Important information for users of Pyrodex


Pyrodex – a black powder substitute – has been reclassified. Read the implications below…

Hodgdon Pyrodex is currently classified as UN0499 and UN0501, meaning that its acquisition and possession requires an explosives certificate. It was previously classified under UN0161, which did not require such a certificate.

BASC understands that in the view of some police forces, possession of previously purchased Pyrodex is unlawful without an explosives certificate. BASC’s view is that this is incorrect.

One must assume that the any change in classification is due to a reformulation, possibly because of the shortage of various propellant components, or because of different packaging. 

If, however, the containers of the previous incarnation have a different UN number and are therefore not subject to the higher levels of control. Possession of the older propellant therefore does not require an explosives certificate, provided it is in the original packaging.

As with all these things, there is an element of opinion. Facts on the reformulation, packaging or classification, confirmed by the HSE or Hogdon, seem to be in short supply. BASC is trying to gather further evidence, but in the absence of this, it is not unreasonable to conclude that Pyrodex previously sold under a different UN number can still be possessed without an explosives certificate.

Nevertheless, it is suggested that all users of Pyrodex should consider getting an Acquire and Keep Explosives Certificate covering UN0499 and UN0501, so they can continue to acquire and possess the product.

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