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Chemical matches were unable to make the leap into mass production, due to the expense, their cumbersome nature and inherent danger.
An alternative method was to produce the ignition through friction produced by rubbing two rough surfaces together.
His match consisted of a small glass capsule containing a chemical composition of sulfuric acid colored with indigo and coated on the exterior with potassium chlorate, all of which was wrapped up in rolls of paper.
The immediate ignition of this particular form of a match was achieved by crushing the capsule with a pair of pliers, mixing and releasing the ingredients in order for it to become alight.
If there occurs an emergency at night it may take some time to make a light to light a lamp.
But an ingenious man devised the system of impregnating little sticks of pinewood with sulfur and storing them ready for use.
Such matches were characterised by their burning speed i.e. Depending on its formulation, a slow match burns at a rate of around 30 cm (1 ft) per hour and a quick match at 4 to 60 centimetres (2 to 24 in) per minute.
The modern equivalent of this sort of match is the simple fuse, still used in pyrotechnics to obtain a controlled time delay before ignition.
One end is coated with a material that can be ignited by frictional heat generated by striking the match against a suitable surface.Others, including Robert Boyle and his assistant, Ambrose Godfrey, continued these experiments in the 1680s with phosphorus and sulfur, but their efforts did not produce practical and inexpensive methods for generating fires.