The laboratoy or school of the arts.
Part I. Artificial fire-works.
A the principal ingredient in Artificial Fire-works is compounded of three substances, of the nature of which the reader may not be acquainted, we shall set out with giving a short account of gunpowder, and its compo-nent parts —Nitre, Sulphur, and Charcoal.
Gunpowder is so well known by its effects, as to render it unnecessary to give any particular description, further than to state, that it is an intimate mixture of seventy-five parts of purified nitre, nine and a half parts of sulphur, and fifteen and a half parts of charcoal. Many Other pro-portions have been employed, but the above are found to succeed, for general uses, the best of any other ; because its force and goodness greatly depends on the total decom-position of the nitre, and the rapidity with which it is per- formed. The accuracy and intimacy of the mixture must of course be as great a requisite as the very ingredients themselves ; and the combination is attended with no small degree of danger. In large manufactories, a mill is em-ployed, in which wooden mortars are disposed in rows, and in each of which is a wooden pestle, moved by the arbor of a wheel turned by water, or wind. The mate¬rials are pounded and mixed in these wooden mortars, for twelve hours together, being occasionally moistened during the trituration, to prevent any sudden explosion. Nothing now remains, after the above operation, but to form the powder into grains, which is found wonderfully to improve its powers, and renders it less liable to soil the fingers, or foul the barrels of fire-arms : —the grains are made larger for cannon, and smaller for muskets. No process can be
well imagined more simple than the granulation of the powder. It is placed to a certain thickness upon sieves, the holes of which are of a certain diameter, and a flat piece of wood is horizontally pressed upon the surface of the powder. The powder being damp when taken from the mill, for. the reasons stated above, is readily formed into molecules of the size of the holes, and its surface rendered smoother, less liable to adhere to the surfaces of other bodies,- and admitting a freer contact of atmospherical air between its particles. A still greater smoothness, and even lustre, is given to putting portion into barrel, which turns upon an axis, by means of wheel- work, and produces certain degree of friction. After this, the whole grains are separated from the finer powder, by sifting and the finer powder again granulated, and finished like the rest. —We now proceed to treat briefly of the several ingredients and first of nitre.
Nitre, or common saltpetre, formed the union of the nitric acid with potash. This salt of fresh taste, and its crystals are, uniformly, six-sided prisms, terminat¬ing in dihedral pyramids, or cut off with slope, and channelled, frequently, from one end to the other. There
great abundance of this salt in nature, as continually forming in places frequented by animals, and on walls secured from rain, and in the rubbish and plaster of old buildings.
Three circumstances seem to be necessary to the for¬mation of nitre. First, calcareous earth, which forms a nidus for its reception in buildings, &c. : Secondly, animal substances ; for it is a known fact, that places watered by animal liquors, and in a state of putrefaction, such as dung¬hills, stables, jakes, &c. afford great quantities of nitre : Thirdly, the contact of air, without which no nitre could be formed. Upon the above principles are founded the
beds of artificial nitre-works. To this effect, a number of proposals have been made, from time to time, by ingeni¬ous men, whereby vast quantities of nitre might certainly be formed, to the great advantage of the state, and emo¬lument of the speculator. But this has been little attended to in England, which is supplied from her settlements in the East-Indies, with more than perhaps she can consume. Spain alone could furnish all Europe with this commodity, according to the information of Mr. Townsend ; but she keeps it principally for her own use, and that of her colo¬nies. France also manufactures this article in great abun¬dance, of as excellent and pure a quality as any on the globe. When nitre has been dissolved, and freed of its
impurities, and re-crystallized, it is fitted for the making of gunpowder.
Of sulphur, or brimstone.
Sulphur, or brimstone, is a combustible body; drv, brittle, of a citron yellow colour, without smell, except when burnt ; of a peculiar taste, which is weak though percep¬tible. It is electric when rubbed, and crackles and breaks
on being instantly exposed to heat. Sulphur is combined with a number of substances, and pervades all nature ; but we shall here only speak of it pure and uncombined. It
is usually obtained by the decomposition of a mineral sub-stance termed pyrites. In Saxony and Bohemia, it is ma-nufactured in a more elaborate manner than elsewhere ; it is put in earthen tubes, in small pieces, and placed on an oblong furnace. One end of the tube stands in the fur¬nace, and the other passes into a vessel of cast-iron, con¬taining water. In this receiver the sulphur accumulates, though impure ; and it is afterwards purified by melting it in an iron ladle, which causes the impurities to be preci¬pitated to the bottom. It is again kept in fusion in a cop¬per boiler, and it is then poured into wooden cylindrical
moulds, which give it the form in which we usually see it in commerce.
Charcoal is the black residue of vegetable matter, whose volatile principles have been decomposed and set at liberty by fire. Different vegetable matters afford coal in greater or less abundance, according to the soliditv and form of their texture. It has a strong attraction for all substances which contain vital or pure air, (now termed oxygenc) which is one reason for the phenomena we sec in the ex¬
plosion of gunpowder. The charcoal of willow-wood is preferred, by many, for the manufacture of gunpowder ; though others maintain, that the coal of hard woods is equally fitted for the purpose, provided it be thoroughly burned, and preserved from the contact of the atmosphere during the operation.
Having now mentioned, in a cursory way, the nature of gunpowder, and its several parts, it remains only that we detail a few other ingredients, and processes, employed in the composition of fire-works, previous to describing the fire-works themselves.
How to break or granulate Sulphur.
Take some spirits ; put a handful of sulphur therein, and let it dissolve ; then take a broad stick, and stir it about till it grows mealy, and like sand. If you would again have it strong and hard, fling a little nitre kito it.
To combine Oil with Sulphur.
Fill a matrass with fine pulverised sulphur, about one- third full ; on this pour as much nut or elder oil as will fill the matrass half full: set it in warm ashes, and let it stand for eight or nine hours, and the oil will change the sulphur to a high red colour.
To make artificial Camphor, and its Oil.
Take of pulverised juniper-gum two pounds, and of distilled vinegar enough to cover it ; close them together in a glass phial ; set it for twenty days in warm horse dung ; then take it out again, and pour it out into another glass, with a wide mouth to it ; expose it to the sun for a month, and you will have a concreted camphor, which is in some measure like the natural camphor : this, for use in fire¬works, is pulverized by grinding it with sulphur in a mortar. The oil of camphor is made by adding a little oil of
sweet almonds to the camphor, and working it in a brass mortar with a pestle ; which will turn it into a green oil.
To make Moulds for rockets,
Rockets bearing the pre-eminence, and being the principal things belonging to fire-works, it is requisite to give some account of every part of them— how they are made, finished and fired. In order to do this, I shall first endeavour to give the curious some idea concerning the moulds they are formed in ; these are turned commonly of close and hard wood, as of white plumb-tree, box, chesnut, cypress, juniper, Indian wood, &c. Some also are made of ivory ; and for rockets of an extraordinary large size, they are cast in brass or copper, and turned in the inside in a nice manner : the foot, or basis, with its cylinder, wart, or half-bullet, may in these, as in others, remain of solid wood. The whole is commonly turned of the size and form of a column in architecture ; and embellished with ornaments, according to the taste of the fire-worker.
The size of the cylinder is agreed, by the most famous artificers, to be, for rockets from a half to six pounds, six diameters ; but for the larger size, four, four and a half, or five diameters of the height of the orifice.
Those rockets which go under the denomination of small ones, are those whose inward diameter cannot receive a ball that exceeds one pound. The middling sort are those whose diameter can admit balls of one, two, or three pounds ; and great ones are such, whose bore will receive balls from three to a hundred pounds.
Rocket moulds, from some ounces to three pounds, are ordinarily seven diameters of their bore long ; the foot, two or three diameters thick ; the wart, two-thirds of the diameters ; and the piercer, one-third of the bore ; the roller, two-thirds, and always one or two diameters, from the handle, longer than the mould ; the rammer, one diameter shorter than the mould, and somewhat thinner than the roller, to prevent the sacking of the paper when the charge is rammed in ; having, always, one still shorter, that, when the shell of the rocket is rammed half full, you may use that with more ease. For the better illustra¬tion, see fig. 1. representing the mould with its basis, cylinder, bore and piercer. A B the interior diameter of the mould : — C D the height of the mould, seven diame¬ters : from D to E is the height of the breech at bottom, which stops the mould when the rocket is driving ; and; this is one and one-third diameter. Upon this bottom you have a solid cylinder, whose height is one diameter of the orifice A B ; this cylinder is crowned with a wart, or half bullet I, having a hole in the centre, in which is fixed the iron, or copper piercer F. —G. a pin that keeps the bottom and cylinder together.
2. The roller. 3. The rammer. 4. The shorter rammer.
It is to be observed, that some of these moulds are made nine diameters of their orifice long ; the shell therefore, with the wart, will be twelve diameters. These sort of rockets fly very high, because of their length, containing a greater charge than the short ; nevertheless, the piercer needs to be no longer than seven diameters, but substan¬tial, so as to keep in its proper attitude : — it will require the dimension of two-thirds of the diameter at bottom, and from thence, tapering, to half the diameter.
To prepare Cases for Swarmers, or Rockets.
The cases, or trunks, of rockets, are made of different sorts of things, viz. paper, wood, tin, pasteboard, linen, leather, &c.
In paper cases, which are for the most part made use of, it must be observed, 1. That great care ought to be taken in winding, or rolling them, upon the roller, tight and close. 2. That the concave stroke be struck clean, smooth, and without large wrinkles; and, 3. That each sort of cases be of an equal length and size.
The rocket-shells being very tiresome for two persons to make by hand, a machine has been invented for the ease¬ment. It is made of an oaken board, about two foot wide, and three or four inches thick, planed smooth, and cut out into channels, or groves, of different sizes, to serve for greater, or lesser, rockets ; and is commonly called the saddle. To these sort of saddles are also made pressers, whereby the cases on the roller are pressed down with a heavy hand ; the handle of the roller having a hole in the middle, a small iron bar is put in, and as the man presses with one hand, he turns the roller with the other ; and, by this means, the paper is brought as tight as it ought to be. See fig. 5 and 6..
For four and six pound shells it is to be observed, that each sheet of paper (except the first and last, in the part where the neck is formed) be a little moistened.
The necks of rockets may be formed several ways: — for those of three quarters of a pound, a well twisted pack-thread will do, which, having one end tied to a stick and put between one's legs, and the other to a post, will draw it close with ease. The large shells require more
strength ; one end of a strong cord being fastened to a post, and the other to a leathern belt, with a hook, as fig. 7 :— and this, by main force, draws the cord, twisted about the neck of the case, — as you see in fig. 8.
Some make use of a bench, on one end of which is fixed a post, to which a cord is fixed, and conveyed over a pully, and through a hole in the bench, to a treddle, to which it is fastened, whereby the necks are forced very tight. See fig. 9.
The necks of extraordinary large sized rockets are forced, with strong cords, over screws, and round-necked irons, proportioned to the size of the shell. See fig. 10.
The wooden, tin, and paste-board rockets, are supplied with necks, turned of wood, joined, and fastened through the sides of the shell with wooden pegs.
Preliminary Observations in preparing the Charges fox Rockets; and to order their Fires of various Colours Before you begin to charge the shell of the rocket, be very careful that the powder is well worked and cleaned ; that the nitre is thoroughly refined, and made into an im¬
palpable powder ; that the sulphur be well cleansed, and brought to the highest perfection; that the coals be of lime-tree, or other soft wood, well burnt, powdered, dried, and sifted ; and all these ingredients be well mixed together and searsed through a fine sieve.
When you are satisfied in these things, and have weigh¬ed the proportionable quantities of each, put the mixture into the work board, fig. 11. and grind it with the grinder, fig-9 fig. 12. for an hour: then try your charge, by sifting a little on a table, and when lighted, burns away in an even fire, and does not fly up, sign that worked enough but at one place burns quicker than another, or stops its course, then you must grind more. The charge being thus prepared, you must put up safe in
place that neither too hot, cold, nor damp, box, or other dry vessel; and when you charge your rocket, then sprinkle and mix the charge with little brandy.
Having rammed rocket, for trial, fire in secure open place mounts even and high, and gives re¬port as soon as turns, sign of being made to per¬fection but the rocket burst as soon as lighted, then the charge too fierce or rises little, and falls back, then the charge foul and weak :— the former rectified by adding more charcoal -and the latter, by some meal-powder. For the rest, must be observed, that the larger the rockets arc, the weaker must be the charge and on the contrary, the smaller they are, the stronger must be their charge.
If you would represent fiery rain falling from the rocket, mix among your charge composition of pow¬dered glass, filings of iron, and saw-dust this shower commonly called the peacock's tail, on account of the various colours that appear in it.
You may also exhibit variety of colours issuing forth from rocket, by mixing among the charge certain quantity of camphor, which produces white, or pale fire rosin, red and copper colour blood-stone, which has been nealed and beaten to palpable powder, blood red sulphur, blue sal ammoniac, green antimony, reddish, or honey colour ivory shavings, shining sil¬ver filed agate-stone, an orange and pitch, dark and deep coloured fire. This must be managed with discre¬tion and practice will be the best teacher in that particular, for long lessons are more fit to perplex a young beginner than put him forwards.
The charges are commonly divided into three sorts, or degrees, viz. white, grey, and black. I have, the better to guide beginners in this art, set down several sorts of charges, according to the proportion of rockets, but with¬out distinguishing the three several colours ; wherefore you have to observe, that to the grey charges are four ingredients, viz. mealed gunpowder *, nitre, sulphur and charcoal ; to the white charges three ingredients, viz. nitre, sulphur, and charcoal ; and to the black charges two ingredients, viz. mealed gunpowder and charcoal.
Charges for Land Swarmers, or Small Rockets.
Mealed gunpowder one pound, and charcoal one ounce. Or, Mealed powder five ounces, and charcoal half an ounce. Mealed powder fifteen ounces, and charcoal two ounces. Mealed powder six ounces, nitre four ounces, sulphur
one ounce, charcoal one ounce and three quarters. This last may be used for the fuzee of others.
Charges for Water Rockets.
Nitre, or saltpetre, two ounces, sulphur half an ounce, and charcoal one ounce and a half.
Mealed powder one pound and a half, nitre four pounds, sulphur two pounds, and charcoal five ounces.
Mealed powder four ounces, nitre one pound, sulphur eight ounces, and charcoal one ounce.
Nitre two ounces, sulphur half an ounce, and charcoal half an ounce.
" Wherever the term mealed powder, or poiuder onlv, is used, it means braised gunpowder: corn powder is whole gunpowder.
A general Charge for Rockets of two or three Ounces.
Mealed powder twelve ounces, nitre two ounces, sulphur half an ounce, charcoal one ounce and a half.
Chargesfor Rockets offour, five, and six Ounces.
Powder, i.e. gunpowder, fifteen ounces, nitre twelve ounces, sulphur one ounce and a half, and charcoal four ounces.
Powder one pound and a half, nitre one pound and a half, sulphur ten ounces and a half, and charcoal twelve ounces.
Powder two pounds, nitre one pound, sulphur three ounces, and charcoal fourteen ounces and a half.
Powder eight pounds, nitre twelve pounds, sulphur two pounds, and charcoal four pounds.
Powder twelve ounces, nitre two ounces, sulphur two ounces, and charcoal two ounces.
Nitre four pounds, sulphur fourteen ounces, and char¬coal one pound.
Powder three ounces, nitre half an ounce, sulphur half an ounce, and charcoal half an ounce.
Powder one pound and a half, charcoal three ounces and three quarters.
For eight, nine, and twelve Ounce Rockets.
Mealed powder eighteen pounds, nitre eight pounds,' sulphur one pound, and charcoal four pounds.
Powder four pounds, nitre three pounds and a half, sulphur fifteen ounces, charcoal one pound four ounces.
Powder three pounds, nitre two pounds, sulphur two pounds, and charcoal one pound.
Powder three pounds, nitre two pounds, sulphur one ounce, and charcoal one pound.
Powder nine pounds, charcoal one pound eight ounces. Nitre
Nitre two pounds four ounces, sulphur eight ounces, charcoal fourteen ounces, and antimony four ounces.
Nitre one pound two ounces, sulphur two ounces, and charcoal four ounces.
Nitre ten ounces and a half, sulphur one ounce, char¬coal three ounces, and brass file-dust half an ounce.
Nitre two pounds four ounces, sulphur eight ounces, and charcoal fourteen ounces.
For one, and one and a half Pound Pockets.
Mealed powder three pounds, nitre four ounces, suL phur one ounce, and charcoal four ounces and a half.
Powder thirty-two pounds, sulphur two pounds, and charcoal six pounds.
Powder two pounds, nitre two pounds and a half, sul¬phur twelve ounces, and charcoal one pound three ounces.
Powder six pounds and a half, charcoal one pound.
Powder three pounds, nitre fifteen ounces, sulphur four ounces, and charcoal seven ounces and a half.
Powder four pounds, nitre one pound eight ounces, sul¬phur ten ounces, and charcoal one pound twelve ounces.
Powder two pounds, nitre one pound four ounces, sul¬phur one ounce, and charcoal eight ounces and a half.
For two and three Pound Rockets.
Mealed powder three pounds eight ounces, nitre three pounds ten ounces, sulphur one pound four ounces, and charcoal one pound three ounces.
Nitre four pounds eight ounces, sulphur one pound eight ounces, and charcoal one pound four ounces.
Nitre sixty pounds,, sulphur two pounds, and charcoal fifteen pounds.
Powder two pounds thirteen ounces, nitre fifteen ounces, sulphur four ounces, and charcoal seven ounces and a half.
Powder twelve ounces, nitre one pound eight ounces,
sulphur six ounces, and charcoal six ounces.
Powder four pounds, nitre nine ounces, sulphur three
ounces and a half, and charcoal ten ounces and a half. Powder one pound, nitre eight ounces, sulphur two
ounces, and charcoal three ounces.
Powfler eleven pounds, and charcoal two pounds ten
Nitre six pounds four ounces, sulphur one pound, and charcoal two pounds and a half.
For four or Five Pound Rockets.
Mealed powder six pounds, nitre four pounds, sul¬
phur one pound and a half, and charcoal two pounds six ounces. Or,
Nitre sixty-four pounds, sulphur eight pounds, and charcoal eight pounds.
For six, eight, or nine Pounders.
Mealed powder twelve pounds three quarters, nitre six pounds, sulphur two pounds and a half, and charcoal
five pounds and a half. Or,
Nitre thirty-five pounds, sulphur five pounds, charcoal
Mealed powder twenty-two pounds and a half, and charcoal five pounds twelve ounces.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre half a pound, sulphur two ounces, and charcoal three ounces.
Nitre nine pounds, sulphur one pound nine ounces, and charcoal three pounds and a half.
For ten and twelve Pounders.
Nitre sixty-two pounds, sulphur nine pounds, char¬
coal twenty pounds.
Powder eleven pounds, nitre seven pounds, sulphur three pounds, and charcoal six pounds.
For fourteen, fifteen, and sixteen Pounders.
Powder ten pounds and a half, sulphur nine pound's three quarters, and charcoal seven pounds*
Nitre twenty-three pounds, sulphur eight pounds, and charcoal sixteen pounds.
For eighteen or twenty Pounders.
Powder twenty-two pounds, nitre sixteen pounds, sul¬
phur seven pounds, charcoal thirteen pounds and a half. Nitre twenty-four pounds, sulphur twelve pounds, and
charcoal twenty-six pounds.
For thirty, forty, and ffty Pounders.
Powder eight pounds, nitre sixteen pounds, sulphur
two pounds, and charcoal four pounds.
Nitre thirty pounds, sulphur seven pounds, and char¬
coal eighteen pounds.
For sixty, eighty, and a hundred Pounders. Nitre thirty-six pounds, sulphur ten pounds, and char¬
coal eighteen pounds.
Nitre fifty pounds, sulphur twenty pounds, and char¬coal thirty pounds.
To bore the Rockets, or ram them over the Piercer. Since the boring of rockets is one of the principal
things belonging to them, (for their operating well) the bores are to be made in proportion to the size of the rockets ; some of them are bored tapering to a point ;
others are hollowed square, running also to a point ; and others are rammed over a round piercer, which is fixed in the wart of the rocket-mould. See fig. 1. I, which stands perpendicular, running tapering to a point. The stronger the charge of the rockets, the narrower should
be the bore ; and the weaker the charge, the deeper and wider :
wider:—for if a strong charge is bored too deep, it will
break in ascending ; and if it is bored too little, and the
charge too slow, it will fall to the ground without any effect :—they are commonly, in middling charges, bored two-thirds of the tube from the neck.
The boring must be performed strait and even ; and
although some will give themselves the trouble to bore them by hand, it is better, when a quantity is to be bored, to send them to a turner.
The rockets should be bored but a few days before they
are to be used ; and kept in dry places ; which you must also observe in other materials for fire-works.
For garnishing of Rockets.
This is done several ways, for they may be both within and without furnished with crackers. On the outside it is done in the following manner, viz. That end of the rocket which is solid is divided into three equal parts, and then bored in the middle of each, quite to the charge j at the bottom of these holes paste a ring of thin paper, upon which fling some mealed powder ; then fix in the crackers, stuffing the sides with some tow or flax ; and over that, paste a covering of paper, to close the opening between the rocket and crackers.
The inside is finished thus: put a small round board (in which you have bored several holes) upon the charge ; then strew mealed powder in them, and fix your crackers ;
cover it with a cap, and paste it to the outside of the rocket.
You may also furnish rockets, both within and without, with sparks, stars, and fire-rain, when those materials are joined either within or without. You may also fix to the large rockets, swarmers, by boring a touch-hole in both, filling them with mealed powder, and, after the touch¬holes are fixed exactly on one another, glue them toge¬ther with a bandage of paper ; thus you may mark a winding figure with a thread on a rocket, and place your swarmers accordingly. See fig. 13. You may also, in¬stead of swarmers, place a globe on the top of the rocket, charged with the composition of rockets, and filled with crackers ; this globe must have a touch-hole, and be light¬ed before the rocket is let off, and it will have a good
effect. Several other things may be done that way, as
the genius of every virtuoso will direct him. See fig. 14, 15. [images in the last part, last chapter]
How to proportion the Rocket-Poles and Sticks.
It is common to tie but one rocket to a stick ; but six or seven may be placed round the thick end, which must be worked with grooves, as you see fig. 17. But as no
rocket would ascend high, if it were not for the true balance observed in the pole or stick, you must further observe, that these sticks are made of light, dry, and strait wood, and must (to one and two pound rockets) be
seven times as long as the rocket ; which proportion, of the small ones of seven diameters, must also be observed in the larger sort. That end where the rocket is tied to, must be two-fifths ; and below, one sixth of the diameter. It is best to give the turner an unborcd rocket, and one that is bored, thereby not only to measure the length, but also balance the weight. After the rocket is tied to the stick, take it four inches from the neck of that rocket
which is not yet bored ; and from the neck of the bored one, about two or three fingers, so as to stand on the back of a knife, or one's finger, in an equilibrium. In large
rockets, the poles must be eight or nine rockets long ; and to find their balance, you take their libration twelve inches from the neck.
Rockets without Sticks.
There are rockets made without sticks. Fix to the small ones (from four, to eight, nine, or ten ounces after they
are bored and rammed) four wings, in the nature of arrow-feathers, made either of light wood or paste-board,
and glued crossways to the rocket : their length must be two-thirds ; and the breadth, below, one-sixth of the length of the rocket ; the thickness may be one-eighth of the diameter of the mouth. See fig. 18, and 19. These sort of rockets are fired on a board or stand, placed between four small sticks ; as you see in fig. 20.
Others fasten one end of a wire, which is about a foot long, twisted like a screw, to the mouth of the rocket, and hang an iron ball to the other end, of an equal weight with the rocket. See fig. 21.
Of Girandel Chests ; how, and with what, the Rockets are fired therein.
The girandel chest, see fig. 16, is made of wood, of what size you think proper, according to the number of rockets you design to fire at once.
The method of firing the rockets is performed several ways ; some fill the necks of them with mealed powder ; others, with quick match ; wherewith, or with gun match, they fire them : the best way to light the girandel, or other fire-works, is with a match, prepared on purpose in the following manner :
Cut some slips of paper, of the length of half a sheet, and about one or two inches wide ; roll, and glue, each of them together over a little round and smooth stick, of a quarter of an inch thick ; this done, take it off, when dry, and fill it with the composition hereafter-mentioned ; ramming it in, by little and little, with a less stick than
that upon which you rolled the shell. These sort of matches are put upon pinchers, as you see in fig. 22 ; and
when they are lighted, they cannot be extinguished either by rain or wind.
vol. I. c Their
Mealed powder three ounces and a half, nitre severt
ounces, and sulphur three ounces three quarters, moisten-
ed with linseed oil.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre one pound, and sul-
phur thirteen ounces, moistened with linseed oil.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre one pound four ounces,
sulphur four ounces, charcoal two ounces, resin two ounces
and a half, moistened with turpentine and linseed oil, and
worked well together.
Mealed powder twelve ounces, nitre two ounces, sul-
phur three ounces and a half, charcoal an ounce and a
quarter, turpentine one ounce, and tallow three ounces
and a quarter ; first melt the turpentine and tallow toge-
ther, then stir the other ingredients among and pour
in the paper shells when dry, they are fit for use.
Of Rockets that run upon Lines, or Ropes, from one place
These are made several different ways and to give
them the more shew, some garnish them wiih figures of
The first sort contrived by fixing two iron rings, or
wooden tube, to rocket, filled with certain quantity of
suitable composition, and bored as usual through these
rings, or tubes, put line, on which the rocket to
run; this of the most simple kind, for being arrived at
the place where the duration of its combustible matter
will allow to reach, there stops. This sort repre-
sented in fig. 23.
For the second sort, fill any rocket, whose orifice
equal to that of the former, but much longer, to the
height of four diameters bore to the depth of three
and a half. Upon this composition put a cap, or little wooden partition, without any hole through it; glue this to the inside of the rocket, or secure it any other way, to
prevent the fire, when arrived at that place, from catching hold of the composition contained in the other part of the case. This done, charge the remainder of the rocket to
the same height as before, viz. to four diameters (three and a half must be bored) ; after this choak the rocket at top, and make a little receptacle for the priming, as at the other end ; or else, fit a round piece of wood to it, with a hole through the middle, as you see in A, fig. 24. which you cover with a little cap ; to this add, on one
side, a tube made of very thin iron plate, which fill with mealed powder ; then bore a hole through the side of the rocket, near the other side of the partition that is in the middle, and fill it with mealed powder ; this is done to
convey the fire through the tube to the receptable A, where it lights the other rocket, and consequently obliges
it to return back to the place whence it came ; the upper part which holds the priming must be covered with paper, as well as the small tube that conveys the fire from that to the other end. This rocket must also have - two iron rings, or a wooden tube, to run along the line. You may make the diversion the greater, by tying small paper
crackers all round. The contrivance of this rocket is very pretty. You have the representation plain in fig. 24, 25.
The decorations and devices that are usually fixed to these running rockets, may be either flying dragons, pigeons, Mercuries, Cupids, or any other fancy, as the
occasion of a feast or rejoicing requires. -
Charges for the Line Rockets.
Mealed powder three ounces, nitre one ounce and a half, and charcoal three ounces, will be a right proportion for three, four, or six ounce rockets.
Mealed powder eight ounces, nitre two ounces, sulphur half an ounce, and charcoal one ounce.
Mealed powder nine ounces, nitre one ounce, sulphur three quarters of an ounce, and charcoal four ounces.
Mealed powder fourteen ounces, nitre seven ounces, sulphur two ounces, and charcoal four ounces.
These charges may be used for sixteen and twenty-four pounders.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre half a pound, sulphur three ounces, and charcoal five ounces. This charge is proper for three quarters and one pound line rockets.
It will be adviseable to make some trials of the charges,
that you may be sure of not failing in the performance : see fig. 23, 24, 25, where a is the rocket; b the tube, or, instead thereof, some rings that slide upon the cord ; c
the partition ; d the pipe, for the communication of the fire from one rocket to another.
How to join two Bockeis to one another ; the one to burn in
the Water, and the other suddenly to fly up into the Air.
Take two rocket shells of equal dimensions ; fill one w7ith a good charge, quite full ; the other charge, bore and tie to a stick, as usual ; the former you glue, upside down, to the middle of the latter ; and, towards the end, tie it round with a cord, which is somewhat longer than the rocket stick ; to the end thereof fasten a ring, and, in that, a leaden ball, which is to keep both rockets in a due posi¬tion on the surface of the water ; through this ring put the end of the stick, which is provided with a cross that is somewhat wider than the diameter of the ring, and keeps the cord, ring and ball under water : the communication of the fire must be made below the rockets, by a small pipe, filled with mealed powder very secure, so as to keep it from the water ; for, as soon as the water rocket is burnt io the end, the fire will make its way through the pipe, and the land rocket will disengage itself by its force from the case of the other, and leave the cord, ring and ball, behind in the water: see fig. 26.
How to make Water-rockets, Water-brands, Water-cats, Water-ducks, Nc. that turn themselves in the Water.
The cases for the water-brands, and also their sticks, must be made something longer than ordinary, and be filled with a composition of coarse coal-dust, small rubbed tanner's-bark, or saw-dust, but in the same method as sky¬rockets. The whole case is to be nine or ten diameters long, and must be divided into five equal parts, and be charged two-fifths full of composition : upon this, charge a report of a quarter high, and upon that, fine iron flakes, in order to sink it ; then cover it with paper, and draw it together with a cord ; —the charge is lifted up a little in the neck, and supplied with brandy-dough, or mealed powder moistened with brandy, and glued over with paper ; and having fixed a wooden swimmer below the neck, it is dipped in wax and pitch, and is ready for use.
Water-crackers, which turn in the water, are thus pre¬pared :
This case is made nine or ten diameters long 3 the neck is drawn quite close, and charged with mealed powder almost half full : upon this, a partition is made with a hole in it ; then put corned powder for a report ; upon that is placed another partition ; the rest is filled with mealed powder, and the end tied close, and the paper cut short at both ends ; when these crackers are to be fired, make a touch-hole at the end of both, reversed, and having filled them up with mealed-powder, and co¬vered them well with brandy-dough, you may fire and fling them into the water, having before dipt them in melted wax, or pitch.
It is to be observed, that, to the water cat-cases, we may proceed thus (from one ounce to half pound crackers) ; but, if larger, they are too heavy, and will not so soon turn up again in the water, till some parts of them are consumed ; wherefore, to remedy this, put in the case, first, three measures of charge ; upon this, put a little corn powder; then again, two measures of charge, and
a little corn powder, and proceed thus as far- as the report ; upon the charge is placed a partition of wood, with a hole in it ; on that, a report of good corn-powder ; then tie it close : further, open it a little, putting some mealed pow¬
der to it mixed with brandy ; and when you would use anoint all over with grease or linseed oil. The water¬crackers, or divers, are commonly rammed in one, one and half, and two ounce, cases, stratified in the manner
just mentioned, taking two measures for each lay of water cat-charge, and little corn powder between each.
There are other sorts of rockets, that may be repre¬sented swimming on the water these are made in the same manner as the one, or one ounce and half rockets, bored one-third in the charge, then put into paper cylin¬der with two small wooden heads, or bases, having hole bored to the centre of each the height of this cylinder
must be equal to half of the rocket, and the hole through the centre of each head fitted exactly to the rocket when you have fixed every thing to nicety, put into melted
wax, or pitch and when cold, you may fire and fling into the water. See fig. 27, 28, 29.
You may also put these sorts of rockets into paper cone, and fasten to the neck of the rocket or else in bladder full of wind, which, instead of dipping in melted wax, do over with mixture of four parts of linseed oil, two parts of bole armenic, one part of white lead, and half part of ashes. See fig. 30, 31.
You may mix along with the reports of the rockets, cer¬tain sparks and stars, intermixed with meal and corn
powder to this fixed an iron or wooden tube from each end of this goes another smaller tube, all having communication with one another. These are filled with mealed powder, covered over with paper, dipped in wax or pitch, and a counterpoise being fixed below, it is fired. As soon as the composition is burnt down to the cap, it is conveyed through small tubes to the lower part, where beating out the partition, it disperses the powder, stars, &c. into the air. See fig. 32,
Charges for Water-rockets.
Mealed powder six ounces, resin one ounce, charcoal three quarters of an ounce, nitre one ounce, corn powder one ounce.
Nitre one pound, sulphur eight ounces, mealed powder eight ounces, and charcoal four ounces and a half.
Nitre four ounces, sulphur three ounces, and charcoal three quarters of an ounce.
Mealed powder one pound and a half, nitre half a pound, sulphur four ounces and a half, charcoal six ounces, coarse coal two ounces and a half, and lead, for sinking, one ounce.
Mealed powder two pounds, nitre one pound, sulphur ten ounces, charcoal eight ounces, coarse coal three ounces, sinking lead one ounce and three quarters (for three quar¬ter ounce rockets.)
Mealed powder two pounds, nitre two pounds, sulphur one pound, charcoal four ounces, coarse coal three ounces, tanner's-dust two ounces and a half, saw-dust two ounces, glass powder one ounce, sinking lead one ounce and three quarters, for one pound rockets.
Mealed powder half a pound, nitre three quarters of a pound, charcoal five ounces, saw-dust half an ounce, and a quarter of an ounce of fine chopped cotton, boiled in nitre lye.
Charges for Water-crackers.
Mealed powder two pounds and a half, nitre one pound and a half, sulphur ten ounces, charcoal eleven ounces, coarse coals nine ounces ; the sinking to two ounce crackers, quarter of an ounce of lead.
Mealed powder two pounds and half, nitre two pounds and half, sulphur one pound five ounces, saw-dust twelve ounces, charcoal three quarters of pound, coarse coals half pound the sinking, quarter of an ounce.
Mealed powder four ounces, nitre five pounds, sulphur two pounds and three quarters, tanner's-dust one pound and half, charcoal one pound, coarse coals two pounds and three quarters, glass-dust four ounces, lead three quarters of an ounce to sink it.
Charges for Tumbling Water-crackers.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre one ounce, and charcoal one ounce and half.-
Mealed powder one pound, nitre eight ounces, sulphur three quarters of an ounce, and charcoal one ounce and three quarters.
Mealed powder three quarters of pound, charcoal four ounces for one and half, or two pound rockets.
Charges for Water -cats.
Mealed powder two parts, nitre four parts, sulphur one part, coarse coals two parts, saw-dust two parts, and antimony three parts, moistened with linseed oil.
Mealed powder two ounces and half, nitre three ounces and half, sulphur two ounces and half, and antimony
half an ounce.
Mealed flour one pound, nitre two pounds, sulphur
one pound, and charcoal one pound.
Nitre fifteen ounces, sulphur five ounces, saw-dust eight
ounces, and antimony two ounces.
Some general Remarks upon Rockets.
1. Your rockets must have their proportionable height, according to the diameters of their orifices.
2. Their necks must be drawn, or choaked, firm ; and, to prevent the cord giving way, they must be glued over.
3. Prepare your composition just before you want it.
4. Let it be neither too damp nor too dry, but sprinkle
it over with a little oily substance, or a little brandy.
5. When you drive your rockets, put always equal quan¬
tities of composition in your cases at a time.
6. Carry with your mallet an even and perpendicular
stroke, when you charge your rockets.
7. The cavity must be bored upright and perpendicular,
exactly in the middle of the composition.
8. Bore your rockets just before you use them ; then
handle them carefully, lest their form should be spoiled.
9. Let the sticks and rods be well proportioned, strait
10. Put your rockets, when completed, in a place that is neither very damp nor dry.
1 1 . Let most of your rockets have at top a conic figure, by that means they will the easier shoot through the air.
12. Avoid, if possible, a damp, foggy, rainy or windy night, to play your rockets.
Defective Rockets are chiefly discovered by the following
I. When they are fired, and in mounting two or three
perches, they break and disperse, without performing their proper effects.
/ 2. When they remain suspended on the nail, and waste
away slowly, without rising at all.
3. When they form an arch in their ascent, or a semi~
circle, and return to the ground before their composition is burnt out.
4. When they mount in a winding posture, without an uniform motion.
5. When they move on slowly and heavy.
6. When the cases remain on the nails, and the com¬
position rises and disperses in the air.
More of these vexatious accidents will sometimes fru¬
strate the hopes of a young practitioner ; but as the above are the principal ones, he must endeavour to avoid them in his first beginning.
Of Rocket-flyers, and the Manner of charging them.
These are of two sorts, namely, the single and dou¬ble ; the latter are made after the following manner :
Have a nave, or button, turned, the dimension of three inches, together with two knots upon perpendicular,
one against the other, of an inch and half long, and so thick that both rocket-cases may fit over them (there must be hole, of the third of an inch in the centre of the nave, for the iron pin to go through, on which to fly;) after this, take two rocket cases, of equal dimen¬sions, which are choaked quite close at the neck, and glued ram in the charge, so far as to leave only room to fix them on the two knobs upon the nave this done, bore into both rockets, near the closed-up necks, small touch-holes, (and one more near the pin) in that which
to burn first from this hole, carry little pipe to the hole near the neck of the other rocket, having first filled
with mealed powder, that when the rocket almost burnt out, the second may be lighted by the first. The
three touch-holes are to stand in one row and you may on on the other side fix a couple of reports, which will cause a swifter motion.
The single flyers are made with more ease ; the neck in these must not be tied close, as in the former, but they must be fired in that place ; but these do not turn so well as those that are made double.
Of these there are three sorts, viz. single, double, and triple ; some of their fells are of a circular form, others an hexagonal, octagonal, or decagonal form ; some like a star, without fells ; some, and the most of them, are made to run perpendicular to the earth ; others horizontal ; all may be ordered so as to serve either on land or water.
Horizontal wheels are often fired two at a time, and made to keep time like vertical wheels ; only they are made without any slow or dead fire : ten or twelve inches will be enough for the diameter of wheels with six spokes. Fig. 34, represents such a wheel on fire, with the first case burning.
The fire-wheels that are used on land, turn upon an iron pin or bolt, drawn or screwed into a post. The nave is turned of close and firm wood, in which the joiners glue the spokes, according to the number of the fells, which must be carefully joined together ; then have a groove hollowed round, so deep that the rocket or case may be about half lodged therein. See fig. 35.
The double wheels must have their fells turned stronger and wider, with a groove for the rockets, not only at top, but also on one side thereof; plying the necks of the rockets at top, to the right, and those of the sides to the left hand. See fig. 36.
Your rockets being ready, and cut behind a little shelv¬ing, bore them ; the first, three diameters of its orifice ; the second, two and three quarters ; the third, two and a
quarter; the fourth, two diameters ; the fifth, one and three quarters ; the sixth, one and a half; the seventh, one and a quarter ; the eighth, one diameter ; always the latter something shorter than the preceding :— after this,
they are primed with mealed powder worked up with brandy, and when dry, glued in the above described
grooves ; you must bear the first-fired rocket's neck above the rest, underlaying it with a tin plate, or any thing else ; the same you must observe in the head of the last fired one, wherein you put the charge of a report , you may also glue on every end of the rockets, a report of paper, with small pipes of copper, or goose-quills, which are fixed one end in the side of the rocket, and the other in the report. When all is dry, then you may cover your wheel on one or both sides, with linen or paper, in what form you would have it.
Having filled some cases within about one and a haff diameter, drive in some clay ; then pinch their ends close, and drive them down with a mallet ; when done, find the centre of gravity of each case, where nail and tic a stick, which should be half an inch broad at the middle, and a little narrower at the ends : these sticks must have their ends turned upwards, so that the cases may turn horizon¬tally on their centres : at the opposite side of the cases, at each end, bore a hole close to the clay with a gimlet ; from these holes draw a fine round the case, and at the under part of the case bore a hole, with the same gimlet, within half a diameter of each line towards the centre ; then from one hole to the other draw a right line : divide this line into three equal parts, and at X and Y, fig. 38.
2. bore hole, and from this hole to the other two,
lead quick match, over which paste thin paper.
A fire wheel which is to whirl horizontally in the water must be thus ordered :
Take a pretty large wooden dish, or bowl, that has a broad flat rim ; (see fig. 39 ;) also a smooth dry board,
something larger than the dish, and formed into an octa¬gon ; in the middle of this board make a round hole that will hold a water-ball, so that one half be received in the dish, and the other half rise above the surface of the board ; nail this board upon the rim of the dish, and fix the ball in the middle, tying it fast with wire ; then glue your rockets in the grooves which are made round the
edges of the board, laying them close to one another, so that successively taking fire from one another, they may keep the wheel in an equal rotation. You may add, if you please, on each side of the wheel, a few boxes, filled with crackers or cartouches, erected perpendicular ; and
also fix double and single crackers, following in a range, one after another, for two or three fires ; or as many as the extent of the wheel will admit.
For your private fuzees, observe that you conduct one from the rocket, which is to be fixed to the composition of the ball, in a channel.
Fill these channels with mealed powder, and cover them close with paper : also lay a train of fusees of communi¬cation from the rockets to a cartouch, and from that to the rest. See fig. 40.
Lastly, when all is ready and covered, dip the whole machine into melted pitch, and secure it from the injury of the water ; the ball is fired first, and, when lighted, you place it gently on the surface of the water, and then lire the. rocket.
To try a fire-wheel ; first weigh one of the rockets, and tie it to a fell, with cord, and according to the weight, fill little long bags full of sand, tying them likewise on the
rest of the fells ; then, hang the wheel on an iron pin, and fire the rocket, and if it turns the wheel, then yon may assure yourself it will be complete.
Wheels formed like stars, are to have their spokes fixed upright in the nave, like other wheels, only with grooves on one of the sides of each, where you glue the rockets; at the bottom of each rocket is made a little hole, whence the fire is conveyed through little pipes, filled with mealed powder up to the next, and so on, all round ; then cover it with linen cloth, or paper, in the shape of a star, and place it on the iron axis.
Observe, that all the rockets used in fire-wheels have their necks tied close, leaving only a small conveyance from one rocket to another :— the last of all must be well secured below, where you may place a strong report of corn powder.
Charges for Fire-flyers and Wheels, of four, five, and sir Ounce Rockets.
Mealed powder three pounds, nitre two pounds, char¬coal five ounces, and sea-coal three ounces.
Mealed powder fourteen ounces, nitre six ounces, char¬coal three ounces and a half, sulphur three ounces, and sea-coal three ounces.
Mealed powder fifteen ounces, nitre six ounces, sulphur three ounces, and charcoal three ounces.
Nitre five pounds, sulphur three quarters of a pound, charcoal one pound four ounces.
These charges are bored with a round bodkin.
Mealed powder two pounds, sea-coal eight ounces, and charcoal ten ounces.
Mealed powder three pounds, sulphur eight ounces, and charcoal ten ounces.
These charges may be used for triple wheels, and must be bored, one-third, with a bodkin.
For Wheels of one Pound Rockets.
Mealed powder six pounds, nitre three pounds, sul¬phur one pound seven ounces, charcoal two pounds nine ounces, and tanner's-dust one ounce.
The bore must be an inch and a half.
For Wheels of one and a half and two Pound Pockets.
Mealed powder six pounds, nitre three pounds and a half, sulphur one pound and a half, charcoal two pounds three quarters, and saw-dust one ounce and a half.
The first rocket in the wheel is, in length, two diame¬ters and a half of its orifice.
For Wheels of three and four Pound Pockets.
Mealed powder nine pounds, nitre one pound and a half, sulphur one pound two ounces, and charcoal three pounds four ounces.
The first rocket is bored but one and a half of its diameter.
To make single and double cartouches, or boxes, tubes, stars, sparks, &c
When some hundred boxes or cartouches are adjusted and fixed in machines of great fire-works, they afford among the towering rockets great delight to the spectators. These boxes are made either of wood, paste-board, or
copper ; and are charged and proportioned according to their strength. If made of wood, they must fit exactly, and receive each other, so as to seem but one continual
piece ; and if paste-board, you must glue on a foot at bottom, of a hand high, to each of them : the inside of these machines must exactly fit and correspond with the outside of the cartouches themselves, and be so contrived
as to slip into one another.
The engine, fig. 41. is very proper for the construction of those boxes, and represents the bench : the other, fig. 42. shews the cylinders, upon which, (having greased them first over with soap) you fashion your boxes, just as you think proper, by pasting one thickness of paper upon another, and fixing a handle to the end of the cylinder.
Having formed them, put them to dry in a moderate heat ; too great a heat will shrivel them up ; when dry,
take one after another off the cylinder, and immediately clap round wooden bottoms (the edges being first done
over with glue) into them, and sprig them on the outside, to make them secure.
The single boxes are to be changed in the following manner :
1 . Put in some corn powder.
2. Upon that charge, fix a round paste-board, well fitted
to the concave side of the box, which has five or six small holes, and is on both sides laid over with mealed powder tempered with brandy.
3. Put upon the paste-board a little mealed powder, and upon that, well pierced crackers, so as to stand with their necks downwards : the principal rocket is put in the mid¬dle, with the neck downwards, open at both ends ; so that being lighted above, and burning down, it may fire the rest of the crackers, which are blown up in the air by the corn powder.
4. The empty spaces between the large fire-case and the crackers, are carefully filled up, and the cartouch is stuffed at top with tow, or else with saw-dust boiled in nitre lye.
5. The cartouch is covered with a cap, which is glued
very closely thereon* ; and for the great case reaching out Of the cartouch, make in the middle of the cap a hole, through which it is put, and close the opening by glueing some slips of paper round it. The fire-case is loose, covered with a paste-board cap.
Double Boxes, or Cartouches.
In fig. 43, is exhibited the construction of a case, called a double one ; to enlarge on the description thereof seems to be needless, only observe, that the bottoms of the upper boxes serve for the covers of the lower, a hole being made, through whkh the composition of the lower box is fired, after the upper rocket has forced away the empty box, which already has discharged its load. The upper box you cover, as has been shewn above. If there are more than two cartouches upon one another, they are called Burning Tubes, which, when fired, shorten by de¬grees, the cartouches following one another till all are fired ; some are intermixed with artificial globes, and seve¬ral other fancies, which afford great pleasure to the spec¬tators.
These boxes, or cartouches, are placed in long cases made for that purpose. The vacancies about the car¬touches may be filled up with sand. See fig. 44.
Another Sort of Fire Tubes.
These are made of solid, hard, and dry wood, of what height and thickness you think proper. Bore the middle of the wood one-third, or a quarter of its diameter, after which divide the whole height into equal parts, each ex¬actly corresponding with the sky-roskets you design to fix upon them, but rather a small matter shorter: all these divisions are cut sloping downwards, except the uppermost, which must run out in a cylinder. On the rims of each of these divisions make a groove all round, of about a vol. i. u finger's breadth ; n these grooves bore small holes, by wh ch the f re may be conveyed through, p pes from the cav ty of the tube, to l ght the rockets that stand beh nd the paper cartouches, wh ch must be made secure to the
wood, lest they should flv up along w th the rockets.
The construct on of the hollow tube n th s and othersuch-l ke tubes s expressed n f g. 45. A, the f re-stars and sparks, nterspersed w th corn powder. 13, a box f lled w th paper or crackers. C, a f re-ball, or water-globe, wh ch you please. D, another box f lled w th crackers. The hollows between these f res are f lled up w th corn powder, to blow up the globes and boxes one after another.
The stars and sparks made use of on th s occas on arc prepared n the follow ng manner :
Take of beaten n tre f ve pounds and a half, mealed powder two pounds four ounces, and sulphur one pound twelve ounces.
Mealed powder three pounds, n tre s x pounds, sulphur one pound, camphor half an ounce, tanner's-bark two ounces, or else saw-dust ; all f nely s fted and mo stened w th l nseed o l.
Mealed powder one pound, n tre four pounds, sulphur half a pound, and pounded glass s x ounces, mo stened w th l nseed o l.
Nitre half a pound, sulphur two ounces, ant mony one ounce, and mealed powder three ounces.
Nitre half a pound, sulphur three ounces, ant mony one ounce, and ron f le-dust half an. ounce.
Nitre two pounds, mealed powder ten pounds, and sul¬phur one pound.
Nitre one pound, sulphur half a pound, mealed powder three ounces, and ant mony one ounce.
Nitre one pound, sulphur two ounces, powder of yellow amber one ounce, crude ant mony one ounce, mealed powder three ounces.
Sulphur two ounces and a half, nitre six ounces, fine mealed powder five ounces ; frankincense in drops, mastich, corrosive-sublimate, of each four ounces ; white amber and camphor, of each one ounce ; antimony and orpiment, of each half an ounce.
These ingredients being well beaten, and finely sifted, must be sprinkled over with a little glue or gum-water, and formed into little balls, of the bigness of a small nut, then dried in the sun, or near a fire, and laid up in a dry place, to be ready, on occasion, for playing off with fire-works. When you use them, wrap them up in tow.
The following Stars are of a more i/ellozc) Cast, inclining to white.
Take four ounces of gum-tragacanth, or gum-arabic, pounded and sifted through a fine sieve, camphor dissolved in brandy two ounces, nitre one pound, sulphur half a pound, coarse powder of glass four ounces, white amber one ounce and a half, orpiment two ounces ; incorporate them, and make balls of them, as directed before.
Sparks are prepared thus.
Take nitre one ounce, melted nitre half an ounce,
mealed powder half an ounce, and camphor two ounces, having melted these things by themselves (only when you use them) in an earthen pot, pour on them water of gum tragacanth, or brandy that has gum arabic, or gum tra- gacanth dissolved in that the whole may have the con¬sistence of pretty thick liquid this done, take one ounce of lint, which before has been boiled in brandy, vinegar, or nitre when dry, throw into the composi¬tion, and mix and stir about, till has soaked up then roll them up in pills, about the size of great pins-heads, and set them to dry, having first sprinkled them with mealed powder.
Some of these pyramidical tubes and fire-works, are now and then fired in large rooms, upon grand entertain¬ments, in miniature, wherein are employed odoriferous pills, and other ingredients, that have a fragrant smell ;
these pills are commonly composed of stora.v calamita, benjamin, gum-juniper, of each two ounces ; olibanum, mastich, frankincense, white amber, yellow amber, and camphor, of each one ounce ; nitre three ounces ; lime- tree-coal four ounces ; beat these ingredients very fine ; pulverize and incorporate them together, and moisten with rose-water wherein you have dissolved some gum arabic or gum tragacanth ; you may form them into pills, and dry them in the sun, or before a fire.
Single Tubes, or Cases.
These are only filled with compositions, and to the out¬side are fastened some crackers, serpents, or cartouches , these cases being generally round and uniform, like a cylinder, you are to trace out a winding line from the top to the bottom, on which cut holes to the depth of two or three inches. See fig. 46. Into these holes contrive to fix paper-cases with wooden bottoms, wherein you may put any sort of rockets vou please ; but take care you provide little holes, to lead from the great tube to the corn powder under these rockets.
Another fire tube is delineated, fig. 47. This is sur¬rounded with cartouches, disposed in a serpentine order,
like the first, which are glued and nailed as secure as pos¬sible ; out of these are dispersed great numbers of squibs. As for the rest, they have nothing but what is common in others.
Another Fire Tube.
The circumference of a cylinder by cord, divided into certain number or" equal parts, and being brought
into poligonal figure, cutting away the convex part, brought into angles.
Bore the plain sides with number of boles, perpendi¬cularly, so as to penetrate obliquely to the great boring in the middle into these holes thrust crackers, squibs, or serpents. —See fig. 48.
Fig. 49, exhibits tube, whose length six diameters of its thickness. The cylinder being divided round the rim into six parts, and each of those into seven parts, re¬serve one of them for the list, between each of which make channels, which being six in number, place little mortars of the same dimensions therein.
The mortars must be turned of wood bore the bot¬toms, and add chamber to them each chamber must be one-third, or one-half, of the depth of the fluting
and the breadth, one-sixth only. These chambers are de¬signed to hold corn-powder.
Secure the mortars on the outside with strong paper cases, and nail them fast the hollow channels, whose cavity they are to fit exactly their length may be double
to their breadth — each mortar must contain globe made
of paper, with wooden bottom and their chambers must be charged with corn-powder.
These mortars fix spiral line, one onlv in each flut¬ing, with iron stays, and bind the middle with an iron plate, fastened on each side of the interstices but before you fix the mortars, you must not forget to pierce little
holes in the tube, and to fix the touch-holes of your mor¬. * J
tars exactly upon them, priming both with mealed-powdcr.
Every thing relating to this may be plainly conceived in
the figure, where A and B describe the mortars, and C the
globe or cartouch.
These, in fire-works, are a great number of strong iron
reports, fixed either in a post or plank, and, with a fire,
discharged at once.
Charges for Cartouches, or Boxes.
Mealed powder six ounces, nitre one pound eight ounces, sulphur four ounces, and charcoal four ounces and a half.
Mealed powder fourteen ounces, nitre five ounces, sul¬phur two ounces, and charcoal three ounces.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre three quarters of a. pound, sulphur four ounces and a half, tanner's-bark or saw-dust two ounces, and charcoal four ounces.
Charges for Fire Tubes,
Mealed powder six pounds, nitre four pounds, char¬coal two pounds, resin half a pound, tanner's-bark five ounces, moistened with a little linseed oil.
Mealed powder three-quarters of a pound, nitre four pounds, sulphur ten ounces, and saw-dust four ounces.
This charge may be used dry.
Mealed powder five pounds, nitre three pounds, char¬coal one pound six ounces, resin three-quarters of a
■nound : not moistened.
A Preservative for Wood against Fire.
This being a" necessary article in the execution of fire-
;, it will not be improper to set it down in this place.
Take brick-dust, ashes, iron-filings, pulverized, of each
an equal quantity ; put them together in a pot ; pour gluc-
water or size upon thein ; then put them near the fire,
and, when warm, stfc them together. With this size,
wash over your wood- work ; and when dry, repeat and
will be proof against tire.
The ?Jctn)icr of preparing, and making Letters and Navies in Fire-works.
Burning letters may be represented, after several methods.
Order joiner to cut any capital letters, of what length and breadth you please, or about two feet long, and three or four inches wide, and an inch and half thick, fig. 50. — hollow out of the body of the letters groove, a quar¬ter of an inch deep, reserving for the edges of the letters a quarter, or half, an inch of wood. If you design to have the letters burn of blue fire, then make wicks ot cotton or flax, according to the bigness and depth of the grooves in the letters, and draw them leisurely through melted sulphur, and place them in the grooves brush them over with brandy, and strew mealed powder on and, again, with brandy and thin dissolved gum-tragacanth, and on that strew mealed powder also when dry, drive small tacks all round the edges of the grooves, and twist small wire to those tacks, that may cross the letters, and keep the cotton or flax close therein; then, lay over brandy paste strew, over that, mealed powder and, at last, glue over single paper.
you would have the letters burn w hite, dissolve six pounds of nitre, and add to little corn-powder in that dip your wicks of cotton or flax. You may, instead, use dry touchwood, cut into pieces of an inch thick; put them in melted nitre over fire let them lay till the nitre
.s quite soaked through the wood after which, mix pow¬dered dered nitre with good strong brandy ; take some cotton, and with a spatula, or your hands, work that, the nitre
and brandy, together ; then squeeze it out ; strew the cot¬ten over with powdered nitre, and make wicks ; having first placed the touchwood in the grooves, lay the wicks over that and the vacancies about and then proceed to make tight and secure, as has been directed above.
There another method of burning letters, without grooves, and this done by boiing small holes in the let¬ters, about an inch distance one from the other the dia¬
meter of the holes must not be above the eighth of an inch into them put, and glue, cases, rammed with burn¬ing charges — these letters do not burn so long as the others, except the charges are very long.
Another method for burning of letters when they are formed, by smith, of coarse wire, about quarter of an inch thick when this done, get some cotton spun into match-thread, but not much twisted to two yards of this, take one pound of sulphur, six ounces of nitre, and two ounces of antimony melt these ingredients in kettle,
first the sulphur by itself, and then the rest all together when melted, put in the match-thread and stir about, till has drawn in all the matter then take out, and strew over with mealed powder let dry, and wind
about the white letters fasten these upon board, that has been well laid over with preservative to keep from firing. When you have lighted one letter, all the rest will take fire immediately.
Letters cut through smooth board, which made to slide the grooves of chest, are ordered thus the lid of the box made full of holes, for dispersing the smoke of the lamps, or wax tapers, which are set behind to illu¬minate the letters behind the cut-out letters pasted oil paper, of various colours, which, when the lamps are lighted, has fine tfkei. Bv these means, various changes
tnay be made in representing devices, names, coats of arms. &c. But this way is more practised on the stage, in plays, than in fire-works.
Charges for burning Letters with Cases.
Mealed powder six ounces, nitre one pound, mixed with rock-oil, or petroleum oil.
Mealed powder three quarters of a pound, nitre nine ounces, and sulphur three ounces, mixed up dry.
Mealed powder five ounces, nitre seven ounces, sul¬phur three ounces, and file-dust half an ounce ; moisten¬ed with linseed oil.
To order and preserve Leading-fires, Trams, and Stack-
Fire-works being of various kinds and inventions, it is impossible to assign certain rules for their several perfor¬mances. But to say something of what concerns a mas¬ter's praise, it is observed, that great fire-works are not to be fired above once or twice at most ; for it would not be deemed an artful performance to fire one cartouch after another ; likewise, the match pipes, the most preferable of which are either iron, lead, or wood, and should be (Strengthened or closely twisted round with the sinews of beasts, and filled with slow charges, which ought to be well tried ; or else furnished with match-thread, dry and well prepared, and afterwards cither joined to the grooves made ill the boards, or only laid free from one work to another. The joinings of the pipes must be well closed ;.nd luted with potters clay, so as to prevent the fire from breaking out ; these pipes must also have little vent holes to give the fire air, or else it would be stifled, and burst the pipes ; but these holes must be so contrived, that the flame may vent itself in the open air, and at some dis¬tance from the works, so as to prevent touching them.
All burning matches are to be as distant from the ma¬chines as possible, to prevent accidents.
A particular direction for conducting your trains and fu- zees, cannot be given, because of the variety of postures,
situations, and contrivances of machinerv : those rules al ready given will be sufficient for the ingenious : add to this.
the advantage a novice in this art may gather from the direction in the figures, which, with much care and in¬dustry, have been traced out for their information.
Charges for Fuzees, or Leading-inafeiies.
Mealed powder three ounces and a half, nitre foui ounces, sulphur one ounce and three quarters, and char¬coal one ounce and three quarters.
Mealed powder three ounces, nitre nine ounces, sulphur four ounces and a half, and charcoal half an ounce.
Mealed powder four ounces, charcoal half an ounce, and coarse coal half an ounce.
Mealed powder half a part, nitre three parts, sulphur two parts, and charcoal one part ; this last is very slow.
Balls, in fire -works, are made of different fashions , some are globular, some oval, some conical, some cylin¬drical, others in the form of a pendant, or drop.
The water-balls are commonly made of knitted cord¬bags, or of wood ; those made of bags are shaped like ostriches eggs, and are,
tilled with their proper charge.
2. The outside dipped in glue, and wound about with
hemp or flax,- till quarter of an inch thick with it.
3. This ball then coated over with cloth, and about the touch-hole glued over with piece of leather.
4. The touch-hole is bored with a gimlet, and stopped
with a wooden peg.
5. At the bottom of the globe, pierce a small hole through to the composition, in which fasten a small copper¬pipe, furnished with a paper report, together with a leaden
balance ; glue the report fast to the ball ; then dip the ball in melted pitch ; open the touch-hole, and prime it with a quick-burning charge.
These balls keep a long time under water before they rise ; and if a true balance is not observed in the lead, or the ball is overcharged, they will sink to the bottom, and burn out ; therefore you must well observe, that when a water-ball, without the balance, is two pounds weight, you must give it four, or four ounces and a half of lead ; but, if it weighs one pound and a half, balance it with three, or three ounces and a half.
W ater-balls, or globes, made of wood, which swim and burn upon the water without any further effect, are of two sorts, viz. single and double ; the single ones are made thus : have a hollow globe, turned somewhat oblong, with
a vent-hole ; fill that with a good and approved charge, but not too close ; prime the end with some mealed pow¬der ; then glue a stopple in* the hole, which must be thrice as thick as the shell of tbe globe, in which beforehand the counterpoise is cast of lead ; when dry, make a hole at top, large enough for a two-ounce cracker to enter ; through this, ram down the charge in the globe, and fill it
quite full with tbe same composition ; then glue it over with a paste-board : and, lastly, fix. a small copper pipe through the stopple, having bored a hole through it for
that purpose; to the pipe fasten a paper report ; when this is done, dip the whole in pitch : these are called single water-globes. Both sorts of globes are, for better secu¬rity, twisted and tied round with several rows of strong packthread.
Double water-globes are such, which after one is fired, discharges another. These have chambers at bottom, which are filled with gunpowder ; on these put a cover oi thick leather, which has several holes in the middle, and goes close to the side ; on this strew mealed powder, and place thereon arlre-globe, which is charged. Fig. 52, will demonstrate the construction. Observe,
1. That the little chamber, at bottom, ought to be one- fifth of the breadth of the whole globe, and that its height be one and a half.
2. That the water-ball B should be encompassed with a water-ball composition, as vou see by H.
3. The partition C is for this purpose, that when the powder in it shall have the fire conveyed to it through the pipes EFG, it may with more force blow up the ball in the body of the first ; this taking fire at the hole D, will burn upon the water for some time, and then, to the asto¬nishment of the spectators, on a sudden, it will blow up the ball that was in it.
4. You must be very careful to secure the piece of lea¬ther or board tlr.it covers the little chamber, lest it should
be blown up by the composition of the greater globe, be¬fore it is all burned out.
llow io charge a Water-globe with many Crackers.
Takk, for this purpose, a single water-globe, which may be round, or of an oval form, and fill the same with
the composition hereafter-mentioned. Hollow the outside, in several places, to the size of your reports, or crackers, which arc to be fixed in them : to each of the crackers belongs a small copper tube, filled with mealed powrdcr, which is to be fitted to the small holes in the flutings, in fhe manner as expressed in the print, where fig. 53. A, are the riutings ; B. the little holes for the fuzes ; C, the upper orifice tor priming ; D, the hollow stopple, through which the ball is primed ; E, the form of the crackers, which are to be fixed in theflutings; F, little fuzees belonging to them.
How to prepare a Water-mortar, or Water-pump, with several Tubes.
Take seven wooden tubes ; wrap them about with cloth that is either pitched or dipped in glue, twisting them round very tight with packthread. Their height, thick¬ness, and diameter, you may order as you think proper, only allowing the middlemost a greater height than the rest ; bind them together in one cylindrical body : to the bottom fix a round board, with nails, and then with strong- glue stop up all the crevices to prevent the air getting to the composition : this done, fill the tubes according to the order represented in fig. 5 4-. First pour into each tube a little corn-powder, about half an inch high ; upon that put a water-ball A ; upon that a slow composition ; then again corn-powder ; upon which put a water-globe, filled with squibs, as you see in B ; on that again a slow composition ; then corn-powder ; and then a light bail, as may be seen in C ; over this put, a third time, a slow composition upon corn-powder, as before, which you must cover with a wooden cap ; on this fix running rockets, not too close, but to leave room enough between for a wooden case filled with a water composition ; the remainder of the tube fill with a slow charge, and close it up. Your tubes being all filled in this manner, get a square, or round, piece of plank, with a round hole in the middle, large enough to receive the ends of all the tubes, which cover close, to preserve the powder and composition from being wet ; this float-board is marked with the letter D, fig. 55. Thus pre¬pared, dip it in a quantity of tar, or melted pitch ; then put the rocket E, or a small wooden tube filled with a
stroag composition that will burn on the water, into the orifice of the middle tube ; the composition of which should be more slow than the rest.
If you would have the tubes take fire all round at once, you must pierce the sides of the great one with small holes, corresponding with those in each of the other tubes ; by this means the fire may be conveyed to all of them at once, and consume them equally and at one time ; but, if you would have them burn one after another, you must
close them well up with paste-board ; and to each tube fix a fuzee of communication, filled with mealed powder, or a slow composition, through which the fire may be con¬veyed from the bottom of that which is consumed, to the
orifice of that next to it ; and so on, successively, to such as have not been fired.
How to charge a large Water-globe with several little ones, arid with Crackers.
Gkt a wooden cylinder made ; let its orifice be at least one foot diameter, and its height one and a half: let there
be a lodge, or chamber, at bottom, to hold the powder, which must be confined by a tampion, or stopple, joined to a round board, fitted exactly to the inside of the globe j through the middle of the stopple must pass an iron tube
filled with mealed powder ; then prepare six water-balls, or more, if you think fit, so that when all are set together in the circumference of the globe, they may fill up that cir¬
cle ; each of these balls must be provided with an iron fuzee in its orifice, filled with mealed powder. Having charged the chamber of the globe with corn-powder, . let down the fore-mentioned board, with the stopple upon it;
then arrange the six water-balls ; cover them with another round board, that has six little round holes, corresponding with the six iron.fuzees of the balls, which must a little surmount it. Spread this last board over with mealed and
corn-po.vder, mixed together, and upon it place as many rockets as the globe can hold : in the midst of these fix a large rocket, into whose orifice the iron tube may enter, which is the same you see in E, fig. 56.
This tube must have holes drilled all round the plane of the said partition or board, that the fire, having a commu¬nication through them, may reach the running rockets, and at the same time fire the water-balls, whose tubes rise out
of the board ; and, thence, after having penetrated down to the chamber below, may blow up the whole into the air, and make a great noise. See the figure, where A points out the six water-balls ; B, the great rocket in the middle of the running ones ; C, the chamber for the pow¬der ; D, a communication, or the iron pipe, to convey the fire to the paper cracker ; F, the globe ; which having been adjusted after the manner dire&ed, cover it close rcun<J ? and dip it in tar, to preserve it from the water.
To prepare the JVater Bee-hive, or Bees-warm, both single and double.
The single bee-swarm is thus prepared. Have an ob¬long globe turned, whose length is two diameters of its breadth, or proportioned to the height of your rounding rockets, which place round the wooden tube marked with A ; this must be of an equal height with the globe, and be filled with a composition of three parts of powder, two of nitre, and one of sulphur ; at the lower end of the globe fix a paper cracker C. The letter D is a counterpoise of lead, through which you convey a little pipe, or fuzee, to communicate with the charge in the wooden tube : at top, fix a round board for a balance, and two little holes, which convey the fire to the charge for blowing up the rockets
See fig. 57.
How to prepare a Water-globe, on the Outside, with Running-rockets.
Get a wooden globe perfectly round and hollow; bore on the outside several cavities, sufficient to receive running -
rockets, leaving a quarter of an inch between the extre¬mities of them, and the composition within the ball; then bore the wood left between each, with a small gimlet ; fill
them with mealed powder; then put in your rockets; close the top of the globe with a wooden cylinder, that has a hollow top, with a touch-hole to receive the priming ; the bottom stop with a stopple, which likewise has a conveyance to the cracker that is commonly fixed beneath it ; between which and the stopple fix also a leaden coun¬terpoise, to keep the whole upright in the water. See fig. 58.
To prepare Water-globes with single or double ascending Rockets.
For the first sort, have a globe turned with a tube in the middle, half its diameter wide, leaving two inches for the placing of solid wood at the bottom ; round this tube, bore holes for small rockets ; after which, burn, with a. red hot wire, or small iron, touch-holes out of the large tubes into the little ones; then fill the globe with the fol¬lowing composition, xiz.
Two pounds of nitre, eight ounces of sulphur, eight ounces of mealed powder, twelve ounces of saw-dust ; this done, close the top with a stopple which has a touch¬
hole in the middle ; then put a good deal of mealed pow¬der into the small tubes, up to the touch-holes ; and after you have placed your rockets upon that, fill the vacancy
round with a little corn-powder ; glue over them paper-caps ; then dip the globe into pitch, but not over the paper covering fix a counterpoise at bottom; and when the fire has burned half way, or further, in the large tube, it will communicate through the touch-holes, and discharge all the rockets at once.
The second sort are made after the same manner, only the middle tube is not bored so wide, because of giving more room for two rows of small tubes round it ; the first row, next to the tube, is bored a little below the middle ;
the second almost near to the end ; the touch-holes for the former are burnt from the inside of the great tube, and those of the latter, from the outside -hole, are closed again
with a wooden pin : in the large tube you may lodge a strong report of iron, charged with corn-powder, having a touch-hole left at top. Sec fig. 59, 60.
Charges for single Water-globes.
Corn-powder half a pound, nitre sixteen pounds, sulphur four pounds, ivory shavings four ounces, saw-dust, boiled in saltpetre-lye, four pounds.
Mealed powder one pound, nitre six pounds, sulphur three pounds, iron filings two pounds, and resin half a pound.
Mealed powder four pounds, nitre twenty-four pounds sulphur twelve pounds, saw-dust eight pounds, powdered glass half a pound, and camphor half a pound.
Corn-powder one ounce, nitre twelve ounces, sulphur four ounces, and saw-dust three ounces.
Nitre twelve ounces, sulphur four ounces, saw-dust two ounces, melted stufF three quarters ; this must be rammed in tight.
Mealed powder one pound four ounces, nitre one pound eight ounces, sulphur nine ounces, saw-dust five ounces, pounded glass one ounce, melted stufF four ounces ; mix them together with a little linseed oil.
Mealed powder eight ounces, nitre five pounds, sul¬phur two pounds, copper filings eight ounces and a half, and coarse coal-dust eight ounces and a half.
Nitre eight ounces, sulphur three ounces, saw-dust one ounce, and tanner's-bark two ounces.
Nitre six pounds twelve ounces, sulphur two pounds fourteen ounces, melted stuff half a pound, saw-dust one pound, coarse coal-dust one pound, and pounded glass one pound* mixed up and moistened with vinegar.
Nitre two pounds twelve ounces, sulphur two pounds six ounces, melted stuff four ounces, saw-dust eight ounces, charcoal one ounce and a half, and pounded glass three quarters of an ounce, moistened with linseed oil, and mixed up with a little corn-powder.
Charges for doable Water-globes.
Nitre four pound six ounces, sulphur one pound four ounces, saw-dust half a pound, and coarse coal-dust six ounces, moistened with a little vinegar or linseed oil.
Mealed powder one pound four ounces, sulphur four ounces, and charcoal two ounces, moistened with Petro¬
leum oil, or rock oil.
Nitre three pounds, sulphur a quarter of a pound, and saw-dust boiled with nitre ten ounces, moistened a
Charges for Bee-swarms.
Mealed powder thirteen ounces and a half, nitre six ounces, sulphur two ounces and a half, fine charcoal three ounces, coarse charcoal one ounce, and fine saw-dust three ounces.
Mealed powder three quarters of a pound, nitre six ounces, sulphur three ounces and a half, fine charcoal four ounces, and coarse charcoal two ounces and a half. powder four parts, nitre eight parts, sulphur two parts, coarse charcoal two parts, and fine charcoal one part.
Odoriferous, or perfumed Water-balls.
Have balls turned, about the size of large walnuts fill them with any of the compositions specified below ; after they are filled and ready, light and put them into water. This is generally done in a large room, or hall, at grand entertainments.
The Compositions for them are as follows :
Nitre four ounces ; storax calamita, one ounce ; frank¬incense, one ounce ; mastich, one ounce ; amber half an ounce; civet, half an ounce; saw-dust of juniper, two ounces ; saw-dust of cypress, two ounces ; and oil of spike, one ounce.
Nitre two ounces, flowers of sulphur one ounce, cam¬phor half an ounce, raspings of yellow amber half an ounce, coal of lime-tree wood one ounce, flowers of ben¬jamin half an ounce ; let those which are to be powdered be done very fine ; then mix them together, as usual.
Nitre two ounces, myrrh four ounces, frankincense three ounces, amber three ounces, mastich one ounce, camphor half an ounce, resin one ounce, boiled saw-dust one ounce, lime-tree coal, half an ounce, bees-wax half an ounce; mix them up with a little oil of juniper.
Nitre one ounce, myrrh four ounces, frankincense two ounces and a half, amber two ounces, mother of pearl four ounces, melted stuff half an ounce, and resin half an ounce ; mix them up with oil of roses.
Mealed powder three ounces, nitre twelve ounces, frank¬incense one ounce, myrrh half an ounce, and charcoal three ounces, mixed with oil of spike.
The manner of preparing the melted Stuff.
Melt twenty-four pounds of sulphur in a shallow earthen pan, over a clear fire, and as it melts, fling in sixteen pounds of nitre ; stir them well together with an iron spatula ; as soon as they are melted, take it off the fire, and add to it eight pounds of corn-powder ; mix it well together, and, being cooled, pour out this compo¬sition upon a polished marble, or metal-plates, and then divide it into pieces about the size of a walnut. This composition is chiefly used in military fire-works, and not for those I am treating of; but for those fire-works which are only for pleasure, it is distinguished by warm and cold melted stuff, and is prepared in the following manner.
Take for the first sort half a pound of nitre ; grind among it three quarters of an ounce of antimony, till one cannot be distinguished from the other ; then melt one pound and a half of sulphur, put the mixed nitre and an¬timony to and mix them well together this done, put warm into wooden mould of two pieces, which should be well greased on the inside this stuff you break after¬wards into less pieces on account of its clear fire, used to imitate stars.
The Manner preparing the cold melted Stuff.
Grind the above ingredients, or eight ounces of mealed
powder, four ounces of nitre, three ounces of sulphur,
and one ounce of coal-dust, together, till all of one co¬' t, J '
lour this done, moisten that stuff with the white of eggs, gum-water, or size, and make a stiff dough then strew, on smooth board, some mealed powder roll the dough upon that quarter of an inch thick strew, again, mealed powder upon it; then cut in square pieces, and let them dry or else form small balls of of the size of small nut, siut, or larger; then roll them in mealed powder, and put them up to dry.
To prepare a Globe which burns like a Star, and leaps
about both on Land and Water.
Cause a globe to be turned, of dry wood, whose dia» meter is the length of a half pound or a pound rocket : di¬vide this globe into two equal parts ; in the middle of one
of the half globes, on the inside, make a cavity, deep, long, and wide enough to hold three or four rockets, or crackers, so that the other half of the globe may be easily and closely fitted upon them ; after this take three crackers, one with strong reports, and two without any ; place them •so into the hollow, that the head of the one may lay to the other's, neck, and be so ordered that as soon as the one is
spent, the other may take fire and force the globe back, and thus alternately from one to the other till it comes to the report, which finishes. Care must be taken that the fire passes not from the first to the next cracker, before it has quite consumed the first , but as I have given a caution
in the article about rockets that run on a cord, the same may be observed here.
Having taken care to fix the rockets, cover them with the other half globe, and join them firmly with strong pasted paper.
To charge Globes, which leap on Land, with Iron and
Take a hollow wooden globe, which has a touch-hole at the top, in the form of a small cylinder ; fill it with an aquatic composition, quite full ; then bore into the charge five or six holes, about half an inch wide, in which put iron petards, or crackers, which run tapering; provide
them at the lower end with a small touch-hole, and cover the top with a tin-plate, in which there is four holes, which you must close up with wads of paper or tow, after you have filled them with the best corn-powder : and when
you fire them on even ground, you will see them leap as often as a cracker goes off. See fig. 61.
The other sort is not much unlike the first, except that to this you add a certain number of crackers, which are disposed as you may observe in fig. 62. A the crackers, B the touch-hole.
How the Globes, discharged out of a Mortar, are made and ordered.
First find the mouth of a mortar, and divide it into twelve parts ; then have a globe turned of wood, which is two diameters of the mortar's mouth high j divide the diameter in six equal parts, and let the height between A and C be the diameter of the globe ; the thickness of the wood H I, should be one-twelfth of the above diameter, and the thickness of the cover of the globe ; the height of the priming chamber F shall be one-sixth and a half of the diameter, but its breadth only one-sixth ; the diameter of the touch-hole B is one-fourth, or one-sixth, of that of the chamber: for the better understanding these direc¬tions, see fig. 63.
The manner of filling these globes is thus ;
Take hollow canes, or common reeds ; cut them into lengths, to fit the cavity of the globe, and fill them with a weak composition made of three parts mealed powder, two of coal, and one of sulphur, moistened with a little linseed oil (excepting the lower ends of them, which rest upon the bottom of the globe, which must have mealed powder only, moistened likewise with the same oil, or
sprinkled over with brandy, and dried :) the bottom of the globe cover with mealed powder, mixed with an equal quantity of corn-powder ; the reed being filled in this manner, set as many of them upright in the cavity of the globe, as it will contain ; then cover it well at top ; and wrap it up with a cloth dipped in glue ; the priming must be of the same composition with the reeds.
The globes represented at 64, and 65, are contrived like the above, only the first of these is filled with running rockets, and the last with crackers, stars, and sparks, in-terspersed with mealed powder, and put promiscuously over the crackers. The figures are so plain, that I need not give any further explanation.
No. 66 is the representation of a globe, which plainly shews its construction: the great globe, which contains the lesser, is the same as described above ; for it is charged with running rockets. In the midst of these rockets fix a globe in a cylindrical form, with a flat bottom, and a cham¬ber and touch-hole. The cavity of this inner globe is filled with iron crackers, and covered with a flat covering : the priming chamber is to be filled with the same composi¬tion as has been directed for the above globes : the fuzees must be filled with good mealed powder.
To prepare the Light Baits, proper to be used at Bonfires.
Take two pounds of crude-antimony, four pounds of sulphur, four pounds of resin, four pounds of coal, and half a pound of pitch : having powdered all these ingre¬dients, put them into a kettle, or glazed earthen pan, over a coal fire, and let them melt ; then throw as much hemp, or flax, into it as may be sufficient to soak it up ; then take it off the fire, and whilst it is cooling, form it into balls.
You may wrap them up in tow, and put them either into rockets or globes.
Take five ounces and a half of mealed powder, one pound twelve ounces of sulphur. Or,
Take three pounds of mealed powder, six pounds of nitre, one pound of sulphur, two pounds of camphor, and two ounces of tanner's-bark, or saw-dust. Moisten all these ingredients with linseed oil.
Take mealed powder one pound, nitre four pounds, sulphur half a pound, and powdered glass six ounces ; moistened with a little linseed oil.
Nitre half a pound, sulphur two ounces, antimony one ounce, and mealed powder three ounces.
Nitre half a pound, sulphur three ounces, antimony one ounce, and iron file-dust half an ounce.
Nitre two pounds, mealed powder ten pounds, and sul¬phur one pound.
Nitre one pound, sulphur half a pound, mealed pow¬der three ounces, and antimony one ounce.
Having mixed and prepared your ingredients, boil some flax in nitre-lye and camphor ; then cut it small, and mix it up with any of the above compositions, which must be moistened with either the white of eggs, gum, or size : form this into little balls, of the size of a hazel-nut ; strew them over with mealed powder, and let them dry.
To cause the stars to burn very bright, make your com¬position of one ounce and three quarters of nitre, three quarters of an ounce of sulphur, and a quarter of an ounce of powder.
Nitre two pounds, sulphur fourteen pounds and a half, and mealed powder six ounces.
The paste, or melted stuff above-mentioned, is also made use of for the same purpose, wrapped in tow.
To project Globes from a Mortar, and the Quantity of Powder required for that Purpose.
The globes being of wood, it is requisite that the charges for them should be agreeable to their substance ; for which end they are first weighed, allowing for each pound of its weight a quarter of an ounce of gunpowder. For example, if your globe weighs forty pounds, you must, to discharge allow ten ounces of powder.
The charge thus performed put the powder into the chamber of the mortar, and cover with straw, hay, hemp, or flax, so as to fill quite full or the chamber of the mortar be too big, get one turned of wood, equal
in height and breadth to the chamber of the mortar that contains the charge of powder required pierce this with a red hot wire, from the bottom of the wood to the centre
of the bottom of the chamber in not perpendicular, but slanting. The place where the touch-hole begins must be marked, so that you may turn to correspond
with the touch-hole of the mortar. When you would load your mortar, cover the bottom of the chamber with little mealed and corn-powder, mixed together and upon that put the wooden chamber, in which the powder required to discharge the globe then fix the touch-hole of the globe, exactly, upon the chamber, wrapping in hemp, &c. to make stand upright.
The mortars contrived on purpose for globes are more commodious, and we are more certain in projecting them these are cast as follows the length of the mortar with the chamber, without the bottom, two diameters of the
mouth the bottom one-fifth thick the chamber half
the diameter of the mouth long, and quarter wide oval
at bottom the sides are an eighth of the diameter of the
mouth thick, which encreased at bottom to third; the thickness about the chamber fourth part.
Some prepare these balls with nitre four pounds, sul¬phur one pound and a half, powder half a pound, anti¬mony six ounces, and charcoal half an ounce.
Nitre four pounds, sulphur three pounds, camphor a quarter of a pound, and powder half a pound.
A fired Sun, with a Transparent Face.
To make a sun of the best sort, there should be twe rows of cases, as in fig. 67, which will shew a double glory, and make the rays strong and full. The frame, or sun wheel, must be made thus ; have a circular flat nave made very strong, twelve inches diameter ; to this fix six strong flat spokes, A. B. C. D. E. F. :— on the front of these fix a circular fell, five feet diameter, within which fix another fell, the length of one of the sua cases less in diame¬ter ; within this fix a third fell, whose diameter must be less than the second, by the length of one case and one- third. The wheel being made, divide the fells into as many equal parts as you would have cases (namely, from 24 to 44) : at each division fix a flat iron staple, which must be made to fit the cases to hold them fast on the wheel : let the staples be so placed, that one row of cases m ay lie in the middle of the intervals of the other.
In the centre of the block of the sun drive a spindle, on which put a small hexagonal wheel, whose cases must be ii!Ied with the same charge as the cases of the sun. Two cases of this wheel must burn at a time ; but begin with them on the fells. Having fixed on all the cases, carry pipes of communication from one to the other, as you see in the figure ; and from one side of the sun to the wheel in the middle, and thence to the other side of the sun. These leaders will hold the wheel steady while the sun is fixing up, and will aiso be a sure method of lighting both cases of the wheel together. A sun thus made is called a brilliant sun, because tire wood-work is entirely covered with fire from the wheel in the middle, so that there ap¬pears nothing but brilliant fire : but, if you would have a transparent face in the centre, you must follow this me¬
thod : take a piece of paste-board of a circular figure, like the sun's face, and cut out the eyes, nose, and mouth, for the sparks of the wheel to appear through ; or, instead of this, paint a face on oiled paper, or Persian silk, struined
tight over a small hoop : either of the faces are to be supported by three or four pieces of wire, at six inches distance from the centre of the wheel, so that the light may illuminate the face. In a similar way, you may place
transparent motto's — " Vivat Rex;" or any other de¬vices, suitable to the day of exhibition. Half pound cases, filled up ten inches with composition, will be a good size for a sun of five feet diameter ; but, if larger, the cases must also be pronortionably larger.
Take glew, let it for some time soke in fair water, then boil it in a pipkin 'till it is quite dissolved, and of a moderate thickness, as it is requisite for a good size. With this, after you have strained your cloth or canvas on a frame, and you rubbed it smooth with a sleek-stone, you size over it; if you add a little honey to your size it will keep it from cracking. When your first priming is dry, then whiten it over with whiting and size, and last of all, when thoroughly dry, paint it all over with a greyish colour of white-lead, and a little black, ground with linseed-oil, and laid on the cloth smooth and even. This being dry, you may then begin to draw on it your design as you intend to paint.,