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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dungeon.jpg Well, for those that have been following the construction of my castle facade I have some great news and great pics! The castle is nearly complete. We finally got all the tarps hung and got the creases out for the most. (Never hang a 40 foot tarp on a when the wind is blowing.) Hanging such a large tarp is quite an undertaking so make sure you have plenty of help. I still have some painting to do on the large center tarp. The blocks don't exactly match on top and bottom due to the fact that I painted it in 5 foot sections over the course of 2 days. That is an easy fix as long as I can get up there to do it. I still need to paint the battlements, main entrance archway and door (the guests will actually enter through the Right hand tower but I want the castle to look authentic.) The best thing happened to me this past week. I had posted an ad on Craigs list looking for any type of free materials to use in a haunted house, foam, foam rubber, lumber, etc. I got a call and was asked to go pick up a large trailer load of 1, 2, 3, and 4 inch styrofoam scraps. It was left over but there are a lot of large pieces, and long plank like pieces already cut. I probably got a thousand dollars worth for free. So now that I have this gold mine of styrofoam we have decided to make 3 dimensional windows, and doorways instead of just air-brushing them on like I had planned. More on that later. Meanwhile here are the pics.
All comments and suggestions always welcome!
 

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Love this. We have a boring non-discript white wartime story and a half house that we disguise with scene setters every year. Takes quite a few scene setters to wrap a house, even a small house and every year some parts rip and need replaced the next. Your idea is much better and looks manageable. The Tower sections are very awesome. I don;t know if we will tackle that this year, but I'm definitely gonna talk the rest of my clan into the stealing the rest of your idea! Thanks for the heads up!
 

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Any pics or details on how this is supported? Attached direct to house, or have some cleats/runners? Or have its own frame.

I am 'on the wall' as to try one this year (current plan is a Hogwarts style castle backdrop)...But I don't think I have the painting skills to pull it off, fraid it'll look like, well a tarp.


What was the tarp material? How thick or heavy?
 

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WOW! I'm impressed.... You're gonna build a "real" castle all around your house? (sorry, but I missed the previous posts...;) )
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Many thanks to all the wonderful comments! Originally I was going to support the facade with PVC but luckily I have friends that know more about structural stability and they leave the artistic flair to me. So they decided to construct the towers and the main support out of 2 x4s. The building itself is not a house it is a metal garage with a 13 foot sliding door on each end. Only one end of the building had any real wooden support, so Columbus, my "Chief Engineer" decided to get a $10 piece of steel at Lowe's which we cut with a cut-off tool and made 2 steel supports. We attached these directly to the building using the screws that are already in the building. Then we built the 2x4 towers and center frame off of that. We used hangar iron to secure to the top of the building as well. We actually made everything out of scrap wood so it is not as straight and pretty as we would of liked, but hey it's a Haunted Castle right?

As far as the tarps go. I originally was going to make this thing 20 feet tall by 40 feet wide so the tarp (the center tarp) is 24 x 40 I got it at Walmart for $64.00. It's not heavy duty I think it says standard duty on it. The important thing about this tarp is that one side is Blue and the other side is Greyish Silver. So I didn't havt to completely cover it with opaque paint. After realizing how tall it would have to be and having no way to reach that height we decided to make the towers 20 feet tall using a 10' x 20' heavy duty tarp (Silver and Burgundy at Walmart I, and the center pieces is about 18 feet high now instead of 24. I actually cut 5 feet off of the large tarp and used "Heat and Bond (Walmart Craft Dept about $3.00 for 2 packs and I used a small iron ( Hobby Town around $20) and grommet tool set (3.00 Harbor Freight) to create a new custom size tarp. sprayed it with some Light Grey Latex paint that I got at Big Lot's for $10 a gallon. I may have used half a gallon. I then the paint with water and spray it with a normal size spray gun (Harbor Freight Tools normally $15-$30) For me I base coat it with grey then go back and paint the blocks with Black and add some depth with shadows and midtones. You can use and air-brush or small touch-up gun for that part, but I actually used the large spray gun for that too, turn the spray down and hold it close, move fast so as to make a fine line. It is better to put a couple of coats of Grey on and let it dry good before doing the blocks. I got in a hurry at first and had to go back and re-block cause I didn't let the first layer dry and it wore off some. Therer might be some kind of clear you can spray on these to really preserve them but so far mine have held up pretty good. My next step is to add some windows and a large door illusion to the main center piece. Then I will install some colored flood fixtures in the ground to illuminate it with an eerie Green, Blue or Purple. Colored strobes might look even better. I'm planning on putting the piece of tarp that already has the stone on it that was trimmed from the large tarp over the eve to get rid of the white building showing at top. A nice creepy banner would look good hanging from there as well with the name of the castle on it. I will post more as I add more. I have to say standing on the ground at night and looking up at it, it looks like a real castle. Remember, if you can dream it, you can build it, and if you build it, they will come. More to come...
 

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Great looking wall. Can't wait to see the added windows and other things. What else do you plan to put on it? Cannons? Flags? Skeletons hung from chains?
 

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I haven't read your previous threads and will look for them now to see your progress from the beginning, but man you did a great job! I can only imagine how thrilled the ToTers will be to see what you've created.

As you look to finish up I'd suggest maybe adding some pendant-type flags to the top wall area. I think you said you had wood framing for the tarping so maybe the flags could be bolted to it from the backside. If you have a slight breeze at night they should add a nice touch. Maybe add a skull face or something like that on the flag. Dragons also come to mind, even a line drawing could work. I'd suggest making a cardboard stencil with the image cut out which you just spray paint (or use stencil paints) the cutout part to get your design transferred. The stencil would be reused to make additional ones.

What else do you have in the works for this year?

BTW it's way too late in the game to mention this but I remember seeing someone's post about using concrete forms to make stone wall scenesetters. Here's a link to what they look like and I know they come in different patterns. Seems like this would be a huge time saver for those contemplating doing something like this.

Concrete form
 

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Great job! In the past, we have used scene setters taped to the house w/ black duct tape. Takes a day to put on and an hour or so to remove. Not to mention retaping the falling parts that won't stick . I think I will try this approach this year.

Has anyone tried taping scene setters to a tarp? Your paint job is awesome. Don't think mine would look anything similar to it.
 
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