Tag Archives: world record

Another World Record Achievement

On 11th October 2014, at the 13th Kounasu Fireworks festival in Japan, they have managed to successfully launch and fire the largest/heaviest aerial shell ever attempted to beat the standing world record.

The firework shell, named Fenghuang Boisterous Dance was the last shell fired for the finale of the 13th Kounosu Fireworks Festival weighing in at an incredible 1014lb the 48 inch shell burst was estimated at an incredible 2,500 feet across.

The effect was a bright orange tail which on reaching height burst in a massive chrysanthemum burst which had secondary coloured horsetails. The effects hung in the air like a breath on the wind before the stars emitted beautiful green strobing lights. Simply Beautiful:

(cut to 3:20 for the launching of the shell and burst)

The previous record holder was from Japan at the Katakai Festival and weighed in at a massive 990lbs and was named ‘Yonshakudama’ measuring 48 inches in diameter (the same diameter as the new boy!) and it gave a bloom of around 875 yards across but its lower weight means that the new boy won overall.


Latest News on the Worlds Biggest Shell Launch Attempt

You may recall in early March that Epic brought you news of a forthcoming World Record breaking attempt at creating and firing the Worlds Largest Shell burst.

The current holder is from Japan and the shell was the Yon-Shaku Dama of Katakai Japan where they fired a 120cm diameter shell which weighed in at 420kg and it was launched from a 12m long launch tube. All this effort resulted in a massive 800m diameter burst which was absolutely staggering.

The boffins in charge of the new attempt of a shell which will be over 150cm in diameter and will weigh 1700 lb or over 700 kg.

Here is some additional data for you:

• The outer casing of the shell will be approximately 4 inches thick and will be composed mainly of compressed cardboard and wrapped in heavy paper to ensure that the structural integrity of the shell is maintained.

• The break charge will be a ratio of 5:1 black powder which will be used to coat the seed husks but this may alter before the final product is agreed upon.

• The ‘stars’ will be a combination of metal fuelled colours and black powder based stars and comets for a glitter effect and salts and other effects which are to be a surprise.

• The lift charge will be large pellets of Black Powder which will be determined following further experimentation.

• The mortar tube which will house the shell is still in the planning stage at the moment but is likely to be a stationary partially buried concrete reinforced tube.

We will bring you more information as soon as it becomes available.


World Record Largest Firework Shell Attempt

Have you ever wanted to be a part of a World Record attempt?

A group of firework enthusiasts have come up with a cunning plan to create, build and successfully fire the worlds largest fireworks display shell. For those of you that don’t know what a shell is, please see an example picture below of a 16-inch firework shell.

With the assistance of the Kickstarter Campaign. The team have from now until the 3rd April 2014 to raise enough funding to make this attempt a reality and with a target of $55000.00.

For those of you wondering why they need $55k, here is the breakdown by Fred Hopper:

The $55,000 is based on the estimate of having the shell supplied with Chemicals,

1500 pounds at $6.00 per pound average from Aaron. that is $9000.

We will also need to have the Stars made at a cost of about $5000 on top of the chemicals, and I am pretty sure I am underestimating because we may very well need to make some moulds and tooling for the press. So, make it $6000

We also need to create the Machine to tape it. I don’t think I want to do it by hand. Last year Jim Widman (wasp machine) told me approx $20,000, and I thought that would be more like $25,000.

With the Tube, using the External Concrete method, We are looking at another $5000 for the forms (3 ten foot lengths, 60″ n Diameter) and the concrete to fill in around. Could be cheaper if we fill it with sand, and of course, we could not feel good leaving a 60″ hole thirty feet deep hanging around, so backfill with sand.

We are up to $45,000 estimated right now and have not yet fulfilled the incentive awards for the Kickstarter backers. That will be mainly Wallet Cards, CD’s and Photograph’s, T-shirts and Hats.

If we pay for an adjudicator from Guinness, they want $8000. I told them we will probably have to do that part ourselves, and as we know, there are hoops to dive through.

If there is anything left (it wont be much unless I am underestimating the power of “crowdfunding” (I Hope!), split between the team for a Launch Party. I have tried to keep it as close to the bone as possible, but It will take some funding, as you know.


A shell (short for bombshell) is a spherically shaped firework mainly used in professional firework displays for huge events like the Olympic Games or New Year’s Eve. Shells are fired from a mortar tube and will reach high into the sky and will burst at anything from around 117 feet for a 2-inch shell to 481 feet for a 36-inch shell. Below is a video of a typical firework shell.

In this case, the proposed shell is going to be 60 inches in diameter and will weigh in the region of 1700lb. The burst on a shell is dictated by its size and works on the principle of 45 feet diameter burst per 1 inch of shell diameter (this will depend on how tightly packed the shell is too).

Using the equation a two-inch shell will give a resultant burst of 90 feet. So the supersized shell, in this case, will give you a burst which is a staggering 2700 feet across.

The current World Record is held by Japan. They fired a 1534lb shell of 543 ¼ inches into the skies over Hokkaido on 15th July 1988 and the burst was a staggering ¾ of a MILE across.

The team planning this have some challenges ahead within particular getting a shell of this weight and size into the air with enough force to lift it but without affecting the integrity of the actual shell.

Furthermore, the stars to be used will have to be extra long burning as they need to burn as long as possible, and at the same time, ensure that they will not hit the ground still burning. Stars, as outlined in one of my previous blog posts, are little cubes of an explosive mixture containing a mixture of salts and metals to create colours, sparks and effects.

The proposed launch dates and site are still at the planning stage but they anticipate that it will be ready for launch late 2015 and they are looking for a ‘space’ big enough to enable safety distances of 8400 feet (over a mile and a half wide).

If you do wish to make history and of course gain yourself a Guinness World Record certificate of participation, why not help the team out. You can pledge anything from $1 to $7500 or more and each different level of funding will entitle you to a bigger slice of the cake.

If (and we hope with all our hearts this is a when) this attempt is made, we will bring you all the news.