Introduction: Grim Reaper Scythe

You Will Need:

  • A piece of plywood (size can vary; I used a 19.5" x 31" x 0.75")
  • A staff or large stick
  • Twine or thin rope (length can vary)
  • Sandpaper
  • Something to carve out the shape (I used an X-Carve machine)
  • Spray paint (red + metallic silver)
  • Hot glue gun + glue
  • Drill + screws
  • A pair of latex gloves
  • A saw that can make small and precise cuts (such as a jigsaw or a scroll saw)

Step 1: Making the Shape of Your Scythe

After you've gathered your materials, you need to plan out the shape of your scythe. It's always a good idea to sketch ideas out on paper before making any permanent decisions. Once you have your general idea mapped out, start to create the shape on a larger scale, such as sketching with pencil on the plywood (if you are cutting by hand) or an online program, like I did. For this project, I used the easel tool on to map out the shape for the machine to carve the "blade" out.

Step 2: Sand the Edges; Rough Up the Sides

Now that you have your full-scale scythe "blade," you'll want to sand the edges of the wood to smooth them out and bring the end to more of a point. You can also use the sandpaper to rough up the flat sides of the wood to give the blade a textured appearance.

Step 3: Paint the Blade

Next, it's time to paint your "blade." Move outside or to a very well-ventilated area and spray paint the blade of your scythe silver.

Step 4: Add the "Blood"

Time to get bloody. After the silver paint has dried, go back to your well-ventilated area, and bring your red spray paint and gloves. Since the top of my spray paint was broken, I ended up pushing the tip of the paint can on a small piece of cardboard and flicking it directly onto the head of my scythe. I also sprayed the cardboard until it was saturated and letting the paint drip off of the cardboard and onto the blade to get the larger drips. You can also use the piece of cardboard as a barrier and spray it while holding it over the blade and letting the mist hit the it for the spray effect. To get the dripping effect on the very end of the blade, I held the spray paint still and sprayed in one area until it dripped down by itself.

Step 5: Make a Notch in the Staff

Now that the head of your scythe is complete, let's move on to the staff. Since the wood is heavy, you need to make a notch in the staff to secure the blade. Start by placing the thinnest part of the scythe (the part that will be mounted) against the wood and mark the staff, then cut a notch the same depth as the thickness of the plywood using a jigsaw or a scroll saw.

Step 6: Mounting the Blade

Now that you have the notch measured and cut, you need to secure the blade with screws so it does not slip out of the notch. Place the head of the scythe in the notch, making sure it's snug. Then drill it into place to secure it.

Step 7: Tie It Up

Start heating up your glue gun, and get your twine. The industrial screw look is not exactly what we're going for with this project, so we're going to cover it up. Place a dab of hot glue and start wrapping your twine around where the scythe head and staff meet. Continue to wrap it up, and add glue as needed.

Step 8: Finishing Touches

You're almost done. You just have to add the finishing touches to your creation, such as more twine, more texture on the staff, etc. Once you're satisfied, your project is complete.

Halloween Contest 2018

Participated in the
Halloween Contest 2018