Friday, December 21, 2012

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Automating fireworks production in China

As labour shortages continue to plague China, many factories are turning to mechanics in order to alleviate the shortage in manpower.

Below are videos of a reloadable shell pasting machine and a machine that fills tubes with clay plugs.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Our brand new Factory in Liuyang, Hunan, opens!

Factory Office Building - He Sheng
Our new factory "He Sheng" in Liuyang is finally in operation! We have spent almost a year modernising the factory and bringing it up to compliance with current National Safety Standards. This week, we received our permanent 3 year Safety Production Certificate!

This factory is now the largest factory in our Group with an area size of 1000mu (about 66 hectares). In total we now have 3 factories in Guangxi and 5 factories in Hunan:

This is a map of He Sheng Factory - He Sheng
* Golden Dragon Fireworks Factory, Shankou, Guangxi (240mu or 16 hectares)
Produces Vulcan display shells and mines.
View from Top of the Factory - He Sheng

* Tong Tai #1 Fireworks Factory, Shankou, Guangxi (200mu or 13 hectares)
Produces Vulcan display cakes, large rockets and missiles.

* Tong Tai #2 Fireworks Factory, Shankou, Guangxi (230mu or 15 hectares)
Produces Vulcan display roman candles, single shots, modular cakes and display cakes.

* Golden Bell Fireworks Factory, Tai Ping, Hunan - with Dong Tai Assortment Annex. (800mu or 53 hectares)
Produces consumer fireworks including cakes, fountains and assembles assortments. This factory has a 1600m2 testing site with roof and electricity.

* Gugang Fireworks Factory, Sankou Town, Hunan (180mu or 12 hectares)
Produces consumer fireworks including cakes and fountains. This factory has a UN 6 Series compliant testing facility with roof and electricity with an area of 6000m2.

* Dong Yang Fireworks Factory, Dong Yang, Hunan (200mu or 13 hectares)
Produces sparklers, and small consumer items.

 Factory trail - He Sheng
* Jixiu Fireworks Factory, Liuyang, Hunan (280mu or 18 hectares)
Produces Shogun display shells and cakes.

* He Sheng Fireworks Factory, Gaoping, Hunan (1000mu or 66 hectares)
Produces Vulcan display cakes, consumer cakes, rockets and display shells.

Our factories produce only Vulcan/Shogun brand fireworks and OEM fireworks for our customers around the world. All factories are under our control and managed by our own staff. Many staff have been with us since we first opened our first factory in Jiangmen 20 years ago in 1992!

As one of the largest fireworks manufacturing group in China producing only for export, we are in a strong position to control all aspects of safety and quality in our products. Having been established in the firework business since 1974, we understand our customers needs and always keep up to date with the ever changing International Regulations.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Fireworks is an awesome job - New Zealand

Here is an article on James York, whose company was founded in 1948 by his grandparents. They used to make fireworks in New Zealand and in the early 1990s, the Yorks joined with Vulcan to build a factory in Jiangmen, Guangdong, China, making machine pressed rockets.

At the time, rockets were all hand-pressed in China by workers and our joint venture revolutionized the manufacture of rockets in China. From 1992 to 2001, the Joint Venture factory made the best quality rockets in China, branded as VULCAN.

This is our catalog from 1993!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Malta Fireworks

Absolutely amazing video of some of the best shells in the world from Malta!

If you are interested to see more videos and photos of fireworks from Malta, visit Bertie Decelis website here.

Himmelszauber in Hannover

A documentary about the International Fireworks Competition in Hannover featuring Vulcan/China, Ipon/Italy and Team Pyro Star Production/Germany.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Globalfest in Calgary 2012

We've just come back from Globalfest having presented our display on 20th August. Video will be ready on Vimeo soon!

Photo by Steven Coutts (Flicker)

We had a great time there and a big THANK YOU to the Canadian crew for making it happen: Patrick, Kelly, Bob, Luis, Don, Kelly, James, Chris, Toby and Hrani.

All Fireworks Photos below taken by Doug Wong (

Diamond Wall

Candle Racks

Photon Flash

View of Elliston Park


The Art of Foiling

The Art of Scab Wiring
Nice Trees
The Art of Working Hard
Born to be Wild
Oops. It is highly recommended that Vulcan cylinders shells are fired from HDPE tubes. 

Doug Wong's Facebook page has some great photos from Globalfest here.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Trico Homes International Fireworks Festival August 2012

Vulcan will be participating at the annual Globalfest in Calgary, Canada on August 20th!


More details about the event can be found at:

Friday, April 27, 2012


With the Symposium coming to an end, we've all enjoyed our visit to this friendly island!

Below is an aerial view of Malta from the plane. Malta consists of three islands: Gozo, Malta and Comino. Malta, the main island measures only 245.7 sq km (94.9 sq miles). 

The Symposium is a great place to meet all our friends from the fireworks industry from all over the world! 

We had the opportunity to visit a few fireworks factories in Malta too ...

A visit to the St John's Co Cathedral in Valetta .. 

A street in the old capital city of Mdina first inhabited around 700BC. 

One of the Maltese setpieces in Mellieha

Inside one of the Band Clubs in Mellieha ..

A band club in Malta is a social gathering place for the Maltese community. Many pyrotechnicians gather in these Band Clubs to discuss fireworks over a nightly drink. 

Below are all the setpieces and wheels set up on the St Paul's promenade .. 

Here's a video of the final setpiece! A mosaic of gerbs with a colour changing chromotrope wheels. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

ISF Sympsium, 23rd - 27th April 2012 Malta

The 13th International Symposium on Fireworks will be held in Malta from 23rd April - 27th April. The Malta Fireworks Festival will then continue from 28th April to 1st May. That's an 8 night fireworks fiesta on the island of Malta!

We are excited to be there, and if you plan to visit, come by the Vulcan booth at the Trade Show!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Production Update: post-Chinese New Year 2012

It has often been said that Hunan and Jiangxi have the worst weather for fireworks production. Dripping wet in Spring, scalding hot in Summer and bitterly cold in Winter. All conditions which are not ideal for fireworks production.

Each year, right after Chinese New Year, when all the factories return to work, we always face the same problem - rain and humidity. This is typical Spring weather in this part of China. This year, it has been worst as it hasn't stopped raining since the end of the Chinese New Year.

What does rain have to do with fireworks you ask? The principal components of fireworks are all sensitive to humidity.

1. Safety fuse - ever tried to light a wet fuse? Sure, the quality of safety fuse has improved greatly over the years and most safety fuses are now coated with a layer of varnish to keep moisture out. But it can also keep moisture in if the fuse is produced on rainy wet days and it's not 100% fool-proof. Moisture sometimes seep in, especially when the firework is packed in a sealed carton or in plastic wrap leaving you with a product that has uneven timing or sometimes stops firing in the middle.

2. Black powder absorbs moisture. One of the components of black powder is charcoal which absorbs moisture like a sponge. When black powder is wet, it may clump together affecting ignition and burn rate, and sometimes even will not light. This affects the timing, the height of aerial shots, and the burst size of a firework, and can also contribute to frequent stoppage in multiple shot items.

3. Paper - Fireworks are all made with rolled paper tubes. After the tubes are rolled, the glue needs to dry. If the weather is wet, the glue doesn't dry and worst, the paper starts to absorb moisture. If tubes are wet, they can easily change shape, overall affecting the quality of the firework. Worst, the wetness will affect the chemicals in the firework and possibly cause fuse stoppage.

4. Stars - Have you ever watched a firework and thought it didn't have as much color as it should or did you ever come across lots of round black pellets on the ground after a fireworks show? It is possible that the stars have absorbed moisture and hence, did not light. This is what we call a black star. It does just that color - black.

5. Bamboo / Wooden sticks - ever seen moldy bamboo or wooden sticks on your fireworks? Yep, it's because it's often so wet in China and high levels of condensation contribute to the rapid growth of mold.

Factories have to make sure none of their fireworks suffer from the above problems, so it takes longer for production to complete as they wait for a day where the sun may come out and dry up some of this moisture. When you consider the fireworks will be loaded in a sealed container for around 3-4 weeks, with the high humidity trapped inside and condensation, it is often a good idea to unload your fireworks, inspect the cases for any signs of dampness and place them in a warm dry area with plenty of good air circulation so they can dry out as fast as possible. Usually the fireworks will function properly afterwards if caught in time.

A 10 day forecast for this week shows rain every day in Liuyang .. except one day with a small chance of sun peeking from behind the clouds.

Beihai does not fair much better, with a little more sun, but rain every day.

All these are contributing to the worsening delivery and production time in China. It does not help the overall situation with a general shortage of workers in fireworks factories. We continue to advise our customers to order early and well ahead of your season. The next weather hurdle will be the Summer when temperatures can reached 40° Celsius (or 104° Fahrenheit) last year and all factories were ordered shut for one month.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Photos from our recent display at Pyroworld Berlin 2011!

Here are some photos by Christoph Maier of a display we did in Berlin recently! All products made by Vulcan's factories in China!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Spielwarenmesse Nurnberg Toy Fair 2012

Once again we will be at the Spielwarenmesse in Nurnberg from 1st Feb to 6th Feb!

Come visit our booth, have a coffee, coke, ice tea, juice, water or cookies and peanuts and talk to Erik, Joe, Elwin and Danny!!

恭禧發財!! Gong Xi Fa Cai!!

A very Happy New Year of the Dragon to all!! As we enter another challenging year in manufacturing in China, below is an interesting article this morning from the local Hong Kong English paper South China Morning Post about the workforce in China.