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Memories that never fade


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#16 nimbus2

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Posted 07 February 2007 - 05:44 AM

There is a timeless beauty to fireworks. Your response, Vince, testifies to this. Who can fathom this mysterious and powerful art?

#17 Zinginex

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Posted 13 February 2007 - 09:36 PM

Red Moon was the parachute flare I remember, they seemed to float for ages. last year I managed to make a star of the same colour and intensity.

Bangers, how many varied uses they were put to.
I'm convinced that an essential part of boyhood at one time was the placing of a suitably powerful one in the fuselage of an Airfix Heinkel or Messerschmitt 109, or was it just us.
Taping them, especially the Standard ones that usually burst in the middle, was part of the skills required to get the best out of them.


I used to play football a few years ago and i think i saw one of those in the air about half a mile away and it was there for ages. You would just see me standing in goal and looking up at it. I never knew what it was untill reading this. I thought it was a plane on fire :blush:

Edited by Zinginex, 13 February 2007 - 09:40 PM.


#18 GZ22

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Posted 16 March 2007 - 01:28 AM

Red Moon was the parachute flare I remember, they seemed to float for ages. last year I managed to make a star of the same colour and intensity.


Red Moon? Now if they are the same ones I knew as a nipper, and if I remember correctly, weren't they made by Standard, cylindrical, about 8'' tall (seemed about a foot tall back then), with a blue plastic ground spike at the bottom, a deep maroon coloured label with a picture of a man on a parachute drawn in white, and topped with the ubiquitous blue touchpaper?

Oh how I too was transfixed by the parachute, which I clearly remember glowed blue, the same sort of colour as a celestial star, and it drifted very slowly for a long time. You could also get double ones, which were fantastic to watch, and even more exciting to set off. I remember asking my brother if we could open one up to get the parachute out, which he of course, flatly refused!

Another memory I have is of more Standard fireworks. My brother would always buy a good sized box and hide them under the base of the fish tank stand, once I knew they were there, and no one was around, I would open the box for a sneaky look, which of course led to me handling each one of them, enchanted by the labels and the promises of what they would look like. One of my favourites was a thin cylindrical fountain named Rainbow. One day I saw that there were two of them in this box, so I took it into the kitchen whilst my Grandma was chatting to my Mum, lit the gas ring on the cooker, opened the kitchen window to let the smoke out, and lit the fountain. It was amazing, the wonderful colours it produced, and all being held in my hand. The smoke became too much, and I dipped the Rainbow into the sink which was full of washing up and water, and to my surprise it bubbled and every time I took it out of the water it was still going! :o

I ran the tap over it and then left it in the sink to soak, and my Mum entered the kitchen asking me why I had the door shut, the window open, and smoke in the room. I told her that there was a fire outside, and I didn't want the smoke to go into the living room, and so that's why I had shut the door. She never did find out the truth, God rest her soul.
Do it safe - Do it right - or - Don't do it at all.

#19 EnigmaticBiker

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Posted 16 March 2007 - 09:02 AM

I used to play football a few years ago and i think i saw one of those in the air about half a mile away and it was there for ages. You would just see me standing in goal and looking up at it. I never knew what it was untill reading this. I thought it was a plane on fire :blush:

:D Just reminded me of something, a few years ago, while out on the bike, I spied a lovely deep red light through the gloom in the distance. I got all excited until I realised it wasn't moving.
It was a warning light on a new hillside telecomms mast.
Fool, sez I, they haven't produced them for 25+ years.


#20 nimbus2

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Posted 21 March 2007 - 02:17 AM

Red Moon? Now if they are the same ones I knew as a nipper, and if I remember correctly, weren't they made by Standard, cylindrical, about 8'' tall (seemed about a foot tall back then), with a blue plastic ground spike at the bottom, a deep maroon coloured label with a picture of a man on a parachute drawn in white, and topped with the ubiquitous blue touchpaper?

Oh how I too was transfixed by the parachute, which I clearly remember glowed blue, the same sort of colour as a celestial star, and it drifted very slowly for a long time. You could also get double ones, which were fantastic to watch, and even more exciting to set off. I remember asking my brother if we could open one up to get the parachute out, which he of course, flatly refused!

Another memory I have is of more Standard fireworks. My brother would always buy a good sized box and hide them under the base of the fish tank stand, once I knew they were there, and no one was around, I would open the box for a sneaky look, which of course led to me handling each one of them, enchanted by the labels and the promises of what they would look like. One of my favourites was a thin cylindrical fountain named Rainbow. One day I saw that there were two of them in this box, so I took it into the kitchen whilst my Grandma was chatting to my Mum, lit the gas ring on the cooker, opened the kitchen window to let the smoke out, and lit the fountain. It was amazing, the wonderful colours it produced, and all being held in my hand. The smoke became too much, and I dipped the Rainbow into the sink which was full of washing up and water, and to my surprise it bubbled and every time I took it out of the water it was still going! :o

I ran the tap over it and then left it in the sink to soak, and my Mum entered the kitchen asking me why I had the door shut, the window open, and smoke in the room. I told her that there was a fire outside, and I didn't want the smoke to go into the living room, and so that's why I had shut the door. She never did find out the truth, God rest her soul.



#21 nimbus2

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Posted 21 March 2007 - 03:01 AM

Not too sure what happened there - I'm still relatively new to this stuff. I was trying to "quote" a part of the text by GZ22 about boxed fireworks.
Boxed fireworks were popular with my neighbours and relatives back in the early 1970's. Unlike myself, they couldn't be bothered with individually selecting any particular firework and so they always went for the "package deal". For them a boxed set, of any size, promised variety, balance and value. Even though I used to habitually scoff at the box buyers I had to eventually admit to myself that there was something distinctly alluring about the contents of those mysterious cardboard treasure chests. Part of this was a certain jealousy on my part because I never had the sizable chunks of cash at hand to buy any box, even if I wanted to.
I remember how a school chum once allowed me to peep inside a box of fireworks his dad had bought and was reserving for the Fifth. It must have been the largest boxed assortment Standard retailed at the time because it seemed to be the size of a suitcase. My friend opened the lid and I looked inside. I thought I was quite familiar with the entire Standard repertoire but when I looked into that huge box I saw many fireworks which I had never seen before, which were never sold individually. In other words - fireworks which only came in a box. There were a number of new and strange members of the Roman Candle family, several unknown fountains and cascades, some unfamiliar rockets and other pieces which I now forget. Many of the novelties were small and sat buried in the corners of the box, buried under larger and more exotic objects. The sight of so many different fireworks lodged together in many layers, their shapes and coloured labels blending into the most beautiful and abstract gallimaufry, was simply magical. Just as I was about to reach over and put a finger into the box my friend lowered the lid and that was that.
I can only envy those whom still possess unused boxes of fireworks from the past, of any size. Such a treasure is like a time capsule. Open the lid and one has a glimpse of a bygone era.

#22 dr thrust

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Posted 28 May 2007 - 01:29 AM

great stories,i to grew up in the (70's) seem's along time ago!,we where very poor we lived in a shoebox in the middle of the road,and had one per of shoes between six of us,blah,blah anyway my point is i can remember that all the fireworks for the evening would fit in to a biscuit tin!!,it was always a box of standard fireworks there wasn't a great choice at the corner shop, how things have changed you need a small van these days, but wow it was the best thing since sliced bread looking in that tin,and i always seem to end the evening with a dirty face, anybody remember that old favourite the traffic light by standard, you know red amber green lots of smoke a great one for the ladies ,think i will have a go at making one for old times sake ;)

#23 maxman

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Posted 28 May 2007 - 09:59 AM

Yes fantastic times! Snow storm was another, along with mine of serpents. I always remember buying a large (at the time) land mine or ground mine from Standard size12 and my dad taking it out and insisting we put it on an old pallet incase it cracked the concrete :unsure: of course there was no chance of that.

It would be interesting to get some original construction details of some of the old fireworks to try to replicate them. Someone who worked at these factorys must have some details or there must be some formulas out there somewhere. What would happen to all that information when the places closed?

#24 Farnet

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Posted 31 May 2007 - 05:57 PM

One of the things I remember from the early 80's was of the excitement from buying a box of fireworks, and (can't remember if it was Brocks or Astra) no matter whether it was a small or huge box you ALWAYS got a tropical storm. So when you had a party and everyone brought a box, you ended up with just loads of them.

Shame they were rather boring though.

Ohhh and whatever happened to the 'indoor' fireworks..... remember... the ones that always took an age to light and ended up looking rather like a hedgehog turd. I haven't seen any for years.
Everything is poisonous if taken in the extreme.

Take time for example, have too much of it and you will eventually die....

#25 dr thrust

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Posted 02 June 2007 - 03:00 PM

wow yes indoor fireworks i remember the turd one! just googled them and theres a video at the" fireworks emporium" i think its the serpent one. remember the air b**b and its cousin that did the same job but it was a srceeeeecher, would that be a whistle mix in them?

#26 Firefiend

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Posted 03 June 2007 - 08:30 PM

I remember the old Indoor Fireworks of the 70s well. We used to get them when we couldn't get the real thing, which was most of the year in those days! Parents used to go mad with all the little black smuts they let off!!

Have a few pics of the old boxes here:

Tabella Box - Cottage Series Indoor Fireworks

Tabella Box - Indoor Fireworks

Cleveland Box - Indoor Fireworks

Sharps Box - Indoor Fireworks

and when we couldn't get (or afford) Indoor Fireworks, the final desperation was:

Brock's Box - Toy Pistol Caps :wacko:

Just for Farnet :lol:

Brock's Fireworks - Tropical Storm

Edited by Firefiend, 03 June 2007 - 08:36 PM.


#27 nimbus2

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Posted 03 June 2007 - 11:05 PM

We had indoors fireworks only a few times so I don't remember much about them. All I can recall with any clarity is how some of these tiny fireworks produced a series of little puffs of smoke - a single weird smelling puff every 2 seconds or so. I was always puzzled how these "smoke ring repeaters" actually worked because all they seemed to consist of was a tiny paper tube about the thickness of a match stick. Thanks for sharing your images, Firefiend.

#28 pyromaniac303

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Posted 04 June 2007 - 08:51 AM

I was always puzzled how these "smoke ring repeaters" actually worked because all they seemed to consist of was a tiny paper tube about the thickness of a match stick.


Maybe something similar to a strobe reaction, but producing only smoke rather than light?
You can never have a long enough fuse...

#29 pyromaniac303

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Posted 04 June 2007 - 08:53 AM

(please delete this, the page timed out when I clicked submit, but it seems to have already sent the message, so when I tried the second time it created a duplicate post)

Edited by pyromaniac303, 04 June 2007 - 08:55 AM.

You can never have a long enough fuse...

#30 Farnet

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Posted 04 June 2007 - 06:32 PM

I remember the old Indoor Fireworks of the 70s well. We used to get them when we couldn't get the real thing, which was most of the year in those days! Parents used to go mad with all the little black smuts they let off!!

Just for Farnet :lol:

Brock's Fireworks - Tropical Storm


Mr Firefiend.... I'm still laughing at that, if you don't mind I'd like to send the link to a friend, as he's be just as amused, that seriously brought back some memories...... you have one comprehensive collection of pictures of 70's fireworks.... I remember parts of those indoor ones as well, another little project chalked up for when I get my act together.

I am sure I saw some indoor fireworks for sale not so long ago, but for the life of me I can't remember where.... I'm going to have to buy some for nothing more that to set off our smoke alarms :)
Everything is poisonous if taken in the extreme.

Take time for example, have too much of it and you will eventually die....




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