Categories  Electric Firecrackers

 
#1080

Debugging a FLASH! Cracker, FLASH! Stick, or POW! Stick

May pose an Electro Shock hazard!   May pose a fire hazard!

REMOVE POWER BEFORE DOING ANYTHING! A SERIOUS SHOCK HAZARD EXISTS.  EVEN WHEN UNPLUGGED THESE DEVICES CAN STILL HOLD A CHARGE!

This document covers possible ways to bring a FLASH! STICK, POW! STICK, AND FLASH! CRACKER back to life.

 

LUBRICATING ELECTRODES

Apply a small amount of oil (any type of multi-purpose oil will do) to a q-tip or rag and coat each electrode with a small amount.  Do not let the oil drip into the device, only a small amount coted to the actual copper electrodes is enough.


 ADJUSTING ELECTRODES

The FLASH! Crackers, FLASH! Sticks, and POW! Sticks will diminish in spark and sound over time.  This happens because the copper pins where the electric arc is created become spread too far apart or move closer together.  The arc actually moves them over time.  Sometimes this happens even after the first few uses.

FLASH! CRACKER ADJUSTMENT

To fix a "dead" or quiet FLASH! Cracker you will need move the copper pins back to the correct distances.  Follow these steps to do so:

  • Unplug the FLASH! Cracker and make sure the power switch is on so that any residual charge is dissipated.  This is very important!  You will get shocked if you do not remove power.
  • Remove the red cap by holding onto the gold ring and turning the red cap counter-clockwise.  It can be a bit tricky to remove and reinstall.

  • Look inside and you will see the copper pins (these are the "electrodes").  There is one large one in between two that stick up on each side of it.  
  • Use needle nose pliers or a small screwdriver (make sure they have insulated handles and not raw metal or you may get shocked- even when unplugged!) to move the outer pins closer or farther away from the center copper pin.  The image shows proper spacing of the two pins.  Notice that the longer one needs to be a little bit farther away from the center pin than the other..  

FLASH! Cracker gap

  • Plug the FLASH! Cracker in and see how it fires.  If it is still unacceptable unplug it and move the pins some more.  Repeat until it is functioning correctly
  • When done, replace the cap by pushing and turning it clockwise.  It can be a bit difficult to reinstall.

FLASH! STICK ADJUSTMENT

To fix a "dead" or quiet FLASH! STICK you will need move the copper pins back to the correct distances.  Follow these steps to do so:

  • Unplug the FLASH! STICK and press the red fire button several times so that any residual charge is dissipated.  This is very important!  You will get shocked if you do not remove power.
  • Look down inside and you will see a red cap.  This cannot be removed on the FLASH! STICK so you will have to work through the opening in it with a small screw driver.

  • Look inside the red cap and you will see the copper pins.  There is one large one in between two that stick up on each side of it.  
  • Use a small screwdriver (make sure is has insulated handles and not raw metal or you may get shocked- even when unplugged!) to move the outer pins closer or farther away from the center copper pin.  

  • The image shows proper spacing of the two pins as if you were looking at it without the red cap.  Notice that the longer one needs to be a little bit farther away from the center pin than the other.

FLASH! Cracker gap

  • Plug the FLASH! STICK in and see how it fires.  If it is still unacceptable unplug it and move the pins some more.  Repeat until it is functioning correctly.  

POW! STICK ADJUSTMENT

To fix a "dead" or quiet POW! STICK you will need move the copper pins back to the correct distances.  Follow these steps to do so:

  • Unplug the POW! STICK and press the red fire button several times so that any residual charge is dissipated. Then Short the large terminals to the high voltage terminals with an insulated screwdriver to completely discharge the unit. This is very important!  You will get shocked if you do not remove power.  The POW! Stick holds a charge even when unlpugged!
  • Remove the 3 small screws holding the cap in place.  Remove cap.  Note: these pictures show a red cap, yours is probably black..

  • Shown here is the inside end of the POW! STICK.  DO NOT TOUCH COPPER WIRE WITH BARE HANDS.  You may get shocked!

  • The following picture describes the electrodes.  These are some things to adjust:

A) Make sure the two phillps head screws holding elctrodes "D" and "E" are tight and that these electrodes are oriented as shown in the pictures. 

B) Make sure the "A" high voltage electrode is positioned as show in the pictures.

C) By sligthly moving the electrodes you will obtain different results.

  • Replace the protective cap when done adjusting.

 

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