There are several eye and nose irritants and Irritant Gasses on the market which can be easily duplicated. A good irritant is formaldehyde. Better known as embalming fluid, it smells horrible, hurts the eyes and nose, and upon exposure to the air it vaporizes, making a room uninhabitable for hours. It can be squirted from a water pistol or nasal inhaler, poured on the floor or vaporized by a bomb. Formaldehyde can be bought at the drug store under the pretext of wanting it to preserve mice or other lab specimens.
The irritant mailmen use against dogs and which is sold widely for self defense is oleoresid capsicum. Capsicum is the hot essence of red peppers. Oleoresin is the process for extracting it. To extract the Capsicum, grind up four ounces of red pepper seeds in a blender or with a mortar and pestle. Red pepper seeds are bought in the grocers’s. The dry, ground seeds are then put into a coffee percolator in which there is about 16 ounces of alcohol, preferably with the water distilled out. The seeds are then percolated for about a half hour. The alcohol is then distilled off until there are only a couple of table spoons of red liquid left in the flask. The red liquid is then added to a half pint of light mineral oil, bought at a drug store.
These can be sprayed from a nasal spray or another good way is with a window cleaning sprayer bought at any dime store. The tube of the sprayer is cut to fit in a two ounce medicine bottle. This way you have enough of the goody to last through a whole demonstration, no matter which side you’re on. It is also nice to keep by the door to repel intruders. Before using, the container should be given a few shakes. Under laboratory conditions all the oil is extracted from the seeds. But with my Mickey Mouse method a lot of oil is left in so the residue is quite potent. Just be sure you strain out any larger bits so the sprayer hole is not clogged.
The ground seeds left in the percolator are dried and saved. They are great for throwing into the faces of people in a mob. If you really want a laugh, throw some broadcast from a theater balcony during the death scene in “Love Story”.
The goody called MACE is probably only acrolein. If not, it works just as well as MACE and is simple and fun to produce. It is the same product as described on pages 104 through 106 of the ANARCHIST COOKBOOK. Mine however, is broken down and simplified.
Acrolein is one of the Irritant Gasses. It is not toxic but causes horrible pain in the nose and copious tears, and irritates the skin. A shot in the face from a water pistol or some other sprayer will put anyone out of the game for at least half an hour. Acrolein is best made an ounce at a time. Put in the flask 2 1/2 ounces of glycerine and 3/4 ounce of sodium bisulfate (Sani-Flush), both of which can be bought at any grocery store. The still is set up with the outside tube connected as the fumes are bad. Then the mixture starts to bubble it must be watched constantly to make sure it does not bubble up into the neck of the flask. If it starts for the neck of the flask, remove the lamp until it settles down. If the lamp is too hot, the tin can is raised on small blocks until the right heat is obtained. Distill off an ounce of acrolein and take away the lamp. An ounce is all this size batch is good for. Let the flask cool for an hour before opening and cleaning. Pour the residue down the sink and put your face over the drain to get a sample of the vapor. Then cap the receiving bottle and wash everything the acrolein was in contact with.
The best squirter for the three irritants above is a water pistol. Most water pistols leak badly so they must be transported barrel up so the goody won’t ooze out around the trigger. It will leak when you use it so it is best to put in a plastic sandwhich bag with the opening held around the barrel with a rubber band. If the pistol has a trigger guard it should be cut off and then it can be used just as easily in a plastic bag as otherwise.