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Prop How-To's Post your own tutorials here or links to your favorite project tutorials. Please only post direct links to how-to pages, not links to main pages of a web site. Please use the Links forum for that.



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Old 09-10-2013
ocalicreek ocalicreek is offline
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Default Owl Upgrade

After checking the various haunt-prop lists, Google, etc, I only found ONE other owl prop treatment. I decided my Golden Cedars Pet Cemetery absolutely NEEDS an owl. In fact, it was one of the first things I thought of as a prop. Here's the thread in which I will document the build as a how-to.

The upgrade includes taking a stock-standard blow-mold plastic garden owl, used to scare away birds, and adding glowing, blinking, following eyes, along with a nice(r) paint job. Hopefully I will be able to post a few pictures later this week and share my progress.

Thanks for reading!

Galen
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Old 09-11-2013
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Maarkb Maarkb is offline
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Can't wait to see it. Are you gonna add feathers? I'm sure it will be creepy!
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Old 09-11-2013
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FastEddie33 FastEddie33 is offline
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Sounds cool..Can't wait to see it!!
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Old 09-11-2013
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Looking forward to it!
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Old 09-11-2013
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Sounds like a solid idea!
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Old 09-11-2013
ocalicreek ocalicreek is offline
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Feathers! I'm undecided on feathers. I was looking at a little baggie of feathers at Joann Fabrics a few nights ago and put them back. I'm thinking it may be too dark to notice the feathers on the whole body so I'll let the paint fool the eye there...but this is a Great Horned Owl, so a few accent feathers on the 'horns' may stand out.

Thanks for the encouragement. I invested a little time with my oldest son this morning working on his train layout, and that's currently in the workshop taking up space. However, I may get started on the owl tonight. Apart from feathers, if I go that route, I have all the parts I need to make this work!

Galen
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Old 09-14-2013
ocalicreek ocalicreek is offline
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Default A good start

Here's what I started with:



Galen
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Old 09-14-2013
ocalicreek ocalicreek is offline
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Next I removed the eyes and beak. I used a Dremel with a round metal cutter/grinder to cut away the base, which was molded to look like the top of an old fence post, I think. Already a vast improvement. Had to put on a leather glove just like an animal trainer.



And here's what's left of the base. There's gotta be a use for this, also for the eyes. The beak was reinserted after I ground away a little inside the head. It was hot-glued in when I bought it and wasn't fully in place. Now it is snapped snugly without any adhesive. I think it was designed to snap in, but the way the slot was made for the beak tab, it wasn't shallow enough to allow it to lock in.



And of course all that dust became charged particles which stuck to the owl, my workbench, etc. My shop vac took care of that. This work session I also bisected a poor ping pong ball, drew in some eyes, and rigged a light in the bird to check out the following-eye effect. More on that in another post.

Galen
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Old 09-15-2013
BugFreak BugFreak is offline
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I've been wondering what to do with one of these things that's been sitting in my garage for a while. I can't wait to see it!
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Old 10-26-2013
ocalicreek ocalicreek is offline
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Substantial progress yesterday. Got to spend the whole day puttering in the garage, first doing some long-overdue straightening, then making an inner support for the owl-tronics.

While I am happy with how the support came together, I'm not as pleased with the brightness of the eyes and even more frustrated with where to put the prop in my yard. Once the rest of the display begins to come together (over the 2014 build season) it would fit easily on a fencepost in another part of the yard. But without a supporting cast, it just looks strange by itself AND is way too isolated in a part of the yard where nobody would walk usually, and it presents itself as a target for theft. Too far from the ToTs and the following eye effect is lost. Too close to the front door and while it is easier to protect, it is also easier to examine (spoiling the illusion) and the blinking is diminished due to ambient light.

So today I am working on a plan B. If you recall from a few posts above originally the owl came molded on a post, which I cut away. Funny thing...I plan on mounting it on a post. Found an old 4x4 timber in the wood pile out back which will make a dandy sign post for the haunt. This year I'm going to leave off the 'Golden Cedars' sign and just make it a fence post with an owl on top. This way I can place the post further from the front door, making it harder to examine close-up and hopefully letting the blinking effect shine in the dark.

But it may mean I have to paint the owl this year, and I was beginning to think I wouldn't have to. Why spend alot of time on something that won't be seen or appreciated?

I took pictures of the innards before screwing them inside the body, and I'll post them later today.

Galen
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