Picture of Giant Halloween Spider
Let's face it - every house needs a giant spider at Halloween.  Not the "Oooo a scary spider just dropped on my head as I went to the front door" kind of spider - I'm talking about the "That furry black beast just ate my dog" kind of spider.

Well, this one isn't quite that big (see last photo for one that is) but the design can easily be scaled up with larger materials to a prop that is very large.

This design is based on a spider we made a couple years ago, with modifications to minimize the number of pipe fittings, and flexibility to add your own body shapes and sizes.  We used 1/2 inch PVC pipe because we had lots of off-cuts left over from a gardening project - I would probably choose 3/4 inch if starting from scratch.

Given the number of joints in the legs you can also pose the spider in different ways (like front legs off the ground ready to grab a passing child) or omit the last segment of each leg so the spider sits flat on the ground.  We found this configuration better for use suspended in a web.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

MATERIALS (all PVC pipe is 1/2 inch, you can scale up as needed).  Approximate prices shown from small hardware store - you may be able to find better pricing at big box stores.  Prices are for all components, not each component.

60 feet x PVC pipe [$12.00]
1 x PVC "T" fitting [$0.40]
3 x PVC 4-way "Cross" fittings [$3.00]
16 x PVC 90 degree "Elbow" fittings [$4.00]
16 x PVC 45-degree "Elbow" fittings [$13.00]
8 x pins to hold legs to body (16d nails work fine)

2-3 x cans spray foam insulation [$15.00]
2 x cans black spray paint [?]
PVC pipe primer and glue [$9.00]
Duct tape [?]

PVC pipe cutter
Drill with 3/16 inch bit
Drop sheet
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KarimK323 days ago

Using the same materials but a bit bigger so he could walk right off my roof. I did use spandex for the body to give a bit of a shimmer. The legs were done using the spray on foam insulation and strips of burlap. I have to give credit to others on line for the extra ideas.

spider complete 2014.jpg
ORDuckFan (author)  KarimK323 days ago
Wow! That's HUGE. And I thought I had a problem finding room to store the legs :)

Great job.
winter5683 years ago
My son and I just finished our giant spider. I added some eyes and LED lights to light them at night. Just on the top back of the spider you can see the solar panel for the lights. We spray painted the body of the spider bright red first to fill in all the cracks and then sprayed the the body black. Nice multicolor effect. We spent 2 days and about 40 dollars in materials to build it. As always, wonderful ideas and instructions to be found here.
mcorbin winter5689 months ago

Cool! This could become a photo op for trick-or-treaters. They could lie down and become part of the scene

This is a better close up of the eyes to show more details. All of the eyes started out point forward, but through the process of taping the wires down and the the shifting of the spray foam some changed their orientation. All and all it seems to work.
Here is a closeup of the eyes. They had small holes in the tops of each eye that I wanted to close up so I just used the spray foam on each which created a bubble that just added to the organic look of the face. I used an empty windshield washer plastic bottle cut up to form the pincers and a scrap piece cut into small teeth with 4 LED lights behind them. This turned out so good that I want to make at least one more spider to put on the roof of the garage.
ORDuckFan (author)  winter5683 years ago
That is way cool! Can you post a close up of the face (spider - not son :))
spacecadetjess made it!10 months ago

Fantastic tutorial! Made this over the course of a week with for this year's decorations with stuff we pretty much had laying around the house! Sadly I didn't have the supplies to make teeth or a crazy body, but I like him! Thank you for the instructions! :)


great use of web. Probably very cool to walk under on Halloween night

gonecountry007 made it!10 months ago

Thank You for the IDEA. I used a 2 liter soda bottle and fastened the legs to it.

ORDuckFan (author)  gonecountry00710 months ago
Awesome! I love it. It's almost scarier with a small body - kind of like a giant daddy long-legs.
NerdSpouse10 months ago
Just finished building a version of the spider. This was really easy and fun.
14, 10:02.jpg
finfan73 years ago
The skull one definitely wins the creepy contest. I think I might have to make one of these and hang it from my ceiling.
And this is a great Instructable. Plenty of detail but kept relatively simple. Good work.
kslatin3 years ago
Just letting you people know. to save money for the body I just taped two shoe boxes together.
acardenas23 years ago
Didn't buy glue or primer, bought a few extra joints JIC, 37 dollars.
acardenas23 years ago
Love it! We are on our way to the local HD to pick up all the stuff. Love your tomb stones too. Go Ducks!
kslatin3 years ago
How much does it cost for all of the supplies total. The thing is that I really want to try this but i don't have a large amount to spend.
l8nite3 years ago
the skull is over the top cool !
simonfrfr3 years ago
AWESOME! I should make one of these! I will make it move though!
bwells24 years ago
I would be scared out of my wits if that thing would be real!
sockit4 years ago
Great Spider - looks way easier than the paper mache-over-ballons version I did one year. One 'simplification' option on the legs would be to eliminate 8 of the pvc connectors (and the 8 short stubby pipes), by having 45 degree connectors come off the spine instead of the 90 degree ones. I haven't done Holloween decorations in years, but this 'ible may inspire me to get back into the spirit!
ORDuckFan (author)  sockit4 years ago
I don't think removing the 90-degree elbows and stubby bits will work - the legs would all be perpendicular to the body, and they need to be flared.
Here's a sketch...
sockit sockit4 years ago
But I now realize that my bad suggestion would not allow rotating the legs. They would have to stick straight out.
Are your tombstones football teams? If you had one that said "Florida Gators" that would pretty much make my day :) I'll die happy when USF beats them.

And more on topic: I love your spider. Will definitely have to try it once I don't live in an apartment any more.
ORDuckFan (author)  mooseinakilt4 years ago
We're huge Oregon Ducks fans - all the tombstones are the Pac-10 teams and notable other recent wins - Sooners and Michigan
Love it! I saw clips from their first game of the season where the score was something ridiculous and they made the poor guy-in-a-duck-suit do an insane amount of push ups. You back a good team. I'm anti Michigan also, so that's good enough for me :)
ORDuckFan (author)  mooseinakilt4 years ago
Beating Michigan at our home in 2003 when they were #3 was awesome, spanking them in 2007 in Michigan was even better. Nothing like running a Statue-of-Liberty play *and* a FAKE Statue-of-Liberty play against them in the same game :D
Hehe... Great Stuff is not great stuff. Good luck getting it off of anything.
I respectfully disagree: It's great at sticking to everything, including clothes, skin, hair, children, pets... :-)
oolala1704 years ago
this is soooooo cool awsome yur awsome thanks
Some Dork4 years ago
My wife is a spider nut and saw this . . . guess what I'm on the hook for making next Halloween? :)

There have been a few similar projects like this in the past, but this is my favorite by far. Well constructed and the organic look from the spray foam really sets it apart. Love it!
b75cycle4 years ago
Built this today. Added golf balls for eyeballs. Used the foam to create pincers. Double check the total amount of PVC pipe needed to save extra trips to the hardware store.

60 ft PVC tube needed
Step 24 - 2ft section of legs = 48 feet

Had a lot of fun building this and the entire family got involved. Thanks for the plans!
ORDuckFan (author)  b75cycle4 years ago
Thanks for the heads-up on PVC pipe! Materials list changed. The legs do in fact need 48 feet ... 8 legs x 3 segments x 2-feet.
l8nite4 years ago
to dang cool !!! where did you get the 4way fittings? I can never locate them at the home improvement stores
zascecs4 years ago
Wow, I made the exact same thing a few years back, except that it was hung from a tree with several pulley systems, making it go up and down.

..and with remote controlled blinking eyes. Anyways, great i'ble.
zack2474 years ago
this is awesome! i totally want to make one of these...
That is amazing! Great idea!

Wesley6664 years ago
You used that expanding construction foam on the body! I was wondering how you got it to look like a giant black meatball! LOL! Jkes, this is soooo awesome!
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