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Discussion Starter #1
Can anyone here tell me exactly how to use theatrical gels to color a basic floodlight? Do you just apply them right to the front of the flood, or do you have to use some kind of frame, or do you have to use a specific kind of floodlight, or what? Not having much experience in theater, and none setting up the lights, I don't know these things... help!

Thanks in advance.
 

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SuperBeast
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The professional gels you're thinking of are really expensive. Have you thought of using 12 volt floodlights (much cooler temperatures) and covering them with homemade gels like these binder dividers that you can find at Office Depot?


You could use multiple layers for deeper colors, and even combine different colors, all for a few bucks.
 

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I belive that you need to make a frame for the gels they can be made out of shirt type carbboard I think there are how to's about using gels if you google that. and don't put the gels right on the bulb they will melt and maybe burn up.
 

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Rookie,

great idea, I was thinking about this very same thing for lighting my GB once it is finished, would of never thought of that. Thanks RL4 for asking this :)
 

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I tried some of the real gels and they do work but I was amazed at how much they reduce the amount of light. The gels that I have reduce the light output so much that you would have to start with like a 150watt bulb to end up with something like a 40watt bulb. In most cases I ended up just using the plain white light or colored LED lights.
 

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Vlad the Impaler
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Thetrical gels are made for lights like parkans and skoop stage lights. These types of lights burn REALLY bright so this means with a thearical light source it wont reduce the light. But since a normal flood light has a lower wattage the gell will reduce the amount of light a little but not to much. you can also buy gells that are thinner for this purpose. If you put a gel on a flood light you want to make sure that you do not directly put the gell on the light bulb, because this will melt the gell. I pesonally like gells better, because there are some many clolors to choose frome rather than just the basic colors of a colored flood light and in the end it can be cheaper than buying alot of colored floods. Also the thing about colored floods is that somtimes the color sucks. I got a red one this year that looked more pink than red. When I was in High School, I was activley in theatere so I got to borrow all kinds of stuff for Halloween like our F-100 fog machine!! I also got to borow a few parkan lights which lit up my house so well. i think thats the only part I miss about high school.
Heres a link of where we would get our gels from. We actually have a place in town that sells gells so I never had to order from the internet. But $7.25 for a 20" by 20" sheet isn't that bad. when comes to it, it will be cheaper than the colored flood lights.
Apollo Design | 20" x 24" Gel
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the info, folks. Now, any ideas about how to make some kind of frame I could use to set gels (or binder covers) into, to color the light from a plain old flood in a cheap lawn stake? Needs to be usable outdoors, in northern Missouri's unpredictable October weather. It's common here to leave the house in warm sunshine and return in the middle of a sleet storm two hours later. And it needs to be cheap. More time and talent than money here. Budget, y'know... heh

I'm thinking maybe some kind of black ducting, plumbing pipe, whatever, with one end cut at an angle to display the light, flat end staked to the ground? Not very flexiible or aimable, but could be pretty sturdy and watertight, and could easily be used as a base for some kind of color film. Whatcha think?

BTW, y'all are great!!
 

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I have made a kinda can/spot light out of those black plastic pots that they sell plants in and cut a hole in the bottom just big enough to stick a floodlight socket though.So from there you could mount the gel on the other end just make sure you drill a couple holes in the underside for heat to escape but not rain and snow to get in and make sure the bulb doesn't touch the plastic.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
So the light would point straight up in the air, right? I'm not sure how effective that would be... any ideas on how to aim the light where it should be?
 
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