Make Smoke Screens With Saltpeter

Smoke provides great concealment.

Saltpeter, otherwise known as potassium nitrate, is a common ingredient of most fertilizers, propellants and gun powder. This compound was also used heavily by military doctors to treat a variety of conditions such as asthma. Saltpeter is named as such because it was referred to as “Salt of Petra” in medieval times. Saltpeter can also be used to make homemade smoke bombs, for making a smokescreen if playing games such as paintball. Making a smoke bomb from scratch is much more cost effective than buying them from the store.


1. Mix 1- 3/4 cup saltpeter with 1/2 cup of sugar. Pour the mixture into a skillet.

2. Cook the mixture over low heat, stirring frequently. Remove the skillet once the mixture liquifies and turns a caramel color.

3. Shape a piece of aluminum foil into a boat or canoe shape. The bottom of the aluminum foil boat should be as wide as a common candlestick. Pour the liquid into the aluminum foil boat.

4. Set a firecracker fuse into the liquid and ensure that it protrudes at least one inch. Allow the solution to dry for a few hours or until hard.

5. Roll the aluminum foil over the hardened smoke bomb. Poke a few holes into the foil using a fork.

6. Light your smoke bomb and run away when you need the concealment of a smokescreen.

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