Step 5: Other ideas...

The guitar player skeleton appeared in 2005. In 2006 I made another skeleton, placed it in a plywood coffin, propped on my lawn: less engineering, but also less action.

I believe the next skeleton will be climbing out of the coffin...
UPDATE 2007: My belief turned out to be unfounded: the next skeleton was, in fact, using a laptop computer.
UPDATE 2008: No Skeleton. Gourdzilla, the Dino-Pumpkin instead.
UPDATE 2009: The Skeleton is back. This year he's reading "Upgrading and Repairing PCs" by Scott Mueller.
UPDATE 2010: Skeleton pumpkin carving a pumpkin. Only tangentially gross.

Used in combination with all of the other sinister ideas out there (light-up eyes, motion-sensor scary voices...), the possibilities are endless.

I live in Humboldt County, Ca., a very soggy location where everything composts in minutes, but even in this anti-pumpkin environment, the skeleton looked great for almost a week.

Of course, the decay looked fantastic, too... The entire assembly becomes a liquid mess at a certain point. It's up to you to decide just when to peel it apart and toss it in the compost bin.

On a side note, one free-hanging skull I made dried out like a shrunken head, and lasted long past Easter. Could the whole skeleton be dried out like that too? Perhaps someone (who lives in a drier location) should try that...

Happy Carving!


Woah this is incredible! Thank you for such a thorough instructable.
This would be great to place right outside our front door. Our next door neighbor already thinks my cat is evil! LOL
That's cool!
does it rot? <br>
Why, of course!
i mean leomon juice! <br>
did you know u can put in a bath filled with lemon and it wont rot ! <br>
how do you make them stand up????
You're really good at that, to say the least.<br />
huh is that second picture made with pumpkin too? really cool stuff!&nbsp;<br />
lol, i have so many great ideas now that you've shown how to do this! :D
It's very cool but why waste so many pumpkins like that..
Waste is relative: the best Pumpkins to use for this are bumpy and weird, and are therefore more likely to be left in the field by the majority of the pumpkin-hunters out there who are seeking perfection. Either way, I compost when the skeleton starts to get gross, so they'll either compost in my yard or at the pumpkin patch...
Hi folks!<br/><br/>This year it's Gourdzilla: <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.instructables.com/id/Attack_of_Gourdzilla_Dino_Pumpkin/">https://www.instructables.com/id/Attack_of_Gourdzilla_Dino_Pumpkin/</a><br/><br/>Mike<br/>
wow u have a lot of skill
That is so AMAZING!!!
This is a thing of beauty. I'm dumbstruck with awe... sigh :)
aah! this is frackin awesome
Incredible! Please, can somebody make sure that the Hallowe'en rules allow this to be netered??
*oh* Right.<br/>
There's no function to edit your own posts...
this is by far, absolutely the coolest instructable i've seen on this entire website yet...that is so cool i def. want to try that sometime halloween or not, maybe not pumpkins will be on sale? :D you rock man
Hello folks! Thanks for all of your comments! This just in: I updated a few items in this instructable, providing additional tips I learned from 2007's skeleton, notably (as germinated by "Gentle Sherpa" suggestion, thanks!) the benefits of leaving more skin... Anybody have pix of their skeletal pumpkin creations? Let's see 'em!
Wow!Real pumpkin sculputor1Thumbs up!
awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Looks so cool!
This is REALLY cool, I will definately do this- if we get any pumpkins this year, I think most of them rotted away during the summer floods and there are only a few normally.
He has such personality - this is so awesome! This is such a big project and its really so original and great. :)
dude all i can say is this is bad@$$ l<sub>l(&gt; _ &lt;)l</sub>l nice work<br/>
you have skill
Wow, thanks for all the kind words, folks!
I'm not certain whether this would work or not. I wonder if you could cut a hole in the pumpkin and fill it with water and black food coloring to "dye" it black from the inside out. Ideally, the inside would become black and shade to white toward the orange skin. You would have to do this prior to carving and may need to keep it filled for some time to give it the desired effect.
Yep, that's the idea. Not sure how well the pumpkin would take the dye, but it might be worth the experiment. I do big scary jack-o-lanterns that would probably benefit from deeper shadows...
That truly does look wonderful, you have a real talent for the pumpkin arts! I wonder though, is there a way to retain the pumpkin skin on any part of this, without it looking odd? As detail, or shading, perhaps?
Sure, particularly if you can select a weird enough shaped pumpkin in the first place, that doesn't require too much re-shaping before it becomes... <em>bony</em>. That way you can leave the outer skin. <br/>As for looking odd... it could be done in a truly gruesome manner: leaving big chunks of orange might look like decaying flesh... bwaaaaahahahahahahaaaa........ <br/>Or some orange might be nice to say more loudly &quot;this was a pumpkin&quot; (most folks can't tell from a distance).<br/>Detail would work, but probably not shading; the &quot;dark&quot; spots are on the outer surfaces, not the inner, where a real shadow would fall. I wonder if there is some way to dye from the inside? Then you'd be able to reveal a darker area when you dig deeper, which would yield more dramatic relief effects...<br/>
This is brilliant!
damn, thats crazy, but I wouldn't have the patience or pumpkin skills to do so.
Absolutely Outstanding! How Creative! I am definately doing this for Halloween. Thanks for the inspiration!
Wow, it's amazing
Creativity for the win. Very cool.
thats awsome
Wow, that's fantastic!

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Bio: Warthog-faced buffoon.
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