Custom Gobos

DHSLXOP

Active Member
Joined
Dec 25, 2006
Location
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Hi everyone

I'm TD for an upcoming show at my high school and the director decided that she wants a gobo to be made of the show's logo to be on the main curtain while the house is entering.

I have found the rosco custom gobo page with all the directions but was wondering if someone could give me some better instructions than what they give:

1) They say email to the local dealer - who would be my local dealer? (I'm in Florida)
2) We are using a Source Four 575 Watt fixture - would a steel gobo be what we need?
3) What is the approximate cost for a custom gobo?
4) In general, once I have compiled all of my information, who do I send this all to?

Thanks so much for your help!
 

ScaredOfHeightsLD

Active Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2005
Location
Los Angeles
Hi everyone
I'm TD for an upcoming show at my high school and the director decided that she wants a gobo to be made of the show's logo to be on the main curtain while the house is entering.
I have found the rosco custom gobo page with all the directions but was wondering if someone could give me some better instructions than what they give:
1) They say email to the local dealer - who would be my local dealer? (I'm in Florida)
http://www.rosco.com/us/retail/index.asp that will help you find a rosco dealer. But don't discredit other manufacturers out there. I have had very positive experiences with Apollo custom gobos as well as some other companies out there. This company in particular has been very good in the past. They make their gobos out of a much thicker steel which tends to last longer. They charge about 50-60 dollars a piece and you get three cuts of each gobo. Shipping is usually very fast and reasonable.
2) We are using a Source Four 575 Watt fixture - would a steel gobo be what we need?
If you are just doing a show logo in black/white this should be perfect. Just make sure you have the correct lens. If your show logo has colors which you would like projected as well, you could look at glass gobos or the Rosco Image Pro If you do go with steel, keep in mind that you need to leave connections in the image for letters like O. SOmetimes the company will take care of this. But the artwork needs to be "Gobo Ready" Also, think about what you want to be lit and what you want to be dark. Make sure this is clear on the artwork.
3) What is the approximate cost for a custom gobo?
I find they can run anywhere from 50 dollars and up for a custom steel gobo.
4) In general, once I have compiled all of my information, who do I send this all to?
Your artwork should meet the specs asked for by whichever company you are having produce the gobo and then it either goes directly to them or to your dealer. Your dealer will have better information in regards to this.
Thanks so much for your help!
Let me know if you have any more questions. Good Luck!
 
Last edited:

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2007
Location
Las Vegas, NV, USA
...
1) They say email to the local dealer - who would be my local dealer? (I'm in Florida)
2) We are using a Source Four 575 Watt fixture - would a steel gobo be what we need?
3) What is the approximate cost for a custom gobo?
4) In general, once I have compiled all of my information, who do I send this all to?

Thanks so much for your help!
1) Looks to be about 30 dealers in Florida.
2) Steel would be the least expensive. May need to go to glass if the design is intricate or multi-color
3) Between $50-$150 for steel; higher for glass.
4) Here's where I hijack you and suggest allowing Apollo to serve your needs. Link to Apollo's Ask the Expert. Might also want to read about their artwork submissions criteria. Also have you looked through the extensive catalogs of stock gobos from Apollo, DHA, Goboman.com, and Goboexpress.com? It's possible the title from your show has already been made, and a copy could be had for $12-15. Good luck. Be sure to get a holder and a donut also if you don't have those.
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2007
Location
Las Vegas, NV, USA
Scaredofheights do you think you could change the colour of your post? On a standard CRT display I find I can't read anything you wrote in the yellow.

And I would be interested to read your opinions on this topic.
It's the 90s, get an LCD screen for goodness sake. Seriously, is it just the bright yellow or can you not read the orangish yellow links, either? Try this, hit reply, then scroll down to previous posts. For me, all of ScaredOfHeightsLD yellow turned red.

I think it's time for some adjustment/calibration on your part. Go to Apollo Gel's site. Can you see all the colors, esp. the yellows?

(kelite, shouldn't I be able to display the list sorted by number? When I try to change "More Display Options" I get a 404 error. Stop stuffing those gel kits and work on your website!)

DHSLXOP, sorry the link to Rosco dealers above returns CT dealers. I had FL on the screen. Use this link, and scroll to FL, or enter your zip code.
 

cutlunch

Active Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Location
Auckland, New Zealand
It's the 90s, get an LCD screen for goodness sake. Seriously, is it just the bright yellow or can you not read the orangish yellow links, either? Try this, hit reply, then scroll down to previous posts. For me, all of ScaredOfHeightsLD yellow turned red.
I think it's time for some adjustment/calibration on your part. Go to Apollo Gel's site. Can you see all the colors, esp. the yellows?
I am glad that ScaredofheightsLD has changed the colour scheme to red which is a lot easier to read. That is why when you scroll down in the reply option you see his text in red.

Yes Derek I am not colour blind and can see the yellow Apollo swatches. It was the yellow on a gray / blue background with a small font that made it hard to read.

To read posts on Control Booth you shouldn't need to keep resetting your colour schemes.

Thanks again ScaredofheightsLD for changing the colour because I found your post very informative.
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2007
Location
Las Vegas, NV, USA
...To read posts on Control Booth you shouldn't need to keep resetting your colour schemes...
Totally agree, and didn't mean to offend, if I did.

Back to topic, have we discussed the methods of "rolling your own" custom gobos here on CB before? It's an exercise, involves muriatic acid, and the results were disappointing when I tried it, years ago.
 

DarSax

Active Member
Joined
May 3, 2006
Location
Bethesda MD
Two quick things; one's going to be something you'd want to hear, the second, something you wouldn't.

Since its a high school show, meaning probably not too many performances and not too much use of the gobo, you could probably create your own out of a pie tin, an exacto (or similar) knife, and some time. You can get a pretty good looking gobo out of those simple ingredients, and chances are the audience wouldn't know the difference.

The second thing is the use of the logo. I'm not positive, but I think my high school might have been hit when we used the (copyrighted) logo of [some hit show] as a gobo sometime in the past. I'm not exactly sure if this occurred (am I already senile?) but its something you should be aware of.
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2007
Location
Las Vegas, NV, USA
Two quick things; one's going to be something you'd want to hear, the second, something you wouldn't.

Since its a high school show, meaning probably not too many performances and not too much use of the gobo, you could probably create your own out of a pie tin, an exacto (or similar) knife, and some time. You can get a pretty good looking gobo out of those simple ingredients, and chances are the audience wouldn't know the difference.

The second thing is the use of the logo. I'm not positive, but I think my high school might have been hit when we used the (copyrighted) logo of [some hit show] as a gobo sometime in the past. I'm not exactly sure if this occurred (am I already senile?) but its something you should be aware of.
Good advice on both points there. As a suggestion for the first, try to find disposable aluminum baking sheets (cookie sheets) as they have more flat surface area than pie tins.

As to "not much use of the gobo" if it is for a curtain warmer it could be on for as long as 30 minutes, so take some care in the fabrication. I was amused the first time I came to Vegas and every show had a gobo of the Hotel's logo on the main during walk-in.

And I'm reminded of using a 360Q-6x16 with a 1200W FEL AND a "BASH-booster" (a buck-boost transformer) to project a gobo on a main for a corporate show.
 

cutlunch

Active Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Location
Auckland, New Zealand
I don't know if you have a local supplier of Selecon Pacific lights. You might be able to rent a suitable one from them and do your Gobo on overhead transperency. You can use inkjet or laser printers.

I have included the link to their site about making gobos.

http://www.seleconlight.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=159&Itemid=372

You might be able to rent the light for the cost of a factory made gobo which you can't use again.

You could also talk to the supplier and see if they will loan you a suitable Pacific so that the drama teachers / admin can what they are like. All suppliers are keen on setting up future sales.
 

David Ashton

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2007
Location
perth W Australia
If one of the parents or friends is a engraver, then making a gobo is a simple exercise just give them the dimensions of the gobo and a picture.The school may have an engraver who will do the job for you.
 

DHSLXOP

Active Member
Joined
Dec 25, 2006
Location
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Thanks to everyone who has posted so far. About the image - this logo was made for the purpose of getting a gobo so I know there won't be any copyright problems with it. Also, because it needs to be lit from our catwalk, lighting it with a transpearacy is kinda difficult.

Right now (assuming I go with Rosco) I'm really confused who i send the information to - Rosco themselves or to a dealer. If anyone has used Rosco (and I think the director would much rather use them than any other company) for custom gobos before, who do we send it to?

Oh, and we're doing Barry Manillow's Copacabana (not done THAT often) so I don't think there would be very many gobos with the logo
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 21, 2007
Location
Las Vegas, NV, USA
You can deal direct with Rosco, but they will have you place the order and write the check, to the local dealer of your choice. You HAVE established a relationship with your favorite local dealer, right?

In my experience, Apollo has offered faster turn-around time and better service than Rosco, YMMV.

Are you sure there's not an existing stock gobo that says Copocabana? Or are you hell-bent on using the custom artwork? I'm thinking of a whole treatment, using green palms leaves on the sides (which may be useful once the curtain opens) and the show logo in the center. What color is the main curtain?
 

Logos

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2006
Location
Launceston Tasmania
I'm certain I've seen either a DHA or Rosco gobo for Copacabana with as you say Derek the whole palm tree thing. Had a look in my catalogue but can;t find it now. Maybe it was a UK only thing cos that's where I saw it.
 

gafftaper

Senior Team
Senior Team
Fight Leukemia
Joined
Jan 2, 2006
Location
Seattle, WA
DHSLXOP, as has been said you can't use a logo from the program or a previous production without permission. Also be sure your gobo doesn't even look like a copywritten logo or you could be in big trouble.
Personally, I would forget about Rosco and just send our CB friend "Kelite" (from Apollo) a private message and I'm sure he would be happy to take good care of you and you won't have to ask another question.


<Hijack> How do I make this user name link work. Isn't "Kelite" correct?
 
Last edited:

len

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 23, 2004
Location
Chicagoland
I'm certain I've seen either a DHA or Rosco gobo for Copacabana with as you say Derek the whole palm tree thing. Had a look in my catalogue but can;t find it now. Maybe it was a UK only thing cos that's where I saw it.
I'll bet something as well known as the Copacabana would probably generate a stock image somewhere. If Apollo, GAM, or Rosco doesn't have something really close to what you want, I'd be surprised. It may not be the exact thing, but for $13 versus $90 you might be able to manage the difference.
 

icewolf08

CBMod
CB Mods
Joined
Jan 11, 2007
Location
Lititz, PA
As has been mentioned, be careful of copyright issues. Also I believe for all of the major manufacturers you need to make the actual purchase through a dealer. Generally what that mean is that the dealer submits an order to the manufacturer, but you deal directly with the manufacturer for the artwork. I have always had my custom templates done through Apollo, they do a great job and they work well with you to get the artwork ready.

Here are some other things to think about. If you are doing text, you should consider EDLT lenses for your projecting unit. Also, it is really a must that you have the template made in "A" size (unless you are not using source 4's/SLs/selecons). The larger image area of an "A" size template helps a lot with readability.

If you can, post the artwork and we may be able to give more pointers.
 

LD4Life

Active Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2008
Location
Fort Wayne, IN
Since its a high school show, meaning probably not too many performances and not too much use of the gobo, you could probably create your own out of a pie tin, an exacto (or similar) knife, and some time. You can get a pretty good looking gobo out of those simple ingredients, and chances are the audience wouldn't know the difference.
I would have to agree with DarSax on this one, since its not going to be a long run, heavy use gobo, just cut it our of a pie tin with an exacto knife.
 

bobgaggle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2007
Location
Philadelphia, PA
If your high school has a Tech-ed department with a CAD program, you can design the logo and route it out of a thin sheet of metal. The router talks to the program and produces an exact replica. We did this for a show at my high school and it worked well.
 

Kelite

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2005
Location
Fort Wayne IN, USA
Sorry to be a 'Johnny come lately' to the gobo party, it was a busy weekend at home with the family!

The pie pan and Exacto* knife has certainly bailed out many a short notice gobo request, and since the reproduction will probably not mirror the 'official program' logo, you should be safe from copyright police. (If the gobo IS that close to the official image on the show program, maybe we need to talk about a job application to Apollo! :) )

Most manufacturers will accept your artwork files sent directly to them, and either work with the local theatrical supply shop that helps your school, or will suggest a local company if you have none chosen.

All my best to you!