Download this slideshow as a PDF: Build a Show (Jun 28 20)
(Text version provided below)
Build Your Own 4th of July (or anytime) Fireworks Show!
For those customers who are new to fireworks or who have asked us to “just tell me what to do” we have put together the following guide to putting on a safe and fun fireworks show.
Before you do anything relative to lighting fireworks, the absolute first point you need to know is this: Safety needs to be a priority, not an afterthought!
Not all towns in New Hampshire allow the use of fireworks so check with your local Fire Department to see if permissible fireworks are allowed in your community.
Here are some additional tips to consider once you have established that you may use permissible fireworks in your community:
- Read all package labels and our safety tips prior to using fireworks. We also include safety tips with each purchase. Call if you have more questions.
- Decide where to light your show. Make sure you have enough room to keep you audience safe. We recommend an area 300 feet x 300 feet. You do not want to light off fireworks near houses, buildings, vehicles, pools, combustible materials or animals. You also want to keep spectators at least 100 feet away!
- Keep the neighbors in mind! Be considerate when deciding what time to light off your fireworks! Talk with your neighbors. Maybe invite them over and make some new friends!
- Determine who will light off the fireworks. Make sure whoever is lighting is capable of retreating to a safe distance. MUST BE 21 OR OLDER! If you have concerns about being able to get to a safe distance away after lighting, use safety fuse.
- Do not allow children to handle fireworks or be near them. Not even sparklers! We do not suggest giving sparklers to children. Instead, stick the sparklers in the ground or have an adult hold it.
- We recommend using a piece of plywood on a flat surface as a base to light all 500 Gram Aerials, Aerial Repeaters, Fountains, Saturn Missiles, Single Shot Tubes, Nine Racks, and Helicopters. Next, use a few pieces of duct tape to tape from the side of the above items down (excluding helicopters, ground spinners, roman candles, and reloadable shells) onto the piece of plywood. (DO NOT TAPE OVER THE TOP!) This stabilizes your firework and helps to prevent it from tipping over.
- Reloadable shells are a two piece system consisting of a ball or canister shell and a mortar tube. A single shell is placed inside the mortar tube in the upright position with the fuse leading out of the tube. Ball shells are round on the top and flat on the bottom and should have the flat part of the shell in the bottom of the mortar tube. Canister shells have an arrow on the side of them and the arrow should be facing up. *** It is important to note: at no time should you place your face, hands or any body part over the mortar. Reloadable devices should be used no less than 150 feet from any structures or spectators. Never load and fire more than one shell at a time from the mortar tube. Never use a wet or damaged mortar tube or light the fuse outside of the mortar tube and never attempt to light the fuse and then drop the shell into the mortar tube.
- *** 13a. The mortar tube needs to be secured on a hard flat surface by placing it in a five gallon bucket of dry sand filled within two inches of the top of the mortar tube. Cover the top of the tube when adding the sand to prevent sand from getting inside the tube. *** Note: On humid days cardboard tubes can absorb moisture, be sure to store in a cool dry place until you’re ready to use them.
- *** 13b. Always keep artillery shells covered in the box they are packaged in and away from spectator and launch area. After lighting the fuse, move a minimum of 20 feet from the launch tube. Wait at least two minutes before reloading. If after two minutes, you still see smoke in the mortar tube, wait until the smoke clears. Clean debris from launch tube after each firing.
- 13c. Follow the manufacturer’s specifications and only use the shells and mortar tube that came in the shell kit. Each tube is to be disposed of properly upon finishing the box of shells. Example: a shell kit comes with 12 shells and 2 mortar tubes. Upon finishing 6 shells in a mortar tube, the mortar tube should no longer be used. The over-use of a mortar tube will increase the hazard of the tube failing and an accident occurring. Do not use ABS or PVC plastic pipe as a mortar. Do not make your own mortar tubes.
- Light ground based items like Jumping Jacks, Ground Bloom Flowers, Crackling Balls, Tanks, etc. on a flat open parking area away from homes, buildings, cars, animals or combustible materials.
- When lighting Roman Candles, place them in a bucket of sand. Do not hold them in your hand!
- We recommend using a stick lighter to light your fireworks. This allows you to keep a safe distance from the fuse you are lighting. Never stand over any firework you are lighting.
- Make sure you have a supply of water (hose that is ready to go) and a fire extinguisher handy. Have one person lighting while another mans the hose.
- There are many more safety points to consider. Be sure to read our safety tips first!
How to organize your show:
- “How long do I want the show to last?” vs “How much money do I want to spend?”
- Keep in mind that most fireworks last between 15-25 seconds. 500 gram cakes last from 30-60 seconds. Most of our descriptions include an approximate duration.
- What order do I shoot these things in?
- Start small, work your way up.
- Choose a piece that will grab the audience’s attention and go from there.
- If you have time, study the videos online and mix your pieces up.
- Some pieces launch their shots faster than others. Different paces help keep attention on the show.
- Mix colors too! Different colors are what fireworks are about!
- It’s your show. Personalize it.
- Knowledge of what you’re firing into the sky will help you determine what order to fire them.
These are guidelines for how to build-a-show. Build your show based upon your likes and favorites. If you love it, your family and friends will too!
Don’t forget the small stuff that can be used prior to or after your show! Sparklers, Jumping Jacks, Crackling Balls and more are fun and inexpensive!
Let me mention this point again… Safety needs to be a priority, not an afterthought!
And while you’re checking out the website, remember to join our rewards program. It will help you stretch every dollar you spend. We keep track of what you buy too, so if you can’t remember the name of that Aerial that was such a big hit, we can look up what you bought!
Please call us at 603-798-3324 with your questions.