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Discussion Starter #1
Hello fellow souls:

I have decided to include my garage into my home haunt this year. It is a two car garage with approximate area of 16' x 16' x 10'

I would like to use this thread as a way to post my progress/pictures as well as consider the suggestions and critique of my fellow haunters.
My goals are the following: 1) Build a SAFE haunt. 2) Build a durable, reusable, storable haunt. 3) Make it memorable, create a true experience for the TOTs.

Well, let's begin.

Perimeter: So I decided already to purchase several black 10' high FR (Fire Retardant) heavy weight stage curtain to hang 2' from the walls to create the haunt space and hide any shelves on the walls. It is on order and I should receive this week. This was not cheap costing about $900 but it is SAFE, removable, durable, and does the job of hiding the rest of the garage very well.

Other things to discuss? Theme. Scenes. Construction of haunt walls. Capturing video footage. Environmentals are key! All five senses are to be included. Lighting, Audio, Smell, Touch (Not actor initiated. I am thinking air cannon and/or interaction with hanging obstacles)

Yes, it's February and in PA we currently have 12" of snow on the ground. This is a passion. I can't stop. I don't even want to. Might as well enjoy it.

Thoughts?
 

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Thanks Atomic. I checked out the link to the lighting thread and it's interesting that I too had previously found and used that lighting tutorial years ago. I am glad to see it is back online. Clearly that guy knows his stuff. For the purpose of this thread I'll try to keep to the subject of the garage part of my haunt itself. I anticipate two areas for scenes. I just don't yet know what they will be. How hard or easy is google sketch? Maybe I can draw out what I envision and share with you guys.
 

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So I downloaded the free version of Google's Sketchup. This has a learning curve but appears to be well worth it. It will save me lots of time and mistakes by planning the layout in this program and then building it. It will also let me collaborate with you guys better. I have a standard size two car garage and I know I am not the only person in America with a garage haunt. I am very surprised more people aren't using this program. Especially since it's free.
 

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I don't anticipate becoming an expert anytime soon but will be def learign anough in the coming months to design my haunt. I will share a link I found that should benefit anyone looking for prebuilt models to use. www.hauntdesignkit.com Sketchup is free and so are some of the models this guy offers on his site. For a few dollars, you have access to more and once you learn how to build at least don't have to build from scratch.

I'd love to hear from anyone with a garage haunt.
 

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I have a "Garage" Haunt. Part of my house (the Garage) was the Oldsmobile dealer's garage, 24 by 26 , before that it was housing horses, all right on top of a huge wine cellar.. well almost all the rest of my house is also a haunted house too, and the yard, and under the yard in the tunnels .
My "Garage" portion has hallways, the ending of a long slide , a large white Shark head made from the entire rubbery front end of some Chrysler-product car, an actual Cistern 10 foot deep , I have steel bars over it to keep anyone out and the ceiling happens to do an extreme slant above the Cistern to also discourage anyone standing on the bars.
There is a Pepper's Ghost illusion featuring a life-sized cardboard image of a beautiful woman, which sets them up for a related scare a short time later as the "beautiful Woman" seems to want to scare them......throw in a few secret doors and passages and my old Time-travel Tunnel (now just for kids)and that is my "Garage".
This is also the part of the house in which several of my October helpers have gotten very scared from actual possibly supernatural sights and sounds, maybe the wine cellar below the earth under it has something to do with these things happening?
 

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Halloween Snob are you behind a year's work already?...2013 in your title LOL. I too have wanted to use a garage at some point. We have a double garage and a separate single that if cleared out could be used. So I will be checking in on your design and build as you progress.

Having been on HF for a number of years already I know that there are others on here who have used Sketchup to workout their layout. Have you tried an advanced search on the forum for the term "Sketchup"? Might be a way to get some ideas quicker than waiting for people to see your post and comment. As we get closer to summer more people will be frequenting the threads but you really should be doing the design work now before the time pressure starts up.

What sort of themes are you thinking of creating within?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
2014 Dungeon Garage Haunt Project Page

ugh. I meant to type 2014. How do I edit the title of the thread?

Attached are some progress pics guys:

This is the scare box in the middle, it is approx 8' x 3' x 7'. Entrance to it is from the rear. You will not be able to see the back as the entire perimeter of the garage is draped in a 10' high heavy duty fire retardant stage curtain. I intend to cut out several holes for both manual and linear actuated drop downs, holes for fog machine to dispense atmospheric smoke, and two way mirrors so the actors can see the TOTS but they cannot see the actors. (Unless a light is turned on inside the scarebox which is an option to the actor.)
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1/2 extruded foam (Lowes) added and trim work. (trim used to secure foam to sheathing. Genius. I opted for this route because I want to change out the foam wall panels from year to year. Glue would prevent me from doing that.)

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Scare box walls complete. New wall going up. i estimate I need about 12 wall panels. The perimeter of the zone is marked with a black draped stage curtain so no walls needed on outside.

After this wall is complete I will finish this side so any mistakes are discovered before I complete the rest. Things left to do are add electrical to walls, finish walls, (use hotfoam cutter with sled to create grout lines, heat gun with water, paint, etc...) add (10) torch sconces, 2 per wall. Add 2 way mirror, Add drop down panels, build roof scene above.
 

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I'm not sure how much this will help you but while I was doing some research yesterday on layouts, I found an article that said to use chalk to lay out the paths/rooms. Simple idea, that way its an easy adjustment if you don't like how it looks. Also it said to make the most of your space you should lay it out like they do the rope lines with large crowds, you can fit alot more paths in a small area. I hope I explained this well enough for you.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Update on progress

All the walls are constructed (4' x 7') and put in place. Grout lines added to each 1/2" foam panel. 3 of the 10 electronic torch sconces have been wired into the panels.

These aren't the most recent pictures but here are a couple more:

This is the torch I am using. It was the most realistic I could find. It is 110volt with an on/off switch. There is a fan in the base which blows several pieces of thin white silk upwards. Two small orange/red bulbs illuminate the silk from both sides. The effect is very good. There are two negatives. I don't like the humming noise of the fan and I wish i could control the brightness of the light. With 10 of these going in the garage, it's more illuminated in there than I would prefer.

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The wall panels were constructed using a 4' long 2x4 as a base platform. I used 2 x 3 bracing for the entire perimeter and in the center. I used tongue and grove construction to connect each 4' panel with the next one. I used 3/8" plywood sheathing on both sides and then 1/2 foam on each side as well. Finally, I used a 4' 2x4 and 2x3 on the very top. I'll send more detailed pics later.

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I used a hot knife to carve the grout lines. I did it free hand (no sled) after marking the lines using a chaulk line.
I staggared the blocks. The dimentions are 16" x 9".

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I welcome everyone's comments and suggestions as I continue the build. I hope you all will like the final result.
 

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I noticed in your one picture that the garage door is up. Will ToTers access the haunt through the large garage door or is there another doorway? If through the garage door are you creating an elaborate entranceway?
I decorate our garage haunt for our Halloween party (where people access it through a standard doorway) and then reconfigure the haunt so that Toters can come in through the large double garage door. It isn't a walk-through, but separate scenes and scares that can be viewed...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Killerhaunts, I promise a full update with pictures this weekend. I have accomplished so much and it is really looking good. All walls are up. All grout lines done. (8) torch sconces hung and wired. (2) drop panels completed in the scare box. Lot's more to do but I enjoy every second of the process. I appreciate your interest. I think you will all enjoy my next update.
 
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