Tannerite® is a binary explosive used primarily as a target for firearms practice. Tannerite is unique in that it is exceptionally stable when subjected to less severe forces such as a hammer blow or being dropped. It is more than 1000 times safer than ordinary black powder since it is not flammable and can not be initiated by any kind of flame or electricity. It is supplied as two powders which are combined to produce the explosive. Tannerite is a trademarked name, and binary exploding targets are a patented invention by Daniel J. Tanner/Oregon.
Tannerite® Company recommends using 0.5-pound (0.23 kg) preparations of the substance, which should detonate when shot by a high-powered rifle. Small caliber rim-fire or slow moving pistol ammunition will not initiate a detonation.
Tannerite® detonations occur at a very high velocity, producing a large explosion and cloud of water vapor. It may be useful for persons who are firing at long ranges; in this scenario, a long-range rifle shooter places targets downrange, retreats to his firing position, and fires. The shooter does not have to walk down range to see if he has a hit, the Tannerite® will detonate and serve as an indicator.
Since the two components are not explosive until mixed, they can legally be purchased in the USA without a license. They can be legally used for sporting purposes in conjunction with small arms, just like black powder and other exempt sporting powder.
The federal government, not the state, governs the manufacture of explosives. They specifically exempt the need for an explosives manufacturing license in five separate statutes. In the CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) Publication 5400. Q&A section, question #48 expressly addresses that a license that a license is not needed for personal, non-commercial manufacture and use of binary explosives. (Click here for link)
Got Questions? Tannerite® offers an array of Frequent Questions (and Answers) in response to inquiries about our products and the policies that surround them. Feel free to bookmark the following list for future reference and watch for updates:
Can you make Tannerite® charges smaller or larger?
Yes you can. To make smaller targets, you can simply mix a 1/2 pound target and pour the contents into a container of your choice. It’s best if the container is not brittle, but just about any container will work. Marksmen have good luck using Chew/snuff cans as target canisters. A really good idea when shooting either small targets, or when shooting at very long ranges, is to wrap the target in Duck-Tape. This prevents a spill or leak if the bullet strikes a little low and ricochets into the charge, or is a fringe hit, or hits the lid on the target. To make larger targets, simply tape one on top of the other and by hitting one, it will initiate them both…thus making a much louder target. Common sense and local noise regulations dictate how much you can use without getting cited for disturbing the peace.
How many spoons of catalyst do I mix into a target?
1 LEVEL teaspoon/5cc (one scoop) per 1/2 pound target. If you use too much catalyst, it will be “Fuel-rich”, not unlike a carburetor that is oxygen-lean, and you will get a sluggish explosion or none at all. For one pound targets, you have two options. You can simply double the amount of catalyst (two scoops/teaspoons per pound). Just don’t more catalyst than is recommended.
What if I am approached by an authority and questioned about my targets?
Be honest. Show them your Tannerite®, explain what you are doing, and if they have further questions, offer them our phone number and website. We have been educating LEOs on Tannerite® for many years. If you are doing something stupid though (like strapping targets to trees or otherwise destroying property on public lands) we will not support you. Tannerite® is sold as a shot-indicator for long range shooting. If you get nailed for blowing up a computer and leaving trash on public property like so many idiots on You-tube, you are on your own. If you are told to stop shooting because others are complaining about the noise, then stop. Do not be as ass and taunt the bull.
How could something so fun, be legal everywhere?
Answer: Because Tannerite® falls under the same laws as black powder and all other explosives that are exempt for sporting use. Refer to the link in the previous paragraph for more hard information on all binary explosives manufacture and use. Remember though, just because it’s a legal product if used as prescribed, does not mean that you can use it in any manner you wish. Not unlike firearms, you can legally shoot them, but there are places where it is forbidden. It is up to the end-user to obtain local authority permission before using our product unless it’s on private property. Even then, if you live close to others it’s best to contact them and explain what you are doing…the same as you should do if you set out to cap off your bowling ball cannon or shoot your 5o caliber rifle.