Last year at the November 1st, after Halloween sales I picked up a 12 foot tall Hanging Clown prop, which on its own looked pretty good, but I thought it would look even better as a Jack-in-the-Box. With visions of micro controllers, pneumatics, and a sound-track, it was an ambitious goals, especially without any experience in putting something that complex together. Skip ahead 11 procrastinating months, I realized that all that wasn't going to happen, so I focused on creating a great box for Jack, adding LED lights for eyes, and and armature to hold him up, which will be the focus of this instructable.

Step 1: Materials and Tools List

The Jack-in-a-Box Prop consists of a hanging clown prop available at almost any Halloween store, an armature to hold the clown up, and a box for him to "pop" out of. Depending on the amount of time you are willing to devote to this project, you can save time and money by using a cardboard box instead of building a wooden box. You can also save on paint by using paint you already have or buying the "oops" paint at the hardware store if you're not to picky about the colors.

1 - Hanging Clown, I got mine last year on November 1st at the after Halloween Sales. A quick Google search revealed several different types, so search around until you find one you like.
16 - Plastic Skulls approximately 5" x 3"

2 - 1/4" 4' x 8' Plywood (I used Luan AC plywood as it was the cheapest plywood at Lowes that would require the least amount of sanding.)
4 - 2" x 2" x 8' Furring Strips

PVC Pipe and Fixtures:
2 - 1 1/4"" PVC Pipes
2 - 1 1/4" 90 degree elbow connectors
2 - 1 1/4" Tee connectors or you can use a 5 way connector if you have time to wait for shipping
1 - 1 1/4" cross connector
PVC Cement

24 - 1 1/2" L Brackets
2 - 130 degree Cabinet Brackets
1 box - 1/2" Wood Screws

Paint and Finish:
1 quart Black semi-gloss
1 quart Purple semi-gloss
1 quart turquoise semi-gloss
1 quart Gloss Clear Coat
1 quart gray primer
1 can Plastics Spray Primer
2 cans Gold Metallic Finish Spray Paint
1" Painters Tape

2 - 10mm Diffused Red LED lights (Reused from the throwies built at the Maker Faire 2006)
1 - Resistor
1 - 9v Battery Connector
1 - Switch
Speaker wire or similar wire

Table Saw or Circular Saw
Router and round over bit (Optional)
Soldering Iron (Used for LED eyes)
Wire Stripper (Used for LED eyes)
Sandpaper, various grits
paint brush and/or paint roller
1 can Great Stuff Foam
1 tube Liquid Nails or other similar construction adhesive

This would be great. O e way you can make it jump is a compressed air shock. Make one with pvc. Attached to a air compressor. Make a handle that has a gear on it so when you crank it and it hits the peg on the gear it will pop up.
wow awsome i think i might make one just as a costume wonder how to make it jump out
call me a scardy cat but i would sh*t my self if this poped open at me on halloween!!! lol
Yeah, I would too! That's really scary.
just realized it doesnt jump out, its still awesome but it would be super awesome if it jumped out when people walk past.
Wow, that's scary... in a good way, of course.
I'm probably gonna create just the box, as a costume, then sit, and wait until someone walks by, or turns the key, from another 'ible (Go look it up, I'm lazy.) Make it so the key will turn via wireless switch, play creepy music, and then jump out. Anyone left standing there, would get candy. X3
I think I'll use this and a huge animatronic hand and make it like Thing in the old "Adams Family" show.
i made one of those and it moves. this instructable gave me the inspiration to do it. heres the link <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03kN-hPqWw4">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03kN-hPqWw4</a> sorry i didnt make an instructable. i realized that after it was too late<br/>
You jack looks great. It's to late now, but I'll definitely have to get mine working by next Halloween.
You could try this <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.instructables.com/id/Ghoul-Grabber/">step sensor</a>. It looks cheap and easy.<br/>
whoa!!! COOL! i totally wanna build this but three big things- looks really complicated, im lazy, and i probably wouldnt have the money for it :) but awsome stuff man!

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