21-Jan-2009 (Wed)
Wherein photos are shared, and the hover-hive remains resolutely unmarked.

Photos are up of our first event of the year, Baxtalo Drom, and also the Hubba Hubba Revue salute to the Canuckistani people.

Also, it turns out that a contingent from the Canadian Consulate was in the audience that night. How awesome is that?

Baxtalo Drom will most likely be returning in March, by the way.

So, one late night last week I took a taxi to the club, and as we pulled up to the builing, the driver (who had no idea who I am or that I work here) asked me, "Why don't these people have a fucking sign?"

"I dunno, man. They probably should, huh?" I replied.

And this reminds me that somehow I have never written about the tragic in-joke that our lack of a sign on the building has become! It's been going on long enough that even most of the people I know who don't work here will caution newcomers away from every bringing up The Fucking Sign.

It's not even that good a story. Basically, we've gone through seven years of a repeating cycle that goes like this. Someone asks, "Why don't you have a sign?" We reply, "Because everyone who has taken on the task of making it happen has failed." The new person asks, "Is there some reason this is more complicated than it seems?" "Not really." Then they say, "Well that's ridiculous! I volunteer! I will make this happen!" And then, nothing happens. And we laugh at them.

Seriously, this has happened like a dozen times.

We even have a CAD drawing of the sign we want. Basically all we need is two things: someone with the ability to take this CAD file and cut it out of a 12'x4' piece of steel (with a laser or water-cutter or something); and the few thousand dollars to pay for it. There have been times when we had the money, but nobody to do the work; and there have been times when we had someone who claimed to have access to the equipment, but who would then drop off the face of the earth before we could gather the funds.

Over the years, I've personally contacted a number of companies who specialize in this kind of work. They say "Sure, that sounds easy!" and then they simply won't give me a quote.

Now, if you're like every other person I've ever met, you are even now feeling an itch that will soon cause you to say something beginning with the words, "Well you know what you ought to do is..."

The sign project is cursed. That's the only explanation.

And that is why we no longer discuss the sign.

23 Responses:

  1. poitoi says:

    Jamie, i dont have a waterjet or laser at my shop, but i know of a few shops that we do business with do.

    I will ask my boss tomorrow if anyone owes us any favors. ;-)

  2. icis_machine says:

    couldn't you get an experienced student from the crucible or tech shop to do it?

  3. fgmr says:

    Do you have a link to the CAD file? Just so we can see what it's supposed to look like..

    • jwz says:

      It looks like a less noisy version of the logo at the top of the web site, with the green parts cut away and the black parts solid. (It would then need small struts welded to de-stencil it, or the whole thing mounted on a mesh or something.)

      The idea is for it to be an uncoated 12' slab of steel bolted to the wall, so that it rusts.

      If we were going crazy-go-nuts on the whole thing, maybe we'd mount it 6" away from the wall so we could shine light behind it. But that's some kind of nutty scifi plan, that is. Forget I mentioned it.

      • fo0bar says:

        Oh hell I hate that craze. It seems like whenever a new building sign is put up, it now has a backlit white light. So at night, you are treated to a vaguely logo-shaped thing that always looks black no matter what color the sign actually is due to the washout from the white light BUT OH MY GOD THERE'S A WHITE AURA AROUND THE SIGN THAT LOOKS LIKE IT WAS PRODUCED BY PHOTOSHOP OUTER GLOW FILTER! Never mind that it's now difficult to actually make out what the sign, you know, says.

        That being said, I think the DNA Lounge logo would be the one acceptable use of that style. As long as the backlight is green, of course.

      • gryazi says:

        This is a dumb idea, but while you're waiting forever, have you considered finding a cheap piece of sheet metal and using a PCB-like resist process?

        Ferinstance: Start by painting epoxy all over the back or laminating it onto plywood, or a 2x4 frame (for ease of mounting, and the idea being that the backing is not visible but helps keep rusting pieces of sign from collapsing and killing your customers). Then sand up the metal, create a stencil for the logo* and apply two dozen coats of spray-on clearcoat from AutoZone.

        Remove the stencil, and the elements will begin to create your logo in rust on the shiny metal surface -- then, if it's sufficiently thin, over time it will rust out completely and you'll have the full effect.

        If you can cut the stencil(s) out of something durable, like plywood, you can crank out more if you ever need to replace it / keep a couple on-deck on the roof or something if it starts to rust through the clearcoat.

        Of course ideally you'd be able to stencil both sides so the parts of the metal you want to keep are fully protected, but that gets complicated. (If doing it by hand, you could use something like vinyl sheet for the stencils, X-Acto through two layers at once, then 'sandwich' those onto each side.)

        There's probably also a bunch of creative stuff you could DIY with copper-clad board, though it's hard to find or etch big sizes. Would mosaicing the logo onto 8x10" pieces give you something resembling [metal + green fiberglass] the look you want? That could be backlit if you find single-side-clad board, but you'd have to clearcoat everything so the copper doesn't rust green and ruin the contrast. [Shoot me if this is already an overdone look out there; we don't have as much tech culture on the east coast.]

        • jwz says:

          "Well you know what you ought to do is..."

          • gryazi says:

            Lulz. But then why do you bring it up, kemosabe?

            [Or in other words, nyah-nyah, it would appear that contacting the actual fabricators being linked here would violate your rule. But holy hell, good luck, we're rootin' tootin' fresh'n'fruitin' for you here.]

  4. 5beroptic says:

    I've just been drinking Costco brand alcohol this evening and wanted to put a place holder in your book with all of the other antibiotic ointments that think they are of worth...

    Totally randomness...

    Thanks for you shitty California related postings.

    -Signed, some Texan (that used to live in California - Death Valley) with a computer.

    :)

  5. ext_146610 says:

    ...nothing at all. No über-cool club ought to have a sign, people need to think that they're meant to be hard to find.

    For extra marks, you need to make sure people have to negotiate their way down an alley and around rubbish skips in order to get in...

  6. wasteddream says:

    Just get Devon drunk and let him spray paint something.

    Win-win.

    • baconmonkey says:

      I was going to suggest tat we hang any caught taggers from the front of the building and make them spray paint a sign for us. that, or spell out "DNA LOUNGE" with their bodies.

      • wasteddream says:

        You'd have to ditch the acronym and spell out the whole thing, in that case, simply because of the sheer abundance of resources.

  7. mysterc says:

    *gets popcorn*

  8. fantasygoat says:

    Please provide a link to the CAD file. Thanks.

  9. Your SIGN, much like my vagine, is HAUNTED!!!

  10. gnat23 says:

    Some very nice fabricators in Oakland said "If you simply want to send some CAD files to someplace to have them cut out without having to deal with anyone in-between, the magical place is: http://www.bigbluesaw.com "

    Locally, East Bay Laser was mentioned, but it deals with a fabricator again.

    • chroma99 says:

      Glad to hear the word is spreading about Big Blue Saw. Apparently we have friends we didn't know about, a great feeling.

      BTW, we run sales from time to time.

      • badc0ffee says:

        Can you make anything bigger than 35"x35"? That seems to be the size of the grid in the Big Blue Saw Designer.

        • chroma99 says:

          The online quoting system works up to that size. But we can make much larger parts -- 4 feet x 8 feet easily, and even larger parts in some cases.

          With the larger sizes, material availability and shipping can sometimes be trouble, so we will quote those parts manually for now. E-mail info@bigluesaw.com for more details.