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Ok, here are the first pics of my Dollar Tree solar flower remake. Basically, I'm turning it into a solar grave grabber.

I took apart the DT flower and removed the solar panel, replacing it with a larger panel from a solar pathway light I got at Walmart for $1.50(one of the red, white, and blue ones). I figured that I needed the extra power to push the additional weight, and it might be used in a lower light environment.


Then I pulled out one of the DT skeleton garlands from last year.


I took one off the garland and using an exacto knife cut off the arms at the elbows (leaving a tab on the forarms, so that they could be anchored back to the upper arm) and at the shoulders


Then using a sewing needle(use what you can find) and a dremel tool, I created the joints on the elbows and shoulders. Now the arms bend and can move some.


Then I took a rectangle shaped flower pot we had lying around for the framework. Rectangle was good because of the depth needed for the tombstone, skeleton, and the extended arms.


I took some paper and I cut out a piece that fit the flower pot top, supported by a small lip in the pot.


Next I got a piece of wood out of my scrap heap.. I think this one came from a picture frame backing.


Next I took the paper and used it to transfer the hole opening over to the wood.


Then I cut out the wood and sanded down the edges. Once that was done, I test fit the wood into the pot and sanded where needed for it to fit.


Then I test fit the skeleton on top of the wood with the guide rods made out of a section of unwound picture hanging wire, and the rod sleeves which is an rc plane guide rod sleeve.


I still need to work out the head control "rods", which right now I'm playing with the idea of 2 pieces of dental floss running through a coffee stir straw and attached to 2 points on the skull. A pull/pull set up to move it left and right.

After that will be corpsing the skeleton in some way, mounting the solar flower guts under the wood, cover the wood with fake grass, cut the holes in the wood/grass for the guide rods, and attaching the rods to the flower mechanism.

Then I need to find or make a tombstone and mount it on the grass, and attach the solar panel to the back of it. I'm also thinking of making a short fence to surround the whole thing, or maybe just the front.

When done, the expectation is that when it gets power, the arms will move forward and backward trying to pull himself out of the ground, and the head will also move side to side as well.

This will be a nice little piece for the front desk at our office, or maybe in my cube.
 

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Wow, scaringyou, when you said you had a unique idea for the DT solar flower pot you weren't kidding! If everything comes together, this is going to be so cool.

Over the weekend we were in a different area of the bay here and I tried looking for the pots in a local DT but ran into the same scenario as those stores in my area--nope, sold out as soon as they came in and not expecting any more. So if anyone hoping to do something similar to what you are doing with yours is thinking of picking one up at a DT, it's probably a waste of time looking there.
 
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