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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all;
I am planning on building a life size horse drawn hearse and would like to include something thats really origional not! I'm planning to combine with the hearse a ghost horse. My plan is to buy a horse harness and I was wondering if anyone has any ideas as to how to stiffen the straps and create the floating effect. If anyone took notice of how Disney World created their horse effect I would love to hear from you also. Anyone with close up pictures of the Disney World hearse would also be appreciated.
Thanks
Myra Mains
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply, the wire suggestion sounds like it could work, I would just need to find a way to attach the wire and also make it inconspicuous. Any other suggestions are always appreciated. I can't help thinking that there must be some way to solidify leather.
 

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I like the rigid wire idea. YOu could fasten the wire to the inside of the harness using those small metel 3/4 circle clips that when squeezed close to a complete circle. What they are really called I have to idea. Or you could feed the wire through the harness. If you did find something to stiffen leather I would think that cracking would have to be a concern. Wire could also be attached to the inside of the harness using small zip ties.
 

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Mistress of Mayhem
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The wire idea is probably the best way to go actually. I remember when I went to Disney World as a kid... or maybe it was a six flags park, I can't remember, but they had invisible dogs on leashes. The leash was a strong wire inside what appeared to be a rope, and it led to a dog harness that was also stiffened with wire inside the harness to make it look like there was a dog inside.

I don't know where you are thinking about getting your horse harnesses, but let me caution you that they are not cheap. I'd suggest buying one that's very used and old for these purposes. Plus, if its old, the leather might be more easily played with to get the wires inside.

If you can't work the wires into the harness, then what you might be able to do is place the wire along the lines that you are wanting to stiffen, and then sew it into place by hand with stitches that will keep it in place. Then, if you can get an old leather belt or leash or something like that, hopefully one that matches the leather of the harness a well enough, you could glue that leather over the appearance of the wire, so it looks like it's part of the harness.

If you manage to get this project done, PLEASE post pics for us! This sounds amazing! :)
 

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There is currently a horse driving harness on Ebay for 0.99! It is in pretty bad shape but it might be something you can work with! Auction ends in about 10 hours. Search driving hirse harness and you will find it.
 

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I agree Rookie, harnesses are made to be extremely durable, so I really don't think you could (easily) thread any type of wire through the seams. I think your best bet is to use some wire coat hangers wrapped in leather-look cloth, or wrapped in black tape. You could wrap the wire with two strips of light-weight cardboard or stock paper and then tape over that to give it a flat look. Then hang everything with fishing line at strategic points to keep it all in the air.

Good luck and definitely post pics!
 

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Going bump in the night..
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An idea that might work is some thick wire, smooth cloth, and fiberglass resin (wire - cloth on both sides - coat it in fiberglass resin and let dry).

I made a strong but light rib-cage for my floating ghost with this method - the ribs are quite thin, but damned strong (no - I won't stand on it, but I think I could make something 5'-6' long that wouldn't bend under it's own weight).

Best of all, it's weather-proof by it's very nature.
 

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Insert Witty Comment Here
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I think wire would ulitmately bend over a distance, so I would recommned metal conduit...you just have to get it bent and it should hold it's shape fine...and I think the conduit might be cheaper than the wire too
 

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I think wire would ulitmately bend over a distance, so I would recommned metal conduit...you just have to get it bent and it should hold it's shape fine...and I think the conduit might be cheaper than the wire too
Thats a great idea! Plus you can get a conduit bender for like 19 bucks sometimes cheaper. Id place bets on that suggestion.
 

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Regardless of the way you went, I imagine this thing would be rather heavy. You will probably need to hang the setup from overhead with spiderwire. You could always make the harness out of hemp rope and soak it in glue so that it would hold it's shape. Then paint the whole thing dark brown or black.
 

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Technological Terror
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I have not seen the Disney prop myself, but you could recreate the bridal and straps with Romex (copper wiring used in typical household electrical jobs). It comes in different gauges (sizes) also in different protective covering colors. You could also spray paint it black or brown. It is bendable but will hold its shape fairly well. It may be a little expensive, but I think if you get enough of it you could make the whole thing yourself and suspend it with wire or fishing line.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks Alucard for the suggestion, I will have to seriously consider it, it sounds like it could work out.
thank you
myra mains
 
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