Archive for the ‘Big Bang Cannons’ Category

Time to stock up on Bangsite for your Big Bang Cannon

Stock up on Bangsite now for the 4th

The Fourth of July is right around the corner. If you have a Big Bang Cannon, it’s time to get it out and make sure it’s cleaned up and ready. If you have an older cannon you haven’t fired in a many years, go find it and clean it up. With just a little effort, it should work fine. (Check out my prior blog post where I cleaned up a neighbor’s old cannon.)

It’s also time to stock up on Bangsite and Spark Plugs so you’re ready to celebrate.

Big Bang Cannon Flint

Go find your cannon and any bangsite you may have. First check the cannon for any buildup in the firing chamber. If you have lime buildup, I suggest soaking it with CLR to clear it out (it’s available at most grocery stores). A clean firing chamber will give you the best performance.

Next, check the spark plug and be sure it’s still making a good spark.

6F Big Bang Cannon
Our Best Selling Big Bang Cannon

Lastly, check your Bangsite. If you have an open container, it’s probably not good anymore. If it looks like dust or flour, dispose of it. It won’t work. It should look dark and granular. Unopened tubes should still be good, unless they’re very old. If you need Bangsite of Spark Plugs, order them now to be sure you have them when you want to use your cannon.

Dave’s Cool Toys has a great 3-pack deal on Bangsite and Spark Plugs for $27.49. You get 3 tubes and 3 flints.

Be sure to check out our Big Bang Cannon page for other tips and lots of great information.

Where are your cannons? Oops.

Our best selling Big Bang Cannon

What happened to our cannons?!

If you were on our site recently looking for Big Bang Cannons, you might not have been able to find them. A helpful customer called to say that they were not displaying.

Well, I’m not entirely sure what happened, but for some reason they all disappeared.

The good news is that they are back now. So if you had wanted to purchase a Big Bang Cannon and couldn’t find them, they are back now. If you haven’t seen them, check them out.


Big Bang Cannon Price Increase (sorry)

Civil War Cannon

One of my favorite items, and also one or our most popular, are Big Bang Cannons. Unfortunately, we have been forced to increase our prices on most of these cannons due to an increase from the manufacturer. Like most products, due to higher costs, they had to raise prices. The last time they had an increase was in 2000, so it is understandable. However, since the price has not changed for 10 years, the increase has been a substantial one.

We are sorry for this increase, but we have kept the prices as low as we possibly can. Subscribers to our newsletter were alerted early to the increase so they had a chance to purchase a cannon before they went up (shameless plug).

All the brass cannons are the same price at this time.

Incidentally, If you aren’t familiar with this great item, don’t miss my Big Bang Cannon information page with all the information you could possibly want to know about them.

Big Bang Cannon Salvage

Josh firing our 6F Big Bang Cannon

At the beginning of the summer, my son was firing off our little 6F Big Bang Cannon. One of my neighbors heard it and checked to see what he was doing and we got talking about the cannons. He mentioned he had a cannon somewhere that he doesn’t remember ever firing. He thought it was in pretty bad shape and might not be fireable (is that a word?).

The next day he came over and he’d found an old cannon in his basement that was the size of a 10FC, but with military green finish (not currently available). I’ll have to do some research to see what cannon it is exactly. It wasn’t in too bad shape, but it needed some work. He asked me if I would mind getting it working and I gladly agreed (I need to keep his wife’s plum goodies coming).

It took me about two days to clean it up, but this mostly involved soaking time. The loading mechanism was fused and needed some work. I soaked it overnight in WD-40, cleaned it up (it must be completely dry to work), and put some graphite on it and it worked fine. There was a bit of calcium buildup in the chamber, so I soaked it for about an hour in CLR, which cleared it out nicely. Other than that, it just needed a bit of cleanup, spiderwebs cleaned out of the barrel, a new "spark plug" and it was ready to go.

I returned it to him with a new tube of bangsite. He brought it back later that evening for my son to fire and it worked great! It was very loud and Josh had a great time with it.

My neighbor wasn’t sure how long he’d owned the cannon, or where he got it from. He was pretty sure he’d never fired it. But with just a little work, it’s good as new. He was fortunate that no parts were missing, but those could mostly be replaced as well.

I’ve been thinking about this. There aren’t many toys out there that you could say this about. Perhaps some older wooden toys could be sanded and oiled and would be good as new if they were kept dry. But Big Bang Cannons are certainly unique. A little bit of cleanup and it’s usable. No need to keep it on a shelf and never touch it to preserve it for future generations. Just make sure you flush the chamber after use, keep it dry, and keep all the parts together.

My son enjoys firing ours. I keep an eye on him to be sure he is using it properly and cleaning it up once he’s done. But he gets the "bang" of fireworks with almost none of the dangers. He certainly enjoyed the larger one too (are you listening Santa?).

Following are some photos of our neighbor’s cleaned up cannon. Unfortunately, I didn’t think to take any pictures before and during the clean up.


Fireworks originated in China during the Sung dynasty, from 960 to 1279, when a cook discovered that a mixture of sulphur, saltpetre, and charcoal was highly flammable (I bet that was an interesting mealtime). Today’s fireworks are made colorful by combining potassium chlorate and various metallic salts which produce may colors. Strontium burns red, copper blue, barium glows green, and sodium produces yellow. Magnesium, aluminium, and titanium give off white sparkles or a flash.

As the Fourth of July holiday comes closer, most families will go to big community fireworks displays, which are performed by professionals that take many precautions to assure safety.

Some families will have their own backyard festivities with store-bought fireworks. Unfortunately, many will not take the safety precautions that the pros do.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that in 2004 (latest figures available) about 9,600 people were treated in hospital emergency rooms for fireworks injuries. Over half were burns and most involved the hands, eyes, and head. About half of the victims were under 15 years of age.

Small children are especially vulnerable because they are attracted to the bright colors of fireworks, but don’t understand the danger. This includes “safe” fireworks such as sparklers, which burn at between 1832º – 3632º Fahrenheit. Yikes!

In 2005 fireworks caused an estimated 1,800 structure fires and 700 vehicle fires.

Following are some fireworks safety tips to keep kids safe this holiday and all summer

  • Only adults should handle fireworks. Tell children that they should leave the area immediately if their friends are using fireworks.
  • Sparklers, generally considered safe for the young, burn at very high temperatures and can easily ignite clothing.
  • Older children should only be permitted to use fireworks under close adult supervision. Do not allow any running or horseplay.
  • Discuss safety procedures with your children. Teach children “stop, drop and roll” if their clothes catch fire. Make sure they know how to call 9-1-1. Show them how to put out fireworks by using water or a fire extinguisher.
  • Read labels and carefully follow directions. All fireworks must carry a warning label describing necessary safety precautions. If they don’t have the label, don’t use them.
  • Never use fireworks indoors.
  • Be sure spectators are out of range before lighting fireworks.
  • Never aim or throw fireworks at another person.
  • Never place your face or any other body part over fireworks (eye protection is recommended).
  • Never try to re-ignite fireworks that malfunction. Throw them away.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies and for pouring on fireworks that don’t go off.
  • Never carry fireworks in your pocket.
  • Only light fireworks on a smooth, flat surface away from the house, dry leaves, and flammable materials.
  • Check for drought conditions in your area. During those times, fireworks are usually banned completely.
  • Keep unused fireworks away from firing areas.
  • Store fireworks in a dry, cool place. Check instructions for special storage directions.
  • Observe local laws.
  • Don’t experiment with homemade fireworks.
  • Be considerate of your neighbors and stop your celebrations by 10:00 p.m.
  • Clean up all the sticks, wires, tubes, etc. that are left around after your fireworks. Put them in a bucket of water and let them soak overnight to be sure they are out.
  • Many pets are terrorized by fireworks. Be sure your dogs and cats are in an area they feel secure in. Don’t take them to community fireworks displays.
  • Use common sense.
  • Even by following these tips, fireworks can still be quite dangerous. Use safe alternatives to fireworks such as Cap bombs, Sparklers, Party Poppers, Snappers, or Big-Bang Cannons (shameless plug).

This series of three images are from a Consumer Products Safety Commission fireworks safety demonstration using manequins illustrating a scene in an incident where a man and his nephew were killed as they removed powder from fireworks bought in New Hampshire to create larger, more powerful and illegal fireworks, in Washington, Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Big Bang Cannons are the only safe substitute for fireworks. They were originally created because the inventor was concerned about the large amounts of injuries from fireworks.

Big Bang Cannons create a loud “bang” by imploding, Once the gas in the cannon ignites, it draws air back into the cannon, creating a noise as loud as fireworks. This makes them very safe because you cannot place anything in the barrel and expel it (that would only inhibit the combustion). They also do not use gunpowder or matches, instead using Bangsite as fuel. Bangsite is not combustible and cannot be ignited by fire or concussion (you can see why they are so safe). Because of these safety features, Big Bang Cannons can be fired by older children with adult supervision (follow all safety precautions). They are also quite loud and are certainly a great substitute for fireworks. Perfect for your 4th of July celebration!

Big Bang Cannons – new web page!

Dave's Cool ToysOne of our most popular items at Dave’s Cool Toys (and one of my favorites) are Big Bang Cannons. We’ve been selling them since 1995 and they are still one of our most popular items.

Our Big Bang Cannon product pages have quite a bit of information about the cannons, but it would be impractical to answer every possible question about them on each of those pages.

For that reason I have created a Big Bang Cannon web page. Not only have I tried to answer every possible question customers could have abour these great items, but I’ve included some history, operating tips, a link to a pdf file of instructions for your cannon (in case you lose them), photos, and much more. I’ll keep it updated and add to it in the future.

Dave’s Cool Toys

Dave’s Cool Toys Blog
We post news about new toys on our site, new toys in the market, general toy information, or stuff we just thought was cool (usually toys).

We welcome your feedback and comments.

Be sure to check out our toys at Dave's Cool Toys. We work hard to find toys you won't find at the big box stores. Now go out and play!

Dave Ference

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