How to Shoot a Roman Candle
The Fourth of July and the winter holidays are approaching, so it’s time for fireworks. Roman candles can be a fun addition to any celebration. If you have never shot one before or don’t know how to shoot a roman candle properly, this article will show you everything you need to know about them!
What is Roman Candle?
A Roman candle is a type of firework that has smaller tubes attached to it. When the big tube explodes, small flames at the bottom of each tube light and shoot out in different directions. The length of time between when the main tube explodes, and each tube lights depends on how far away from the main one.
Roman candles are different from fireworks. Fireworks, such as sparklers and fountains, only shoot out flames. These have to be attached to something else to fly into the air.
Process: How to Shoot a Roman Candle
Step One: Select a Roman Candle.
Roman candles are long sticks made up of several different tubes (smaller ones) attached. The size of the main tube will determine how high the Roman candle shoots up into the air. They normally range from two feet to three feet in length, but you can find longer or shorter fireworks at specialty stores.
Step Two: Prepare the Roman Candle.
The first thing you must do is snap off the tips of all your smaller tubes and remove any paper from the wick. The tube will now be open on one end, allowing the fuse to fit inside it. You can also use a small knife or pair of scissors to shave off some excess wick, but be careful not to cut the fuse itself.
Step Three: Light the Fuse.
Lift the red plastic cap on the bottom of your Roman candle and slide your unlit fuse into it until you cannot see it anymore. This may take a little bit of force; pry up with a butter knife or something similar.
Step Four: Prepare Your Shots.
For every 25 gram fireworks, you will need approximately 1 cup of water. If your fireworks are smaller, adjust accordingly. It is essential to use distilled water rather than tap water and make sure it is not frozen beforehand!
Fill a bucket (or other containers) with the water and place your fireworks in it. A little bit of hot sauce will help with your firework if you plan on shooting off a lot, but it is optional.
Step Five: Light Fireworks.
Once all of this is complete, step back to a safe distance (at least 50 feet) and light the fuse! The best time to light the fuse is as close to ground level as possible. The larger the Roman candle, the higher it will shoot up in the air.
Enjoy your show! Keep in mind that this process can be done with any fireworks and would likely get you more bang for your buck than buying a bunch of smaller ones. These instructions are also very general and may need to be modified slightly depending on your specific fireworks.
Step Six: Clean Up Your Mess.
While Roman candles are fun to shoot off, they can also make a big mess if not cleaned up properly. Be sure to have containers ready for soaking all the spent fireworks in water and try to remove any debris that might have landed on the ground. You can also use a hose to clean off anything particularly dirty, but be careful when using it in a dry area as it may cause even more of a mess!
Things To Consider When Shooting a Roman Candle
- The Roman Candle needs to have enough powder on the wick for it to shoot high into the air. If not enough powder is added, the result will be a dud.
- Never light one roman candle from another, as this can cause great damage to the person lighting it.
- Always wear safety glasses when shooting a Roman Candle if sparks fall back down to the area you are standing or sitting in.
- Be careful not to light more than one candle at a time, as this can cause great damage to your hands and body if the candles ignite immediately after being lit.
- Never light a Roman Candle near dry grass, walls, trees, or any other flammable material as this can cause great damage to your surroundings and/or person.
- If you cannot find a Roman Candle launcher, try using a sparkler instead. The sparkler will light the candle in the same way an igniter would.
- Make sure you have a bucket of water or hose nearby if the fireworks fail to launch all the way into the air and land on your property. This will help prevent any fires from starting.
- Do not try to re-light a Roman Candle if it does not ignite, as doing so can overheat the waterproof seal, causing the firework to explode in your hand.
How Long a Roman Candle last?
Roman Candles are those delightful little firecrackers filled with gunpowder. They have an outer shell of paper or other material to hold the gunpowder and a fuse (act as a wick). So it is that determines how long it will last. As the fuse burns, it creates a flame that travels down the inside of the candle and ignites the gunpowder. Some fuses are different lengths for different sizes of candles, and they burn at different speeds.
The fuse will normally reach about 1/4 to 1/3 of the way down before it ignites all the powder. The amount of powder inside the candle determines how long it will burn. The more power there is, the longer it will burn. Some fuses are made with small grains of gunpowder wrapped in paper, and others use a bituminized material as a slow-burning fuse.
Roman candles are fun to shoot off on holidays and events. We hope you learned a few tricks from this blog post on how to shoot a roman candle! Have you tried any of these tips? Let us know in the comments below what your favorite way is to set up or light a roman candle.