Make a DIY lifesize animated breathing grave Halloween prop that is super spooky. This behind the scenes DIY video will give you an idea how the earth moving grave works and how to build one. Here is our version of the Halloween motorized breathing grave animated prop and its mechanics. Its design look and foam body was based off a real life cradle shaped grave for a small child we found which works great for boxing in the components for this moving box shaped prop. I found such a grave while on an out of town trip after I thought I’d stop and check out the local cemetery and graveyards. This Halloween prop is a great eye catching decoration addition to any yard or home haunt cemetery. Out of all the tombstones and gravestones this motorized prop stood out and was noticed as people skimmed across the rundown grave marker horizon. Everyone noticed the crunching sounds and moving pile of dirt and leaves as this moving grave came to life. We built the platform and box out of 3/4″ plywood and painted it flat black to disappear in the October nights. We carved and sculpted several outside portions of the prop from a white bead foam and then applied a styro safe hardener to the outside of the shaped and molded pieces. Each foam piece including the stella-alive epitaph carved tombstone is attached and removable with a Velcro. The idea for the mechanism came from watching several other youtube videos with different motors and materials but similar designs. The prop is motor driven with a electric motor purchased from Mcmaster Carr and enclosed in a Plywood enclosure with a vent located on the side to help prevent over heating. The motors part number and information is in an annotation in the video if your interested. The gear motor was connected to a piece of all thread with a threaded coupling which I drilled to small holes, threaded them and inserted small Allen screws to act as locking locks to help hold the motor shaft to the all thread. The piece of all thread had several aluminum arms with rollers attached to the ends that would roll as it pushed the burlap sack up and down. I got the idea for the rollers from another youtube video called guts with cam adjustment by saw 3 fan. We used caster bearings and electrical EMT pipe straps to hold the all thread down to the graves bottom section. Because the burlap sack would get tangled from time to time a piece of black plastic was placed in between which not only solved the problem but added a nice cracking sound making it more noticeable. The burlap and plastic are held down with several magnets that stick to a strip of steel that has bee fastened to the side of the box frame. We are proud to say the breathing grave won best 2012 motor driven prop on the Dead with Dave Show. You can check him and his haunt out at Pandemic Cemetery.
Some other motorized prop videos you may be interested in are
Motorized Kicking Legs
Motorized Rat Box Prop
Carved & Sculpted Foam Bell: Electric Motorized Swinging Prop
DEAD with Dave Home Haunters Awards 2012
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