No Plastic Rockets

Discussion in 'Fireworks Forum Chat And Discussion' started by Chorlton Fireworks, Feb 9, 2021.

  1. Great to see @Celtic Fireworks moving forward and searching for ways to reduce the minimal elements of pollution from fireworks while not compromising on safety or quality.

    They have a large selection of rockets arriving this year with no plastic at all.

    Great to see. Well done!

  2. Tinderbox

    Tinderbox Pro Firer/Crew Supports UKFR

    At last. Excellent step forward.
  3. Awesome, a good amount of 90's rockets had less plastic than today, I all ways thought that even the nose cones could be made from compressed paper.
  4. paul s

    paul s Supports UKFR

    I’m trying to think if we ever had early rockets with card cones .....??

    I can only recall flat ended or plastic cones. I imagine forming card ones will not be easy to do.

    One less gripe for the anti lot.
  5. Tinderbox

    Tinderbox Pro Firer/Crew Supports UKFR

    Paper mache cones formed under a press in moulds will be easy and fast. Yarn for weaving looms mostly comes on cardboard cones. Machines exist to make wrapped paper cones for fireworks fountains of all sizes. Nose cones on rockets are not essential really. It's just for window dressing. Their specific impusle is just not up their to be affected by nose cones. Unlike model rocketry where high speeds and altitudes are the aim. Most major UK manufacturers made a range of huge flat headed rockets back in the day.

    Do a search on youtube for Tom Rubenclau Rocket Master. He makes the most amazing 3/4" 1lb core burning rockets with paper tubes and cat litter nozzles carrying 3" cyinder shells (flat headed and spiked with twine). No plastic.

    I remember when all fireworks were 90% to 100% paper, wood and glue. Fired tons of paper only rockets back in the day and all performed well. I've said it before a few times on here, the use of plastics these days is because that is the default material for most things now and there isn't really any other credible argument other than plastic is fast and cheap. Motors were always either crimped card tubes or tubes with clay nozzles and worked perfectly well.

    The Estes solid fuel model rocket motor range are high performing BP end burning motors. The D class motors out perform most large consumer firework rockets and they are all made with paper and bentonite.Core burners do create higher pressures but nearly all large rockets made in the UK were core burners and again used crimped paper tubes. No excuse for plastics anymore.

    Excellent move by Celtic. Sometimes going backwards isn't such a bad thing.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2021
    DaleMartin likes this.
  6. I saw a recent report about a shortage of cardboard due to the huge increase in home deliveries.

    How will our planet cope with even more trees being cut down for paper-making?

    Will more use of paper affect the planet more, less, or the same as less use of plastic?
  7. Dayle Ward

    Dayle Ward Supports UKFR

    Recycling of paper is cheaper to do than plastic as well as less environmentally damaging. Ultimately we need to look for other forms of paper making, Hemp paper is a fantastic substitute with much less damage overall! A tree takes years to grow, a hemp plant only a few months!
    Tinderbox and Limonskaya like this.
  8. Yeah most nose cones were plastic but most of the rockets I remember had the stick glued on the motor and wrapped with the paper label, the payload bodies had a roll bead at bottom and glued on the the motor, plastic cone pressed into the top, I think I'm thinking of the the big big Weco display rockets I used to buy
  9. Do you know what the fuse cover is made of?
  10. no clue, Iv just taken the info I have from the Facebook post above. Will ask the question
  11. Great news! I always feel for the environment when I see one of the larger £15 rockets that are a huge plastic case

    Hopefully other manufacturers will follow suit
  12. Great news. Only issue which time will tell for me would be how well they store in comparison to there plastic counterparts. I say this as most folk store in outbuildings, sheds where humidity and heat vary greatly. Will this affect the performance quality of the casing and composition contained within (most composition is contained in a plastic bag). Just in case I have a few leftovers for that mid year pyro fix.
  13. Tinderbox

    Tinderbox Pro Firer/Crew Supports UKFR

    That goes for every type of firework. Cakes, fountains etc.
  14. Interesting I approve of no plastic :) I am interested in how the stick will be attached. I assume a paper wrap as in the days of the old UK manufacture. I know a paper wrap is used now on smaller rockets that have the plastic tube wrapped in card. My point is that the big plastic rockets now shatter and the the big stick falls to the ground fairly harmless though some are quite heavy but will fall horizontally. When the stick stays attached to the tube the spent rocket becomes a lawn dart! Maybe not such a problem with little rockets but what about big ones? I wonder if a way has been develoved to detach the stick after the heading goes off or is there a size limit to the rockets?

    Then again there are such things as tubeless rockets! A slug of propellant wrapped in paper so no tube will fall and stick comes off at burn out. Cant wait to find out

  15. RocketRev

    RocketRev Moderator Supports UKFR

    I've seen plenty of plastic bodied big stick lawn darts! The plastic body shatters and the bits that formed the effects container break away from the motor section and come down like plastic confetti in smaller or larger pieces. The plastic that surrounds the motor stays around the motor and keeps the motor attached to the stick and that whole assembly becomes a nasty lawn dart.
  16. Tinderbox

    Tinderbox Pro Firer/Crew Supports UKFR

    That's a good point. Most large rockets are designed to be seperated from their sticks during the break though this isn't always 100% effective and as you and Rev state, they become dangerous darts.

    Tubeless motors do indeed exist and are a very interesting method of propulsion opening up allsorts of potential effects just with the motor rising alone. I've seen colour comps and whistle comps being used to good effect. The problem there may be that the quantity of the comp required to lift a decent header equivilant to existing large rockets will be more than the already existing BP cased motors and will push the NEC over the thresshold and then there is the added expense of CE testing and marking. If it was possible to get beyond that, I suspect the RRP to be almost prohibitive to the end user.

    With some R&D, the stick can be made to seperate during the break but this requires paying people to design and test using up materials over a given period just to make an environmentally appealing product. I for one endorse this motive but on a business level, one has to weigh up the cost and effort against the projected return and overall worth. Is the demand out there for more environmentally friendly fireworks? I'm talking end user, not retailer. From what I see behind the counter over nearly 20 years of selling, folk couldn't care less and they even come back asking for daft looking rockets they bought previously that had plastic heads made to look like novelty toys when those very rockets scatter horrendous sharp fragments of non-biodegradable plastic into the environment. But, that doesn't concern most folk. They aren't even aware of it mostly.

    Manufacturers need an insentive to change something that is already working for them and that is a massive hurdle. I'm 110% behind ridding the use of these awful materials but I think it will take a mutually agreed upon industry movement to have some influence for the rest to follow suit and then the products need to be marketed with that environmental message in a bold way for the effort to be effective. Once you get some momentum in that way, nobody wants to get left behind so others will naturally start to follow suit.

    Let's hope Celtic have started a trend.
  17. "Exciting News - less plastic!
    Our Insanity, Vader, Rocks and Messenger rockets will all be made of paper this year - no plastic in the rocket at all. Same quality, same burst size but significantly less environmental impact. Following the successful launch of our low noise range last year we wanted to go a step further and so this was a logical step forward. Available at the same price as 2020 from all good retailers soon!"

    The messenger will be the interesting one as seems to be the bigest. Looking at pictures here seems like the stick is held on by a label so potential lawn dart. Is that last years messenger? Non plastic not out yet??