Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Grasp The Force

As some of you may know I have been given the the great opportunity to Fight Direct "Pericles," in a space opera/sci-fi homage setting, for Shady Shakespeare this summer. *Spoilers* There may be some swords with energy beams for blades. Also, there may be anywhere from 3-9 of these weapons on stage. Now, anyone who's played with the licensed "light sabers" from a certain franchise know that the $130 dollar types are nice and solid but can still break down with heavy repeated use, say . . . once a night 2-3 days a week for an entire month, ALSO, not to mention those are someone else's intellectual property and even though this would be a parody, I would like to bring some more unique and original designs to this production.

That being said, many of the places to get these crazy future swords will cost approx $200 on average (there are a few who go as low as $50 and some who go as high as $6-800 or more [GAWD I WANT! SO HARD] but 2-3 seems to be the dominant going price for most) and although a couple bills for one, maybe even two for someone who REALLY wants one seems like an okay, one-time purchase, I'm looking at upward of 3 thousand dollars. Without being specific about what my armory budget is, let me just say that I am not familiar with ANY production house that allows for that much of a budget for one single show, let alone 1 of 3 shows for the season with only one fight in it. Plus, I share the budget with props and there are some things in the show that I feel will be MUCH more pivotal to the performance than my one tussle and the raw materials alone for them will take a well deserved chunk of the allocated funds.
Yes, one solid piece of wood, a "laser sword bokken"
The reason I bring all this up, is one, my blog post for today is just a smattering of the research I've done looking at different production houses and shopping for props. And two, I'm blatantly going to ask you, my friends, family and assorted readers to either donate, purchase and contact me about acquiring lightsabres for this show. I am currently working on some ideas for fundraisers, I have fiddled with the idea for a Kickstarter/indie-gogo, but the magic idea would either be a straight donation (paypal button to the right ----> please feel free to put "for theatre lightsabres only" in the message, or even in person if you've ever met me) Or even purchase a lightsabre from any of the sources I provide and contact me to allow me and several other full grown adults (physically, not mentally) to bash it repeatedly for a few moths straight. Or even should you have one or a few already, any help would be appreciated. Please, if you are even the least bit inclined, email me at t3h (dot) h4773r (at) gmail (dot) com  and we can chat about ideas and needs of the production.

For those of you who came for the shineys, thank you for listening to my spiel, and just reading my blog is doing more than I'd ever expect, so on to the goodies!

Advanced-Light Weaponry
AWL. Main site, high-mid price
Ebay store. Damn they're divers
These are cool. Huge collection, I believe every blade is a custom item. Apparently there's a Texas troupe that has tried other sabers in the past and only his stand up to their abuse. I've talked to him over email, very swift to respond, sounds professional.

Ultra Sabers, low-mid price
I know a bunch of kids who got their sabers from here. They've been at it for some time and have a large selection as well as the most competitive prices I've seen. I attempted to contact them once or twice, but I believe I saw they had a booth at Wondercon around that time so I understand if they were a bit swamped, hope to hear from them soon.

Park Sabers, mid-high price
An old school "forge." The phase blades they use are SRZ BZNS and MAKE the eye see the blade trail. as well as using internal lamps so that the blade will "ignite" properly. I really like their double blader. I have only recently attempted to contact them, no word back yet, but they have one of those "on the site, enter your email & message" add ons and I'm not sure if my large message went through or even coded correctly, I guess I'll see.

Custom Saber Shop, low-high price.
Another "old school forge" no single hilts & blades for sale BUT they have a custom builder interface I have played with a bit. I have not contacted them yet, and will try to in the near future.

FX Sabers  
More a resource hub & community than a one stop shop. A very active culture with a lot of info.

Saber Forge, price mid
A newer guy to the field, met him at Anime Expo last year. He was quick to contact and nice enough. Many unique items there. My current favorite, mostly because of the items below . . .

Yes, Light-tonfa. Ah hahahaha!
Need some reach, how bout a pole-arm saber?

JQ sabers, High price
Crazy High end, awesome sabers. clean pro site. UK crew. they do offer stunt sabers for about $200U.S. with a few customizable features.

Legacy Weaponry, mid-high price (
A student of AWL, started making his own when he moved. Not sure if he's still cracking them out, have not contacted. REALLY cool stuff though, You can definitely see the attention and, well, legacy, from the work with AWL.

I'm know I have missed/left out a few different lightsaber houses and maybe I will post on them later or even find a few more. I have even attempted to sift through numerous dead sites and un-informed reviews to try and gauge how "good" each company is and quite honestly I can't find enough to make a reliable assumption about any of them. Although, I think anyone who has time and energy to honestly crack these things out is a step above any sort of massed produced thing, so, I'd start with kudos to all of them and then go from there.

And, just to jazz you up, here's Ray Park being awesome, apparently something he does A LOT!

No comments:

Post a Comment