The Halloween shows that I do for local schools include a lot of roman candles and other tube-type items; I used to stick them in buckets of sand but since that frequently caused problems due to pieces not being properly secured and tipping over (my volunteer loaders are great people, but when you’re continually putting things into sand and pulling them back out they don’t always get tamped down as well as can be) I decided to try something different this year and build some freestanding candle racks:

Since candles come in different sizes, I needed to be able to load more than one of each size at the same time and after studying the problem, it turned out that using a 2 ft. length of 1×6″ pine would allow me to cut lots of holes, allowing me to use any combination of candles I could want. The bottom piece is cut to accept the tubes with a “plate” at the bottom to keep them from falling through, and because fuses can be on the top or side depending on the manufacturer, there’s plenty of space between the top and bottom pieces to access them:

(You may notice that the third firework from the left doesn’t go all the way down; it’s a small piece with a spike on the bottom that’s designed to be stuck in the ground so I drilled a small hole in the top that the spike would fit into)

I also designed the racks so the stabilizing feet could be removed and attached to the sides, allowing me to stack the racks and save space:

While the racks performed very well, I did notice that I’ll need to make some changes to the bottom piece because a few of the multi-shot candles bounced while firing, which caused them to pop out of the bottom recesses and tilt a bit (not enough to cause problems but certainly enough to cause concern); it’ll be easy enough to add some depth to the bottom pieces, and I have plentry of time to get them ready for next year’s show.

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