Friday, December 9, 2016

Making Your Own Pepper Spray

Go with me back to a time in Reagan’s America. Being in the military during the Reagan administration was a joy. This country had a big budget for military and we could do our job and do it well.
My job in the military was not law enforcement or security. But I was a gun nut. I was on a mobility team and we played games and trained all year long. I had to qualify with an M16A2
Rifle twice a year. Since I was qualified with the sidearm (the Smith and Wesson M13 and the Beretta M9) and the M60E3 machine Gun, I had to qualify with these too. I lived across the street from the guy who ran combat arms training and maintenance and he called me every time they were doing some unusual training or shooting something different. I was also tasked to keep track of, schedule, and perform weapon qualifications for my mobility team. So I just told the police guys, qualify me as an instructor. My commander approved it and I went through the school. When they needed some help with training big classes and other things, they called me. It was great! It got me out of my regular job and I was doing something I loved!
In the process I was trained in the use of a defensive baton, and pepper spray. During the pepper spray training they required everyone to be sprayed with the spray. So naturally, a bunch of young guys with short haircuts, we turned it into a competition. After you were sprayed they had an eyewash full of milk there for you to stop the burn. We timed from the moment you were sprayed to when you hit the eyewash. Bragging rights were at stake. I went a full 68 seconds and came in 2nd. To this day every time I see pepper spray I cringe a little. It is painful.

Pepper Spray as the most commonly used form of nonlethal self-defense. It is readily available. In the event of an economic collapse or other unknown situation where you can no longer purchase pepper spray, you may come upon a situation where the firearm is not needed, conserve ammo, keep animals and pests away from plants or you just don't like guns. You may have to make it yourself. Please note: Making your own pepper spray involves risk of injury so don't accidentally spray yourself and use caution. If you have breathing difficulties have someone else make it for you or make it in a well ventilated area.

Caution: This is dangerous

Let's begin: It's as simple as stocking up on dried pepper/chili or growing your own and a delivery system. You can make it to carry on your person or make a wide dispersal device for groups. You can buy them at any do-it-yourself store, nursery, garden center as or on Amazon and do a search for any of the following peppers/chili. Selecting the Pepper/Chili: The following are types of peppers/chili recommended and the rating heat index of each pepper/chili: The Scoville Heat Unit is the rating or "hotness of peppers" that measures on a scale of mildest to hottest. I am going with the hottest and easiest to acquire. The lowest heat index recommended is the Red Cayenne pepper at 30,000 SHU to 60,000 SHU. The middle heat index is the Thai or Thai Bird Chili at 50,000 SHU to 150,000 SHU. At the top of the are the Scotch Bonnet chili and the Habanero chili at 100,000 SHU to 350,000 SHU, the Red Savina Habanero at 350,000 SHU to650,000 SHU and the Ghost Pepper or Naga Jolokia Pepper which is considered the hottest at 800,000 to 1,500,000 SHU. The 10% Capsaicin pepper spray issued to LE can vary from 2,000,000 SHU to 6,000,000 SHU compared to store-bought pepper spray containing 2% to 10% Capsaicin vary from 500,000 SHU to 2,000,000 SHU.

Delivery System: Homemade delivery systems can be as effective although you may not get the same results as the LE brands. I'm showing you how to make up for it. Delivery systems are as simple as a one to three ounce spray canister you get in the travel section for toiletries and up to 32 ounce spray bottles reminiscent of the glass cleaner bottles where you squeeze the trigger in a spray mist or stream. You can also make a delivery system with Garden handpump pressure sprayers as well as the one to four gallon hand pump pressure sprayers used for gardening, pest control and weed control. Of course the larger the container the more pepper/chili you will need.

The Process:
Step 1. Container preparation. Inspect your spray bottle or pressure sprayer for leaks by filling it with water. If the device leaks when tilted, lying on its side or after excessive spraying then choose another container. You don't want it dripping or leaking in your pack, vehicle, purse or hand. We will be making enough for a pint of pepper spray.

Step 2. What you need.
Six peppers or chili's, the hotter the chili or pepper the better. You can use more pepper/chili if you like to get it as potent as possible.
Garlic, two medium or one large-sized bulb or two table spoons of minced in a jar or powdered if you don't have it (the odor repels some bugs and people)
A method of drying the pepper/chili (dehydrator, stove, solar oven or sundried)
Rubber gloves (to handle the pepper and oils) Safety glasses (to keep it out of your eyes)
N95 mask or other respirator (prevent inhalation especially if you are sensitive)
Vegetable chopper or knife and cutting board to break it down.
Blender, grinder or coffee grinder (crush the pepper/chili and garlic)
Two sealable containers (I used a 32 oz. sports drink bottle and a16.9or 20oz. bottle)
Strainer or cheese cloth (to remove the pits and seeds that will block the
flow to spray)
Funnel (allows it to flow in the container saving as much as possible and
prevent a mess)
A well sealed container for storing unused pepper spray. Keep it in a cool place or fridge. Vinegar or Ispropyl Rubbing Alcohol (this is used as the delivery system and it keeps the pepper and Capsaicin in tact longer than water would as well as already contains an irritant to the senses)
Baby oil or mineral oil (this is used to latch on to the body or clothes) NOTE: If you are using this around plants, trees and vegetables to fend off pests and animals or don't have it, you can substitute the vinegar, alcohol and baby oil with water. If you are running low on vinegar or alcohol you can add water to make up the difference in measurements.

Step 3. Preparing the pepper/chili. I am giving instructions for those with and without a blender or grinder. Dry the peppers/chili by means of a dehydrator, sun-dried, solar oven or set in the oven at a low temp.
a. Place the peppers/chili in the blender.
b. Cut, chop or grind the peppers/chili as fine as possible then place in abowl.
a. Place the garlic bulb or bulbs in the blender.
b. Mince, chop or grind the garlic and place in the bowl.
a. Two table spoons of baby or mineral oil into the blender.
b. Two table spoons of baby or mineral oil into the bowl.
a. Add twelve ounces of alcohol or vinegar into the blender. Blend on high for two to three
minutes until purged.
b. Add twelve ounces of vinegar or alcohol and mash and grind until it's as close to being smooth as possible. You can slowly add the alcohol or white vinegar as you blend it to avoid splashing. Pour it into the larger bottle with a funnel to let it sit overnight in a cool place to react and increase the effectiveness of the solution. When ready get your funnel, strainer or cheese cloth and water bottle. Place the funnel in the smaller 16.9 oz. to 20 oz. water bottle then place the strainer or cheese cloth over the funnel. Pour the pepper/chili mixture into the water bottle using a funnel and strainer. Any leftover remnants from the strainer can be used in the garden or trash area to keep pests and animals away. You now have pepper spray and can store it in the refrigerator or a cool place and it's ready to pour in your sprayers at any time. Since it is sitting in vinegar or alcohol it should last anywhere from a month to three months. I sprayed an opossum in my trash can with a garden pressure sprayer and he darted out of there. I haven't seen him in two weeks. I used a solution around my garden and the neighbor's dog won't go near the fence.

Step 4. Cleaning the container and blender/grinder after use. A solution of bleach and water will counter the oils left behind in the container. Mineral Oil and soap and hot water can be used to clean out the blender or grinder. Use caution when cleaning the containers by wearing safety glasses and gloves. NOTE: You can make pepper spray with powdered/ground pepper instead of home-grown or store bought dried peppers/chili but the intent is to get the maximum use of the pepper/chili and garlic. If you do store Cayenne or hotter pepper/chili powder here are the instructions: Take eight tablespoons of Cayenne pepper or four table spoons of habanero pepper and pour it into a 32 ounce or 1L bottle Take two tablespoons of powdered or minced jars garlic and pour it into a 32ounce or 1L bottle. Add two table spoons of baby or mineral oil and pour it into a 32 ounce or1L bottle. Add 14 ounces of alcohol, vinegar or water and pour it into a 32 ounce or 1Lbottle. Shake bottle well and let it sit overnight in a cool place to react and increase the effectiveness of the solution. With a funnel and cheese cloth or towel you can pour it into the 16.9 oz. to20 oz. water bottle and you are ready to store or place it in your dispenser.

A second recipe.

Required: hot red pepper powder (I use Schwartz’s Cayenne Chilli Pepper Powder); surgical spirit (aka rubbing alcohol); baby oil; 2 small glasses (one with a lid); coffee filter paper, or muslin, or something like that; a funnel; a spray bottle.

1.Put 2 tablespoons of pepper powder into a small glass.
2. Add enough surgical spirit to completely submerge the pepper powder to a depth of 1 cm or so.
3. Give it a good stir. You want to dissolve as much pepper powder as possible, though a certain amount will remain undissolved even after 15 minutes of stirring.
4. Add 10 drops or so of baby oil.
5. Put the lid on the glass and shake well.
6. put the muslin/filter paper in the funnel, then use this to filter the mixture as you pour it into the second small glass. This will filter out the undissolved pepper powder – you don’t want it clogging up the spray bottle in your hour of need! Pour it slowly. Once it’s all been filtered, discard the filter and the waste powder.
7. Transfer liquid to your spray bottle. Obviously you can’t use a pressurized can as these can’t be opened and re-used. But some products, like Body Shop lotions and antibacterial hand washes, come in spray bottles that use a pump system to spray out their contents and can be opened and refilled. These spray bottles do not contain a propellant under pressure, so you can’t deliver a long, continuous spray – but believe me, with this stuff you won’t need to.
Now, I was pretty leery about putting too much faith in a recipe I found online. I could see from the list of ingredients that the spray was unlikely to blind or cause permanent damage to a target. But I didn’t much like the idea of spraying this stuff into an attacker’s eyes just for him to laugh at me before pounding my face into the ground. So I knew I had to test the stuff. And the only ethical way of doing this was to test it on myself.
First of all I dabbed some on my lips and the skin on my face. That didn’t do much at all. So then I sprayed a little into one of my eyes.
I was prepared, and it really was only a little spray: but the shock and pain still doubled me up. If I had been blasted in both eyes with a few shots, I would have been blinded and probably knocked off my feet. Yet 15 minutes later I was okay again. (Note: if you get sprayed, it helps a little to wash your eye with milk.)
So there you have it. If you are attacked and happen to have a bottle of this stuff on you, a few sprays to the attacker’s eyes should distract him long enough for you to make good your escape or whatever. But remember: it has to be sprayed into his eyes. Stuff like Mace, CS spray and proper pepper spray will hurt an assailant’s skin. But a pair of sunglasses will probably protect him from the effects of this stuff. So this isn’t some magic potion or Touch Of Death. Keep its limitations in mind.

Also, know the laws where you live. You must be careful making stuff like this, it should not be played with. It is dangerous and can possibly injury eyes. This is for informational purposes only. If you really want a decent pepper spray I recommend Sabre products. Anything else may perform poorly. Get trained with pepper spray and stay updated with that training. There are inert sprays out there that you can practice with.

Semper Paratus
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