This post is only somewhat related to the topic.. but...
In a previous post I said that I've never seen a Yung-Feng or SanTai shell that was labeled "Made in Taiwan" they are all made in China it seems eventhough the plants are often listed as Taiwanese.
Finally, I saw two SanTai that were made in Taiwan. They were both old ones, from roughly 1993. One of them is a 5" with rising comet that is attached to the shell by means of a long (hemp looking) rope. The rope is about 2 feet long, with a 1" comet on the end. The guy who owns the shells says they are humorous looking while rising into the air, because the comet-on-rope is winging all over the place while rising along with the shell.
They were very nicely pasted in and hard as a rock. Pasting quality not often seen anymore today. Go SanTai Taiwan! :w It is nice to see a shell that looks like the builder took pride in assembling.
I certainly prefer 10 high quality shells over 200 low quality ones!
As is the rule of our fireworks factory. Its either good or else it goes swiming....
All our shells are covered with layers and layers of paper. Sometimes we also use plastic containers but even when we use plastic container we still recoat and again recoat with layers and layers of paper and to add to all this, each shell is more than once strenghtened with strings allover.
As a first; I'm not a professional pyrotechnican, i'm only saying what i can say out of experiences and my thoughts.
I think it's impossible to reckon 200 cheaper shells above 10 super-quality shells as a professional pyrotechnican. If you do, you'll get a highly sky-filled show, with grey, weak colors. No way you'll get in the news with thát! And even if you'll get in the news, the header would be "Nice skyline lasts show BUT [insert critiques]". And that's not your goal, as a pyrotechnican, appears me. You don't always want to have a "but" in the headers when it's about your show last night. If you choose for those 10 super quality shells, the sky will be highly less filled, but the colors and shapes of the peony's for example will be so fantastic, you'll make the crowd and the press forget the less filled sky.
Apparently, the shooters nowadays generally think "the general public does not know the difference", and even if they're right with that, in my opinion is Fireworks a hobby and a passion for every shooter, and why would you then take the less quality products?
Almost 8 years later the fear , that the high quality special shells will disappear , has gone . Year after year during our visits in Italy the best companies of the South produce fantastic " home made " traditional cilindrical shells .
Even the quality and complexity of these shells is increasing .
And there is export to the Northern European countries , for example in Germany companies like Pyros and Pyrounion import these special Italian shells for reasonable prices .
Chinese manufacturers cannot reach the high level and experience which is needed for the production of these shells .