My friend John found this really great Chucky doll on eBay and had an idea for a mini electric chair. With the help of our friends Jeremy, Terry, and Karmyn (pictured with Chucky), we created an automated prop that we call Chucky Fries. With the addition of a simple controller, audio player, and second-hand pneumatics, we created a shockingly entertaining Halloween display. Chucky shakes, thrashes, and laughs-and survives the ordeal ready for the next set of trick-or-treaters.
Step #1: Modify the doll. Next
- Many plush dolls are overstuffed and will require the removal of stuffing at the natural bend point of the waist to allow the doll to move freely.
- After removing enough stuffing to allow the doll to flex, sew the body back together and reinforce the seam with gaffer or duct tape.
- If your doll does not have removable clothes, you should perform this step from the backside.
Step #2: Prepare the cylinder mount.Next
- For the best stability, the output end of the cylinder should be countersunk into the back of the chair.
- Use a piece of scrap aluminum to create an L-bracket for mounting the cylinder. The bracket should just meet the shoulder of the push-rob end of the cylinder.
- Attach the other end of the bracket to the cylinder's swivel mount with a 1/4-20 machine screw and nut.
Step #3: Mount the cylinder. Next
- Start by drilling a 1/4" pilot hole through the back of the chair at approximately neck level(when the doll is seated).
- With painter's tape, mark a 5/8" wood bit for the correct depth, then countersink the cylinder-mounting hole.
- Drill a second pilot hole in the back of the seat and mount the cylinder(via the L-bracket with a 1/4-20 machine screw and nut.
Step #4: Mount the doll to the seat. Next
- Mount the doll to the seat by using a wood screw and large fender washer through the hinge-point of the body.
- If the chair has arms, use pet collars to secure the hands.
Step #5: Connect the doll to the cylinder. Next
- Make a small L-bracket with scrap aluminum, and drill holes in both tabs so that the bracket will just slide onto the end of the cylinder's push rod; secure with a nut.
- Connect the push rod to the doll's neck with a long zip tie.
- This doll's neck has a slot for securing the plush body, so we put the zip tie into this slot and tightened just enough so that the zip tie would not come out.
- A little bit of play in the zip tie will let the head move freely, and this is what you want.
- Trim the excess zip tie and adjust the doll's clothing as required.
Step #6: Create electrode mounting points. Next
- With your drill and a 1/4" wood bit, drill a hole into the top-center of the doll's head.
- Cut radiating slots from the head hole with a utility knife so that the head of a 1 1/2" carriage bolt can be pushed through.
- Once the bolt head is pushed through, secure with blood-colored hot glue and cover with a large fender washer.
- Repeat the process on the doll's left ankle with a 3 1/2" carriage bolt, using fender washers on both sides of the ankle.
Step #7: Make and mount the electrodes. Next
- Cut two 4' lengths of #10 electrical wire, and crimp ring terminals on both ends of each.
- Wrap these wires tightly around a broom handle to create a helical shape.
- Mount the electrodes to the head and ankle with wing nuts and to the back of chair with wood screws.
Step #8: Panelize and connect the control components.
- Working with props like this is much easier if the components are panelized on a board.
- The second photo shows how we did it. Connect the valve wires to the prop-1 controller using output terminals V+ and OUT0.
- Connect the AP-8 audio player to the Prop-1 with the supplied 3-wire jumper cable; the cable connects between P7 of the controller and Serial header of the audio player.
- Connect the audio player speaker terminals to an enclosed 8-ohm speaker.
- Finally, connect the controller and audio player to a 12V or 24V DC power source (as required by the solenoid valve).
- Cut two 3' sections of 1/4" polyethylene or vinyl tubing, and connect to the valve output ports. Cut another length of tubing (as required) and connect to the valve input port.
- Wrap a bit of teflon tape around the threads of the press-in/MPT adapter, and then screw into the male quick couple. Finally, press the supply tube into this assembly-now you can connect the prop to a regulated (25psi–40psi) pneumatic supply (compressor or air tank).