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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, been a home haunter for quite some time now and wanted to know whats the easiest way to build maze walls for inside a garage. Last year I used 2x4 and just jammed them to the ceiling with any nails or anything. Any ideas? thanks in advanced
 

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STARK Raving Mad
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I have been using a system for 4 years now, and it works so well that I leave parts of it up year-round. I attached metal framing TRACKS to the ceiling, perpendicular to the rafters. I then insert the top end of my 2x4s into the track and put a screw through the track into the wood. See IMAGE-1.jpg

At the floor, I use Joist Hangers (from Lowes) to anchor the bottom of the 2x4s. Using a 1/8" masonry bit, I drill a couple of holes into my garage floor (gasp!) aligned with holes in the Joist Hanger, drop in some toothpicks, and tap in roofing nails. I attach the 2x4 to the Joist Hanger with a couple more screws. See IMAGE-2.jpg

For the walls themselves, I picked up a bunch of beat-up 8' conference tables (free on Craigs List), drilled 3 holes through the metal frame on each side, and attach them to the vertical 2x4s with some screws. See IMAGE-3.jpg and IMAGE-4.jpg

You could use the same system without the tables. Once the 2x4s are anchored at the top & bottom, attach your plywood, hardboard, etc.
 

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Garage walls with black plastic

For the past 6 years, our (my daughters and I) haunted garage has had plastic vis queen walls, always a maze along with us and her school buddies hiding inside, within specially designed hiding places (typically 2ft x 2ft cubes, around corners).

Materials have included (for a 20 x 20 garage):
2-3 large rolls of plastic sheeting, 2-3ply (thin), black, usually about 10 ft x 50 or 100ft, what ever is on sale a Menards, Lowes or Home Depot, a large utility type stapler with 3/8" staples for attaching the plastic to both walls and ceiling (inner walls), yes you will either remove the staples after or just leave them in the walls and ceiling (this is being changed this year, see below). Now, without anything at the bottom of each wall, the wind blows through the garage and moves the bottom of the walls, not good. Also, the fog does not stay in the halls. So, I have used handmade sandbags on the bottom of the walls, it worked, holding the walls down, but the people moving through would move the wall bottoms when they were scared. So, the past two years I glued 2" by 2" bits of wood to the floor at ends and center of walls and then stapled the bottom of the walls to the bits of wood. This stopped the walls from moving, but the scaredy cats would dislodge the walls from the bits of wood, also the sometimes the top of the wall would also become unstapled, due to both bottom and top of the walls being afixed with staples. There was no room for movement due to scared people pushing them.

This year I and my wife are working earlier (starting last week) with this year's haunted garage, including a new way of constructing walls inside the garage. I have developed the concept and will be constructing this weekend. Here it is, I'll post images later today (it's 5:41AM now, a bit too early).

I will use:

1" x 1" 8ft and 10ft long wood trim board (cheap and light) used for both top and bottom of each plastic sheet wall panels (also cut 8ft or 10ft wide)

same vis queen material described earlier

1/2" and 2" drywall screws or "barn" screws (preferred, they have 1/4" head, instead of phillips and are driven by 1/4" socket plus they have large washer already installed on them)

many small "S" hooks and "O" hooks, used to connect top boards (top only) to ceiling hooks and wall screws

many individual links from 2 or 3 feet of light chain (again I'll provide images)

Measure your garage walls, pick a typical width for the maze corridors (24" or 32", add little rooms for special surprises, your kid, their friends or a bench (with your 72 yr old father-in-law dressed up with a 'Jason' mask, that was great last year), a bottomless pit (constructed from plans from this site, last year). I plan each maze using MS Excel, or graph paper, with my daughter (she's the boss of the show), and save each plan each year so I do not repeat floor plans.

Once you have your measurements, you can estimate the amount of materials you need. Now, here where the fun starts.

A plastic wall panels are cut 12" longer (up and down) then necessary and drape on the ground, this is true for inner maze walls as well.

You screw the barn screws along the top of the garage walls, I am screwing a 2" barn screw every 3ft, to hook the top board of the outer wall panels, giving each 8 or 10ft panel at least 2 fasteners. Leave each outer wall screw exposed about 1/2", this is to hook the wall panel on. Now, use screw an "O" hook into the top of each outer wall top board matching the wall screw placement. I would also mark the outside facing panel with a number so that each panel can be easily rolled up at the end of the season and reused each year.

The inner maze wall panels will be dangling from the ceiling, using 2" barn screws ever 2 ft or so (and at corners). Same bottom treatment as outer walls. The fixtures for the inner walls will be 2" Barn screws into ceiling holding link from chain, 1/2" Barn screws into chain link atop the wall boards, then use "S" hook through each link (ceiling and top board) to hang the board to the ceiling. Again, I will provide an image to make this clearer.

After you have hung the outer and inner walls take the 1" x 1" boards and roll the bottom of each panel until the plastic panel is just touching the floor or a bit above. The bottom board will keep the panel flat and straight and will absorb the push from the scared people, and just return to normal dangling above the ground.

All of the wall and ceiling screws and hooks can be painted the color of the garage, so they are not so apparent during the year, also, they are ready for next year. It will take a bit of time the first time, but every year after, the walls are ready to be unrolled and hung in a matter of minutes.

My garage ceiling joists are 16" on center, so I am considering having 32" wide corridors from now on and placing the ceiling hooks in a 32" x" 32" grid. This should, once installed, provide a never changing hanging system where I can leave the ceiling hooks where they are and change the maze design every year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I wish i could drill into our garage floor but my girl friend would prob kill me...

The S hook and O hook idea sounds pretty simple and much safer when scared kids go runing through the maze. Picture would help alot, thanks for the ideas =)
 

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I've used a method similar to emcwiz in the past, suspending light weight 1x2s from the ceiling, not even using the screw hooks but 3M adhesive hooks every 3-4 works ok as well. Plus you can remove them after (if you want) and no damage (I have a finished garage)

This year I've planned a 3/4" pvc frame, and the maze "walls" will be attached with snap-tees for versatility in the future.
 

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Psychomaniac
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I decided to make mine out of 3/4" EMT conduit and pipe canopy fittings. The conduit is pretty cheap from Home Depot or Lowes and the fittings were very well priced from Yuma's Bargain Warehouse...

Canopy Parts and Tarps Everything you need to build your Canopy.

Here's the layout we're using this year...



The walls will be 6 mil plastic sheeting from Lowes. I actually have the whole frame setup already but haven't had a chance to take pictures yet. It looks like it'll work very well and offers plenty of options for running wires and mounting lights.
 

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We use a frame made from 2X2'S with 4x8 3/8" plywood screwed together at out Pro Haunt. Very easy to assemble and very light weight. You can screw them together, then use cross beams at the top. The wood also makes it easy to mount and anchor props.
 

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7/16 osb plywood framed by 2x2x8 furring strips along the edges & "+" in the center.
We make 4x8 & 6x6 panels. We have used 1/8 4x8 hardboard instead of osb as well, to make the same same sized panels. They are lighter & cheaper then the osb panels. But, tend to warp a bit if not properly supported. The panels are painted with a coat of Exterior latex paint, to protect them from the elements.
 

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High Desert Haunter,

Sorry I took so long to provide images, they can be found in the Album section, there are two albums, I am not yet familiar with this application, so there are three images per album.

I hung the permanent outside walls, these never change each year, only the interior maze walls change from year to year. The inside wall panels will be hung next week, after my daughter and I create the floor plan.

There were some small changes, I found really inexpensive chain at Menard's. It was about $6 for 20 feet. My wife helped by de-linking the change for me. We used two links for each ceiling hanger, one link for each board hanger, and four links for each hinge, take a look at the images. These worked really well and after hanging all outer walls, we still have over 15' left.

Yes, the ceiling hangers will make holes if you remove them. If you don't want holes then Jalsing's experience will be helpful.

I recommend taking a look for the ceiling joists, they are typically 16" apart from each other and make an excellent bit of wood to drive the barn screws into, also you can create inner maze walls that are 32" wide, again leaving the ceiling hangers for next year, so that you can re-use the hangers, even with different maze design. The 32" spacing is also good for telephone booth like hiding places within your maze.

I may not be clear enough, if you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask.

Halloween Forum - emcwiz's Album: Haunted Garage Simple Walls


Halloween Forum - emcwiz's Album: Haunted Garage Simple Walls II
 

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Wow, i didn't realize this site had user albums, so here's the basic idea for mine, using 3/4" PVC cut to 80" and 40" lengths (easy since they come 120") This allows for 7 ft high walls and really any combination of length/width you can with those lengths (or cut some custom) This standard length makes it easier for storage and re-assembly as well.



Covered with 3' strips of black 4 mil plastic sheeting, cut to 7' and clamped to the pvc. You can find pvc fabric clamps at various sites, I used flexpvc.com, also had to get 3-way elbows and snap Ts which allow for wall attachments and vertical supports which are not hard cut into the frame so they can be moved added or removed. They also had better pricing on regular elbows and tees than Home Depot. I'm also going to use 'scene setters' and 'room rolls' to add to the effect...



I'll add some construction pics later, my flexpvc order should be in tomorrow or Wednesday, and I start construction next week!
 
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