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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
1,799
1,532
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Looking through my Hallmark Fireworks Sky Hunters Rocket Pack (F3 25m spectator/15m firer, NEC pack weight 325g), one of them, Brocade Crown effect (picture below) has an extremely dicky kinked stick, probably put on while being manufactured in China, but there are no breaks in the balsa wood launching stick.IMG_20220727_153747.jpg
The rest (pictured below) are ok and good to go.
IMG_20220727_153941.jpg

So, the question is, should I fire the one with the dicky stick, or break the stick and soak it in a bucket of water?

I'll be wearing appropriate PPE ie fire retardant overalls safety goggles hard hat and steel toe cap boots while firing, as I always do when displaying, so if I do take the decision to fire it, and something goes amiss i.e. wonky flight, dangerous take off or an unexpected flash through (although I've never had the latter mishap with these rockets as yet), at least I won't come to any harm.
 

Firey Dave

Baronet
Oct 25, 2014
944
1,148
3,124
Looking through my Hallmark Fireworks Sky Hunters Rocket Pack (F3 25m spectator/15m firer, NEC pack weight 325g), one of them, Brocade Crown effect (picture below) has an extremely dicky kinked stick, probably put on while being manufactured in China, but there are no breaks in the balsa wood launching stick.View attachment 9261
The rest (pictured below) are ok and good to go.
View attachment 9262

So, the question is, should I fire the one with the dicky stick, or break the stick and soak it in a bucket of water?

I'll be wearing appropriate PPE ie fire retardant overalls safety goggles hard hat and steel toe cap boots while firing, as I always do when displaying, so if I do take the decision to fire it, and something goes amiss i.e. wonky flight, dangerous take off or an unexpected flash through (although I've never had the latter mishap with these rockets as yet), at least I won't come to any harm.
Personally I wouldn't as I would've thought that's potentially going to give it an unpredictable flight path. I could be completely wrong but I envisage it trying to go round in circles.
 
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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
1,799
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Personally I wouldn't as I would've thought that's potentially going to give it an unpredictable flight path. I could be completely wrong but I envisage it trying to go round in circles.
Or it could even fly skewith, sideways at a funny angle, or in an arc above ground level, exploding a few feet above the ground, I'll make a judgement on the day I fire it and decide what to do with it.

The fireworks are usually fired at 25 metres upwind and away from the audience and there's enough space for me to run sharp, retire to, and take cover safely, should things take a turn for the worse with this rocket and it's dodgy stick.
 
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Somersetpyro

Moderator
S-T Fireworks Guardian
Dec 16, 2013
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Bournemouth
I've had this before. Make the stick wet (not soaking, otherwise it'll penetrate the actual rocket head), place it on a flat surface, and stack heavy items on top of the stick (big books, a piece of flat-sided furniture etc), and leave it for a couple days. It should come out much straighter :) it's a shame to waste a great rocket otherwise, and with a bend like that i wouldn't be keen on firing it, PPE or not!
 

AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
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I've had this before. Make the stick wet (not soaking, otherwise it'll penetrate the actual rocket head), place it on a flat surface, and stack heavy items on top of the stick (big books, a piece of flat-sided furniture etc), and leave it for a couple days. It should come out much straighter :) it's a shame to waste a great rocket otherwise, and with a bend like that i wouldn't be keen on firing it, PPE or not!
I've wet just three quarters of the rocket stick well up to the straight part nearest the firework rocket motor and payload casing, as you have suggested, and placed it under a heavy flat based piece of furniture i.e. a small armchair with no casters lying directly on top of the affected section, in order to try straighten the stick somewhat, and make it safer to fire.

I'll leave it for two days and see what comes of it.

Thanks for that advice, because it would be a real shame to waste such a good F3 rocket, because of a manufacturing defect that isn't of my making.
 
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Somersetpyro

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S-T Fireworks Guardian
Dec 16, 2013
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It may need a couple of attempts to get it straight enough to safely fire, that particular stick is quite a lot more curved than most. Surprising that your pack made it past quality control really :unsure:
 
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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
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It may need a couple of attempts to get it straight enough to safely fire, that particular stick is quite a lot more curved than most. Surprising that your pack made it past quality control really :unsure:
Quality control under CE manufacturing, isn't quite as rigid, as it was under BS 7114 : 2 : 1988 manufacturing.

If something like this happened in a pack of several rockets or even a batch of large single rockets under BS 7114 : 2 : 1988 manufacturing, it would immediately be rejected on safety grounds, because there is no way that sort of defect would be permitted at all under BS 7114, because it would be classed as a serious defect.

Hopefully under UKCA fireworks requirements, quality control will improve for the UK market products.
 
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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
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Good news, your suggested technique Somersetpyro, has actually helped straighten the firework rocket stick a bit, bit better than it was, and is not quite so kinky bent.

I've wet the stick again thoroughly, and put the bent section, underneath the flat base armchair to try straighten it flatter even more, and I'll see what it's like on Sunday afternoon.
 
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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
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1,532
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Good news, your suggested technique Somersetpyro, has actually helped straighten the firework rocket stick a bit, bit better than it was, and is not quite so kinky bent.

I've wet the stick again thoroughly, and put the bent section, underneath the flat base armchair to try straighten it flatter even more, and I'll see what it's like on Sunday afternoon.
Update - the firework rocket stick is far better than it was, although still not completely 100% though, and I can't get it absolutely perfect. I think we can safely say it's less of danger while taking off and can reasonably be relied on to take off and perform safer than it was. Definitely an improvement.
IMG_20220731_143241.jpg
16592745908451114910827777119671.jpg
 
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SilberWirbel

Noble the 3rd
Oct 12, 2016
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I'm not a big rocket user due to overhanging trees, but for what it's worth that looks useable to me. As long as you have a decent amount of space to set it off in. If you're still worried you could always set it off first before the main show and use it as a wind checker!
 
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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
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I'm not a big rocket user due to overhanging trees, but for what it's worth that looks useable to me. As long as you have a decent amount of space to set it off in. If you're still worried you could always set it off first before the main show and use it as a wind checker!
There's enough room to get back to 15 metres after lighting, where I'm setting it off.

I'm pretty confident in firing it.
 
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Somersetpyro

Moderator
S-T Fireworks Guardian
Dec 16, 2013
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Bournemouth
I'd say you're all good to go, it's a lot better than it was certainly :) glad I could help, as I said it would've been a shame to waste such a good rocket
 
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AnthonyUKpyro

Royal Knight the 5th
Feb 13, 2013
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I'd say you're all good to go, it's a lot better than it was certainly :) glad I could help, as I said it would've been a shame to waste such a good rocket
And therein goes a lesson to all of you, ALWAYS check your rocket sticks of all rockets that you get, single and multipack, as soon as you receive your delivery of fireworks, and if you see defects like I got with severely bendy sticks, follow the advice above that Somersetpyro has given.

Also check sticks for breaks too, in that case, there is little you can do practicably to remedy it.

In that case, do not attempt to repair them with strong tape, nails or glue and certainly DO NOT ATTEMPT to fire the seriously defective rockets with haphazardly repaired sticks you have put right, it could be extremely dangerous.

DO not fire the seriously affected rocket with dodgy sticks with breaks etc, either.

Snap the seriously affected stick, and soak the affected rocket in a bucket of water for three days before disposing in the household rubbish, yes it might leave one or more rockets or a rocket less in your pack, but better that, than a serious accident, property damage or a fire caused by ignorant firing of a rocket or a set of rockets, with severely damaged stick(s), potentially putting people and property at risk.

And a final reminder don't be tempted to chuck the affected rockets onto a firepit or bonfire either, as they could explode flinging burning material out or fly at somebody causing a nasty injury!
 
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