Making Dragon Eggs isn't Hard, but a lot of guys find getting them to work to be pretty difficult.
There are a few little tricks, mainly in the preparation that will have your eggs crackling every time.
WARNING - THIS COMPOSITION IS A DANGEROUS FRICTION AND SHOCK SENSITIVE COMPOSITION
THIS ARTICLE SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A HOW TO GUIDE AS SOME SAFETY PROCEDURES AND PRECAUTIONS MAY HAVE BEEN OMITTED
Step 1 - Gather your bits together
Ok, you're going to need the usual bowls, spoons, gloves, scales & screens etc if you're going to cut them (for larger eggs) you'll need a good flat blade knife, some baking paper and a rolling frame & roller. If you're after smaller eggs you can just granulate them with a screen or press them through a garlic press. The garlic press makes excellent mouse poo sized eggs with very little effort. These work really well as small star cores.
Next you'll need some raw materials, You will need one of the following: Lead Tetraoxide, Bismuth Sub Carbonate or Bismuth Trioxide. The first 2 work exceptionally well but the Lead is very toxic and Bismuth Sub Carbonate seems to be pretty hard to find. Bismuth Trioxide is a little easier to find but its very hard to get working, If you're using the Trioxide it MUST be very dry, you really need to use it on the same day you dry it, once you've stored it even for a few days it seems to only work sluggishly if at all. Also it must be milled as fine as possible. The drying and milling are critical to getting the Trioxide to work. The Lead & Sub Carb seem to work without Issues
The next thing you will need is Black Copper Oxide, this is not required in a couple of comps.
You will also need some Magnalium Powder, Ive used many sizes from -60m to 325m, All sizes work, the bigger the particle size the bigger the crackle, 6 mm Eggs made with -60m go off like 1/2 gm flash crackers while eggs made with smaller sizes have multiple smaller crackles.
Making NC Lacquer isn't hard, just find any source of NC and dissolve in Acetone, but what you make the Lacquer from and the consistency you end up with can make big differences. For NC you can use homemade, made by nitrating cotton balls or pads Ive also heard you can purchase NC online from Aliexpress, Smokeless Gunpowder or the most commonly available is Table Tennis balls(not the Vinyl ones). The first 2 work very well and Table Tennis balls do work but results vary, not all Table Tennis balls are created equal, i believe some contain Dyes, Plasticizes and Stabilizers, I tried lighting a couple of different brands and they varied from just burning to burning quite aggressively, the later would obviously make a better lacquer. Below are some pics of the batch of NC Lacquer I made to make the Eggs in this thread, the main requirement for the lacquer is that there's enough NC in there, the Lacquer made with homemade NC comes out a little gelatinous and about the consistency of store bought apple sauce. If your'e using Table Tennis balls aim to end up with a Honey like consistency.
Eggs made with Table Tennis ball lacquer are notoriously hard to light you will need to ensure you prime them very well with a hot Dragon Egg prime
Step 2 - Weigh up and mix the dry components together
For this batch I'm using a modified version of the 37.5/37.5/25 formula.
75 gms Bismuth Trioxide/Antimony Oxide Mix.
75 gms Black Copper Oxide
50 gms Magnalium -100 mesh +300 mesh
For this mix Ive MILLED TOGETHER well dried Bismuth Trioxide 70% and Antimony Oxide 25%
This mix is more reliable and performs better than straight Trioxide, It also stores very well, this batch was made over a year ago and i don't need to dry it before use
Place the dry ingredients in a bowl and combine well with a spoon or stirrer
Step 3 - Add the NC Lacquer - Don't be shy
For this 200 gm batch I added 4 large spoons of NC Lacquer, better to add more than not enough, Its easier to combine when it's a little gooey and only just drips off the spoon, NC Lacquer being Acetone based will dry up pretty quick
Let the mix dry up a bit till it becomes a firm dough. When it doesn't slump when formed into a peak its ready to turn out onto baking paper.
Step 4 Turn out onto baking paper, roll out & cut
Turn the firm dough out onto baking paper and knead into a ball, the remnants in the bowl and spoon will dry quickly, i used a plastic bowl and spoon so a quick twist will see the remnants flake off, knead this into the dough ball
Spread the dough ball out roughly by hand and then roll out to even sheet, I used a rolling board with 5 mm rails so might sheet is a nice even 5 mm thick, Start cutting the sheet with a flat bladed knife, I use a thin blade cleaver a got from the Chinese grocery store for about $4
Finishing Up Once you've finished cutting give it a couple of minutes to dry up then drag the paper sheet over a square or round bar to open up the cuts, do this in both directions and repeat a couple of times during drying, doing this will make the cubes separate very easily when dry, Its best to break them up before they are completely dry, they come apart easier.
When they've dried up pretty well I put them in a Kitchen sieve and swirl them around and also rub them around gently, this removes the small flakes and loose dust.
I put the dust and flakes through a series of seives to grage them into different sizes, these can be used in fountains or put in star comps for effect.