Double Stuffing & Balloon Molar

by Ralph Dewey

The Balloon HQ challenge this month is to make a design using the double-stuff technique and also by removing some of the outer layer of balloon by popping it off to create interesting effects.

Double-Stuffing a Dog

To double-stuff two #260 balloons, I use a coat hanger wire with the ends smoothed by grinding and a wire wheel. The benefit of double-stuffing is the variety of colors that you can create. But the disadvantage is how difficult it is to twist two layers of balloons. And sometimes the balloons tend to stick together causing discoloration or splotches of color.


Popping Off the Balloon

One of the ways to pop off an outer balloon is by pinching it. For example, stuff a white 5″ round balloon inside of a black 5″ round balloon. Inflate the outer balloon a little and then inflate the inner balloon to about 90% capacity. Tie off both nozzles. Because there is a small space between the inner and outer balloons, it is possible to pinch the outer balloon with your fingernails. This pops the outer layer and reveals the inner balloon. However, if it is done as part of a magic effect the audience can easily figure out that you merely pinched the balloon to make it change color.

Rip-Off Method

I’ve developed another method for doing the same thing and without any air or space between the two balloons. It only requires a strip of very sticky cellophane tape. Take a 4″ length of tape and fold it in the center to form a 1/2″ tab in the center. Stick the tape on the balloon. Firmly grasp the tab with one hand and the knots with your other hand. Then rip the tape away from the balloon as shown. The tape ruptures the outer layer of balloon. And because the sticky side of the tape is attached to the outer balloon, it can’t stick to and rip the inner balloon. (By the way, in the photo I have masking tape on the balloon so that you can see it more clearly.)

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The rip-off method can be used on a double stuffed #260 balloon. Give it a try to create some interesting colors and effects.

Balloon Dog

I’ve double stuffed two different colors of #260 pencil balloons to make a basic dog. See how it looks when the outer layer of balloon is removed.


Balloon Molar

You can make a quick molar type tooth from the new all white #321 balloons which don’t have a black tip. Inflate two #321 balloons to about 10 inches and tie off the nozzle. Squeeze each balloon so that the air goes as far toward the nipple end and you can get it. Twist off a 3″ bubble on the nozzle ends and twist both balloons together. Then twist off 6″ on both nipple ends and twist them together. Be sure that the nipple ends are filled with air.

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Make another set of white #321 balloons just like the first two. Twist all four 3″ bubbles together and all four nipple end bubbles together. Carefully deflate each of the 3″ bubbles by stretching and rolling their knots. Snip them near the knot. That allows the bubbles to slowly deflate. Then tie the balloons together. Stretch each of the nozzle ends down between the four balloons to hide them. Curve the nipple ends to look like the roots of the tooth to complete it.

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