Monday, December 12, 2016

Working Garbage Truck Halloween Costume

For the love of trucks!

The Assignment

"I want to be garbage truck, with arms on front, that really dumps."

Originally, I was thinking of an around-the-waist design similar to our Halloween costume last year. Yellow dump truck. Yay, trucks!

Below is a garbage truck costume with similar straps over the shoulders and wearing the costume around his waist. Found here.
Adorable! But it doesn't have working arms. 


After much thinking and Pinterest searching, I found the below picture and knew that was the way to go! Found here, with more images.

This mama used two boxes for each costume, one for the cab and one for the body of the truck. She decorated with poster board. She mentions a pulley system for the rope in order to move the bin. 

Words About Our Garbage Truck

For the cab of our truck, we ended up using one medium box that we was headed for the real recycling bin. Cut side windows and a windshield, covered the cab with white poster board, and only formed the backside of the truck with green poster board. The green part is hollow! 

For him to wear it comfortably, we cut a couple of slits in the box to feed backpack straps through. The backpack is completely hidden in the hollow back of the truck. Here's a shot looking up. The bottom of the backpack is taped up onto itself so that it wouldn't dangle down. 

 Now for the most important part...a real working garbage bin!!! 

In order for the yellow bin to fit perfectly between the arms, we cut pieces of cardboard box and taped them together. Finished it with yellow construction paper and clear packing tape. 
The candy needs to goes in the middle section in order to dump directly into the hopper, so we added filler on the sides. The black filler is folded construction paper taped in place. 

We used real screws and bolts to attach the yellow collection bin to the arms and the arms to the side of the cab. This helped the costume remain sturdy and allowed for movement when the collection bin was tipped to dump into the hopper.

The gold stoppers are cabinet pulls from our laundry room. 
Screws, bolts, rope, caution tape and reflectors were purchased at Lowes. 

The rope is connected to the yellow bin by a knot and runs outside the front of the truck to a hole in the middle/top of the cab. 

The rope comes into the cab next to his head. There is no pulley. He simply pulls the rope down and the bin dumps directly into the hopper! 
We tried to rig something so that the rope wouldn't be directly next to his head, but it proved too difficult to provide enough force to move the bin. Thankfully, he didn't mind the rope placement. Because...working garbage truck!!! 

The hopper is located on the top of the truck and functions as the candy collection bin. The hopper's backboard turned out to be an important piece. Without that, the candy would fly over the truck and land on the ground. 
We made the hopper from a small Amazon box, covered in green poster board and packing tape, and secured it to the cab with zip ties. The backboard is the one box flap that I didn't cut off.

Critic's review: He loves it! 

By using the backpack, it turned out to be comfortable for our three year old to walk long distances for trick-or-treating. Even though he could've walked far, he didn't have to...many houses were so amused by his costume that they gave him extra candy just to see the garbage truck work again!

Side notes: I'd add front headlights for practicality during evening trick-or-treating.
We needed to help him with steps because he can't see his feet when wearing it. :)

This was our most ambitious costume yet! He is
 already planning for next year...a real flying space shuttle. Stay tuned.

What was your most ambitious costume attempt? 
What was your favorite Halloween costume from childhood? 

My favorite was a 50's girl, complete with poodle skirt!

Happy Halloween!

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