I'm planning on a Carnival theme this year and want to build a Ferris wheel. Its only a prop and will be filled with 4' skeleton riders not humans. Has anyone out there made one and can give me any advice?
I have a rotating x-mas tree base that I am planning to mount horizontally on the upright arms. By using the Xmas tree base I can use lights without them twisting around the central shaft. The shaft will have 2 parallel wheels with openings to accept the arms. That way it can be dismantled for transportation and storage.
Each of the 8 arms will be 8' long so the the overall diameter will be over 16'. Of course this will have to be mounted a little higher so that the cars at the lowest point will not scrape the ground. The carts will hang from a wooden dowel and allowed to swing free so that gravity holds them down as the wheel spins.
The uprights will be a simple a-frame that will be decorated to match the theme. It will be attached to a wider base for stability and staked to the ground for safety. Just like a real ferns wheel it will have to be fenced off so that over excited TOTs don't run up and try to climb on.
I look forward to your input!