Well, here's one solution: Using inexpensive, readily available off-the-shelf materials, you assemble an actor-operated, CO2 cartridge powered squib that can create a blood spray up to 12 feet away, and you do it for around $30. The project is saved! Here's how you do it.
NEW! Check out this great video from member timlogik showing the effect in use by Amber's Sweets, his Repo! The Genetic Opera live performance cast. Thanks, Tim!
So you're doing a play, making a film, staging a zombie massacre for Halloween or whatever, and you need a special effect to simulate a person being shot. You don't have access to a licensed pyrotechnician, so explosive squibs like they use in the movies are not an option. You're on a limited budget, but you still want a good-looking, energetic effect that doesn't require complicated materials or rigging, leaves your actor free to move around, and doesn't require any big, bulky equipment to hide in your actor's costume. It has to be safe. You need this by tomorrow. WHAT DO YOU DO?
Step 1: You Will Need:
One CO2 bike tire inflator *
One CO2 cartridge that fits your inflator
One Hose Barb air nozzle adaptor **
Three feet of 1/2" vinyl tubing
One push-fit splice connector for 1/2" vinyl tubing (optional) ***
One small hose clamp (optional, but recommended - not pictured)
Blu-tack or low-tack masking tape
a banana (not pictured)
Some fake blood
A hobby knife
A vise, or a set of locking pliers
A marinating needle or large hypodermic needle
* You want an inflator that has a trigger valve as opposed to a push-to-fill valve. Also, you want one that screws into the Schrader valve on the bike tire, and ideally one that can accept multiple sizes of CO2 cartridge with both threaded and non-threaded tops. Mine cost $20.00 at the local bike shop, but they can be found cheaper at places like Walmart, or online.
** Usually found in packages of pneumatic air nozzle accessories - about $3.00 at Lowe's
*** This is just to make loading the banana plugs easier. If you don't mind taking the tube off of the hose barb to reload, you can skip it.