September 17, 2009

Candle, Candle Burning Bright...

Building and repair of the Haunt has commenced!

I thought I'd share one of the smaller, yet larger, projects to take on this year. That project was the faux candles that came with the haunt from Skull and Bone.

I say smaller in that, typically, PVC candles aren't very big.

I say larger by virtue of sheer numbers.

The originals from Rob were cut, grouped in some cases, and then slather-coated with "Fix-All" which is a powder that, when mixed with water, forms a sort of plaster. It bulked out the straight PVC pipe and made them look "softer". Some were also filled with Great Stuff to build up the inside and form a "shelf" for the tea lights to sit on.

Years of use and weathering had caused many of them to become brittle and unstable. During the transporting of the haunt a good many of them essentially shattered and I was left with bare pipes and piles of plaster chips. Some came apart just picking them up as the plaster makes them heavy and some of the groups weren't wired or otherwise bound together first. Many, however, did escape harm and were reusuable with the plaster mostly intact.

So, I've spent the better part of the week cleaning off bad spots, clearing out the insides, replastering, adding hot glue "drips", adding foam inserts and painting eighty-six PVC candles.

Yep. Eighty-six.

About 24 hours combined, 6 cans of spray paint, a half-gallon of acrylic ceramic tile adhesive, approximately 100-4" and 80-10" hot-glue sticks, a few lengths of sliced foam pipe-wrap for tea light shelves, and two numb and swollen hot-glue gun trigger-fingers later... I'm pretty pleased with the results.

The originals were "smoother", but I wanted to add detail by giving them more pronounced drips. I may have gone a little overboard, but I like them slightly exaggerated. Plus, they are all much more stable and durable now and should last for many years.

Now I only have to get about 30 more tea lights. =\

Work on the haunt continues apace.


  1. Well that explains what you have been up to :D

    Glad to have you back....what a task my friend. 86 candles!!! They look fantastic.

    Looking forward to seeing your progress!


  2. Thanks, C! I built a Monster Mud Reaper, too. More on that soon. =)

  3. Oriental Trading Company has the electric tea lights for pretty cheap.
    Yours look way better than mine. I didn't bother to paint... But maybe a trip to the store for some white spray paint...

  4. Thanks, Shell! Yeah, the painting made the drips look much less like, well, hot glue. Heh.

    Costco has tealights in a 28 pack for $12 which includes 28 extra batteries. The drawback is each pack has 8 colored tealights (4 red & 4 silver). So I bought 2 packs which gave me 40 white tealights and 56 extra batteries for $24. Not too shabby.