Software Documentation

Software Documentation

Flame, Spark and Fog Jet FixturesDocumentation

Intermediate Last updated: May 24, 2024

35 Spark Fabrica SF-Z5 Fly Spark 6CH

The Spark Fabrica SF-Z5 Fly Spark fixture is a moving head sparks fixture that can be controlled by any of the DMX-capable firing systems, such as Piroshow, Pyromac, PyroSure, fireTEK, Cobra, Fire Control G2, and Mongoose.


Figure 1 – Spark Fabrica SF-Z5 Fly Spark



The Fly Spark fixture supports direct control of the head angle over DMX, and it also supports a set of 72 pre-defined firing pattern macros.  Finale 3D only supports the direct control of the head angle features.  As of June 2024, Finale 3D does not support the 72 pre-defined firing pattern macros.


Specifying the angle of effects

To add a sparks effect to your show at a specific angle, simply insert one of the sparks effects from the supplier catalog, such as “SF-Z5 [200/0417] One Sec Sparks (md)”.  Then adjust the duration on the timeline to the desired duration by dragging the right end of the effect bar in the timeline, and adjust the angle by dragging the control point at the top of the effect’s trajectory in the 3D view.

To animate the moving head angle, insert a Move-In-Black effect to specify the starting angle of a movement; and then add a Move-To While On effect shortly after the Move-In-Black effect to specify the ending angle of the movement.  Adjust the trajectory angles of the Move-In-Black effect and the Move-To While On effects to specify the angles.  The time between the two events is the duration of the sweep.  You can add additional Move-To While On effects after the first in a sequence, each with its own angle, to create a back and forth sweeping animation.

As of June 2024, the majority of firing systems do not have support for ramping a DMX channel value, and Finale 3D‘s firing system exporter does not yet support ramps, so as of this date the angle sweeps created with Move-In-Black and Move-To While On effects for this fixture will move at the fixture’s maximum speed, regardless of the duration between the Move-In-Black and Move-To While On effects.  It is not possible at this time to design a slow moving angle sweep for this fixture in Finale 3D.

The situation with ramps is changing this year (2024).  Most of the major firing systems are nearing completion of their support for ramps.  Concurrently, Finale is in the process of improving its DMX exporter to use the new ramp features of the firing systems to control the speed of animated parameters like the angle sweeps for this fixture.

Finale’s improved exporter will also provide a similar control of angle sweep speed for firing systems that do not have ramp capabilities by automatically using multiple events in a stair step sequence to change the angle parameter.  Finale’s exporter will provide the user with options to manage this capability since it enlarges the script size with the multiple event sequences.


Table 1 – DMX channels

DMX Channel Meaning
Channel 1 (DMX Channel Base + 0) Angle from 90° to -90°,128 or 0 and 1upwords (128 is up, 255 is to the right; values down to 3 are to the left; as a special case, values 0 and 1 are also up)
Channel 2 (DMX Channel Base + 1) Unused, write 0.
Channel 3 (DMX Channel Base + 2)  Height (0-15 = off, 16-90 = low height; 91-170 = medium height; 171-255 = high height)
Channel 4 (DMX Channel Base + 3) Unused, write 0.
Channel 5 (DMX Channel Base + 4) Sequence (0 – 2 or 186 – 255 = no sequence; 3 – 185 = sequence based on the formula: channel value = 2 + sequence number * 2.55, rounded to nearest)


Channel 6 (DMX Channel Base + 5)  Pre-heat (0 – 49 or 201 – 255 = OFF: 50 – 200 = ON)



To design a show for Spark Fabrica SF-Z5 Fly Spark units, please follow these steps:

  1.  Set up.  (A) Follow the set up instructions in DMX basic instructions.  Depending on your DMX controller, you may choose to give each each fixture its own DMX universe, or give each fixture a channel range in a shared DMX universe.  (B) In the real world configure each physical fixture unit’s “Start Address” to be the start of the channel range you allocate for it. (C) In Finale 3D configure the “DMX Channel Base” of the fixture to match the Start Address exactly.
  2. Add the Spark Fabrica supplier catalog to your Finale 3D account.  Login to the website.  At the top of the page, go to “My Account > Supplier Catalog Settings” (  Find the Spark Fabrica supplier catalog in the table, and turn the switch to ON.  Then launch the Finale 3D application and synch to network.  The Spark Fabrica catalog will appear as one of the available collections in the effects window, which you can choose from the selector at the top of the window.  This catalog contains effects for all types of Spark Fabrica fixtures currently supported in Finale 3D, together.
  3. Add effects to the show.  In the 3D view, click on a Fly Spark position to filter the effects window to compatible effects.


Choosing the DMX channel ranges for fixtures

Each Fly Spark fixture requires multiple channels, so if you are putting multiple fixtures in the same DMX Universe, you need to set the Start Address on the fixture in the real world and the corresponding DMX Channel Base on the fixture in Finale 3D to a range of channels that doesn’t overlap with others.  A DMX universe has channels 1-512.  If you want to pack as many fixtures into the 512 channels of a DMX universe as you can, back-to-back ranges are the most efficient.  Table 2 shows an example for Fly Spark fixtures.  Some DMX firing systems only support 50 or 100 channels, so you may not have all 512 channels to work with.


Table 2 – Example channel ranges for 6CH Fly Spark fixtures

Fixture DMX Channel Base Channels Used
1 1 1-6
2 7 7-12
3 13 13-18
4 19 19-24
5 25 25-30
6 31 31-36
7 37 37-42
8 43 43-48
9 49 49-54
10 55 55-60
85 505 505-511



Table 3 – Example files and downloads

Download link Explanation
SF-Z5 FLYSPARK USER MANUAL.pdf Spark Fabrica SF-Z5 Fly Spark user manual