Introduction: Making a Stunt Dummy Out of Cardboard, Duct Tape, and Newspaper

Picture of Making a Stunt Dummy Out of Cardboard, Duct Tape, and Newspaper

Ever wanted to make a movie where you wanted somebody to fall down a flight of stairs, or off a building, but didn't feel like using a real person? Well here's a tutorial on how to make a decent looking stunt dummy out of free materials.

Step 1: Instructions

Picture of Instructions

Here's how to do it.

Step 2: Use It!

Now just throw it around! Have fun!
Here's a video of it falling down a flight of stairs!

(This is my first instructable, so if I did anything wrong, just tell me!


cooperkevin95 (author)2009-10-12


I made one of these today. It looks great, and almost realistic! For a head, I used a gourd, duct tape, and old newspaper (newspaper used for the chin, nose, cheeks, and other features). I plan on using this dummy for a LOT of my upcoming films, including a scene where a guy is hit by a bike and gets thrown into a truck bed.

Thanks for the Instructable. Now, if only he had hands...

And a head...

wetpaint (author)2008-04-14

cardboard cutouts are much harder then that to make if you want them to last, i make them for a living, and if you would rather just order them from any picture you want, or you want those ones with the faces missing to stand behind check these sites out.

Cardboard Cutouts
Faceless Cutouts

conn067 (author)2008-03-30

Oops... Oh well.

conn067 (author)2007-10-28

When I made this, I didn't have all of the required stuff, so I sowed together some trousers, a jumper and a balaclava (I didn't sow that on). Then, after sowing everything up, I stuffed the whole thing with shredded paper, duct taped a face onto the balaclava (and duct taped around it also to make a helmet) and sowed the balaclava on.

Joanassie (author)conn0672008-03-29

Sow? Do you mean "sew?"

barnzo (author)2008-03-09

I tried to make this and it fell apart. I even printed out the instructions.

VogelYogel (author)2008-02-16

An idea for the hands would be to get a pair of disposable latex gloves and fill them up with expanding foam. When it's dry, just cut away the glove and use a file or a rasp to "mould" it to the size you want.

L.Y.H.O Productions (author)2008-01-20

This sounds like a good idea. I'll make a how to video for this on youtube mabye!

penfacerat (author)2007-07-29

i got an idea for the hands you can trace your hand and make several cutouts then hot glue them together then tape them to the wrist or if you want the fingers to bend you can cut off the fingers glue them and tape them to the hand

That would work if I were to give it gloves, but how how would I make it look real without gloves?

copy yor hand on card board then tape on more layers of smaller layers and tape it up with duct tape, then spray it with a skin-like color

you could spray kitchen gloves in a "flesh tone" as for packing them i am not sure how you would do that maby fill then with expanding foam or put bendy plastic pipe in the fingers with groves cut out. anythink to give it that hand effect.

Darkshot (author)2007-10-07

cool thanks! ive been wanting a punching bag at home >:D (smiles evily) but yeah cool instructable

irwinner (author)2007-01-28

well i got an idea for the hands, you could use some of those fake hands you can get at Halloween shops, you know the ones that have like fake blood on them, as for the head i have no idea

Super Cameraman (author)irwinner2007-07-29

The problem with that is that I've only seen left hands... Weird.

Danny (author)2007-04-29

not to chop my friends head of to use as the head...

gmcintire (author)2007-01-29

My roommates and I did something like this back in college. We used pantyhose stuffed with newspaper and even stuck a 1lb bag of flour in the chest to give it that nice "thud" when it hit the ground (we lived on the 3rd story, that was fun!) We'd stand on the balcony, hold the dummy, and pretend to talk to it (things like NO, DON'T DO IT!), then toss it off and scream. We got quite a few girls to scream, as well as a campus officer to laugh :) I still remember the looks we got when we bought the pantyhose... 3 college-aged guys buying nothing but pantyhose at Tom Thumb at 1 in the morning...

wraith001 (author)2007-01-28

Nice! You have a really realistic dummy there!

robonut625 (author)2007-01-28

Neat idea! Good first instructable... just try breaking it up into steps.

StepsoftheSun (author)2007-01-28

Hah! This looks pretty good; I've seen this kind of dummy used to a funny effect here.

Notes on the actual instructable: break up your first step into four separate processes and type them up in the actual Instructables-editor. Make the images larger too. If possible, embed that video instead of just linking. Looks good otherwise!

About This Instructable




Bio: Film maker, musician, tinkerer. Living in Philly.
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