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Quick Lamp Making Tip: Fast Nuts!

How to move 3/8 inch nuts really quickly along long lengths of threaded lamp pipe.

Just Look at this Blimp Lamp!

Blimp LampI love this blimp lamp from Flaminio Bovino ! At first I thought this was a render--and we don't publish those here--but on closer examination it appears that the trusses are actually water-jet cut from steel and the brass bit are hand turned. It's real!

Not only real, they are for sale. I want one!

More info on the website. (larger image behind the cut.)

Mjöllnir Lamps for the Roadster

Some projects take a long time. Sometimes I start something and then put it aside, in this case for more that two years! When Make:TV came out to the workshop to shoot a profile of me in July of 2008, one of the projects that I worked on for them was a coach lamp for my car. I built one lamp for them and just finished the other lamp today. Watch the video for the beginnings of the project and then click through to see some details of the construction and the completed lamps. 

I've named them Mjöllnir Lamps because my fellow SPWS contributor Annie (who is a Viking) says that they reminder her of Thor's hammer.

Rechargable Lantern Battery Flashlight Mod

I have several 6 volt lantern flashlights kicking around the shop.  However, I never use them because I generally baulk at the $7 they want for a lantern battery that can't be recharged.

So I modded a flashlight to take a 6 volt 4 Ah lead acid battery I bought at Home Depot . . . 

Chandelier Candle Retro-fit

When we moved into our house there was an electric chandelier in our dining room.  It was an adequate enough fixture but incandescent chandeliers are terribly inefficient, six 25 watt bulbs actually put out a fraction of the amount of light as a single bulb of half the combined wattage, and while they do make candelabra base compact fluorescent bulbs, I find their light cold, harsh, and they are not very dim-able.

Besides, nothing beats real candle light for a romantic dinner at home.

Read on for details on converting an electric chandelier back to candles . . .

Kerosene Acorn Burner Sconce Lamp

I was having a hard time this morning getting started working in the shop.  

I get one day a week to work in the shop and as a result I often end up with a list of things I want to get done that is about three times longer then it is possible to accomplish, stress results.

Today I decided "screw it. I'm making a lamp."  

I started with a couple of pieces of brass from an earlier, rejected, project that fit together to form a reflector and kerosene reservoir . . .

Lyra's Lamp

We have a new puppy in the house, and while this is a wonderful thing in general, it means I sometimes have to get up in the middle of the night to let him out. The problem is I don't have a bedside lamp so I end up stumbling across the bedroom to turn on the overhead lamp so I can find the leash as well as my robe and shoes. Needless to say this does not please The Lady. So, my next project had to be a new bedside lamp.

Like most of my lamp projects this one started with a visit to the junk bins.  At right you see part of an antique student lamp I rescued from the metal recycling bin before the ban on picking at our local dump went into effect.  It's quite nicely made, but this is all I was able to retrieve.  The other parts are from various more mundane fixtures and the bulb at left is a reproduction Aerolux glow lamp. 

. . .

Dump Finds: Rayo Lamp, Typewriter

rayo lamp and woodstock typewriteAs of late last year we were banned from pulling items for our town dump's metal and wood recycling bins.  The stated reason was 'public safety' but it was fairly clear from the expressions on the faces of a few of our town's selectmen during the discussion that the whole idea of 'taking things from the garbage' was abhorrent to them.

One of them related the story of seeing some folks remove a 'soiled mattress' from one of the dumpsters.  He feared that the town could be held liable for 'disease' if this form of reuse were allowed to continue.

While we generally love and respect the Victorians and their technology here at the Steampunk Workshop, we do think that our public officials need to have a more modern understanding of epidemiology.

Angle Lamp Repair

finished angle lamp

The Angle Company of New York manufactured these unique lamps from the early 1890's until 1929. In my opinion the Angle Lamp is the pinnacle of kerosene wick lamp design. This is a two burner version. They also commonly came in 3, 4 and (much rarer) 6 and 8 burner versions as well. Single and two burner wall mount lamps and a single burner student lamp were also made. They came in a variety of paterns and materials. This is the simplest, a tin plated steel can with nickle plated burners.

This kerosene lamp will hang over the dinette in my school bus camper conversion project and as such will need to be a functional decor piece so this is more of a repair then a restoration or conservation project.

Putting an Angle Lamp Back in Oil

edison socketOne of the tragic realities of Angle Lamps is that many have been electrified in a crude and destructive manner. Below is such a lamp. I bought this lamp on eBay thinking that it was solid brass. I intended to move the burners from a tin plate Angle Lamp over to this body. However, when it arrived I discovered that it was tin plate also and, in fact, had only a brass wash that had been destroyed inan attempt to polish the lamp. All in all a pretty sad case.

Brass Kerosene Sconce Lamp

This is a lamp for my bus conversion project, most likely it will go in the bathroom. Total project time was about an hour.

The Mae West, an Elegant Kerosene Lamp

Clean up

I'm really happy with this one, the proportions work really well, it's sexy in a Mae West kinda way.

Dual Power Kerosene Electric Lamp

table lamp with 12 volt bulbsThis lamp was built before I had created this website so these are the only pictures I have of the construction process.  The components of this lamp are all steel which solders very nicey if you use a good flux but really needs a coat of paint to look good.  In this case I used a Krylon gloss black fast drying enamel and intend to add decoration in the form of decals in the British canal boat art "Rose and Castle" style.

Swing-arm Kerosene Wall Lamp

Swing-arm kerosene lampHere's another real quick project, the two donor lamps are below, both came from our town dump this past weekend.  This will be my first lamp with a glass font.  Furthermore, this font has a hole in the bottom so I will be making liberal use of the non-traditional material; GE Silicon II Sealant.

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