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Light up Guitar


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Hi all,


I have been appointed as LD and Chief LX for our school production of Grease.


The director has given me a few ideas which she has picked up from seeing the London show...


One idea which I am still stuck on and cant think of anything is the light up guitar for "Those Magic Changes".


She wants the guitar to be lit up in 3 colours around the edge layered.. so like red around the edge, blue the next layer then yellow the next or something like that so it keeps the guitar shape.


Does anyone have any ideas how I can create this effect?


Have any of you done it before?


Any help is good help :D





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Not to pour too much cold water on this, but is your teacher really set on this idea?

Unless you can find a guitar to hire in specifically for the effect, you're likely to be spending a significant amount of time, effort and of course cash on something that is used in one song. Not to mention the fact that you may end up ruining a guitar in the process...

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Levels of cost, paint, just bright colours and possibly use the Samoiloff effect after experimentation to make the colours pop.


UV paint, similar to above but use blacklight and possibly some combination with the Samoiloff effect.


Electroluminescent, EL, tape or string, not hugely bright but capable of different colours, requires battery packs and inverters in `guitar`


LED, RGB tape round the `guitar` with controllers and power source in the body is going to be bright and look good but cost a large chunk of change.

Possibly adapt some battery powered LED strings , lot around this time of year, in combination with some paint effects could be budget friendly/


`guitar` dosen`t need to be a real guitar , may be a slightly scaled up model reads better, plywood and foamcore are your friends ;-)

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After reading the last post, I have an idea (although I dont know whether it would work as I'm not that great with things like this!!)


Could you not paint sections/lines on the guitar in UV paint, so that it ONLY shows up when there is UV being fired at it? Then, when it gets to the scene that you want the colours painted on to show up, turn a UV cannon on as well as all the other lighting you want, and it should make them light up? Or does UV paint still show up (i.e. in red) without UV? :P


Anyway, hope this helps!

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She is quite set on the idea...


We have the time as we arent doing it till February.


The scene before it must loook like a normal guitar then when the song starts it lights up... Maybe LEDS around the edge?


must be switch controlled so that when we black out it can be switched off and not glow


any other ideas?

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They run via a low voltage transformer, so you theoretically could adapt to battery.


How about a bunch of the battery operated LED lights from here?


As with any practical solution you would expect to be using a fake guitar. Drill loads of holes in wood sheet. Poke LED's through. Hide cabling and batteries. Depending on number of circuits switching from one control might be a bit tricky but not impossible.


I've used the company before and highly recommend.

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If you were thinking UV cannon, there is such thing as a shutter that can be fitted to certain UV cannons. They take ages to get going and like you said, would look quite odd during blackout, so a shutter would clear that up. I have no idea of costs or where your local would be, the best I can offer you is that PRG own some.
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The IR tape controllers are natively 12V and usually drop out much below 10V, PP3 wont cover it, 10 AAs or a li ion battery will, did anyone say it was a cheap option....


UV cannons with dimming/shutters, Wildfire fresnels with either venetian blind dousers or scroller and string in progessively deeper greens, not sounding cheap either.


The OP seems keen on a fully worked out set of plans rather than ideas though, sseems to have done no investigation on suggestions given and reaction to one helpful suggetion is


"look at it..."


indeed, come half way here, investigate some of the ideas and come back with whats not going to work for you and why and might get better answers

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