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10 Foot Tall Grim Reaper Costume & Puppet

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Step 3: The Frame

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Every frame is going to be different due to materials on hand and the shape and needs of your character.  The easiest way to create a back pack puppet is to use a hiking backpack with an external metal frame.  A hiking backpack is designed to comfortably support 40 or more pounds and comes with a waist belt to provide counter balance to uneven loads.

I scoured our local thrift stores and made a few calls but could not find one.  So, I improvised. 

An older computer case/backpack provided the basic platform and shoulder straps. The bulk of my frame was going to be made out of 3/4" PVC pipe, but I was worried there may be too much flex in the pipe over a 6 foot length, so I found some square metal bars from a closet organizing system to add rigidity.  I cut square holes for the bars and 3/4" holds for the PVC pipe in a number of the large paint sir sticks compliments of Home Depot. I then cobbled together a frame and backpack design.   I would really recommend finding a hiking backpack - this took a lot of time and effort.

I incorporated a stronger, wider wood piece to support the shoulders of my character.

I would recommend using the 'T' connectors to create shoulder height crossbars - these ultimately added a lot of stability while walking down the street.
 
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