If the thought of dozens of tricker-or-treaters in gross-out costumes knocking down your door makes you want to spew, have we got the pumpkin for you! Every time the Arduino-Controlled Chemical Foam Spewing Pumpkin encounters a trick-or-treater at your doorstep, it spews burning chemical foam all over your front lawn. Now you can convey how much trick-or-treaters make you want to vomit, without doing any real vomiting yourself. So grab some antacid to settle your stomach, and dive deep into these helpful instructions to build your own.
Step 1: Materials
(x1) Large round pumpkin
(x1) Square Nalgene 1000 ml bottle
(x2) Square Nalgene 250 ml bottles
(x1) 5' of 3/8" rubber tubing
(x1) 100g potassium iodide mixed in a 2M solution
(x2) 500 ml 35% hydrogen peroxide solution
(x1) dish soap (economy style, not natural stuff)
(x1) food coloring
(x2) 5/8" rubber grommets
(x2) brass check valves for liquid
(x2) 3/8" barbs
(5') rubber 3/8" hose
(x1) Teflon tape
(x4) small diameter hose clamps
(x2) self-priming pumps
(x2) 5V SPST relays
(x1) 10K resistor
(x1) M-type connector
(x1) 9V battery clip
(x1) 9V battery
(x1) 22AWG red and black solid-core wire
(x1) 9V / 2.5A wall wart
(x1) 3' floor switch material
(x1) Halloween Door Mat
(x1) Assorted alligator clips
(x1) Assorted zip ties
How to make Chemical Foam
The chemical foam is made from mixing a few simple ingredients:
- Hydrogen Peroxide (the stuff you put on scrapes and cuts is 3%, the one we're using is 35%)
- Potassium Iodide (mixed in a 2M solution)
- Dish Soap (not the eco-friendly kind - get regular stuff like Palmolive)
- Food Coloring
Step 2: Drill holes in mixing chamber
The check flow valves are attached directly to the mixing chamber and thread themsleves in as they are twisted into position with a wrench.
This part is a little tricky, as a safety precaution we capped the ends of the MIP threaded check valve with a compression fitting - a brass nut of sorts that was just small enough to fit through the mouth of the bottle and screwed into place. We used a piece of metal tapped onto the nut to hold the compression fitting in place as the check valve was screwed in so that it threaded itself on.
Wrap the check valves with teflon tape and screw on the brass barbs.
Step 3: Insert grommets in chemical reservoirs
Insert a 5/8" rubber grommet into each of these holes.
Put the caps back on the bottle.
Step 4: Insert
If the fit gets very tight, you should use a little WD-40 to ease it through. You might also consider drilling a small hole in the cap to prevent a vacuum from happening when the pump turns on.
Repeat for the second bottle.
Step 5: Attach
Repeat for the second bottle and pump.
Secure the pump to the bottle if necessary to keep the system stable.
Step 6: More tubing
Plug your threaded barb into the other end, and fasten this as well.
Repeat this for the seconds pump.
Step 7: Attach hose to brass barb and check valve
Repeat for the second pump assembly.
Step 8: Drill hole in cap and mount nozzle
Epoxy the fitting in place in the top of the cap.
Step 9: Relays
See the schematic for more details.
Step 10: Check flow rate of pump
Step 11: Program Arduino
Download the attached code and upload it to the Arduino:
Step 12: Prep Potassium Iodide
Mix the solution with a gentle swirl.
Step 13: Prep Hydrogen Peroxide
Step 14: Build door mat switch
Basically, it is a series of long switches wired in parallel. Attach wires to each end of the switch, cut it so that it fits under the door mat, and then place it underneath your door mat.
Step 15: Carve a pumpkin
Now is time to carve your jack-o-lantern. It helps to tape a paper stencil to the front of the pumpkin, position how you like it, and then trace it.
Once you have drawn the face onto the pumpkin, cut it up.
Step 16: Wire it up
Step 17: Fill pumpkin with reservoirs, pumps and reaction chamber
Plug in the power and battery.
Step 18: Activate door matt switch and spew foam
It's good to avoid being spewed upon. The foam is mostly-harmless, but can be quite hot.