The Complete Guide to Effective & Safe Intravenous Administration.
Mainly written because SemiKiler's marvelous video which used to be hosted on the site has disappeared at some stage and has left a void on shooting how-to. The pictures only really cover the important bits, which is all you need.. Mods feel free to add to or edit this as you please.
Updated 12/08/2011: Improved and expanded pictures.
Updated 07/07/2011: Added pictures and some formatting.
Updated 22/06/2011: Added a few bits and pieces here and there.
The following is no biblical, definitive, fool-proof or concrete guide. Take it with a grain of salt, and follow it as a guide, not to the letter. I'm not sitting beside you and can't foresee every scenario or piece of equipment, so if you think you need to use a different way, go for it.
By reading this advice you place no responsibility on the part of myself, drugsandbooze.com, or it's staff for any harm brought about from use of this guide, and understand it to be purely hypothetical and educational.
In the pictures I'm using equipment a second time. I do not endorse this and did so for the sole purpose of taking those images.
- Use packaged, unused equipment wherever possible
- Rotate injection sites each use to allow spots to heal
- Use alcohol wipes to clean the area before injecting; give the alcohol time to evaporate
- Be careful. You only get one set of veins, and once they collapse that's it. Practice good vein care.
- Use equipment which has even touched other equipment that has touched someone elses blood. Ever.
- Re-use equipment with old blood in it. Blood is a marvelous place for pathogens to spawn. Fevers and infections galore.
- Ignore signs of infection. If the area is warm, swollen and overly sore, go to a doctor. Right now.
- Draw back into the syringe and re-hit to get the last bit out of the rig. It damages your veins and is not worth it.
- Attempt to shoot into the veins of the neck or pelvis. While it's most certainly doable, it's extremely dangerous and not worth it.
- Attempt to shoot into an artery, EVER. If you register and the blood is bright red and gushes into the syringe, pull out gently and carefully, then apply pressure to the area immediately.
What you want if you're doing this the smart way.
While it will depend entirely on your region, a decent needle exchange will stock the following all at low or no price. Failing that, some pharmacies will carry rigs, and all of this equipment can be purchased in bulk from ebay or similar online shopping sites for decent prices.
1. Two syringes:
I like to use 3 mL/cc ones rather than the 1cc insulin ones, gives you more working space and you can put whatever gauge needle on that you please.
2. One draw up needle:
18g blunt mofos. Useful but not 100% necessary - a regular smaller needle will work.
3. One injecting needle:
Personal preference, but as a guide:
- 29-30g if your veins are bad (30g used in picture)
- ~27g if your veins are good
- anything below if you're brave
These get real blunt, real fast when re-used. Blunt = pain and vein damage. When you're fiending it won't matter but bare it in mind. The higher the gauge, the smaller the hole and damage but the greater chance of clotting in the needle and shooting through a vein. Also keep in mind a 30g pick takes a lot longer to push fluid through than a 27g.
Two stages is best. A large pore filter like cotton to get rid of most of the shit, then a micron (wheel) filter to get rid of the rest. Personally I won't shoot if I can't get a .2um filter. End of story. These can be re-used multiple times within reason.
You always see people in fiction using those daft rubber ones but if you want to do it the easy way, get one of the velcro ones with the plastic buckle. Much easier and more sensible.
If possible, track down some bacteriostatic water. Most people will have to make do with bottled water, or purified water. Avoid tap water, NEVER use spit. I don't think I need to explain that one.
7. Grinding tools:
If you're using pills, you want to grind your stuff as finely as possible. Personally, I find a curved bottom shot glass plus a screwdriver handle to be perfect, and use the same shot glass for mixing the shot. Many prefer crushing with a card, or using a hose clamp grinder.
8. Mixing container:
As aforementioned, a shot glass is perfect, a spoon is fine too. This will depend on whether you're going to need heat - the latter type of vessel being better suited in which case.
9. Alcohol wipes:
10. A tissue or cotton bud:
Because bleeding isn't sexy.
Prepare your shit.
Clean everything. Whatever you're mixing in, whatever you're crushing your pills up with, etc. Giving it a once-over with alcohol wipes is best. If it's been in your mouth or anywhere germs are likely to have been, pay particular attention to it.
Drop your stuff into your mixing container (crushing the pills up if that's what you're in to), and add .5 mL (or enough to dissolve all the product into) of water. Mixing it up with one of your needles with the cap on is easiest. Something like tar will need to be heated at this point, this will depend entirely on your drug and I'm not really qualified to list each one. Google is your friend. Leave it to soak for a little bit, then dump in a torn off and rolled up piece of cotton bud, or even better a cut off 1/3-1/2 of a cigarette filter - just don't cut it from the tobacco end - and mash the needle-less tip of your first syringe into this filter. Proceed to draw up gently. This will filter out most of the insoluble gunk. You may like to repeat this wet-mix-draw step to wash the bit extra out of your stuff, but keep in mind it will increase the fluid volume you're going to have to inject.
After this, whenever possible, also use the smallest micron (wheel) filter you can get your hands on. I use .2 micrometer (um) ones. This is the only plausibly safe way of shooting, as it removes any bacteria and particulates from your solution. It may not remove viruses so do not use this thinking you can share equipment, also be aware that micron filters used repeatedly over time can grow bacteria and become not only ineffective but dangerous. Wheel filters attach to the end of your draw-up syringe and have a slot for a draw up needle on the coloured end. You may like to run a mL of water through to get it wet before using it for real. You can skip the micron filter, but I would never advise it nor do it myself no matter how hard I'm fiending. The risk to your body is very real, and very serious. I don't say that lightly.
Point the draw up needle into the barrel of your second syringe after pulling the plunger to give some space (fixed needle: remove the plunger and pour it in from the top, separate needle: shoot it in the tip) and gently push the fluid through. Not all of your actual product will make it through - it's just a fact of using wheel filters that some will get left behind, so you can either leave it to come through next time you use the filter, or you can unscrew the first syringe, draw up ~.5 mL of water, screw it back on and flush that through. Again, another thing which will improve your yield but increase final fluid volume. It's annoying, but it's worth it for the safety it provides. Your call.
Now that you've got your syringe with the final solution (geddit), attach your needle and very gently push the plunger up until there isn't a lot of air left at the top. Don't bother pushing it right up until it spurts out the needle like people do in movies - it's totally unnecessary. Fun fact: it would take more air than you can get into a syringe that small to do you damage. Don't worry about bubbles.
Digging for pipes.
Best injection site is the median cubital vein in the crook of your elbow. Experienced users will find and need others but beginners should start here. If you're right handed, you may like to inject into your left arm to benefit from the superior dexterity - though I can tell you, regular IV use is a quick way to become ambidextrous. Attach your tourniquet 2-3" above the bend - you'll have to work out how to do this. Youtube is your friend. Best advice I can give here is to find a way where the tension is controlled by holding the end of the tourniquet between your teeth so you can release it with no hands. Apply enough pressure not to cut off the blood supply entirely, but to increase the pressure and puff up the veins. Start pumping your hand / arm. This will be made easier if you have:
- good veins
- warm temperature (or anything else causing vasodilation)
- plenty to drink to increase body fluids
Once it's nice and obvious, go ahead and uncap your needle on the syringe you're using. Aim the eye of the needle towards your face, and point the tip towards and along the vein on a 45 degree angle towards you so the injected fluid is flowing towards your heart. I cannot stress this enough. Youtube / Google if you're unsure, because you need to get that pointing towards you thing right. Very gently and carefully insert the tip, very slowly, until suddenly you see a flash of red in the base of the needle. At this point, advance slightly further a millimeter or two, then reduce the angle of insertion by tipping the syringe away from you ever so slightly down to around 30 degrees, and slide the needle in slightly further. At this point your tourniquet should still be tight. Once the needle is in a good ~5-7 mm, draw back gently with your index and middle fingers on the syringe plunger, and you should see dark red blood enter the barrel of the syringe. This is good - it's called registering. Gradually release the tourniquet (here is where you'll appreciate the teeth thing) and register again. If either of these registers fails, you need to slowly withdraw the needle and try again with a new one, or after screwing the needle onto another syringe and flushing it out. The reason I recommend registering twice is that the needle can slide out of or through the vein when you release the tourniquet. It's superfluous, but it's better than missing a shot. The tourniquet needs to be released before injecting because otherwise the additional volume puts enormous pressure on the vein and can cause it to burst.
Assuming the second register went swimmingly, you may now begin shooting. I like to watch the point where the needle is attached to the needle base, against a point of reference on my skin to make sure the needle doesn't move and cause you to miss the shot, while applying just gradual, gentle but firm pressure on the plunger with the index finger. Do whatever suits you. Once it's all away, you may start to feel it coming on (though some drugs like methylphenidate can take up to a minute to hit), so carefully and not too quickly withdraw the needle, place the syringe on a desk or table, apply a bit of cotton bud or tissue to the hole and enjoy the rush. Once you're happy, maintaining pressure on the injection site, it's a good idea to draw and squirt some water through the rig you've just finished with until most or all of the blood is gone from (most importantly) the base of the needle. This just means that god forbid you have to use it again, you're not going to be injecting bugs or playing with a clogged pick. Recap the needle, and put it into a sharps container or somewhere safe where no one will find it by accident.