Picture of Pixie, the world's most intense desk lamp
A few days ago, on my drive in to work, I noticed a fallen lamppost on the side of the road.  It had been raining for several days straight, and the jellied dirt had slumped in a mini-landslide, taking the lamppost down with it.  The next day, I kept an eye out for the lamppost, and it was still there, untouched.  The day after, it was still lying in the mud, and late that night, a prius screeched to a stop on the wet roadside and a friend and I jumped out, armed with wire cutters and socket wrenches.  Slogging through the mud and keeping an eye out for flashing blue lights, we proceeded to harvest the lamp from the pole.  Minutes later, setting a world record for most efficient lamp-heist, we threw the lamp in the trunk and sped off, leaving nothing behind but soggy footprints and the trailing bass beats of Poker Face.
Back at the shop, we hauled the 40-pound lamp in and laid it out on a desk, eager to examine our spoils.  To our dismay, the lamp housing was filled with painfully pungent mud, two birds nests, a diverse and unfortunate assortment of poop, and buried deep in the stinky muck, the lamp electronics. 
Undeterred, we set to work.  With paper towels, simple green, chlorox, an air compressor, we painstakingly scooped out the muck and chased the antisocial smell away.  Two hours later, tired and covered in bits of poo, we had the lamp cleaned out.  I grabbed an old computer power cable and wired up the power lines.  My friend stuck a powerful pose of readiness next to the surge protector's power switch.  We took cover behind a convenient pile of crap and, hearts in our throats, hit the switch.  A dim, sickly white leapt from the bulb, which hummed an off-key fluorescent tune.  We glanced at our feet, underwhelmed.  Moments later, we noticed a subtle shift in the room's lighting.  Our shadows seemed to be shifting direction and growing longer.  Although it was midnight, the room was lit up bright as day.  The bulb caused instant headaches if we so much as glanced at it.  Our grins grew as bright as the bulb, and we knew that our efforts had paid off.  Our little girl just had to warm up, that's all.
apink19 months ago

The lamp was clearly beyond civic service, judging by the poop jam inside, so in fact you did the city a service in removing garbage and up cycling into a kick-ass man-lamp. Proud of you :)

ohen3ry1 year ago

Nice hack. Poor celebration of theft.

Tex Arcana1 year ago
@.mickeypop: just for that, we're gonna tell the cops you did it. :-P
mickeypop1 year ago
Typical city street lamps cost between $400 and $600.

You realize you committed a felony by stealing the lamp that was city property.

On top of that, you admitted to it and even posted your picture to boot.

You best not tell anyone around town about it, and certainly don't tell it's on the web.

akospenda2 years ago
Should have done it during daylight. During the night lampposts are lit and therefor have live wires :)
skyworxz2 years ago
Your writing is awesome! Love the story, I could read a whole book by you...
Ugifer2 years ago
That has to be the best insane 40 pound desk lamp I have ever seen!
You, sir, are utterly barking. Keep up the good work!
waraji2 years ago
You just cost your county/city a few hundred dollars. Neat light though. It's like looting. You looted it to protect it from being looted by someone just like you?

I prefer to obtain true surplus legally.
Ernest122 years ago
Since it was a street light, I think I would have made it floor mobile, with the ability to raise and lower as well as move around the shop.
bradnh2 years ago
Great Instructable, not just for the content, but also for the style. You've inspired me. Thanks.
vincent75202 years ago
Fun !
Watching the first pic I thought you made the lamp post and shade from a old chait on wheels !!!!… ;)))
So maybe that's an other idea ?… ;))

Nonetheless your instructable is very valuable ! Thank you.

BTW : I noticed that you had a special tool for bending tubes : never saw that before. Is home made ? Can you buy it ? Where ?…

Thanks again
prank (author)  vincent75202 years ago
It's a standard pipe bender--you can buy them at most hardware stores. They're handy for bending conduit and other smallish pipes.
thank you !…
thank you !…
caitlinsdad2 years ago
I hope you did your civic duty to anonymously report a downed street light.

Conduit bending is an art, I think you need to compensate for tubing stretch and compression to calculate the proper cut length for the desired circle. It's marked on the conduit bender.

Most people would have put in a UV LED array. You can get a tan while exposing your PCB to print.

And...you left a girlfriend sleeping alone in the middle of the night to go scavenging? You are a crazy man.
MonkiMan2 years ago
It was even a perfect idle dreamer wearing a hat flowers, wonderfully crazy sentence!
randofo2 years ago
Nice. How long can you tolerate to use this for?
prank (author)  randofo2 years ago
your question does not compute good sir