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Hey guys,
I have been doing haunts for a few years now but I let others do all of the animatronics in my haunt. I was wondering where I could learn some basic animatronic props to try and get my feet wet. Something with wiper motors or of that sort. I'm not quite into pneumatics yet but I would like to see some projects that would be good for a beginner. Thanks in advance!
 

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This is the first animated prop I ever built.
http://fulcrumsites.com/haunt/html/the_grave_grabber.html
I think it is a good starting point.

Don't be tempted, like I was, to try and go as low-budget as possible.
I pulled wiper motors from cars in the junk yard.
I made screen door closers into pneumatic cylinders.
I bought antique solenoid valves from a recycled parts store.
I built my own controllers from hacked mp3 players and programmable relays.

In the end, I found it was much safer, easier, and even cheaper to buy the right part the first time to do the job.

There are several places online where you can buy a wiper motor, complete with instructions for use and support if you have questions.
 

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When I first went down the animatronics road, I foolishly dove head first into it. It was also before I discovered this site, so I had few resources to fall back on. So, I did my own R&D. It probably took WAY longer than it should, but I learned a TON! Wiper motors rule. LOL They can also hurt you real bad (had my finger crushed more than once by one... all part of that R&D). I ended up building my own simple controllers, plus a remotely controlled servo controller (there are dozens of them out there now... very few when I started 11 years ago).
You've taken the first important step... ask others! You've come to a great forum, and we are all happy to share out successes, and failures, with you.
If you need help, ask away! I have found a lot of great ideas and assistance in here, and am more than willing to return the favor!
 
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