Turning a Utopias bottle into a Lamp
September 18, 2005 8:19 AM   Subscribe

My bottle of Sam Adams Utopias is empty and I'd like to turn it into a lamp...

The bottle just cries out for lampatude. I'd like to make it a basic table lamp with the bulb at the top, covered by a shade (which I'll have to make myself). My questions are...

1) The bottle is copper over porcelin. Is there anything I have to watch out for when drilling? Can I even drill?

2) I may need to weight the base incase it turns out top heavy. Is there a good way to do this?

3) I have drills, dremmels, vices, and soldering on on hand. Will I need another tool?

Any other hints and tips you may have towards homebrew (ha!) lamp construction would be most appreciated!
posted by robocop is bleeding to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (10 answers total)
 
My suggestion is to leave the bottle intact, just slip on a bulb holder on top and find a way to screw it in place. So that way the bottle's structure and beauty is left intact.

Also you can use little pebbles to weigh down the bottle.
posted by riffola at 8:44 AM on September 18, 2005


1) To go through porcelin, I'd buy a special bit. They make bits for glass, that might work. Depending on the size of the hole you need, you might need a hole saw instead.

2) I did this once by dumping in a bunch of lead split shot (from a place that sells fishing tackle) and then pouring in a cup or so of plaster-of-paris (suitabley mixed with water, of course).

3) You'll need a wrench or two to assemble it all.

I've never shopped here, but this place looks like it has a large selection of lamp parts that might come in handy.
posted by Daddio at 8:46 AM on September 18, 2005


use valve grinding compound and a short piece of tube to drill thru hard material, and patience as it takes a little while.
posted by hortense at 9:19 AM on September 18, 2005


use valve grinding compound and a short piece of tube to drill thru hard material, and patience, as it takes a little while.
posted by hortense at 9:22 AM on September 18, 2005


Don't mean to hijack the thread, but how was this interesting beer that you speak of?
posted by punkrockrat at 1:21 PM on September 18, 2005


I think one of these lamp kits would work better than drilling. Google for "lamp kits" gets you other stores; I have no experience with any of them, but something pre-rigged for bottles might be easier than drilling into porcelain.
posted by fionab at 3:30 PM on September 18, 2005


Also, this is a pretty good set of instructions for making a lamp; just ignore that hideous set of boxes that they felt the need to light up.
posted by fionab at 3:32 PM on September 18, 2005


I don't see any point in drilling, unless you want to try to screw a nut onto a threaded lamp, uh, tube thingy (I forget what they're called) from the bottom as well as the top. The TLTT would have to not extend beyond the bottom of the bottle, so you wouldn't be screwing it into anything at or below the base...

Why not use Daddio's suggestion of lead shot (or pebbles, or marbles, or nothing) plus plaster of paris (or concrete, or whatever) - insert the TLTT into your mixture while still liquid, clamp it so it remains upright, and let dry. Then your base is weighted and your tube is firmly attached, ready for a socket etc. No potentially bottle-damaging drilling required.
posted by attercoppe at 9:45 PM on September 18, 2005


Okay, I should have checked this before submitting my other post, but oh well:

It's called a lamp rod. Simple, yet completely descriptive. Much better than threaded lamp tube thingy.
posted by attercoppe at 9:48 PM on September 18, 2005


Don't mean to hijack the thread, but how was this interesting beer that you speak of?

Pretty good. I've had each of the other Utopias incarnations and this was by far the best. Previous editions were a bit too heavy on the 'tastes like maple syrup and vodka' flavors, while this one was a nice, smooth sip. Woody, sweet, and warming. Great for after dinner in lieu of a scotch.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 4:30 AM on September 19, 2005


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