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How to Make a Jack in the Box Toy

By Christobal Hughes ; Updated July 28, 2017
Jack-in-the-box toys are popular gifts for children.

A jack-in-the-box toy uses a crank to open a box, triggering a toy to pop out such as a clown, doll or monster. When the crank turns, music plays. A jack-in-the-box toy is targeted toward younger children or toddlers. It doesn't take a professional craftsman to make a jack-in-the-box, but some basic construction skills are needed.

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Things You Will Need

  • Hinged wooden box
  • Crank-operated music box
  • Latch
  • Spring
  • Cyanoacrylate

Purchase a wooden box with a hinge. The box can vary in size depending on the size of the jack-in-the-box being used. The toy must fit in the box securely with it closed and cannot touch any sides.

Drill a hole in one side of the box. Install a music crank box. Insert the crank through the drill hole.

Install a latch to the music box crank. Close the lid of the box and crank the music box. Test the timing of when the box opens. The box will open at the end of the song. Adjust the latch if the timing is off. Check that the arm of the latch is attached to the music box crank.

Use a type of cyanoacrylate to glue the spring to the bottom of the box. Attach the jack-in-the-box to the spring. Spread cyanoacrylate on the bottom of the box and side of the spring being attached. Place the spring on the glue and keep it secured until it dries. Close the lid.

Paint the outside of the box and decorate it with custom designs.

Crank the box, listen to the music and watch the jack-in-the-box pop out.

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About the Author

Christobal Hughes graduated from Marietta College with a Bachelor of Arts in finance and a minor in advertising and public relations. Hughes specializes in finance, accounting, fitness, video games and computer technology.

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