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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Up in smoke! » » Low burning temp (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

scaress
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salt lake city
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hi,
I've heard of some type of fluid that burns at a low temperature. a friend of a friend told me that fire dancers can light body parts on fire for longer periods then with alcohol.

the Swami/Mantra book has a formula to make your own, but I don't know where to buy the chemicals.

anyone know where I can buy this product? or any ideas for further research? google isn't helping.
Destiny
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Inner circle
1429 Posts

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Hi Scaress - I don't think the forum allows discussion of fuels - because of all the injuries over the years.

Not sure I have a body part I'd be willing to sacrifice to an experiment on what fuel burnt the longest and safest. I rather like both my arms.

Like many others, I do 'fakir' on arms, legs, tongue and sometimes cheeks of my face with the regular fuels and find that plenty effective - a lick of flame across the skin - and then wipe it away.

As a younger Fire Eater I went on wild goose chases for many mystical and mythical effects related by 'friends of friends'.

The ever elusive search for the 'cold flame'.
Destiny
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I would recommend you read Bill Palmers sticky bun topic on chemicals and fuels.
Plenty of people try this game but few last as long as him. The ones who do are obviously not only very good entertainers, but behind that - very educated in their craft. Their advice is priceless - even when it's not what we want to hear - maybe moreso then.
scaress
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salt lake city
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Wow, you really do your face?
(glad you specified, I was wondering)
Destiny
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I wondered if I needed to be that specific for about a moment...

I do the face but I'm wearing a ton of make-up - I use use old sticks for that and leave a bit of soot behind - wipes off the make-up afterwards very easily - but adds to the authenticity of the fire on stage - (gotta love it - using BS to prove the danger of what is actually a real danger)

My main danger is not my skin but plastic hair full of hair lacquer. I throw my head right back - fortunately heat rises - haven't lost a wig yet in 31 years of self imolation.
CasualSoul
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Edmonton, Canada
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I think the product you are looking for is called Cold Fire, not the fire suppressant version but an actual fuel, but I don't know where to find it. Google didn't seem to help when I searched for it. I also have no idea how safe it really is.

Personally I use Zel Gel, as that's what the professional stunt people in Hollywood use. You can only buy it in bulk and I recommend you get the Zel Fuel as well as they work perfectly together. Get the safety manual as well. I use it to light one of my hands on fire to end a fire magic routine. Although it is, imho, the perfect solution, the whole set-up is expensive and a little messy to use. The upside is that it's a true reputation maker. Here's a link:
http://www.zeller-int.com/categories/fireret-01.htm
"Open their mind by performing the impossible"
scaress
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salt lake city
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CasualSoul you're my hero!!!!

if you're ever in SLC I'll buy you a coke!
CasualSoul
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Edmonton, Canada
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Smile

Glad to be of service. I'll take you up on that if I ever make it out that way. Smile
"Open their mind by performing the impossible"
gsidhe
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Michigan
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I am afraid that there is no such thing as cold fire. There are things that burn at lower temperatures, but fire is fire. If it's burning, it can burn you.
Boiling water is never more than 212 degrees. It can burn you.
I can't think of any chemical that ignites at less than 400 degrees. Changing the fuels used is only going to change the amount of time you can hold the flame by fractions of a second. Rather insignificent.
As for the gel...I don't know anything about it. Personally, I'd never use it.
I think that props like this are dangerous. They bring about a comfort level with the fire that I find unhealthy. If something hurts a bit, you respect it, are more careful with it. If you can't feel it, it becomes more inconsequential, and mistakes are more likely to happen.
The last thing we need is for people to become complacent with fire.
And really, which is more impressive? A goo coated hand set on fire, or simple flesh?
Eew. Goo.
Guess what I am trying to say is...Just learn to do it the traditional way, or at least learn the traditional way first. From a professional teacher. Get a couple of scars, get some respect for the element, then play around with gels and such.

Forgive me if I came accross a little harsh...It is really annoying when folks after a show are walking about talking about how it must have been cold fire because there is no way someone could hold real "hot" fire that long on their skin. It is a myth I have become rather passionate about dispelling.
Gwyd
CasualSoul
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Edmonton, Canada
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I first heard about the whole "Cold Fire" thing reading a Café thread:
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......;forum=5

A magic store merchant I know also said he was working on getting some in. Maybe he was pulling my leg Smile I can be very gullible sometimes.

I agree that it is dangerous to get complacent with fire, but I really enjoy using Zel Gel and have never had a problem and the gel has never been detected by my audience (although I only use it in low light environments). The manual you can get for it is also invaluable as it covers many tips, application ideas, and critical safety issues. As I said before though, the whole set-up is expensive, a little messy, and is really geared toward the serious professional (which I am not btw; I'm just a fanatically obsessed magic hobbyist with the time and the means Smile).
"Open their mind by performing the impossible"
Destiny
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I have to agree with Gwyd - I've been told by 'clever' audience members for 30 years that I was using a 'cold' flame. I've had occasional vengeful fantasies of holding them down and letting them feel the 'cold', but basically given up arguing.

I remember about 15 years ago getting excited about the wonder gel that movie stuntspeople used to protect themselves from fire. Besides being very expensive and not commercially available in Australia I could not see how it could fit in my act.

What do you do after setting a hand alight - perhaps don a fullbody firesuit and run across the stage blazing - each to their own, but to me that is not a fire show - that is a stunt.

On movie sets these things are used in very controlled environments - and take advantage of film editing - neither of which we can do in live performance.

There's lots of old tricks that can be incorporated in a modern act which will look totally new because noone has done them in years.

In a reprint of a early 1900's carny book I discovered the secrets of spoonfeeding yourself from a bowl of flame and blowing sparks as opposed to flame - those old blokes knew what they were doing.
gsidhe
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Michigan
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I'm not totally knocking the use of gel. I just don't think it is necessary and a lot of people I know that have played with it got literally burned.
One lit their hand, thought they had put the flames out (They didn't) and because they couldn't feel it lit themselves on fire.
There is a reason why we feel heat. Keeps us from getting burned.
The gel is used (As pointed out by Destiny) mainly in a setting with guys with fire extinguishers and a medic on site. Most of us don't have the luxury of having an EMT ready and waiting (Although anyone using fire in an act should have a trained spotter with an extinguisher and wet COTTON towels watching their act like a hawk- I started in fire performance as a spotter), so the best recouse (In my opinion) is to learn to do without aids.
I have read the thread about coldfire, and the only properties of such a chemical that I can think of that would be useful would be a fast evaporation rate which would cool the skin minutely while burning. But with a high evaporation rate, it is going to burn through the fuel quickly, and start working on your skin.
By all means, use the gel (And good choice getting their manual as well) if it is something you have studied and are comfortable with. Just remember to do a really good visual check before assuming that the fire is out.
And always...I reccommend a good teacher.
Gwyd
Figurehead
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I had this book By John Lippy called "Chemical Magic". It had some things in it that by today's standards are just plain dangerous and/or stupid to try. One of the things it said you could do was "Whet a piece of brimstone with gasoline, ignite, place in the mouth and exhale to produce a shower of sparks and flames from the mouth". Um..... no thank you. I can't remember but it also may have had a "recipe" for some sort of "low temp" fire liquid, but I'm not sure. Either way, I wouldn't believe it or try to make anything in this book. Not only are the ingredients dangerous, but some are actualy illegal to obtain today.
Destiny
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Hi Figurehead,

Yiu must have missed in my post where I mentioned it was an early 1900's publication. From memory the Lippy book came out in the 1980's.

I assure you the technique I'm refering to is totally dissimilar to what you describe and did not involve fuels other than those we commonly use in fire eating.

This technique did not involve flame, only sparks.

I don't think it's appropriate to go into detail here, but it was not a particularly dangerous method.
Freak Prodigy
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NYC & LA
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I have actually used this "coldfire" liquid.

It isn't anything special.

It's Orange.
It's an oil.
It smells kind of nice.
It stains.

Pretty much the only thing you can do with it is to soak a cotton ball in the stuff, light it on fire and slowly toss it from hand to hand.
It burns from the top ( the fire doesn't envelope the entire ball) so you can leave it on your skin a bit longer.


Who cares??? I don't think it is very impressive and there is absolutly no need for it if you have been taught how to perform with fire properly.



Brett.
Blog:
http://www.bloudermilk.blogspot.com
_________________________________________
E-mail:
BrettELoudermilk@gmail.com
Destiny
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http://youtube.com/watch?v=zLMsrmC0SX4

This is my cabaret fire show about 5 years ago - towards the end you will see two wipes of the face.
scaress
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salt lake city
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But if I can't find cold fire, then I can't wear my Ghost Rider costume for halloween.

plasticdestiny, nice headlights.
gsidhe
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Michigan
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Ghost rider...The reason I took up Fire Meteor (The long chain with the flaming weight on the end)
I'm not a comic book reader, but I love the imagery.
If you look close at my avitar, the fire is on a set of 18" steel claws.
Yaay for pop culture influence!
Gwyd
Sylver Fyre
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Michigan
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Nice video plasticdestiny.

Scaress, if you are worried about your costume alter and change it. It's all part of fire safty. Better to be safe then be charred and burnt.
Sylver Fyre

"Do not warm yourself by the fire, become the flame"
---------------------------------------------
www.knottybitssideshow.com
Add me on Myspace or Facebook! http://www.myspace.com/sylverfyre
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