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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is the year to finally build a Johnny's ghost. Love this guy and so much gratitude for providing such great info.

http://johnnysghost.blogspot.com/2012/09/animated-cloaked-ghost-final.html

Since I already have a similar, static phantom with a lantern, I was considering a candelabra like this guy.

https://www.collagecab.com/wp-conte...vered-with-clothes-holding-candle-holder..jpg

The skeleton one is cantilevered but the candelabra would still have to be pretty lightweight I would assume? Johnny's ghost moves both arms so weight is a substantial concern.

I have looked for a lightweight plastic model with zero success. I am open to making something but haven't come up with a material that would be lightweight enough to do it. Suggestions? Thanks as always!
 

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Although it can be a pain, I'd look into a combo of foam and pvc or Polly pipe. Keeps it light and you really only need the pipe for the main stem. My FCG is 100% carved foam right down to her vertebrae. Keeps the motor running well without the heat build up or loss of speed.
 

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Foam is probably going to be the easiest / cheapest / lowest barrier to entry and one of the lighter options. You could glue up a few layers of urethane foam board from the hardware store and use 'all thread' rod for a center pivot, then shape the curved pieces by spinning it with a power drill and using some coarse sand paper to whittle it down to shape.

If you can live with a bit more stylized candelabra, I made the one below - each of the five 'wings' and five 'feet' were cut from 3/8" plywood. The center is an old tree branch and the candles are plastic fluorescent tube protector. Of course 2 AA batteries and flicker LEDs for the candles. It's a bit heavy with the wood, but those pieces could just as easily be foam - then you're just cutting shapes out of flat sheet foam without the need to 'lathe cut' them.

If you have access to a 3D printer, that can make some remarkably light parts. You could just print the main parts and glue together. But then you need a 3D printer!



lost in the attic candelabra3 by Ted Haun, on Flickr

Hope this helps.
 

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I’d go with 3D printing, then you can thin out your fill percentages and use a honeycomb fill.

Though, I suspended a candelabra last year with high strength fishing line and it survived the night. It was the same kind that Michaels sold (though I think they painted it white last season.)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for responding everyone. I picked up a couple of small PEX pipe sizes thinking I would heat and curve it into the candelabra arms but am not sure it can be bent with a heat gun or if it would hold its shape. It’s certainly way lighter than PVC!

I’ve “sculpted” with pink foam sheets before but with the small diameter of the candelabra arms, breakage is a concern.

Unfortunately I don’t have or have access to a 3d printer.
 

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I will put on my thinking cap on this one Daphne, I have been wanting to make a Candelabra for a while and I will come up with some ideas on how to pull it off. Right off the top of my head, if you want fine arms, flexible 1/4" copper pipe (You buy it in rolls) would have the rigidity and the ability to still be bent and formed. Fill the pipe with sand before you attempt to bend it though, the stuff likes to kink.

I think I'll make a candelabra my next weeks video tutorial...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Apparently while editing on my phone, I accidentally deleted part of my previous message...

Kallen, you even carved the vertebrae in foam? Wow, that's hardcore.

Corey, you did a fantastic job on your candelabra. I debated using fluorescent tube covers as well. Assume you just hit them with white spray paint and hot glue at the top?

I was going to run LED's up in the candles and attach them all to one power source to minimize weight as well. On my cat prop, which is dressed like Dr. Strange, I used Evan's Designs lights in the eyes and for the infinity stone pendant to minimize hardware/weight and figured I would get lights from them again for this unless someone has a better suggestion.

SamhainPropworks, that would be great, your tome book was absolutely stunning so I'm curious what you will come up with on this. I considered copper and have heard of filling it with sand to avoid kinks but have never worked with it. Please let me know if you do a video, I would love to see it. Thanks.
 

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Hey Daphne,

Here is a sneak peek of what I came up with! The only issue is the candles, as the ones I had were 2 AA batteries each. The candelabra itself (Sans Candles) comes in at 213g. So using the same construction and different candles, I'm pretty sure the weight will be low enough for almost any animatronic. I hate to be a tease, but I was excited to have this finished. The full tutorial coupled with my usually rambling will be posted this Saturday.

Edit: The arms are 1" Blue foam, head treated to increase rigidity, I shook the heck out of is after I finished it, to see if I could force it to break and it held solid.

 

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Corey, you did a fantastic job on your candelabra. I debated using fluorescent tube covers as well. Assume you just hit them with white spray paint and hot glue at the top?

I was going to run LED's up in the candles and attach them all to one power source to minimize weight as well. On my cat prop, which is dressed like Dr. Strange, I used Evan's Designs lights in the eyes and for the infinity stone pendant to minimize hardware/weight and figured I would get lights from them again for this unless someone has a better suggestion.
Thanks! Yes - for the candles, cut the tube protector at the "sort of melted" angles, dribbled some hot glue at the top to make the 'melted' part, very light coat of white spray paint, aged it up with some beige spray and spattered some black to look like mold or other gunk.

For the LEDs I salvaged some cat-5 ethernet cable which has 4 pairs of thin wire. Ran a pair to each flicker LED, glued the LED to a stick about 7/8 the length of the candle - so it sits just inside the tube (about where a candle flame would be if it burned down inside the candle). Glued the stick to the candelabra, then set the tube over that and glued in place.

Ran all the wires down to a small battery box at the base and painted the whole base black. Here is a 'modern' pic:

candelabra by Ted Haun, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sorry I disappeared. It was a crazy prop building extravaganza here and I spent most of the last several days covered in paint and building material residue. I was literally covered in paint. Being incredibly graceful, I managed to trip and step/fall in the paint, it flew everywhere, including all over me, especially from the waist down, all over the garage and everything in the vicinity. Since I had mixed the color and didn't have enough left to mix anymore I was actually blotting the paint from my clothes onto the prop hoping it wouldn't run out before the prop was covered ha ha! The paint went through my pants, socks, shoes and even on my skin under all that. Never squat down in that situation, I managed to cover the entire back of my pants as well while blotting the bottom of one pants leg on the prop but I digress...

Your candelabra turned out great SamhainPropworks. I watched and really enjoyed your video. You did a great job! Thanks for making it your project of the week, it was super helpful! I wouldn't have thought of using the heat gun for several things you did so that was really a super tip.

The design of the candelabra evolved this weekend but I can still use several of your ideas which is terrific. Mine is sort of a hybrid between yours, Corey's and the new design.

Thanks for all the help everyone! It has been amazing and I hope what I create turns out even half as great as what everyone on here has created. It always blows me away at how many creative people we have here, what an awesome community!
 

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Your paint shenanigans gave me a laugh, I relate because I know the exact thing could happen to me. You should explain it as you were channeling the ghost of Jackson Pollock and it was him not you that made the paint mess all over everything. It's not a disaster, it is Art™.

I'm glad you enjoyed the prop tutorial Daphne, my greatest hope is people take what I build and give it their own flair. I am on a bit of a kick lately playing with heat guns, spray paint and foam, the texture outcomes are awesome. I really like the fact that when you heat foam it gets a almost plastic skin on it, which brings a lot of strength to a piece, but it is a bit of a rodeo on how much it melts it and how much is too much. I have a stack of pieces of foam outside my house right now using all different paint/heatgun tricks in different orders that produces the best replicable corroded metal texture. I want to do a set of metal manacles and chains this week, thus the experimentation.

As for the Candelabra, I honestly always am seeing things that I see people talking about and realize it is something I wish I had as a prop. A lot of my videos are pretty pedestrian props, not exactly the most exciting things alone, but together in a scene can really flesh it out. I am hoping when you are all done, you will share what you come up with.

Good luck with the paint cleanup!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
All of my projects involve at least one fiasco such as the paint debacle. Happy to share it if I ever get to the actual build ha ha. The prototype is coming along pretty well even though it has evolved at least twice a day for the last week and a half. It looks like a paper doll and cardboard convention exploded here at the moment....

Just out of curiosity, what is THE adhesive of the hour with regards to craft foam and the thick workout mats? I've always used hot glue or Liquid Nails Fuze It for everything but was wondering if contact cement was a better option although the other stuff seems to work just fine. I also have to glue some plastic reusable straws to either PEX tubing or CPVC. Thinking my best bet there may be to make a small disc from workout mats and drill holes around the outside for the straws to friction fit the pieces together with Fuze It to connect to the perpendicular PEX/CPVC.
 

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When it comes to the EVA foam, the best glue hands down is the contact cement. The bond it forms is bloody amazing. I have tried hot glue a long time ago and it just end ups making a mess that refuses to sand easy. If you end up friction fitting anything through EVA, I usually just tack it with hot glue at that point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
While I manage to burn the daylights out of my fingers every single time I use a glue gun, contact cement always makes me nervous because once the 2 pieces touch you are done. Invariably, I need to shift something slightly and it is not exactly cooperative in that regard hence the fact that the bottle is always full ha ha.
 

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Oh gosh, me and hot glue as well.. I guarantee if you have watched any of the videos where I use hot glue, I burn myself on camera guaranteed, I'm pretty good at hiding it but you can hear it in my voice. You are correct though, contact cement is a no negotiation glue, once it is stuck, it is stuck. My one suggestion is getting lower temp hot glue and a gun that plays well. I have a big, Black and Decker glue gun that turns anything I put into it into molten lava with a need to consume the skin on my fingers. I'm sure with a lower temp gun the glue would not become as angry.
 
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