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painting 7' latex balloon to look like the moon Answered

Hello out there curious and creative Instructables! I am planning on turning a 7' white latex balloon into the Moon. I plan on painting it after it is inflated. I wondered if anyone has had any experience painting on balloons. What kind of paint will adhere and flex with the balloon? I also intend to light it from inside so the it will "glow". I don't know how to determine what kind/how many LED's to use to create the right amount of glow. Since the balloon will be large, do I need to worry about the heat from the LED's? I can keep the battery or AC connection on the outside of the balloon and above it on the ceiling so that it will not show. Put your thinking caps on and help me out once again.
Thanks!'

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user
Tool Using Animal (author)2009-01-21

If by a 7' balloon you mean an old weather balloon like you can buy from surplus shops, I'll warn you they are very fragile. Secondly, latex balloons "rot" fairly quickly, and leak like a sieve. Lastly, any paint you use should have NO solvents in it other than water.

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user

Thank you for your reply! Yes, what you are describing sounds like what I have on order. I have abandoned the idea of painting onto the balloon. I have decided to try what I did to an 18" balloon the other night. I blew up the balloon and then deflated it. Poured some glycerin inside and rubbed it around; then I added enough talcum powder to absorb the glycerin coating the walls of the balloon. Once inflated this made an uneven coating that when illuminated from below, made a pretty convincing moon. I plan to use Hi-float instead of glycerin. I just used what I had on hand at the time the idea struck. You make me wonder if I use the Hi-float and double the balloon if that will make it more durable. Or, will I be creating another problem that I have not thought of? I have not worked with a balloon of this size before and I am sure it comes with its own set of challenges. Your input is appreciated!

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user
Arano (author)addinar2010-09-17

what do you mean by 'double the balloon'?

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user
bikerbob2005 (author)2009-01-21

i could be ebil and just say latex paint, i would think airbrushed would work .wallie-world sells packs of fabric paint it is very flexable and comes in like 8 different colors.latex balloons tend to lose air fast not sure about reinflating it with out damage to paint.papermachie the balloon?

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Goodhart (author)2009-01-16

The LED's depend on the translucency of the balloon once inflated. If the wire leads out the mouth of the balloon, there will be some leakage, but a good clamp will slow it down pretty well. Painting the balloon is tricky....few paints, if any, are a flexible as the rubber of the balloon.
Painted on inflated, it may peal off or tear small holes in it once deflated. Painted uninflated, the same may happen, and you will most likely end up with a distorted moon.

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user
11010010110 (author)Goodhart2009-01-16

try graffiti. some of them dissolve the baloon though - boom you can setup the leds inside to create a pattern of spots which resembles the moon

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user
Goodhart (author)110100101102009-01-16

graffiti ? Is that a type of paint? it used to mean, stuff painted on city walls, etc. :-)

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user
guyfrom7up (author)2009-01-16

you have to have like a sphere of LEDs in the center

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user
11010010110 (author)2009-01-16

paint it ? why not just use a white baloon ? you can place the led inside the baloon. connect it to battery like in throwie or feed it from outside thru induction for dim led i dont think there is any issue for brighter led its ok unless the led or its wires touch directly the baloon

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kelseymh (author)110100101102009-01-16

I think he wants to paint lunar features on the balloon.

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