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Good Afternoon Everyone!

I am looking to make some floating lanterns for the entrance of my sidewalk. I have the camping lanterns that have been redone but I just cant figure out how to make them look like they are floating. I did a quick search and nothing came up. Any ideas? There is nothing by them to hide anything either. I will have a fence up but it wont be tall enough to cover up any pvc/strings. There isnt anything to tie the strings too for that matter!

Any suggestions? I know..it seems impossible to me too =(
 

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Evil Wizard
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2,165 Posts
How close to the sidewalk will these be? If they'll be set back far enough, you could try using galvanized steel tension wire (like for chain link fences), spray-painted flat black and bent into a sort of U-shape, then stick both ends into the ground and suspend lantern with fishing line from its center.

Edited again to add: The one Halloween prop that I most want to do is the McLaurin Floating Lantern, but my current front yard is much too small to achieve the proper effect. :( Maybe some day . . .
 

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Human Candy Shovel
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How close to the sidewalk will these be? If they'll be set back far enough, you could try using galvanized steel tension wire (like for chain link fences), spray-painted flat black and bent into a sort of U-shape, then stick both ends into the ground and suspend lantern with fishing line from its center.

Edited again to add: The one Halloween prop that I most want to do is the McLaurin Floating Lantern, but my current front yard is much too small to achieve the proper effect. :( Maybe some day . . .
LOL. I made one of those double balance beam Floating Lantern but have nowhere to hang it. I made it for my haunted trail, but the nearest 120 volt AC outlet is like 400 yards away from where it was to be set up. I'll probably hang it as a single beam floating lantern in a tree in my yard this year, or rebuilt it with much shorter beams.
 

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Evil Wizard
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LOL. I made one of those double balance beam Floating Lantern but have nowhere to hang it. I made it for my haunted trail, but the nearest 120 volt AC outlet is like 400 yards away from where it was to be set up. I'll probably hang it as a single beam floating lantern in a tree in my yard this year, or rebuilt it with much shorter beams.
That's the other reason why I won't attempt it anytime soon: Have no trees in my small front yard that I could hang it from. :(

Well, that -- and the likelihood that I'd somehow electrocute myself . . . :eek: :D
 

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Human Candy Shovel
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1,107 Posts
That's the other reason why I won't attempt it anytime soon: Have no trees in my small front yard that I could hang it from. :(

Well, that -- and the likelihood that I'd somehow electrocute myself . . . :eek: :D
If you have no trees, you could plant a couple of long lengths of black metal pipe about 20 feet apart, hide them behind cornstalks and use that for your mount. Put an elbow and short length of pipe at the top to mount two lines. Just mount the motor on a square of plywood with an eyebolt at each corner to run the two lines through. You could even go so far as to run a pipe the distance between the two uprights instead of lines and strap the motor to that.

Then just make the lines hanging the two beams real short, while the line hanging the lantern would be really long, so you keep all the mechanics to the prop up above eye level.

You can avoid electrocution by using a disco ball motor - they're 120 volt AC and are wired to plug right into an electrical socket like your toaster or blender. You just have to run an extension cord out to it.
 

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Evil Wizard
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2,165 Posts
If you have no trees, you could plant a couple of long lengths of black metal pipe about 20 feet apart, hide them behind cornstalks and use that for your mount. Put an elbow and short length of pipe at the top to mount two lines. Just mount the motor on a square of plywood with an eyebolt at each corner to run the two lines through. You could even go so far as to run a pipe the distance between the two uprights instead of lines and strap the motor to that.

Then just make the lines hanging the two beams real short, while the line hanging the lantern would be really long, so you keep all the mechanics to the prop up above eye level.

You can avoid electrocution by using a disco ball motor - they're 120 volt AC and are wired to plug right into an electrical socket like your toaster or blender. You just have to run an extension cord out to it.
I'd love to, but somehow I don't think that the HOA ( :rolleyes: ) would love it so much . . . even though seasonal decorations are permitted. :D

Great idea though.
 

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Going bump in the night..
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I've been doing "floating candles" in my front yard for the last few years, and the nearest tree (or anything tall to tie line to) is at the street in front of my neighbors house, about 75 feet from the corner of my house.

Here's what I've been doing, with a decent amount of success:
50 pound test fishing line for main support lines.
Black thread for suspending the candles from the support lines.

I tie the string around a rock, and toss it into the tree, until it gets wedged good and proper in branches - usually takes a couple of tries.
I run the line to a corner of my house, pull the line as tight as I can by hand without snapping the line, and tie it off.
I'll then tie another support line to the middle of that one, and run it to another corner of my house.
I'll usually run a couple more lines from corners of my house to each other, to make a really loose grid of support lines (usually about 4 or 5 lines at most, criss-crossing over my yard about 8-10 feet above the ground).
Then I just hang the candles (PVC, hot glue, white paint, and LED tealights) using black thread from the support lines, until they look right.

During the daylight, the fishing line is still visible (the black thread is too, but it's very hard to see), but it's not obvious, so people driving by usually don't notice it - they just see the floating candles.
At night, the thread is absolutely invisible, even from a foot away, and the fishing line is hard to detect as well - usually people will notice it when they shine a flashlight over my tableau, but not before.


So, depending on the weight of your lanterns, this might give you some options for having floating lanterns in an area that has no obvious overhead support.
Keep 'em guessing.


Oh, the reason I use a rock for the line getting into the neighbors tree - when I'm taking down my decorations, and I cut that last support line, the rock will usually drop out of the tree, with the remains of the line attached.
Keeps me from having to climb a tree to get stuff out, and it keeps my neighbors from becoming angry at me for tossing stuff into their tree.
 
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