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Destructive hardware decommissioning

Normally, when a piece of computer hardware fails, the owner would either return it under guarantee or discard it.

However, when the buttons stopped working on the mouse shown below, we decided to decommission the unit by utterly destroying it using an explosive device. We did this for three very important reasons :

*    It's a Microsoft product.

*    It's out of guarantee.

*    The entertainment value is high.

Warning : The method described below can cause high speed shrapnel which may cause injury. You have been warned.

Firework Take an 'Airbomb' garden firework. Carefully take it apart and remove the magnesium powder based explosive tube from inside it saving the fuse (see next pic).  
Firework in bits Insert the fuse so it is both secure and in contact with the small original fuse in the top of the tube. Insert into the peripheral of your choice, light the fuse and get the hell out of there.

Although the device only measures two inches long, it is EXTREMELY powerful and ULTRA loud for it's size. Normally, these things shoot up into the air several meters before going off. At close range they will cause injury and probably hearing damage.

Sequence of Events

Stage one

Explosive is placed in the mouse with the fuse sticking out if the top. Mouse is reassembled and placed in front of the video camera. The fuse is ignited and the blasting team retire to a safe distance.

Stage two

The device goes off with a terrific BANG, obliterating the mouse and sending debris flying all over the place. Fantastic!

Stage three

A smoldering crater remains, but no sign of the mouse, oh, wait a minute, there is is raining back down now in small pieces!!.

Click here to download the MPEG video of the explosion

Note in the video the screaming children that can be heard in the background after the explosion. There is a school about 100 meters away and unfortunately for them, we did the decommissioning during lunchtime. The video does not quite do the explosion sound justice, it was extremely loud and echoed all around the neighborhood.


The debris collected after the decommissioning exercise. Note the mouse finger wheel (centre) plus other parts were found some distance away.