Haunted Balloon

Introduction: Haunted Balloon

 A haunted helium balloon for Halloween (or any other time of the year!) This can really scare you, if you aren't careful!

You need:
one Helium Balloon (on ribbon or string)
one wrapping paper "ghost" (this is the ballast)

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Unweight

 When you get a balloon, it usually has a weight on the end of the ribbon, to keep it from floating away. (pic 1a) Some times these are plaster, or a bag filled with either sand or beans. For our purpose, this is too much weight, as we want the balloon to float in an eerie manner. To facilitate this, replace the weight with a "ghost" made of paper. (pics 1b & 1c) Roll up a small ball of paper to put inside another small sheet of paper, to make a ghost. Tie him onto the ribbon.

Step 2: Trim the Ballast

You Are Going To ballast the balloon to about chest height. Do this by adding or subtracting weight. Losing ballast is easily accomplished by snipping away at the ghost's tail. (pic 2a) To add ballast, you may have to make a bigger ghost, or possibly add tiny bits of duck tape. Maybe you'll need a smaller ghost. However you can accomplish it, the goal is, for one moment, to get the balloon to just hang there, at about chest level, and not rise or fall. Do this in the middle room of your house. 

Step 3: Wewease Bwian!

Once you've gotten the balloon (w/ ballast) to confidently HOLD there for a few seconds, let it go. Right there. Then forget about it. Go about your business. Go do laundry, or cook something. Watch TV. Lah dee dah.
I'm telling you, these things have a mind of their own. They will go from room to room periodically. You will wonder where it's gone, then it will suddenly appear. I've had one follow me clear through the house, ducking under the doorway. Waiting. It watches you. It's alive.
If you find it stuck to the floor in the morning, remove tiny tiny amounts of ballast, always initially looking for that "about chest height", and forget about it. Make adjustments if you have to. Give it a good try! It works! (just watch out for fans and open windows!)

Halloween Decorations Challenge

Participated in the
Halloween Decorations Challenge

Be the First to Share


    • Toys and Games Challenge

      Toys and Games Challenge
    • Backyard Contest

      Backyard Contest
    • Silly Hats Speed Challenge

      Silly Hats Speed Challenge

    4 Discussions


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I don't know if you can still get them, but we used to get a UFO shaped balloon which had a spiral of peel off sticker weights on the bottom, so it floated around like an alien ship.

    Dream Dragon
    Dream Dragon

    8 years ago on Introduction

    So basically, you trim for neutral buoyancy and it follows any available air currents. That is VERY cool, well done.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Ah, trim for neutral buoyancy! I knew I lacked some jargon. Exactly! I love watching the balloon move ever so slowly across the room! Maybe this needs a little basket? gondola? HO scale ballooning! Hmmm... Thank you very much!