Primacord is a brand of detonating cord used in blasting. The registered trademark Primacord was originally owned by the Ensign-Bickford Company;[1] Ensign-Bickford sold the trademark to Dyno Nobel in 2003,[2] who manufacture it in their Graham, Kentucky factory. The name is also used as a genericized trademark for any detonating cord.


Primacord consists of a continuous core of PETN, RDX or other high explosive, bound by textile yarns and finished with plastic and wax as waterproofing agents.[3] It is produced in eight strengths:

NameLoading g/m (gr/ft)Colour
Primacord 11.5 (7.5)Yellow
Primacord 22.1 (10)Orange
Primacord 33.2 (15)Red
Primacord 4Y3.6 (18)Yellow
Primacord 4R3.6 (18)Red
Primacord 55.3 (25)Red
Primacord 88.6 (40)Red
Primacord 1010.6 (50)Yellow

Primaline is a related product differing principally in having a plastic jacket instead of textile. Primaline is also available in higher loadings, up to 85 g/m (400 gr/ft):

NameLoading g/m (gr/ft)Colour
Primaline 4D3.6 (18)Orange
Primaline 4HS3.6 (18)Clear with blue stripe
Primaline 55.3 (25)Orange with wax coating
Primaline 5D5.3 (25)Orange
Primaline 5NF5.3 (25)Yellow
Primaline 8D8.6 (40)Orange
Primaline 8HS8.6 (40)Clear with black stripe
Primaline 10HS10.6 (50)Clear with red stripe
Primaline 2121.3 (100)Clear
Primaline 3231.9 (150)Clear
Primaline 4242.5 (200)Clear
Primaline 8585 (400)Light green


Primacord is initiated with a blasting cap or by a donor line of detonating cord or other high explosive. It detonates along its entire length at a velocity of approximately 23,000 feet (7,000 meters) per second. It is used to create explosive effects and to build reliable explosive charges. It is used in conjunction with other high explosive materials to form charges, including linear charges, capable of near instantaneous results.[3]

See also


  2. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-04-02. Retrieved 2013-03-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. "Primacord Detonating Cord - product technical data sheet" (PDF). Ensign-Bickford Aerospace and Defense Company.
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