Sabulite grenade, WW1

I’m doing some research into the New Zealand Tunnelling Company of 1915-1919 – and today came across articles describing tests on a new (in October 1915) type of grenade which used sabulite explosive.

Sabulite would appear to have been made in Auckland at the time, and seems to be a mining explosive now. Can anyone point me in the direction of any books on the subject, any websites (I’ve checked Google, but “sabulite” doesn’t seem to feature much). I’d just like to follow that particular road as far as I can for my research. Thanks if you can help.

Might want to try out these guys. An explosives forum I found when searching on sabulite.

for example…

Belgian Sabulite:

78% ammonium nitrate
8% TNT
14% calcium silicide

That’s a scary MB, Philster! Current URL (they’ve changed from when Google got a shot of their archive page you found) is for Rogue Science. I won’t provide a link. They seem to be mainly in with how they make explosives in their own homes – I noted that they don’t like newcomers posting new topics without reading the FAQs, which is under construction ajnd therefore unreadable.


Thanks, anyway. I thought I might have been onto something when I spotted picric acid - but this explosive was used in bombs and grenades thrown by the Turkish Army during the Gallipoli campaign, while “sabulite”, apparently safer because it wouldn’t explode without a detonator, showered the trench with chunks of metal instead of just splinters. At least I’ve got one chemical combination for make-up – but the history seems to be destined to be vague, at this stage.