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Imperial Hybrid (7)
706 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Valentines Day I was host to a Make & Take of Florida Haunters.
Our project was Shiastu Massager's.

This is J. W. , which is short for Jerky Werkey.
When he was first assembled, he had some rather un-controlled Jerkying
and big arm swaying going on. LOL. He has been tweaked and is running smoother. His head is just a styrofoam creation. the lower jaw cut out and
re-set - eye sockets carved out etc. Tongue is a sponge. Eye ball is a ban roll on ball and teeth are q-tips that were built up a bit with some air dry clay and then sealed with fingernail acrylics. The head was latex painted.
Motor is the Shiastu Massager with PVC arm frame ( per Spooky Sam's grave escaper ) and PVC head support with plumbers tape to limit the motion of the PVC's. Hand is just a child's monster glove attached to the PVC.
Box was built out of scrape wood.
I intend on lighting the inside with some kind of strobe and motion sensor.
However all my Halloween lighting is in attic and I cannot get to it right now.
Here is a couple of pics of J.W. and a Video.
Sorry the video is sideways. LOL ! Newbie to doing video's and posting them. If I retake one later, I will post it correctly.


Funeral Crasher
7,469 Posts
Awesome prop!! I love the head--it's a masterpiece! I can tell it took quite a few hours to put all of that together.
The way he's dressed he looks like a stockbroker before he's had his morning coffee!!
Congrats on a wonderful prop!

Imperial Hybrid (7)
706 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I just saw the how-to on that yesterday and was wondering if it's feasible to put it in the top of a coffin like it's trying to get out? Since you made a really fantastic example, you can answer me. lol
Growler- I think the shiatsu could definately be used in the way you suggest.
Ofcourse I don't know what kind of coffin lid design you have - but even to
"off set the lid" and have your corpsed zombie coming out. Since you can
angle your PVC with elbows you kind work at posing his movements. It is just
something you have to play with. That would be cool to see. If you "do it ",
please post a pic and then leave me a message on my page, so I will be sure not to miss it !

Thanks for all the other positive responses to this prop. I will try to post some "insight" to what I did. Can't do a TuT. Didn't take enough pics of the process.

I am very bad about taking pics as I go along. Mainly because I am either following someone else’s directions and there is already information out there or I am entirely “Winging it” and have no idea what is going to work and what doesn’t and its in constant fiddling. Documentation of my projects sometimes would be a hit or miss as far as the photo’s.

This build was based on Spooky Sam’s Tutorial found here.
Village Haunt

Ofcourse, He does not show very much of the inner working either.

Here is a couple of shots of J.W. nekked : That’s Hamm, my husband who was Originally assembling J.W. at the make and take . While I danced around alot. (lol)
He was pretty jerky. ( the prop, not my Husband) So I re-located the plumber’s tape and tension to make him smoother running. Then, I had to go back and kind of re-do all that again on the arm and make the arm swing a little more defined for his crate. So once you get the idea, then
there is no actual formula where to place what exactly. You just have to fiddle with it to your liking, make sure its not rubbing or jerking or doesn't bind up. If you get the plumber's tape to tight, it will bind up and stop the motion.
So there has to be some slack. Too loose and you get Jerky and off balanced. Looping the plumber's tape and securing it to the PVC is a little tricky. It was hit and miss for me to make him run smoother.
Be careful NOT to drill into the shiatu motor area either. Use the handle area
to drill into and secure the ends.

PVC lengths can also effect the smooth motion. Longer extensions can throw it off balance. I did shorten the arm a bit too. If your clothing is heavy, say a suit coat or something. You may have to tweek him again a little.

Here is a photo of fellow haunter and forum member: Maureenpr’s unit. She had found a curved piece of grey PVC and was utilizing it.

the thing with the Shiatsu is that you can use both post or use one. I used both on this prop. You can search Madmax on this forum. He use to do a lot with shiatsu. Standing zombies, conjoined zombies etc. He was an inspiration to a lot of the later shiatsu props that we copy.

Contunued below:

Imperial Hybrid (7)
706 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The head: Just a Styrofoam wig head I had been playing with before. I cut off the jaw and then glued it back on so it would have an opened mouth. Actually I kind of used “warm” glue ( hot glue will melt the Styrofoam) . Then I took my wood-burning tool with the round disc usually used to “transfer” and started working at redoing the shape of the head and eyes. The heat just kind of evaporated the areas. So you have to do it rather lightly. I put in deeper, rounder eye sockets. Smoothed down the nose. Worked inside The mouth. Just kind of played until I thought I should stop before I didn’t have anything left. Then I used Spray Paint to lightly coat the entire head. Spray Paint “eats” Styrofoam so don’t actually “paint” it close. I stood back and kind of misted so it would texturized the piece. (Sounds like I know what I was doing doesn’t it? I don’t. LOL) After that I painted the whole thing with just Latex Paint. That seals it and latex paints do not eat Styrofoam. From there I just painted with craft and latex paints I had on hand. Just layering and highlight what I thought looked okay.

The eyeball idea came from watching Dr. Kreepy ( also another forum member) you tube video on making eyeballs. Sorry, I don’t have the link off hand, but you can go to You Tube and search for it. I used a Ban Roll on deodorant ball, but Dr. Kreepy suggested you can use those bouncy balls.

Teeth- used Q-tips and kind of formed up some air dry clay found at Wal-mart and had laying around for the grandkids. Made some “teeth” looking things. (Which were a little large for proportion of the head and mouth I think, but it is a zombie right?) After the clay was dry – I took fingernail acrylic. The stuff you can extend your fingernails with. Its kind like a two part acrylic. ( a liquid mixed with a powder –directions in box) You can buy it at your drug stores. I use to be a nail tech, so I had it laying around. Viola, toothy looking things.

The crate. I am a girly girl, and not a carpenter. Not wanting to wait for the Hamm, the husband, to build something for me. I set out with the cordless drill screwdriver; some of his “better” Screws and assembled the stupid looking crate one piece of wood at a time. Fortunely, there was about 30 pieces of scrape wood that were all the same length
and width. So I just laid out a square and started from there. It is rather sturdy and Hamm was impressed when he got home that day. LOL !
But a fellow haunter at the make and take ( Spyder) built his out of Foam.
Actually you don’t even need a crate. Just set your zombie into the cemetery, coming out of his grave. Tombstone behind him.

Or maybe what Growler suggested coming out of his coffin lid.
Your only limited by your imagination on this.!

So there is some insight to what I did. Couldn’t do a actual TUT on this – because it was all just kind of- assemble and try as you go type of build.

But definitely try it. Its pretty fun and easy for people like me, who aren’t quite into building your own motors etc. Shiatsu’s can be found at the thrift stores, on freecyle, ebay for around $3.00 to $5.00 dollars. Really cheap mechanical workings.

Going to work on a Dark Gardner’s Spider Vic rendition next using the Shiatsu Massagers for the movement. And I thought about just making some Zombie Hands to put on the massager, like they were coming out of the grave for another Prop.
If they turn out well, I will post pics.
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