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  1. #1
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    Info for helpers with displays

    I am writing up a paper for any new help we have help with our shows. I was wondering if anyone has anything like this already I can see to get some information on do's and don'ts I might be forgetting to put on it.
    Last year a had a few things come up that I didn't really address before this person started helping so I want everything written down to give to everyone on the crew.

    My major ones are:
    No kids allowed (had this happen one year, i was working on some frontage and my helpers wife showed up to drop something off, he had his 10 year old kid helping load shells, i was not impressed. The wife took a picture and posted on facebook about her helping with the city show. I had to have a talk to him and i had her delete that picture.)

    No alchohol (had this one happen the first year, a guy popped a beer open while loading shells. This is one of the first things i address now. My policy is no alchohol until you leave the site. Even after done setting up.
    Jason Ziegler
    Council Grove, KS

  2. #2
    APPROVED MEMBER pyroandy's Avatar
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    Sounds Like Standard Operating Procedures. Did you take the PGI course and get a book. Lots of good info in there.

  3. #3
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    No smoking.

    Safety glasses required for working with the actual fireworks (not hauling racks).
    PGI and CrackerJacks
    BATF Type 20
    NYS Certified Pyrotechnician

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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    I'm not an actual pyrotechnician, but I have helped in some shows over the past couple of years. Let me see if I can make a list of sorts of stuff I've found.

    - Don't be in a hurry.
    - Gloves come in handy when moving racks.
    - If on smooth ground like concrete or asphalt, a u-boat cart is priceless.
    - A decent headlamp is very useful. I can't express how useful they are. Pack extra batteries.
    - Pay attention to what you're doing.
    - Stay hydrated, eat well.
    - Bring black plastic sheeting and nails to cover racks in case of rain. The guy I've helped uses rubber roofing.
    - Pace yourself, take breaks, don't wear yourself out.
    - Give yourself more then enough time to set up.
    - Crowbar > hammer when removing duplex nails.
    - Bring a little bottle of dish soap to wash hands with.
    - Watch where you step around modules.
    - Don't expect to be provided with everything you need.
    - LED flood lights are very useful when cleaning up.
    - Bring earplugs. Keep extra pairs.
    - A large box can be used to sit module on. Don't break your back.
    - Be open to learning.
    - Lots of guys have slightly different ways of doing things.
    - If not using your own tools, treat them with care.

    I'm sure there's more, but that's what I can remember right off.

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  6. #5
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    Stay hydrated. Where a hat. Always have an escape route. When in doubt ask. Dont put random shells in random tubes and wire them to random cues when helping with a pyro musical. Seriously, i have seen this happen. If something doesnt look right, ask. It helps to asign a go to person. Asking a question of just anyone on the site may get you the wrong answer.

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  8. #6
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    Quote Originally Posted by pyroandy View Post
    Sounds Like Standard Operating Procedures. Did you take the PGI course and get a book. Lots of good info in there.
    No, I have never done the course. I was going to last year at PGI and didn't. I would like to do it this year.


    Quote Originally Posted by wrtiii View Post
    No smoking.

    Safety glasses required for working with the actual fireworks (not hauling racks).

    You would think the no smoking would be common sense. I have found that to no be true. I will have to admit, I forget about the safety glasses. I have helped with other shows as well and most people I have been around don't. Very good idea. I work in construction and have been to the ER 3 times for stuff in eyes, poking and eye. You would think I would learn.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamisonlm3 View Post
    I'm not an actual pyrotechnician, but I have helped in some shows over the past couple of years. Let me see if I can make a list of sorts of stuff I've found.

    - Don't be in a hurry.
    - Gloves come in handy when moving racks.
    - If on smooth ground like concrete or asphalt, a u-boat cart is priceless.
    - A decent headlamp is very useful. I can't express how useful they are. Pack extra batteries.
    - Pay attention to what you're doing.
    - Stay hydrated, eat well.
    - Bring black plastic sheeting and nails to cover racks in case of rain. The guy I've helped uses rubber roofing.
    - Pace yourself, take breaks, don't wear yourself out.
    - Give yourself more then enough time to set up.
    - Crowbar > hammer when removing duplex nails.
    - Bring a little bottle of dish soap to wash hands with.
    - Watch where you step around modules.
    - Don't expect to be provided with everything you need.
    - LED flood lights are very useful when cleaning up.
    - Bring earplugs. Keep extra pairs.
    - A large box can be used to sit module on. Don't break your back.
    - Be open to learning.
    - Lots of guys have slightly different ways of doing things.
    - If not using your own tools, treat them with care.

    I'm sure there's more, but that's what I can remember right off.
    All good info. Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by stuntborg View Post
    Stay hydrated. Where a hat. Always have an escape route. When in doubt ask. Dont put random shells in random tubes and wire them to random cues when helping with a pyro musical. Seriously, i have seen this happen. If something doesnt look right, ask. It helps to asign a go to person. Asking a question of just anyone on the site may get you the wrong answer.
    About every show i do is a pyromusical. So everything is marked, i had a guy not paying attention one year and loaded 2 modules (64 cues) to the wrong modules. Luckily i caught it before he did anymore. We had the talk about making sure it is correct. All good info
    Jason Ziegler
    Council Grove, KS

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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    I think more important than anything-

    Make sure your lead pyros are on the same page as you are.

    i use this like any manufacturing problem. Your running a company. your hiring people, knowing that your (supervisors/lead people) know what you expect is important for them to pass the same knowledge and make sure it's happening is important.

    You can't be everywhere at all times- But having crew leaders and compensate those people for leading is important.

    Anything less than that- your running a dog and pony show and you shouldn't be doing shows.

  10. #8
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    I make copies of my setup plan with the products , cue ,mod & a semi forrest gump diagram of the layout .
    Beyond respect , they can answer a lot of their own questions = less interuptions , better flow because they're faster than me . know the mission And they can catch me ,if I'm overlooking or sometimes ideas to improve.

    Basically my checklist through the design with corrections subs and lots of scribble , color codes and checkoffs. Nope nuttin fancy and the raggitty buzzilion notes to myself , that i'd forget ''THAT DAY'' . It keeps them on the same page as me for sure The effort is clear . Keeps me calmer when my guys flow like a well oiled machine. They appreciate knowing what they're doing instead of a buncha chaotic do this do that !

  11. #9
    APPROVED MEMBER Adrenaline Pyro's Avatar
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    This is not too bad for basic info.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  12. #10
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    Re: Info for helpers with displays

    One way to prevent screw ups is to designate your stations and modules by letter, not by number. Say you have four stations labelled 1, 2, 3 and 4. Your product has labels like 1-3 for station 1, cue 3. Someone could easily land that at station 3, cue 1. But if you labelled your stations A, B, C, and D that product would be labelled A-3. No way someone will land that at C-1! I had a helper goof this up once but since switching to alphabetical stations, no further problems.
    Michael Guerra, M.D.

    Licensed Texas Pyrotechnician
    PAT/ Fireants
    BATFE 54

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