Mechanical Marvel Trades Courage for Chocolate

When we see what [Jason Allemann] does with LEGO, we wonder why more one-offs aren’t made this way. This time he’s made a Halloween mechanical marvel that will surely scare more kids than anything else they’ll encounter on their rounds — so much so that many may even decline the chocolate it dispenses. Who wouldn’t when to get it you have to reach over an animatronic skeleton hand that may grab you while a similarly mechanized spider may lunge onto your hand.

The chocolate dispensing, the hand and the spider are all animated using four motors, a LEGO Mindstorms EV3 brick to control them, and a touch sensor. When a kid presses a pumpkin attached to the touch sensor, the next chocolate candy is lowered by gravity onto a conveyor belt and carried forward to the awaiting child. That much is automatic. At the discretion of [Jason] and his partner [Kristal], using an infrared remote control and sensor, they can activate the skeleton hand and the lunging spider at just the right moment. We’re just not sure who they’ll choose to spare. It is Halloween after all, and being scared is part of the fun, so maybe spare no one? Check out the video below and tell us if you’d prefer just the treat, or both the trick and treat.

We do have to wonder if there’s any project that can’t benefit from LEGO products, even if only at the prototype stage or to help visualize an idea. As a small sample, [Jason]’s also made a remote-controlled monowheel and an actual working printer along with a Morse key telegraph machine to send it something to print.

4 thoughts on “Mechanical Marvel Trades Courage for Chocolate

  1. Great build!
    The manual ‘discretion switch’ is also a nice touch. One Halloween I rigged up a subwoofer under the porch with a looped mp3 of monster growling every 30 seconds or so, right under their feet. Most kids loved it, but we got some very little ones that year and it was too much for them (they took off screaming and wouldn’t come back). If I do that again, it’ll have a manual trigger or on/off switch for very young audiences.

    1. Yeah, I was thinking it might be too much for the littlest ones too. I was also wondering about those with an added fear for spiders in general. A lot of people seem to afflicted with that.

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