Artistic expression can help us all to be free. Sometimes, you just want to write your name on a wall. Other times you want to call really nice names to the cops. Other times you need your message to be read for as many people as possible and need to write big, very big. Graffiti help us with that. Nick a spray can spend the afternoon writing ACAB until the poo-lice try to stop you, then spray paint their handcuffs and run!
But what happens when you want to send a message, and you would like to make it big, very big? You use a fire extinguisher.
Sounds counterproductive, right? But some fire extinguishers can be refilled (the water type ones) and pressurized with a bike pump. So instead of filling it up with more water, why not give that little tool life?
There are many things you can do with a liquid gun at high pressure. Imagine a riot and loads of cops with their armor and helmets. ONE QUICK PUSH and their helmets are covered in colorful goodness, stopping them from seeing and attacking your comrades! Or maybe you are in a squat and the bailiffs are about to come in. How about if we swap paint for baby oil, spray them up and down and dose a large quantity of that oil on the floor and then film them unable to even stand up? If that is something you are going to do, please please please edit it with the Benny Hill song and send it to us, you’ll be our hero!
Right, so we have convinced you that fire extinguishers are cool, and now the task is different. How the fuck do I do that? Luckily, our comrades at MTL Counter-info have you covered. Read the instructions below:
1. Steal the extinguisher
Find a water-pressurized fire extinguisher. They are metallic silver and come in two sizes.
Both sizes have removable tops, which are often attached with a nut.
The larger size is 9L and has a Schrader valve, like your bike tire, so that they can be easily repressurized. It is often found in universities, apartments and office buildings.
The smaller size is 6L and needs to be repressurized with an air compressor. It is only found in restaurants because they are for grease fires, and are sometimes conveniently placed near the back exit!
2. Empty the water
Wear cotton gloves to avoid getting your prints all over the thing. Spray the water out of the fire-extinguisher, ensuring that the pressure gauge reaches 0 psi. We usually do this in an alleyway, but it can be done in your bathtub.
3. Fill with paint
Remove the nut and top section.
Fill the extinguisher about halfway with a mixture of equal parts latex paint and water.
Reattach the top section, and make sure it’s tight.
For the 9 L, pressurize with a bike pump until the gauge reads 100 psi.
For the 6 L, there is no Schrader valve so you will need an air compressor, found at hardware stores or most pawn-shops. Remove the hose, and connect the air compressor tubing, using a 3/8” male adapter.
Set the air compressor to 115 psi. You may not even need to depress the handle of the extinguisher for the pressure to slowly raise to 100 psi. If you need to depress the handle, remove the safety pin and depress it gradually. Stop as soon as it reaches 100 psi, to avoid paint going into the tubing.
Return the safety pin and secure it with duct tape.
Wipe down with a cloth soaked in rubbing alcohol to remove any fingerprints!
And now that you know how, what is your next target? Make your city colorful again. Praise the fire extinguisher.