be similar to other terrorist attempts, like the Christmas day bomber.

    I have not heard one mention of any type of gun powder use

    Take that for what its worth.

    They are still leaning to a person with Saudi ties rather than “right wing” at least.

  7. I did some quick math based on stills captured from the videos.

    see the blog for details but the bottom line is: Low explosive, probably black powder or equivalent in a poorly contained pipe-bomb type vessel (pressure cooker seems unlikely, it’s really too big for this) with an effective blast radius of about 15 feet, and massively too much fuel for the container resulting in external combustion for almost a full second after the container ruptures.

  8. I’m not sure its nice to see the comments, but some what comforting that others are picking up on the same things I did.

    But cheers for the blog. I went looking for this information and found more here and in the postings than I did from official sources/media.

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