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Russell H.
Russell H., Service Tech
Category: Consumer Electronics
Satisfied Customers: 10779
Experience:  8+ years of professional experience
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We have a Gemmy "Halloween Fortune Witch" we purchased from

Customer Question

We have a Gemmy "Halloween Fortune Witch" we purchased from Costco several years ago. She holds a crystal ball with a skull inside. They sing "You put a Spell on Me" and say some other things. Only one of the witch's eyes lights up now and her mouth doesn't move as well. The skull lights up as do the lights inside the ball but it no longer moves inside the ball. The witch doesn't "dance" anymore either. We looked for a manual but no luck there. How can we fix her? We do a big Halloween thing for the kids in the neighborhood and she is a favorite! Please help!
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Consumer Electronics
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

Hi, thank you for contacting JustAnswer.com. My name is Russell. I will do my best to provide the right answer to your question.

The case you are asking about is a difficult one... precisely because there is likely to be no manual whatsoever (that would help with repair) available anywhere.

In fact I cannot even (at this point) determine what exact model you have. It doesn't seem to be sold on eBay, for instance... the nearest I seem to have found, is this (just the skull in the crystal ball):

http://thumbs2.ebaystatic.com/d/l225/m/mra8A_UYdZtfCQnsWR0qHiQ.jpg

If that is a match to the skull-in-the-crystal-ball in your Gemmy figure, please let me know.

I am guessing that your model is one of the kind that is large or near-life-size.

Perhaps this is the model you have:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/QUITE-RARE-5-FT-TALL-ANIMATED-FORTUNE-WITCH-by-GEMMY-IN-ORIGINAL-PACKAGING-/321900518939

If so, then the problem yours is having, could be one of several things.

1. the wiring may have been delicate, and some wire joints may have been bent and broken by being bent.

2. even more likely, or at any rate quite as possible, is that the motor(s) that drive the motions may have failed, and be in need of replacing.

3. perhaps, just perhaps, dust has gotten into linkages and/or gear trains, and 'frozen up' the action of the motors that no longer move the parts.

To address these three possible causes, you will need to have someone with a delicate touch and some experience with electric devices, disassemble the figure skillfully enough to not break its outer case etc., and examine the workings for those three problems.

(Additionally, though (1) above may apply to the witches' eye not lighting up, it could simply be that a bulb has burned out. That is, if the 'bulb' is not actually an LED light... and they seldom burn out.)

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Russell. I am sorly I have not gotten back to you. I have been working ungodly hours and take care of my 96 yr old mom as well. I really do want more info about this and I am embarrassed to say I really had no idea how expensive this would end up being. It is money I really can't afford to spend. Since I'm apparently committed, I'd like to get my money's worth. I understand how fragile the wiring is. I can see how tiny the connections are as well. I would like to find out the best way to go about taking "her" apart so as not to really destroy things. I have found similar products. I am thinking that maybe some of the movements are controlled by o-ring type belts on pulley assemblies. I just need to have some idea how to open "her" up.The example of the witch holding the skull is I deed our witch by the way.
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

You are not 'committed', I don't think. If you wish to abandon and/or cancel this question/case at JustAnswer.com, that's fine as far as I know.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hey Russell....I'm sorry to stretch this out.....been working impossible hours....maybe I can call you after work...what are your hours?
Expert:  Russell H. replied 1 year ago.

JustAnswer.com regulations do not allow you to call me. And I regret that I cannot offer Live Phone Call service at this time.

No need to worry if you haven't got time to pursue this case yet. Put off getting back to it as long as you need to, and get back to it at your complete convenience.