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Flash Powder

Important Information About Flash Powder

Flash Powder is a combination of an Oxidizer and a Fuel (powdered metal). Sold in two separate bottles, once mixed they are highly explosive. These binary (part A & part B) powders have been a staple in the world of theatrical special effects.

While these items are still available, binary powders (Flash Powders) are no longer sold to the general public due to it being regulated by the federal government. A "Type 19" or "Type 20" BATFE (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) License is required to legally purchase, use, and store these types of explosives.  

"When the binary components are combined, the resulting mixture is an explosive material subject to the regulatory requirements found in 27 CFR, Part 555." - BATFE
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More information on how to obtain the necessary license(s) can be found here.

Besides the BATFE requirements, local or State laws may also apply. Care must be taken to ensure ALL laws are strictly followed as it pertains to these types of products. Contact your State Fire Marshall's Office for more information.

Unfortunately, there are still a couple companies that are selling binary flash powders to the general public, only requiring them to fill out a simple "hold harmless" form. These companies "are subject to Federal recordkeeping requirements and must maintain records of manufacture or acquisition, distribution, exportation, use, inventory and daily summaries of magazine transactions found in 27 CFR, Part 555, Subpart G—Records and Reports."  In other words: they are in violation of this requirement and are selling products to consumers who are unknowingly breaking the law with their use.

Theatre Effects only provides these items to qualified professionals with appropriate State and Federal licenses.

The majority of pyrotechnicians and licensed professionals do not prefer the use of binary flash powders as they can be difficult to work with and do not guarantee consistent results. The overwhelming majority of these professionals prefer to use Professional Stage Pyro.

The use of Pyro is not right for every situation. Federal, State, or Local laws and requirements may inhibit (or downright forbid) the use of any forms of Pyrotechnics. Also, while certain states may allow these types of items to be used, institutions may forbid them for their own reasons. If you would like to create AMAZING Simulated Pyro and Flame Effects, check out our complete line of Simulated Flame Products. 

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