Set Myself on Fire Lolz

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John Hasler
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by John Hasler » Sun Sep 17, 2017 9:59 am

> The safety trick was throwing the gas out over the fire.

Very dangerous. One slip and half the bucket ends up on you while the rest still goes on the already burning fire.

Harold_V
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by Harold_V » Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:45 pm

John Hasler wrote:> The safety trick was throwing the gas out over the fire.

Very dangerous. One slip and half the bucket ends up on you while the rest still goes on the already burning fire.
Absolutely! That's one of the stupidest things I've read in print of late. Throwing gasoline on a burning fire, regardless of the method, isn't a good idea, for reasons already presented.

I did something when I was a young person that was a very valuable learning experience.

I had started working at Sperry Utah Engineering Laboratories, in Salt Lake City (now known as L2). A generous proportion of the castings used in the missile were made of magnesium, so I took small packets of chips home with me with the idea of watching them burn some fine day. It was a cold late fall night when I emptied the packages on the ground, and set a match to them. I had been told that adding water to a magnesium fire would accelerate burning, but I had no clue how that would work. When the pile was burning with attitude, I tossed some water on. Might just as well have been gasoline. There was an instant flash, with the pile erupting in violent flame. Now I understand why extinguishers for magnesium fires are made of a black sand-like product.

Don't use gasoline for starting fires. Not any. Do it enough times and your number will come up.

H
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BadDog
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by BadDog » Sun Sep 17, 2017 6:12 pm

Wow, sounds like all the makings of a manually actuated Fuel Air Bomb. In my book, that would be much worse than just pouring on and lighting.

I can't imagine anything but disaster ensuing, but I wonder if the reason it may have worked without catastrophe is that the fuel was soured 2 cycle and not straight gas (even soured)? Never tried to light that stuff outside the engine of a stubborn chain saw or dirt bike that sat too long, but I wonder if that might have made it behave more like diesel?

And another guess based on second hand information, but I'm not sure "extinguisher" is the right word for a Mag fire. Maybe more like "retarder"? From what I think I recall, it's almost impossible to stop in an open environment once started.
Russ
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stephenc
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by stephenc » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:50 pm

From the age of 16 till I was about 28 and the realities of being a financially solvent adult kicked in I was enamored with drag racing .

I witnessed an event that was a prime example of why a person doesn't use a volatile fuel source all Willy nilly .

One November afternoon I was at a friends house cutting firewood and he decided to burn a brush pile that had been piled for a few weeks .
The fuel he decided to use was a 5 gallon can of methonal. After the event I asked him why the methonal

His answer was .... it seemed like a pretty safe idea , everything was soaking wet with two inches of wet snow .
I was going to leave a long trail of fuel for a wick and hide behind the tree .

He didn't get to the leaving a long trail part . I didn't see what happened but I felt the heat from the fireball from about 100 feet away .

What he said happened was ,... I had just finished soaking the pile with fuel . And I still had about a gallon or so left in the can . I was going to pour the wick when I kicked an old bale of hay that was under the brush ... and the next thing I know the world caught on fire .

He was pretty lucky .. He got off with flash burns on all his exposed skin.. including eye lids . And he lost all of his body hair .
He was lucky the fuel in the can didn't ignite .
He was lucky he blinked and didn't blind himself .
He was lucky he was exhaling and not inhaling .
He was lucky it was a wet snowing day and he was able to stop drop and roll in the wet snow because every inch of his clothing was on fire .

It seemed pretty safe .. except for that old wet bale of hay .
Wet hay bales will spontaneously combust , all we could figure was his kicking the bale open exposed it to air and it was hot enough to ignite setting off the methonal.

I haven't used gas as a fire starter since

John Hasler
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by John Hasler » Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:22 pm

Russ writes:
> I can't imagine anything but disaster ensuing, but I wonder if the reason it may have worked without catastrophe is that the fuel was soured 2 cycle
> and not straight gas (even soured)?

He got away with it because it takes time for enough gasoline to evaporate to form a large volume of explosive mixture. That can't happen when there is a flame already present. There are lots of ways for it to go wrong, though. For example, you throw a bucketfull that all happens to land on part of the pile not on fire yet. It then sits there evaporating for a while, and then the fire reaches it. Or, as I said, you fumble the bucket and dump half of it on yourself (or someone else).

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SteveHGraham
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by SteveHGraham » Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:29 pm

I can help with this. If you really want to fry in a fireball, you need to pour the gas on a big object with lots of surface area, walk back to your golf cart to give the fumes time to develop, and then come back and light it.
Every hard-fried egg began life sunny-side up.

Harold_V
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by Harold_V » Mon Sep 18, 2017 1:39 am

SteveHGraham wrote:I can help with this. If you really want to fry in a fireball, you need to pour the gas on a big object with lots of surface area, walk back to your golf cart to give the fumes time to develop, and then come back and light it.
One may not have to "come back to light it". Just create a spark. That's the problem with gasoline---the fumes evolve and travel quickly and readily ignite. You don't get that with Stoddard solvent and oils.

The methanol experience is a horrifying story. Much like gasoline.

H
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neanderman
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by neanderman » Mon Sep 18, 2017 2:17 am

Dad occasionally used gasoline to ignite various things. When doing so, he always stood a practical distance away and threw a match or other source of ignition toward the material.

He was also VERY emphatic that you NEVER add a combustible liquid to somethIng that is already burning/smoldering/glowing/hot; for example, squirting charcoal lighter fluid in embers -- the flame can run right up the stream of liquid, into the can...
Ed

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SteveM
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by SteveM » Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:21 am

I remember cleaning bike parts in my dad's basement with gasoline.

I got a good talking to that day.

The weed burner torch is a good idea. When I burn weeds off the driveway, I have to be careful to not melt the asphalt.

Steve

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SteveHGraham
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by SteveHGraham » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:56 am

Harold_V wrote:One may not have to "come back to light it". Just create a spark. That's the problem with gasoline---the fumes evolve and travel quickly and readily ignite. You don't get that with Stoddard solvent and oils.
Harold, please. An expert is talking here. If people want to set themselves on fire correctly, they should leave nothing to chance.
Every hard-fried egg began life sunny-side up.

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warmstrong1955
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by warmstrong1955 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:29 am

Steve Graham burning brush:
Steve.png
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SteveHGraham
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Re: Set Myself on Fire Lolz

Post by SteveHGraham » Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:51 am

I'm more ripped than that.
Every hard-fried egg began life sunny-side up.

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