By: Spatula Tzar

Spatula & Sickle

One day, I decided to fill a paper tube with some KNO3/sucrose smoke mix. I packed it tightly, plastered the ends, and drilled a nozzle. Little did I know, I had just created a rocket.

35g rocket

I had already experimented with rockets made from roman candle tubes, but I wanted something a bit more powerful. So, I loaded up a 3cm tube with 35 grams of fuel, and gave it three nozzles.


"Three nozzles? What are you crazy?"

Well, yes, partially. I am talking to myself after all. But I made three nozzles (which will henceforth be referred to as the trinozzle) for a very good reason: I felt like it.

Triangular chaos

As you can see, I attempted to drill the trinozzle as centered as possible. As you can see, this did not work. I started by drawing an equilateral triangle in the center of the endplug, but it didn't come out very even. So I scrapped the lines and just drilled the stupid thing. It seemed to work well enough.

The trinozzle also raised an interesting question: how do I light the thing? I don't really feel like wasting three igniters on something that has a good chance of blowing up on the launch pad, so as usual I came up with an ingenious solution. (I am intentionally keeping you in the dark about my solution to force you to read on. It's a literary technique I picked up from Dan Brown.)


I took an ordinary piece of cheap-ass fuse paper extracted from a firecracker, and dipped the ends in my special unpatented blend of nitrocellulose laquer. The ends were quickly coated in my home made low-grade bona fide meal powder, and set out to dry.

Thrice I did this.

More fuses

Now you can see it coming together. The three pieces of fuse are placed in two holes each. For those too lazy to glance over at the picture I so meticulously edited just for your viewing pleasure, this means each hole has two fuse pieces inserted into it, creating double ignition redundancy in the trinozzle.

Spiffy, huh?

Flashy nichrome

Now we get to see some great closeups of my favorite alloy (aside from inconel that is): nichrome. Nichrome is great. It's cheap, heats up nicely, and doesn't oxidize very easily. Beat that, tungsten carbide. You had to resort to a nonmetal.

As I was saying, wrap the nichrome around all three fuses, and attatch your lead wires to it.

More nitrocellulose

Coat the igniter in some more nitrocellulose laquer, and prime it with some more black powder. It is now ready to be launched.

I'll continue this misadventure as soon as I dare to launch it.

~~Spatula Tzar

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