Creepy Crawlers DIY

 Fox Bug Goop

Bedazzled has the TV commercial for the original Creepy Crawlers kit from 1965. I posted this in 2005, but it's worth reporting, because it is getting close to Christmas and it was my all-time favorite toy.

To make a Creepy Crawler, you squeezed a heat-setting liquid plastic, called Plastigoop, into a metal mold of insects and other vermin. Then you put the mold into an electrically heated unit called a Thingmaker. When the Plastigoop hardened, you pulled the bugs out of the mold and marveled at them.

But don't bother with the modern version of the Creepy Crawlers set. The manufacturer had to make a kid-safe version, and as a result, the kit is a piece of junk. Besides, the new Plastigoop is probably non-toxic, but it has a poisonous and evil smell.

Interestingly, there are DIY Plastigoop / Creepy Crawler people out there keeping the Creepy Spirit alive. A woman named Patty has homebrewed her own goop (Patti-goop!) and sells it on eBay so you can use it with a vintage Thingmaker. I have no idea what it smells like.

And a fellow who goes by "Dr. Goop" specializes in modern formulations of thermo-set goops for Thingmaker toys. On his site, you can find examples of home made Creepy Crawler molds, too.

(Photo above from the All About Plastigoop! page) Link to TV commercial (Thanks, Andrew!)

Reader comment:

Jon says:

Hello! Thanks for posting the bit on DIY Creepy Crawlers. The thingmaker was probably my favorite christmas present of all time. Since I'm only 22 I had to suffer through the irritating "safety" feature (the tempreture controlled door blocking access to the mold.) This bothered me to no end, I couldn't wait an extra 10 minutes to see how awesome my bugs came out! After spending a few days coming close to making myself pass out by blowing on the temperature gage, I got fed up and took the contraption apart to remove the safety door. The Creepy Crawlers Thingmaker was the first consumer product I improved through hacking. I still remember that feeling of empowerment, like I had beat the system by taking a toy's design into my own hands. I haven't thought about that in a long time, thanks for helping me remember.