Introduction: Shuffle Bot Head Quick and Cheap
I'm thousands of miles away from my workshop and tools. But Halloween is one of my favorite times to get creative so I didn't let my distance from supplies or tools prevent me from making a costume. I spent less than 2 hours working on this and less than $10.
Here is how I made the cardboard head from the Shuffle Bot of the LMFAO music videos.
Step 1: Find Some Stuff
- Appropriate size cardboard box
- Cheap fabric grocery bag, thin t-shirt, or other thin black fabric
- Two bicycle lights
- Some extra cardboard
- Packing tape
- Three gallon sized ziploc bags
- Some bubble wrap
- A knife
- Ruler and a bowl
Step 2: Assemble the Box
I didn't have gold paint nor a place to use paint so I just turned a cardboard box inside out. That way there wasn't any writing on the outside. I lucked out one day and there were two cardboard boxes on the stairwell outside an apartment on one of the lower floors of my building. One was just the right size and I didn't need to modify the box other than putting it together inside out.
Step 3: Mark Where to Cut the Openings
I used a bowl to trace for the eyes and a ruler to mark the opening for the mouth. You'll be looking through the mouth opening so make sure it is positioned so that you can look through it easily.
Step 4: Cut Out the Openings
It is pretty sad that I had to use one of our kitchen knives to cut cardboard. I don't have a utility knife, hobby knife, or even a multi-tool here. But a sharp knife will do the job. Take care cutting the curves of the eyes. And don't forget to cut an opening to squeeze you head into on the bottom of the box.
Step 5: Add the Black Fabric Lining
I didn't have a t-shirt that was thin enough material and the previous time I used dark fabric to see through for a costume I used a mesh but didn't have access to any. Here in Asia some stores will give you a very thin fabric bag when you shop. I tried out the bike lights and you could see the LEDs flashing through the fabric so I cut out pieces of the bag and taped them inside the box over the openings for the eyes and mouth.
You could skip the fabric on the mouth if you need to be able to see better, want to be able to eat or drink, or don't care if people know who you are. Because I was going to be wearing mine during the day, didn't need to put anything in my mouth and wanted to be a little secret at first I put the fabric over the mouth.
Step 6: Build a Cardboard Shape to Hold the Bike Lights
I got pretty lucky and found two used LED bike lights for $10. They were perfect - a series of lights that could be set to all on, all flashing, cycling through in series or a seemingly random illumination. I just had to construct a structure for inside the head that would hold the lights yet give me access to the buttons.
Use packing tape to secure the assembly inside the head.
Step 7: Add Padding
Given the right tools and supplies I would have used a helmet or hard hat to secure the box to my head. But without that available I had to come up with some other way of keeping the box on my shoulders and not slumping forward or back.
I had some bubble wrap but not enough to secure the box well. I realized that I could use zip sealing plastic bags filled with air to create pillows inside the box.
These turned out to be VERY hot but I wasn't going to be able to wear the box for more than 20 minutes or so at a time so given the resources it worked out well.
One gallon bag on either side and one in the back and a roll of bubble wrap below the mouth opening that i could sort of brace with my chin worked out very well. I just used some packing tape to secure the bags and bubble wrap to the opening at the bottom of the box.
Step 8: Add Appropriate Clothing and Shuffle or Wiggle
I was wearing mine at a school so I wasn't going to go for the outfit in the most recent LMFAO video. Despite an hour of perusing the second hand clothing at the black market here I couldn't find a gold track suit. So I went with gawdy snow pants and a black hoodie.