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Years ago I made a prop, that for whatever reason I now have no pictures of (My photo hard drive did crash earlier this year). I've got most of my photos back - Yay!

Anyway.... when we had our Halloween parties/haunts we went with a different method each year to distinguish who was a guest and who wasn't. One year it was a printed ticket for everyone, another year is was a rather elaborate clip on I.D. badge. We had ticket stubs for a best costume prize - this particular year it was a coffin with a bottle of Vampire wine and a couple of glasses in it. Vampire Prize.jpg

In order to be eligible to win the prize you had to drop your ticket stub into this 55 gallon drum prop that I made. We found a mask with a flat head on top and attached it to the inside of the lid, so when you lifted the lid you saw a creepy flat-headed monster raising with the barrel lid. The lid was attached to a switch that, when lifted high enough would set off other components that were inside the barrel; a fog machine, a yellow warning strobe light and what I deemed to be the LOUDEST PA horn in the world!! It was SO loud I had to stuff t-shirts into the front of it to make it bearable to listen to! Lol

That prop no longer exists, but I would like to recreate it, but in a safer, low-voltage kind of way.... maybe even animate it to raise on it's own with the use of a prop controller like picaxe and add an MP3 player for better sound effects.

I'm awaiting delivery of 2 55 gallon metal barrels, and I know how I want to decorate them. But admittedly this is my first foray into animation and the use or prop controllers. I want all my props from here on out to be safer low-voltage and controlled by a prop controller running music/sound fx. Totally self-contained is what I'm shooting for! My design of the switch being activated by a cable attached to the lid was hokey at best, but it worked. I'm looking for the non-hokey route from here on out! I do have some skills with assembling electronics and soldering, having worked for Motorola in Schaumburg Illinois for a few years and as a repair tech and eventually QA Supervisor for VisionTek in Gurnee Illinois, but that's as far as my electrical knowledge goes.

I realize I'm asking a lot, but any help with this project would be greatly appreciated! After this prop I have another old prop we want to recreate as well..... it was a big hit with everyone. Especially people who did not like dogs! *Evil Laugh*
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