Cheap dragon smoke wanted
October 30, 2008 2:15 PM   Subscribe

My dragon has lost its fire. I have a dragon above my front door. I want to make it blow smoke out the nostrils. And I'm cheap.

The dragon is a rubber halloween mask. I'm going to run some tubing to it to augment the LEDs I've installed as eyes. I don't want to pay 200 bucks for a small smoke generator.
I also don't want to burn down my house. I suppose I could sit on my front porch and shotgun the dragon through the tubing, but that's going to be expensive and the candy won't make it to the kids.

Any recommendations for making smoke on the cheap?
posted by disclaimer to Society & Culture (9 answers total)
 
Fog machine. Starts at roughly $30.
posted by JMOZ at 2:19 PM on October 30, 2008


cigarettes?

What type of climate are you in? Any chance of visible breath on Halloween night?

In any case, I'd probably opt for some sort of vapor rather than real smoke.
posted by winston at 2:21 PM on October 30, 2008


How about some dry ice?
posted by nitsuj at 2:30 PM on October 30, 2008


You can get dry ice at many supermarkets in easy to manage packages and they smoke very convincingly. Call around to a few places. You can get the package, put it in a small container of water and it will smokesmokesmoke. Alternately, incense will work, little cones and whatnot, but would need to be replenished. Good if you want to get that stinky otherworldy vibe, bad if you have allergies.
posted by jessamyn at 2:38 PM on October 30, 2008


Smoke bombs, either commercial or homemade? (Note: smoke bombs produce a lot of smoke.)
posted by box at 2:42 PM on October 30, 2008


Long sticks of incense are pretty cheap.
posted by hooray at 2:43 PM on October 30, 2008


Ultrasonic mist maker
posted by Comrade_robot at 2:55 PM on October 30, 2008


Smoke bombs and incense are a.) not so easy on the eyes and sinuses in close proximity, and b.) hard to safely contain when in use. One more vote for dry ice - safe, nonirritant, and easy to acquire. I'd install it right in the mask somehow, rather than try to route it through a tube.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 2:56 PM on October 30, 2008


Do you want something short and flashy, or something sustained? The dry ice solution sounds like a good idea, but you might need to refill it a couple times, depending on how you plan to set it up and how much your design can hold. Smoke bombs would be cool for the brief style, but if you do it in an enclosed area, it'll make the place stink.

I've also heard you can just buy the smoke machine fluid and heat it to get a similar effect as from the machine. I heard about it as part of a prank where you make a person think she/he has car trouble by pouring some of the fluid in the tailpipe, which then evaporates and is pushed out by the exhaust. IIRC, it won't circulate any more than any other mist without the mechanism inside the smoke machine, though, so it might not seem like dramatic puffs of smoke so much as a guy slowly exhaling on a cold day. Also, I'm not sure how to heat it safely. The MSDS sheet I found for one brand says that it isn't particularly flammable, but I'd still be nervous about using something like a candle to heat it.
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:39 PM on October 30, 2008


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