Folks forever believe there is only one kind of cross-match fuse, which is "right." In particular, there are people who think that the legendary Thermolite is the holy grail of cross-match fuses. And there is a peculiar breed of pyro who has been brainwashed that ONLY the crossmatch fuse method they read about in such-and-such a book is right. Well, that isn't necessarily so.
So, when you've run out of now-impossible-to-get Thermolite, here are some possibilities for you, some of which, you may be surprised to read, you can actually purchase at Skylighter.
Quickmatch: the Chinese-made flat quick match fuse often consists of multiple strands of very skinny black match fuse which can double as cross match fuse. Its downside is that itís not very stiff. So you may have to make your time fuse hole a little larger to accommodate this variety of black match fuse. It also cannot be shipped, so you can only get it by coming by and picking it up or getting us to bring it to one of the club shoots we attend. Skylighter product #GN3001.
Cross-Match Visco: This is very thin green colored visco type fuse. It is commonly used as the central fuse to which strings of firecrackers are braided. It is stiff and easy to use. Downside is that it does not take fire as easily as black match fuse. Skylighter product #GN1010.
Paper Firecracker Fuse: This is actually a fairly stiff, paper-covered fuse used in firecrackers and other Chinese fireworks. The stuff that we get is actually two strands. It takes fire well, but not quite as easily as black match fuse and it's reasonably stiff. Skylighter product #GN1200.
Homemade Black Match: Easier to make fuse than most people think. Tom Perigrin's book, Introductory Practical Pyrotechnics, shows you how to make it. Use only pure cotton string, containing no reinforcing synthetics. Can be made fairly stiff.
The bottom line is that there are plenty of alternatives for cross matching. Any of the fuses above are within reach of the average US hobbyist.
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