View Full Version : Gemmy 5' animated pirate.

08-18-2012, 06:52 PM
Has anyone ever hacked one of these to work with Vixen? The controls for the mouth is motorized but the is a board in the bottom of the pirate. Can this be accessed by Vixen to control the mouth?

08-19-2012, 01:16 AM
Finally got it stripped down and converted to a zombie.

08-19-2012, 01:47 AM
Finally got it stripped down and converted to a zombie.

Yeah... and without pictures it's just a fish story... :shifty:

I have a "Madame Leota"-like witch ball thingy that is animated when it hears sound - not nearly as fancy as your pirate but I'd like to hack that one of these days too...

Scot Meyers
10-11-2012, 03:46 PM
Yes it can me hacked and wired into vixen. I have have a gemmy snow man and 2 santas and wire them up for computer controll using wall warts.
Hacking Gemmy 5.5’ Santa, Snowman, Homer or Grinch

Here is how it went for any of you who want to control Santa.
I have found that unlike Mr. McCormick’s how to on line, each Gemmy Santa’s wiring colors are different (probably due to different years or the cost of wire) You may need to test each wire pair for each moving part to know which wires do what. So get out your multimeter you will need it.

1st I took off all the screws in the bottom

2nd. I then took off all the screws from the Motherboard

3rd. I removed the motherboard from the Santa snowman. I cut off enough lead in case I want to re install it later or sell it so someone else. This included the aux port, sensor, and switch and power coupling.

Any way my Santa’s wiring did not match the description in the McCormick web page.

I took out my multimeter. Using the gemmy mother board to control each motor, I stripped back small pieces of each pair to test the vdc to make sure I get the correct wall wart for each motor.

Also I decided not to use Santa’s hip swing. (green/blue wire) If you want the hips to swing they are a 1 motion motor running at 12vdc.

I used a 12vdc wall wart(power brick) to feed the 12vdc to the white/black pair to run Santa’s mouth.
The red/brown wires feed Santa’s head. Santa’s head is reverse polarity so I went and picked up a 12vdc DPDT(double pole/double throw relay to work the head motion.

Before I go into the DPDT wire up I wanted to say that I decided to take out the entire mother board from Santa. You may not need to or want to do this. If you have a later model year as there may be an aux jack on your Santa. I have seen where Gemmys with audio jacks are not hacked but yet the audio feed from the lor board is fed into Santa thru the aux jack. However Note that when controlled by Aux jack the swinging hip motions do not move.

I decided not to use the mother boards but to use my LOR board with 2 12 vdc and 1 5vdc wall warts.

I picked up a bunch of wall warts for about $1 a piece at the local thrift store or flea market.

Ok with that all said. I disconnected the main wiring harness from the mother board. I then connected 1 12vdc wall wart to the white and black wires to open Santa’s mouth. His mouth is spring loaded so it automatically closes when no power is applied.

Next to make his head move I purchased a heavy duty 12vdc dpdt relay at radio shack you can also get them at all electronics.com.

I crosssed the normally open with the normally closed and then wired the wires to Santa’s head motion. I used a 12vdc at the coil and 5vdc at the common switch. I siliconed the ends to help avoid corrosion.

I hooked the wall warts up to LOR. Channel 1 was the 12vdc coil and channel 2 was the 5vdc. Whenever the 5vdc was applied his head would turn left but when not applied would revert to the right.

If you want to see pics send me an email to Holidaygeek@msn.com put gemmy santa hack in subject line. I will reply with the entire howto doc pics included .