Snap-it™ and Blink-it™ Beacons Now Patented!

Snap-it beacons are miniature, less than 1" x .5" x .5" (2.54 cm x 1.27 cm x 1.27 cm), LED markers that attach to standard 9 volt batteries, for use on the stage, or other low-light level situations. They give off a small but very visible light (red, yellow or green) that help performers to find their marks, or to see the edges of platforms or equipment in the dark.

Blink-it™ beacons are exactly the same as Snap-it™ beacons, but they "blink" with an approximately 1 per second flash rate.

Common uses for Snap-It and Blink-It beacons

Marking center line and quarter lines for dance companies.
Snap-it beacons are much easier to see than glow-tape, so dancers can easily find their marks. Lay the beacon on its side with the lighted end facing upstage, the battery then blocks all the light from the audience's view. The point of light provided by the beacon can easily be seen by the dancers or performers, even with stage lighting in their eyes.

Lighting Trees or Booms

Blink-it beacons are perfect for marking the edges of equipment, such as lighting trees, booms or monitor speakers, which can be dangerous for performers moving on or off stage in the dark. Blink-it beacons can be positioned so the audience can't see them, but performers will easily see them blinking, even with the side light "flooding" their eyes, and be warned of equipment that's otherwise invisible in the dark.

Stairs, Doorways, Hand Railings
Either Snap-it or Blink-it beacons can be helpful in marking stairs, doorways, railings, etc. - that performers need to find quickly in the dark. For example; they can be used to mark the angular edge of a thrust stage, so that actors looking down would see the Snap-it beacon marking the edge of the raised stage platform against a dark auditorium floor bellow.

Reference Guides
Snap-it and Blink-it beacons can be useful reference guides for Lighting Designers while focusing lights on a dark stage.

Three Colors
Both Snap-it™ and Blink-it™ beacons come in three different colors:
red, yellow or green. They will run for days (approx. 125 hours) on a new alkaline battery with continuous use, or weeks with intermittent use! (To turn them "off", simply use the thumb-tab to unsnap one terminal.) Finally, you can do something with that pile of "used" batteries from the wireless microphones!


A discussion on 9 volt batteries
The reasons for using 9 volt batteries were many. First of all, almost every theatre has a pile of "used" 9 volt batteries left over from the wireless microphones, and it made good economical and environmental sense to use this resource. Consequently the 9 volt battery is very common and can usually found in any theatre. If the device had been designed around, say, a watch battery, quick replacement could have been difficult. Most, if not all, hardware stores carry 9 volt batteries; rarely do they carry watch batteries. The specific design of the 9 volt battery has both terminals on one end, this allowed for a smaller device that did not have to enclose the battery. The terminals themselves feature a unique snap design that allows the device to be securely attached. The rectangular shape allows the battery and device to lay flat on the floor without rolling away, while providing a low profile to the audience. The 9 volt battery also has a very good size to power ratio. Because the electrical "draw" of the device is very small, it can use either "long lasting" alkaline batteries or "inexpensive" carbon batteries.