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Catherine Wheels

Catherine wheels are iconic fireworks that are a must at any event or celebration. They spin at great speed and produce stunning sparks and colours. In the past, selection boxes were the place to find Catherine Wheels, but now you can purchase them separately. At Ghengis Fireworks, we have a few for you to choose from, and they are perfect additions to any fireworks display.

What is a Catherine Wheel?

Also known as cyclone or pinwheel, a Catherine wheel is a type of classic firework consisting of either an angled rocked or a powder-filled spiral tube. When ignited, the firework’s energy creates unique flames and sparks and causes the wheel to spin at high speed, making the display much more spectacular. Catherine wheels can be as simple as small wheels that only last a few minutes to complex, large fireworks fixed with gears that have a longer duration and fire off for a much more significant effect.


There is a history associated with the name Catherine wheel. In ancient times, a girl named Catherine of Alexandra touched the wheel, breaking it into several pieces, but miraculously none of the debris harmed her. It’s a myth or story from the great Christian legend. Catherine wheels are trendy in Malta, where you can get many of them ranging from small to large and large to gigantic.

How it Works

Catherine wheels are usually mounted on a post. When ignited, the firework’s energy causes the wheel to rotate at high speed while also creating colours and sparks. A pinwheel has various mounted rocket-like motors. When ignited, Each motor provides thrust and sparks with its exhaust gas, rotating the wheel at high speed. This spinning of the Catherine wheel adds to the overall effect, throwing out vivid sparks as it spins.

The Largest Pinwheel Firework

The largest Catherine wheel was made in Maqaba at Malta in a factory called LILY FIREWORKS. It was massive with a diameter of 32 meters. This mighty and large pinwheel firework was ignited at an annual festival called Our Laddy of the Lilies on June 18, 2011.

Types of Catherine Wheels

Catherine wheels can vary in detail, design, and size. Two of the most popular variations of pinwheel firework are star piece and five-wheel piece. The five-wheel part has its four wheels placed in the form of a cross and then one wheel in the middle. Star piece is generally substantial in size. It is about 4 meters in diameter and placed in the center. It has diamond shapes that range from 8-10 and spin on the base. It creates both opening and closing star effects. Both types of pinwheels are ideal for virtually any firework display. There are several other types as well. At Ghengis Fireworks, we stock Destiny and Penny Farthing Catherine wheels. Both are low noise and have a safe viewing distance of 8 meters.