3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_bannerIs that a coat rack in the corner, or is there a murderous superhuman in a hockey mask about ready to gut you? Is that the flicker of a candle flame, or a ghost crossing over to our world? Whether you’re creating a haunted house, decorating for a party, trying to spook trick or treaters or just an old school goth, nothing sets a scary scene faster than dramatic lighting. There is just something about darkness that has always made humans uneasy, especially when strategic lighting casts some creative shadows.

Since I’m spending the month of October (here and here) helping you find the best 3D printable things that will make your Halloween great, I decided that I couldn’t let a week go by without assembling a list of the best spooky lighting effects. Whether you use these models to set the Halloween mood or to just creep your guests out is up to you, but I have some great holiday lighting options for just about any use. As many of you longtime readers may know, I have an unhealthy obsession with 3D printable lighting, so really you should have seen this week’s column coming. Here are Ten 3D Printable Halloween Lighting Things:


GLOWING SKULL LANTERN3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_skull_lantern_1

Skull Lantern by MakerBot

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

This creepy glowing skull lantern is going to look great either hanging around the house, or as a fun light to carry around the neighborhood and lighting the way for trick or treaters. The lantern consists of a “metal” frame surrounding a glowing skull that acts as the light source. There are printing and assembly instructions online, and the whole thing seems to snap together pretty easily.

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You can 3D print the actual lantern frame using a metallic filament, or just use standard PLA and give it a metallic paint job. And just 3D print the skull in a glow in the dark filament, or print it with translucent filament and put an LED light inside of it, and you’re guaranteed to give a few frights.


SPOOKY GHOST TEA LIGHTS3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_ghost_tealight_1

Ghost (Hollowed for Tea Light) by vaughabr

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

One of the best things about online 3D printing communities like Thingiverse and MyMiniFactory is the users who take existing models and adapt them into entirely new models with completely different uses. These cute little ghost tea light covers were remixed from this tiny 3D printable ghost and hollowed out so they will cast a spooky glow.

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These little guys should be printed in either a white or translucent filament material, and if you use some black paint or a sharpie you can just fill in the eyes and mouth. They can be put on a string of lights hung around the house, or hung in the bushes outside to add some festive spooks to the neighborhood. You can even stick them on those flickering flameless tea lights and place them in all the nooks and crannies around your home.


SPIDER WEB LED LIGHT3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_spiderweb_1

Spider’s Web LED Candle holder by MakeALot

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

You can cast an eerie glow in any corner of the house with this creepy tea candle holder. It is printed with a spider web pattern that casts webs up on the walls around it, and the model even includes a few 3D printable spiders to really make those shadows scary enough to make your skin crawl.

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Make sure that you don’t use a real burning candle because it might melt the holder and start a fire, but thankfully those LED candles will work perfectly. You can use any color filament for the candle holder frame and the spiders, but the designer suggests using a clear filament like TGlase for the see through portion of the model. If your 3D printable can’t use an advanced material like that then a standard clear filament will work just fine.


JACK-O-LANTERN TEA LIGHTS3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_jackolantern_mini_1

Jack O’ Lantern by 3dmakerspace

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

These little pumpkins have been designed to look like tiny jack-o-lanterns and were designed to either fit on top of those blinking tea lights, or you can put them on a string of lights and hang them around the house.

3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_jackolantern_mini_2

There are three different jack-o-lantern designs, and each one has a small slot for a stem that can be 3D printed in a different color filament. Obviously this model was made to be 3D printable in a bright Halloween orange, and you can use either a translucent orange or an opaque orange, both will cast a festive glow.


NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS JACK SKELLINGTON LAMP3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_jack_1

Jack Skellington with Glowing Pumpkins by 3DCustomizationCo

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

You know how department stores are already bringing out the Christmas decorations? Well you can do the same without ruining the Halloween mood with this cool Jack Skellington bust and glowing pumpkin lights. Everyone’s favorite spooky Santa Claus surrogate is going to look great in your house year round, but he’s also a great decoration to bring out for Halloween and leave up through Christmas without being called lazy.

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Obviously this model is going to require some painting in order to look complete, but this is an easy paint job without anything too complicated. In fact you can even 3D print the model in white or black filament and then just carefully paint on the other details.


HALLOWEEN MASON JAR LANTERN3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_masonjar_1

Halloween Mason Jar Lantern by ADVANCED3DCREATIONS

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

If the skull lantern that I wrote about above is too on the nose for you, but you still wanted a lantern to carry around that had a Halloween design then this great mason jar lantern is perfect for you. The designer even included several different lantern pane designs to set whatever mood that you want.

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This simple box lantern will cast an eerie glow, and it was designed to hold a mason jar inside of it that will in turn hold the flameless LED candle. You can use any material to 3D print this lantern, and either leave it as printed or give it a nice paint job. It’s super easy to make it look like an old metal lantern by giving in a nice coat of black paint and then dry brushing on a metallic gray color. You can even add some fake spider webs to it to really sell it.


CREEPY GLOWING ANIMATRONIC ROBOT HEAD3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_robothead_1

Animated Humanoid Robot Head by hyperplanemike

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

Not all Halloween decorations need to be ghosts, pumpkins or skulls, sometimes all you need is something that just looks creepy and unsettling. Well, this light-up animatronic robot head is exactly what I would call creepy and unsettling. That glowing face and eyes is going to look extremely spooky and scary looking out a window at the street, or hidden in an out of the way corner of your house.

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This is actually a pretty great robotics project and the designer includes links to full directions, Arduino code and supplies, but it can also be made without the electronics. Just 3D print all of the parts and include some inexpensive LED lighting inside of it and you’re going to have a scary, featureless glowing robot face that is ready to unsettle your guests. Here is some video of the creepy robot face in action:


SPOOKY CHANDELIER3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_chandelier_1

The Chandelier of Fear by MakerBot

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

The Chandelier of Fear is a fun model uploaded by MakerBot to add some Halloween flair to any home or office. This cool chandelier looks like it’s vintage, or at least like it came right out of Disney’s Haunted Mansion. It even includes 3D printed candles with dripping wax and some chains.

3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_chandelier_2

This is an advanced 3D printing project, but it looks like it is more time consuming than actually difficult. MakerBot has also unloaded complete printing and assembly instructions, so as long as you follow them closely this should be a relatively painless project. While MakerBot left the model unpainted, I would suggest giving it a nice paint job to make it look less like plastic and more like real metal. And of course some fake cobwebs are going to give this tons of character.


VORONOI-STYLE SKULL LAMP3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_skull_voronoi_1

Skull lamps – Voronoi Style by shiuan

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

You can really cast some spooky shadows with this great looking voronoi skull, that was hollowed out enough to fit a small LED light inside. There should even be room for a small flameless LED candle if you want to make it easy for yourself. Because the voronoi pattern has big gaps in it, this is really going to cast some fantastic shadows, and it’s going to look really different based on how bright the light source is. The flicker from the flameless candle will also look really cool inside one of these.

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It really doesn’t matter what color filament that you use for this print, it’s all pretty much going to look black in the darkness. Although a bone white color filament will give off the illusion that this was carved from a real skull, which will add some extra creep actor to it. Again, remember that this is plastic and shouldn’t be used with a light that gives off a lot of heat, so LED only.


MOTORIZED GHOST LIGHT3dp_ten3dpthings_halloweenlights_motorized_ghost_1

Motorized Halloween Ghost Nightlight by gzumwalt

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

Not all Halloween lighting effects need to be frightening, sometimes they can be cute, and even educational. This project is perfect for a maker just learning about 3D printing and basic electronics. This project includes a 3D printable motorized base that spins around this small ghost, or a pumpkin if you prefer.

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The designer included a set of highly detailed printing and assembly instructions, and included a list of all the supplied that you’ll need to make everything work. Here is some video of the Ghost Light in action:


That’s it for this week, I’ll see you next week with a list of quick and easy last minute 3D printable Halloween costumes. If you’re decorating your house with 3D printed Halloween props this year then I would love to see what you’re currently printing. You can email me or reach out on Twitter @SJGrunewald and say hi.

If you 3D print anything from any of my Ten 3D Printable Things columns Tweet it with the hashtag #Ten3DPThings and I may include it in one of my future columns. And if you really impress me I may have some filament samples to give away. So show me what you’ve got, folks!

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