Animated & Illuminated Happy Ghost




Introduction: Animated & Illuminated Happy Ghost

About: The more mistakes I make, the more knowledge I gain.

'Animated & Illuminated "Happy" Ghost' is another Halloween themed model designed for the upcoming Halloween parties. Makes a nice centerpiece for a table full of Halloween "treats"!

The ghost in this model is similar, but not identical, to the ghost in "Tea Light Ghost Lamp", and as in Tea Light Ghost Lamp I've included files for both single and dual extrusion printer ghosts.

As usual, I probably forgot a file or two or who knows what else, so if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask as I do make mistakes in plenty.

Designed using Autodesk Fusion 360, sliced using Cura 3.4.1 and printed in PLA on both an Ultimaker 2+ Extended and an Ultimaker 3 Extended.

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Step 1: Purchase, Print and Prepare the Parts.

I purchased a 6vdc 30rpm gear motor, a 9mm exterior by 5mm interior coaxial panel mount power jack (to fit with the ac adapter I'm using), a 5vdc ac adapter, a two lead RGB color cycling LED and a 330 ohm 1/4 watt resistor.

I've included the "ghost" files for both single and dual extrusion printers. The files "Eye, Left.stl", "Eye, Right.stl", "Ghost.stl" and "Mouth.stl" are the single extrusion files, the file "Ghost.3mf" is the dual extrusion file.

I printed all parts at .1mm vertical resolution, 50% infill, no build plate adhesion and no supports. I printed four "Bolt, Top.stl", two "Pin.stl" and one each of the remaining parts.

Prior to assembly, test fit and trim, file, sand, etc. all parts as necessary for smooth movement of moving surfaces, and tight fit for non moving surfaces. Depending on the colors you chose and your printer settings, more or less trimming, filing and/or sanding may be required. Carefully file all edges that contacted the build plate to make absolutely sure that all build plate "ooze" is removed and that all edges are smooth. I used small jewelers files and plenty of patience to perform this step.

This model uses both M8 by 1.25 and M4 by .07 threaded assembly, so a tap and die set containing these threaded sizes may be required to clean the threads.

Step 2: Animate.

Solder a 76mm (approximately 3") length of red wire between the motor positive ("+") terminal and the coaxial power jack "tip" terminal, followed by a 76mm length of black wire between the motor negative ("-") terminal and the coaxial power jack "ring" terminal.

Press "Cam.stl" (the red disk in the photo) onto the motor shaft as shown.

Using one "Pin.stl" (black in the photo), attach "Bar.stl" (yellow in the photo) to the motor cam as shown. Do not over tighten the pin as the arm must rotate easily on the cam.

Attach the coaxial power jack to "Base.stl" as shown, then press the motor assembly into the base assembly as shown.

Using "Bolt, Mount, Ghost.stl" (black in the photo), attach "Mount, Ghost.stl" (white in the photo) to the base assembly using a 3.5mm hex wrench, pliers or slip joint pliers. Do not over tighten as the ghost mount must rotate freely on the base.

Using the remaining "Pin.stl", attach the free end of "Bar.stl" to "Mount, Ghost.stl" as shown.

Apply power to the assembly to verify smooth and (relatively) quiet operation. The gear motor should not strain or "whine" during operation.

Step 3: Illuminate.

If you are not planning to illuminate your model, then you may skip this step.

Trim the LED wires to 10mm in length. Solder a 76mm length of black wire to the cathode wire of LED (the wire closest to the "flat" side on the base of the), followed by a 76mm length of red wire to the anode wire of the LED.

Cover the red or black wire with heat shrink tubing to protect against shorting.

Trim the leads of the 330 ohm resistor to 10mm. Solder one lead of the 330 ohm resistor to the coaxial connector "ring" terminal (the motor black wire is also soldered to this terminal).

Slide the red and black led wires down through "Bolt, Mount, Ghost.stl" and out the oval hole in the side of the base tower, then fully insert the led into "Bolt, Mount, Ghost.stl". Solder the led red wire to the coaxial connector "tip" terminal (the motor red wire is also soldered to this terminal). Solder the led black to the free end of the resistor.

Apply power to the assembly to verify smooth and relatively quiet operation, and to verify the led is color cycling.

Step 4: Build Your Ghost.

If you print the dual extrusion version, then you may skip this step, but if you printed the single extrusion version, well there is some assembly required if you wish to add the eyes and mouth.

Following the photographs, I glued the right eye, left eye then mouth (in that order) to the ghost using thick cyanoacrylate glue (the thick glue gives some, but not much, set up time to allow final manipulation of the parts in the ghost). While installing the eyes I used my small finger, inserted through the mouth, for back support. When installing the mouth, I used my index finger, inserted through the base, for back support.

Step 5: Final Assembly.

Align "Top.stl" with the base assembly as shown, slide the top onto the base assembly, the secure in place with the four "Bolt, Top.stl".

Place this assembly on a firm surface, the press your ghost onto the base as shown.

Apply power and you're done!

That is how I printed, assembled and tested 'Animated & Illuminated "Happy" Ghost'.

Hope you enjoy it!

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    2 Discussions


    Question 1 year ago on Step 2

    GREAT WORKS really smooth the surface have you sand it a lot? can you explain how you get the super cool surface? thanks a lot


    Reply 1 year ago

    Hi SilviaM42,

    I did no surface preparation, but I did print this model at .06mm vertical resolution which gave it the look I was searching for.

    I'm truly glad you enjoyed the model!