Hand flashers are fun effects- they let you shoot a ball of fire right out of your hand. They’re great for plays, haunted houses, magic tricks, practical jokes and showing off in front of cute girls/guys. Who doesn’t love fire? The effect uses flash cotton and flash paper which burn so fast that it is fairly safe.
I just found an Instructable that tells you how you can make your own hand flasher / fireball shooter. During the recent production of Cats I did tech for (the one that gave birth to the confetti cannon) I ended up buying a hand flasher because I didn’t have time to engineer one myself and it cost me over 50 bucks. I wish this Instructable was around a couple months ago.
Anyway, most of the stuff needed to build the thing is available at Home Depot (your in-store engineering headquarters!). I was sort of hoping that the author had come up with a nifty way of making a glo-plug (used to ignite the flash-cotton) out of parts from the Depot too but that you have to order online. You also need to get the flash cotton and flash paper from somewhere, but your town probably has a magic shop if you don’t feel like ordering it online.