Step 1: Intro / Disclaimer
A few years ago i saw this little beauty [http://www.thetubelamp.com//photos/tags The Tube Lamp] pop up online, designed by Nik Willmore and decided it was exactly what i needed for my little Mad scientist Laboratory. unfortunately i couldn't spare the disposable cash needed (or justify it) to purchase such an item, though i would still like to some day as his still has a captivating hold on me :)
This is project to show you how to make a much more cost effective version of the tube lamp design to get you by for the meantime. Rough estimate of the costs involved in this project is totaled at around or under $20 depending on the supplies you choose.
NOTE: I Have updated some of the steps to help clarify some things and changed the way certain things are setup so they are more efficient and easier to understand. and from now on i also won't wait as long between doing a project, taking the pictures, and then making the write up as that leaves too much room for error :) thanks for reading.
Step 2: The Base
to make the lamp the box was flipped over and the bottom became the top so if i have to make any adjustments or replacements i can turn the box on it's side and slide open the "Lid"
Step 3: Box Continued
Originally there was going to be wrap around text as you can see in the photo that was a quote "The best way to predict the future is to invent it." -- Alan Kay
The most expensive part of this whole project was the standard Dimmer wall switch (push in to turn on and off, rotate to dim or brighten) (the black box on the left) which ran me about $7 at the Home supply store.
There are three wires running out of the back of the dimmer switch unit, two black and one green, the green wire is for grounding, and since the box is wood and since i didn't use a three prong grounded electrical cord i just removed the green wire.
*Okay i've revised this a bit and made a much simpler and effective way to wire up the sockets, i could have sworn i wired it up one way and not another, but i completed this project a few months ago and just did the write up now, so i forgot about that change in plans sorry for the confusion*
... take all the black wires coming out of the sockets and bunch them together, i used wire ties to keep them all together, do the same with the white wires coming from the sockets use a wire nut to connect all the white wires together and have them connect to one of the wires from the power cord...
connect all the black wires from the sockets together as well and wire nut them together with one of the 2 black wires coming from the dimmer switch... then connect the remaining black wire from the dimmer switch to the other wire on the power cord
The light sockets themselves were purchased from Lowes and are fairly cheap as well ($2 or so) and are designed for ceiling lamp repair and replacement.
Step 9: Finish
In the second shot you can see the finished product, along with a nice black Radio Knob replacing the big boring beige knob that comes with the dimmer switch.
If you liked this one, be sure to check out the smoke stack lamp instructable that i'll be posting up where i used some of the things i learned from this project, right now i'm still putting the finishing touches on that project but you can see some shots of how it's coming along in my Flicker Photo stream
Thanks for checking out my first Instructable!