Intro: Light-up Trick-or-Treat Bucket
Light-up Trick-or-Treat Bucket
Trick-or-Treating is a super-fun sugar-filled activity, but it can be pretty dangerous for kids and adults canvasing poorly lit streets, going up and down dimly lit stairs and in general not being able to see (or be seen) very well.
Flashlights help, but they are so directional and the bright spot of the beam tends to ruin your night vision so that the surrounding areas appear even darker after the light disappears.
So here's the solution: a Trick-or-Treat bucket with LED lighting!
The bucket provides uniform light that is easy on the eyes. The LEDs provide sufficient light to see all around the bucket, which means that you can see in front of you where you are walking, and the person following you can even see where they're going too!
The perimeter location of the LEDs also lights up the bucket itself so its very visible, making sure that others see you too.
Step 1: Supplies
You will need:
A trick-or-treat bucket. The bucket must have a lip that curves outward so the LEDs can be hidden underneath it.
LED light string. I used a 10 LED set from the Dollar Tree. The Christmas decorations were out and a white light LED set was available. I also found some Halloween light strings with decorations that could be pulled off to expose white LEDs.
2 AA batteries
Velcro self-adhesive 'dots'
Orange tape (I used orange electrical tape)
Hot Glue Gun and glue
Double-stick tape (not shown)
Duct tape (not shown) - optional
Step 2: Size Your Light String
The string of LED lights I had was too long to just go around the top of the bucket so I decided to shorten the string. I did this by making a gather in the wiring just before the LED. I gathered the wire and then wrapped orange tape around the wires. I did this to the whole string to shorten it.
Step 3: Mount Your Battery Case
I decided to mount the battery case in the bottom of the bucket using velcro 'dots'. This allows the battery case to be pulled out of the bucket if desired, and gives your some maneuvering room when replacing the batteries.
Load the batteries in the case now so you don't have to fumble with it later.
After mounting the battery case I taped down the wires with orange tape to make them 'disappear'.
Step 4: Add Your Reflectors
I really didn't want the light to shine up through the lip of the bucket, but to be directed downward. To help direct the light I decided to make some reflectors. I thought it would be difficult to add a reflector completely around the lip so I marked the location of each LED and added a reflector only at the location of the LED. This required less effort and left exposed portions of the bucket lip to firmly glue the wiring to.
The reflectors are just aluminum foil cut in 1/2" wide strips and cut into 1" lengths. The strips are held in place in the lip by double-stick tape. I added reflectors completely around the underside of the lip.
Aluminized mylar could also be used for the reflectors instead of the aluminum foil (cut up an aluminized mylar balloon, or 'space blanket'), but I knew right were the foil was and didn't see much benefit to using mylar - but it would certainly work.
Step 5: Mount Your Light String
To get the wiring from inside the bucket to up under the lip I cut a small notch in the lip of the bucket. I could have just taped the wires in this location but the notch made it more secure and gave me a definite starting point under the lip.
I worked the light string around the lip and duct taped the LED lights down in their respective positions. I wanted the LEDs and wiring held in place while I applied the hot glue. Any type of tape would do but I had some duct tape handy and I knew it would hold the LEDs in place.
Step 6: Hot Glue the Light String in Place
Go around the perimeter of the lip and hot glue the wiring in place. I essentially filled the lip up with hot glue except where the LEDs were located. Make sure to get hot glue under the wiring next to the bucket so it holds it firmly in place.
Step 7: Fire That LED Trick-or-Treat Bucket Up and Be Safe Trick-or-Treating
Switch on your LED lights and Enjoy seeing the light (and not tripping while trick-or-treating!)