I'm in a newly forming college band and we're gonna wanna play parties a little down the road. So I think we should build our own stage so we're not on the same level as the crowd, does anyone have any experience with this? Maybe a stage building kit or something?? Anything you can add will help me out, thanks!
Fender Hot Rod Deluxe
Gibson Faded V
Warmoth Strat copy
Epiphone Hummingbird (FS!!)
Ibanez SR400QM
Fender BXR100
Reggae Bass Covers mahn!!!

I recommend just building platforms, unless you are skilled enough to build a large, multi-piece stage which can be transported (Kinda difficult if you're a beginner). But a single, foot tall platform oughta be fine. Wood-working 101 type of stuff
JS20S Satriani signature
Epiphone Les Paul Standard
Gibson SG Classic
Randall RM100 Combo w/ Plexi, JTM, Ultra, Recto, and Brown Modules
I build a stage on a weekly basis.
It's basically made up of tables, metal frames held together with plastic links topped with wooden panels. It's really quite simple, it's raised about 18inches and can be constructed and deconstructed in half an hour.

I'm pretty sure it comes as like a kit, but I imagine it's expensive.
I'm pretty sure this would be perfect for you as long as you have the budget.
I've built one before, just using good ol' wood, hammer, and nails.
My guitar modification blog.
Quote by MuffinMan
Jesus was all like "To those about to rock, I salute you." then he grabbed his mighty axe and rocked the Romans out really hard. Of course they were strict classical music so....
My church has a stage that we used to use until we got the new sanctuary. It's just a bunch of 4x4 (or so) platforms, not at all difficult to make. You just take a platform thick enough to hold a decent amount of weight, build the "walls", and there's your platform.
hehe... towlie, you're the worst character ever.

...and i say dig a hole and make yourself lower than the audience. that'll show 'em!
The best thing about house parties is that you are playing at he same level as the crowd. It gives the gig more energy imo.

Also you wouldnt want to have a stage thats is to big, unless the floorspace in the room you are playing in is massive, and can fit a stage big enough for all the gear and the drumkit. Also, make sure it isn to high, otherwise you wont be able to stand up
I'm actually starting a job this week where I'm building stages. I don't have that expertise yet, but I have a little bit of woorworking experience.

Here's what I would do: I would build a stage that's maybe only 1-2 feet tall. That way, you're still close to the crowd, but you're up high enough that people standing back a bit can see you, and if you're playing outdoors it gives you a flat surface, off the (potentially wet) ground for your amps and drums, and makes you less likely to run into a ceiling indoors. I'd make some small platforms that you can put next to each other, and quickly screw down some 4'x8' sheets of plywood or particle board for the floor before the gig (Make sure to bring a power drill and a bot of fresh screws with you). And, absolutely, make sure it's sturdy before you use it live. A collapsing stage could be embarrassing.
Schecter Hellraiser V1 / Schecter Stiletto Extreme 4 / Gallien Krueger 400RB / Hartke Transporter 4x10 / Digitech BP200 / Pod Studio GX
Quote by Black Star
I've built one before, just using good ol' wood, hammer, and nails.

That's how it's done right there.
I really wouldn't bother. My band has played parties and same level as the crowd is no problem. One foot off the ground won't save you from mic-grabbers and over-zealous moshers unfortunately. Same level makes things a lot more modest and intimate, and you can impress them with your music and style, not wood-work.

There's this other local band. Their guitarist built them a stage in four pieces and nailed black fabric to it and everything. Most people just thought they were a bunch of tossers. That's small town Ireland I suppose, but it's also the attitude you face in a casual setting like a house-party, yaknow?

EDIT: If you're really set on building a stage, use thick wood and do whatever else you can do to eliminate vibration. If you've got a micstand on the stage the vibrations will go up and you get feedback.
Last edited by Icarus Lives at Oct 13, 2009,
For the cost involved I would say its not worth while building one from scratch. You'd be better off hiring in some steeldeck or similar staging decks with some 12/18inch legs. (any higher and you need to start thinking about crossbracing and stairs)

Any local sound or lighting hire place will be able to hire you some, or know of where you can get some. Its pretty cheap to hire for a night and they'll drop it off where you want too!
Quote by Dave_Mc
how do those marshall handles compare tonewise to, say, mesa handles?

Owns a Blackheart Little Giant...
Make a series of boxes with hinged corners, so that they can be folded flat. The height of the boxes will denote the height of the stage. Next, cut some pieces of board that will just fit corner to corner in the boxed, make a cut in these boards so that you can slot two boards together in an 'X' shape. Place the 'X' shapes in the boxes, this make the boxes solid and prevent them folding up while in use.
Finaly, place all the boxes together and place large boards on top. It's advisable to either nail or screw the boards to the boxes to stop them slipping about, screws would be the best as they are easier to get back out afterwards.

So now you have a stage that can be stripped down and flat packed for storage or transport.

Problem is, for an entire stage big enough for a whole band, that's still gonna require a decent sized van just to transport the stage, and you haven't even started moving the band's gear yet. So what most people do is just make a small stage, just big enough to fit the drum kit on, known as a 'drum riser'.
Even if the rest of you are standing on floor level, the riser will be a focus of attention for the audience and will certainly make you look more professional than a band without one.
just get loads of cheap but sturdy tables and get some plywood, paint all the plywood black and paint you band name/logo on it. set up the tables close together and place all the pieces of plywood on top of it in the best position then nail the ply wood to the tables or something similar to that, then it wouldn't be really hard to transport each table. something similar to that might work. not the best idea but might work.
I've always thought being on the same level (in more than one ways) helps the bond between the band and the audience; no seperation, distance, etc.

The only thing elevated is our amps.