View Full Version : Making outdoor hallways out of pallets
12-04-2007, 05:38 PM
I am going to be in charge of a charity haunt next year. We are making the hallways out of pallets. Does anyone know of any good sites that explains using pallets with haunting or any haunted houses that have pix of pallet hallways? thanks
12-04-2007, 07:19 PM
Pallet walls have been discussed several times on the main Hauntworld board.
Remember they are heavy, if you stack them and the wind blew them over on somebody...........
Pallets run the gamut. They may be made from wood so hard that you will have to drill a hole before it will accept a nail or a screw, the wood also can be very spilntery, bad for customers possibly running bare hands over it in a dark maze.
I would use a slege hammer and pound 2 by 4's into the earth, in the center of the pallet wall space to hold them up from both directions at the same time, then run a 2by4 across the top , screwed to the upright 2by 4 to tie everything together to give it as much strength as possible, customers may also be very scared or roudy and slam into your walls with all of their bodilly force.
Plan ahead and place thicker , stronger pallets across from your scare stations to absorb the impact.
If your walls are to be left up for long periods of time, I would place a couple of solid cement bricks (small ones, not blocks) under the edge of the pallet to actually keep the wood from making ground contact, resulting in premature rotting away.
This also helps if you might be making your path through the walls more all-weather with gravel or wood chips, making drainage under the wall because it it brick-elevated.
12-04-2007, 08:02 PM
Also remember that most of them are only four feet or so high. If you have to double them up, they will be even heavier and not as sturdy as if you started with an eight-foor panel to begin with.
Your best bet may be to try to get some eight-foot 2X4s donated, or even some studs, and use break the pallets down for parts to build regular panels.
01-06-2008, 09:21 PM
They also don't take to pain or fire retardent too well. A better bet to give the look is labor intensive, but bnuild a framework and use light picket stakes to represent the pallete pieces. Those are easier to paint and not splintery.
Jim": me likey the gravel idea for drainage by the walls. Was going to simply have them elevated a couple of inches above the ground and have a small ridge of the dirt path to hide the crack, but that works out as well.
01-11-2008, 04:42 AM
Check out my home haunt...myspace.com/terror2596 Or main site... www.angelfire.com/tn/tristanshaunt
-Terror AT 2596-
01-11-2008, 02:15 PM
Here are some pics of my haunt. The inner walls are built out of pallets. They don't look sturdy but trust me they were strong. http://s204.photobucket.com/albums/bb101/haverghastasylum/
01-18-2008, 01:54 PM
I have used pallets in my haunts before, but not for anything like walls. I have used them to make paths and also to build a house facade. If at all possible, you should avoid the use a pallets - not just because of the things previously mentioned - but also because they are extremely difficult to do anything with other that when they are in their original pallet form.
The first year we used pallets, we tried to take them apart using a crowbar. Not only was this extremely exhausting to do, but most of the slats broke.
Then we used a reciprocating saw to cut each nail holding the slats together, but this is also time consuming and will mess up a ton of blades.
Stick with luan and 2x3's for an exceptional alternative!
01-18-2008, 02:19 PM
I guess if you have a lot of money go for the laun board idea. I however am just doing something for fun and pallets is all I had to work with. I understand pallets are not he best but it is all I had. As long as my walls are srtong they are good enough for me.
01-22-2008, 03:12 PM
can someone help me and tell me how to get the walls to stand up and not just fall??????????????? I need to start soon, I am tired of doing black plastic like always, and i'm asking like everybody around here. Lol
01-23-2008, 04:23 AM
If you haven't found anything out yet...I's like to offer these suggestions.
Two ways I have completed completed walls for a maze and even my main haunt were by using the bi-fold doors. These I obtained from our local habitat for humanity restore for the price of only $ 5.00 each. They do not have to be put together- you only have to prime and paint them to keep them weather proof .
Or you could leave them natural and let them weather to look old.
Using a scrap piece of wood... you screw the sections together and brace it at the top to hold sections together. The restore may let you have them for free if you are a non-profit...but a 5 bucks each...way cheaper then buying the ply and 2x4's needed for the standard haunt wall.
2nd is the use of metal t-posts that you pound in the ground.Get at least 8 footers and pound in 1 foot. slide the pallet over the t-post- align the next pallet and then pound in the t-post. join them together again using the scrap wood and screwing the pieces together to hold. I suggest you do not double the pallets .
Instead perhaps using landscape fabric wire it to the t-posts very top...its dark and strong and won't weather for many years.
If you need further explanation- just let me know.
01-23-2008, 02:02 PM
Great ideas guys.
02-04-2008, 09:46 AM
I did the pallet thing 2 years ago, it was hard to work with because of the weight. I would not do it again.
02-06-2008, 11:32 PM
Lose some weight and the work will be easier, seem easier too, less sweating, more energy.
I know, I've been there , done that.
03-02-2008, 11:57 PM
Actually Jim... I make my living from weight loss and fitness...go figure.
03-03-2008, 12:26 AM
IRONY trifecta is now in play.
05-19-2008, 09:23 AM
I too used pallet last year over 500 got them free and from a beer dist. com..I stack them two high and srcew them together than ran 2x4 on top across them very strong then I wrap them in plastic from top to bottom..plastic not very good when it rain and windy last 2 years. the pallet was way to much work they did a very good job but will be building some walls this years...I spend 1500.00 on wood and plastic just to throw away afterwards...
07-08-2008, 08:24 AM
I made an almost permanent structure using palettes for a short maze a few years ago. I purchased 10' 2x4's and bags of concrete. I dug a 2 ft. hole, "planted" the 10ft. 2x4 in it leaving 8 ft. above ground and filled up the hole w/ about 1/2 bag of concrete. I planted these poles every 8 ft. of length (so two palettes would fit side-by-side). I made the distance between the walls 4 ft. although I think if I did it again I'd make them a bit farther apart so actors and customers can fit in there easier.
When it came time to construct the maze I slid 2 palettes on top of each other, over the poles (not easy, you need a helper). As these palettes were 4'x4' and I spread the poles 8' apart, I joined the palettes in the center by backing them with a thin slat of wood and securing them to the ground (to keep them from swinging like a door) w/ lengths of metal rebar hammered into the ground where the two palettes meet. I bent some bendable metal bars around the rebar and then screwed the metal bars to the palettes.
I screwed 2x4's across the top of the structure every 4 ft. to secure everything. This thing would NOT fall down. I stapled black landscaping fabric over top of the whole thing and then decorated it w/ tattered fabric and cheesecloth. My wife said I should have just built a house!
It was a "pantload" of work and got a bit more expensive than I thought it would (big surprise huh). The majority of the expense was in 10ft. 2x4's and bags of concrete. You'll need 4 2x4's, 2 bags of concrete and 4 palettes for each 8ft. of maze.
When it came time for teardown I just unscrewed averything, pulled the palettes off of the posts, knocked the posts over (with my truck), puled them out of the gound and smashed the concrete off of them w/ a sledge hammer.
The wood was 90% recoverable...ready for my next insane venture! MUHAHAHAHAAAAA!
Palettes are readily available in large numbers but are an absolute BITCH to work with. The wood is rock-hard, heavy and any attempt to alter them is rewarded by splintered slats and bent rusty nails.
If you're looking for someone to post quick-n-easy palette construction tips, I don't think you'll find them. Palettes are super heavy and making 8 ft. walls w/ them without a sound, secure construction framework to support them will end with somebody getting squished by falling wood.
I don't have any pictures (cause I'm an asshole) so let me know if any of this needs clarification. I can render up some quick diagrams.
07-08-2008, 06:04 PM
Some really good points there. Pallets were really designed with only one purpose in mind and using them for something else is very difficult. They are heavier and heavier duty than they need to be and are too small, requiring lots of bracing.
I've used them for lots of different things over the years and if I had to build a haunt from them I think I would just put up stacks and stacks of them the way they are designed to be used in rows and be done with it. It would take a lot of them and would use up a lot of room (eight extra feet in width) but standing them up on their sides and bracing them is a real pain.
07-09-2008, 12:18 AM
We have also used tones of them in our hanuted barn, for walls, orcourse fences in the outdoor cemetary (the look better every year due to the weathering). if you brace them good, you will be o.k. Yes they are heavey, but in most cases are free. When we use them inside for walls, we cover them with thin paneling. You would be suprised what you can get at a Lowe's or Hoe Depot if you ask for the damaged or cull wood. My cousin, who owns the haunted barn, also works for Lowes, he gets wood for pennies on the dollar, but you have to be in the right place at the right time or it's gone. Also ask for oops paint, he gets a lot of off red that works for blood.
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