Your doorbell works hard day in and day out letting you know when somebody wants you to come to the door, but it probably doesn’t see as much action all year long as it does on Halloween night. Just in time for the scariest night of the year I’m going to show you how to transform your boring old doorbell button into a creepy disgusting eyeball that must be poked and squished by unsuspecting victims if they have any hope of summoning you to give them candy.
It’s a fairly simple build and you don’t need that many tools. It will work with pretty much any eyeball you can find (as long as it is squishy). I’m not going to spend a bunch of time making the bezel super detailed and fancy because the extra detail would be lost in my shadowy entryway (that’s code for “I’m lazy”). Feel free to get as fancy as you like with yours.
What You Need
- disgusting gooey squishy eyeball
- a doorbell button (or some other momentary pushbutton)
- a piece of plywood (5/8″ thick or thereabouts)
- some Super Glue
- some screws
- a dril and drill bits
- a jigsaw
- a piece of paper
- a pen
- a pair of scissors
A note about the eyballs; the ones I found are the consistency of those Wacky Wall Crawler things and they feel absolutely disgusting. They came from a place called Halloween Express. Here’s what the package looked like:
Update 9/2012: It appears Halloween Express no longer carries these. I poked around on Amazon and found a few that might work, but you may have to adjust the design a bit to accommodate different size eyeballs. Note, I haven’t personally tried any of these, so I can’t confirm their squishiness:
|Jumbo Sticky Eyeball|
|Icky Sticky Eyeballs|
|Glow in the Dark Sticky Eyes|
|Neon Sticky Eyeballs|
Take your piece of paper and fold it into quarters. Use the pen to draw 1/4 of the shape you want your doorbell bezel to end up being. Make sure the center of your design is on the same corner of the paper as the center of the folds.
Cut out your design.
You now have a perfectly symmetrical template for your doorbell bezel. Place the template onto the piece of plywood and trace around it.
Cut bezel out with a jigsaw.
Sand all the rough edges off.
Paint the template.
Now here is where things start to get a bit tricky. Get a spade bit or hole saw that is about the diameter of your eyeball. I’m using a hole saw because I don’t have any spade bits that big. We only want to drill 3/4 of the way through your plywood, so put a piece of tape on the bit to use as a depth gauge.
Start drilling a hole in the center of your bezel (you can use the fold lines on your paper template if you need an easy way to find the center). Stop when you reach your tape.
Pull the bit out. If you used a hole saw the middle stuff may or may not be stuck in the middle of the bit. If not, use a screwdriver, or chisel to remove it, or drill it out with a smaller spade bit. Remember, this hole is only supposed to go 3/4 of the way through the wood.
Drill a smaller hole through the remaining 1/4 of your plywood of the size required to mount your button. I decided to use some fancy panel mount button I found at a surplus place instead of a doorbell button since it takes much less force to activate it and I didn’t want people having to mangle my eyeball to get it to ring. The downside of using this button is that it needs a square hole. I hate square holes.
Install the button.
Squirt a ring of Super Glue around the wall of the eyeball hole (eye socket?). Be VERY CAREFUL not to use so much that you glue your button together into a worthless lump of plastic. It can happen. Trust me on this.
Place the eyeball into the hole.
You may want to squish it a bit for a few minutes so that it presses up against the edges of the hole and makes better contact with the glue.
It’s starting to look gross already! Excellent…
By now you’re probably wondering what happened to one edge of my doorbell bezel. It used to be highly artistic and fancy, but now it’s been cut flat. Measure twice. Enough said.
Let the glue dry for a few hours. When it’s done, try pressing the button through the eyeball to make sure that it still depresses freely and didn’t get glued together.
Remove your old doorbell button and unhook the wires. Connect the wires to your new and improved button.
Stuff the extra wire into the hole and mount the bezel with a couple screws. The part of the button that is protruding from the back of the bezel should fit nicely into your existing button hole. If there isn’t one now would be a good time to make one. Every house needs a button hole.
Stand back and admire your work. Looks pretty gross, huh? Now try pressing it. Poke it. Squish it. You’ll hardly notice the sound of the doorbell ringing somewhere in your house because you’ll be so pleasently disgusted by what you just did. By now your kids, parents, friends or whoever else lives in your house will have opened the door to see what idiot keeps ringing the doorbell. Have them test out your creation. Probably about half of them won’t even want to touch it.
You are now ready for the onslaught of trick-or-treaters!
Here are some things I may try next year. I thought I’d include them in case you wanted to try them this year:
- Make it light up
- Recess more so it’s less likely to get ripped off
- Replace doorbell sound with a scream or something scary