Introduction: Ornament: Repurposed Light Bulb

Picture of Ornament: Repurposed Light Bulb

Simple Dremel Project for Instructables.

Repurpose an old light bulb to create a lighted ornament.

Total Build Time: 35 mins

  • Dremel work: 5-10 mins
  • Wiring: 5-10 mins
  • Customizing: 10-15 mins

Step 1: Gather All the Parts Needed for This Project:

Picture of Gather All the Parts Needed for This Project:

Dremel tool and cutting accessories

(1) medium light bulb

(3) LEDs

(1) 3V button cell battery

22 gauge wire

Heavy duty wire or string

On/Off switch

Solder and soldering iron

Styrofoam

Electrical tape

Glitter glue

Window frosting

Safety glasses, gloves, etc.

Step 2: Dremel the Bulb

Picture of Dremel the Bulb

Using the dremel cutting/saw tool, cut off and remove the bottom ¼ to ½” off the light bulb base. Be sure to wear safety glasses and gloves as well as keeping something over the bulb, such as a heavy towel, in the event the bulb was to shatter. Carefully remove the components inside the bulb and carve out the inner channel so that you have a completely hollow bulb.

Step 3: Wire the LEDs

Picture of Wire the LEDs

Before we begin soldering, please note we’ll use a rocker switch as an interrupt for the negative/ground connection. Solder the (3) positive ends of the LEDs to the positive side of the battery. Next, solder together the (3) negative ends of the LEDs, but not to the battery.

We’ll then create connections we’ll use to solder to the rocker switch. Cut (2) pieces of 22 gauge wire, each about 2” in length. Solder one to the connected negative end, then solder those negative wires to the one of the rocker switch connectors.

Solder the other 2” wire from the other rocker switch connector to the negative side of the battery.

TEST: turn the switch on and off to make sure your wiring/soldering is done correctly.

Place a piece of electrical tape over the solder points, especially on the negative side of the battery so that the wires don’t touch and create a closed circuit minus the switch.

TEST: test fit of the LEDs and battery to make sure they’ll fit into the hollowed out part of the bulb.

Step 4: Add the Hanger

Picture of Add the Hanger

Before we secure the LEDs inside the bulb, drill a hole through both sides of the metal portion of the light bulb. Next, secure the wired LEDs and battery into the bulb. Obviously, you’ll want the LEDs shining into the inside of the bulb. Carefully feed your wire or string through the drilled holes, making sure not to damage the LEDs. If using metal wire, it might be a good idea to solder the ends together.

Step 5: Cap the Bulb

Picture of Cap the Bulb

If your LEDs and battery are able to fit inside the bulb without any problem, you can use the dremel to cut the middle from the end of the bulb (that you cut earlier) so it fits side by side with your switch or use Styrofoam to fill in the gaps. Definitely use electrical tape or hot glue to seal the bulb.

Step 6: Decorate the Bulb

Picture of Decorate the Bulb

You can get pretty creative with how you want to decorate your light bulb. Mine is fairly subtle, using glitter glue and window frosting.

Once decorated, you can hang your repurposed light bulb in a spot you want accented with light.

Enjoy!

Comments

seamster (author)2014-08-26

Cool bulb hack. Thanks for sharing this!

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