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Dry ice is what's used for "ground fog" in movies (for fog in the air, they use oil-based foggers) because it's immediate, gives great thick ground-hugging fog which quickly goes away (important on a set), and leaves no residue. But Hollywood has budgets that allow it. They use high-wattage foggers made from 55-gallon drums with 220V heating elements in them and buy hundreds of pounds of dry ice at a time.Dry ice is fine in your lab scene to make the beakers bubble but for ground fog at home you are much more cost effective using a conventional water-based fog machine and chiller.
 

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If you only need a small scale effect, say for something indoors, You can put water in a crock pot ( a slow cooking pot) set it on high which will keep the water warm enough so it will not freeze around the dry ice. If you put dry ice in a bucket of water alone, then the dry ice will freeze a layer of water around itself and stop until the pressure builds up on the ice and it pops open again, with some force I might add. Remember this is for a small effect like a chauldron or something simular, it will not fog the room up.
 

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If you only need a small scale effect, say for something indoors, You can put water in a crock pot ( a slow cooking pot) set it on high which will keep the water warm enough so it will not freeze around the dry ice. If you put dry ice in a bucket of water alone, then the dry ice will freeze a layer of water around itself and stop until the pressure builds up on the ice and it pops open again, with some force I might add. Remember this is for a small effect like a chauldron or something simular, it will not fog the room up.
I use crock pots when I use dry ice. It works great. I put a small crock pot inside a pumpkin and put the dry ice in there too. It works great, but it is a lot of maintenance FYI.

Heres some pics:



 

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Thats true. I suggest you play with it and see how long a given size of dry ice will last. That will give you an idea of how long you can go before you need to go check the crock pot. Also dry ice in water makes some noise too, boiling and hissing, its a nice effect too.
SAFETY NOTE --- Dry ice is very cold stuff and may cause frost bite, use gloves when you handle it or use tongs. Store in styrofoam cooler, wrap with newspaper. DO NOT put in a tight fitting container. Dry ice turns directly into a gas and can pressurize the container its is stored in. Leave the lid open just a tiny bit. Looks great in the punch bowl too (just a small amount).
 

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Warning with the crock pot in the pumpkin... I also had Christmas lights in that pumpkin so it glowed. It was pretty awesome. The halloween party that year was about 2 days before actual Halloween. I always carve the day of the party and use the pumpkins in the basement and througout the house. I bring them outside the next day where they wait to be set up again for Halloween... well... Im sure everyone here knows the smell of rotting pumpkin.. if you dont well then dont try this at home!

The heat from the lights and the crock pot shortens the life of a chopped up pumpkin and man oh man did it ever stink!!! on Halloween. I could vomit right now just thinking about it. It actually took me some time to figure out what the heck the stink was from. If you want a great rotting death smell for your haunt.. this is a cheap way to do it.

Anyway. The christmas lights were thrown out cuz everytime you turned them on the smell would come out of them (it was one of my brand new 300 light strands for 25.00) That was bad. Next time I would use dollar store ones. I would aslo get the pumpkin in the cold that night before I went to bed if I wanted to keep it for a couple of days or just get rid of it the next day period.

Just an FYI. It was a great pumpkin though Charlie Brown!
 

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I would say for the safety precautions and the maintenance, I don’t think there would be much of an advantage. But thats just me. I think using dry ice to keep it contained to cool fake fog, would be a waste of money.
 

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Dry ice won't just chill the fog, it will freeze it. A significant portion of what would be fog will end up becoming a thick layer of frost on the dry ice. Waste of fog and expensive dry ice. Once again, dry ice is good for spot effects -- a cauldron, a pumpkin, beakers, etc. If you want area fog, go with a fogger and regular ice chiller.
 

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Not that I want to encourage mobs of haunters at grocery stores begging for dry ice, but you guys do realize that most grocery stores get stuff shipped to them in dry ice. The stores have NO USE for this dry ice once they've unpacked the boxes and the dry ice is simply tossed out the back of the store to evaporate.

If you ask really nicely they'll often let you have the afore mentioned dry ice for little or no cost. You just have to find out when the closest shipment to Halloween is and go pick it up.
 

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I used to work in a local theater group had a dry ice fogger made from a metal trash can with a hot water heater element in the bottom and fans in the lid that pushed fog through duct outlets in he side of the can. This thing worked great and was made with spare parts. I don't use dry ice anymore as in this state you are supposed to be certified to handle it now. I also work in a pro haunt and our local inspectors won't allow it.
 
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