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"Simple" conversion of metal lamp to use touch switch

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This was intended to be my entry for the weekly switch challenge but it took 3 weeks for the switch i ordered on Amazon to be delivered so I missed the deadline but thought I'd go ahead and post this anyway.

Last summer I bought a chrome metal lamp at a garage sale for 5 bucks.    I really liked the chrome.   It worked fine for a while but after a few months the push button switch died.   Rather than simply replace the switch, which had already been done at least once, I thought this would be the perfect lamp for a touch switch.   with a touch switch you simply touch any metal on the lamp and it'll turn on/ off as well as dim.  since every bit of this lamp is metal, it's a perfect choice.  there are several types of touch switches available.  there is one that you plug into the wall and then plug the lamp into it.   This lamp doesn't have a threaded rod down the middle so the socket wiring is isolated from the body so i wasn't sure if that would work.   There is also a touch sensor socket that you screw in and then screw your bulb into that.   This lamp has the socket recessed in to the base so the screw in socket wouldn't work.  I went with the hard wired switch replacement.

To spice up the lamp I painted the base and the underside of the metal lamp shade.  I'm reasonable certain that the paint shouldn't interfere with the touch sensor but I'm typing this before it's complete so fingers crossed......

 
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rimar20002 years ago
Interesting, thanks for sharing!
Jurassic1 year ago
What do you mean "don't play drums on it"? I'm guessing the bulb goes out and shorts the switch? Could you put a fuse in somewhere to protect it?
paqrat2 years ago
I have a couple of vintage pole lamps one has two lights the other has three. Each swich controls each of the lights independently. Would this work with them?
ARGMISTER2 years ago
I wonder if this will work with a bottle lamp? You would have to have a metal shade right?
dimtick (author)  ARGMISTER2 years ago
If your lamp has a metal base with a metal rod that connects to the socket then this will work. you don't need a metal shade. you may be limited to only being able to touch the base to turn the lamp on/off.
If you check you local hardware store there are other touch switch options that plug into the wall and then the lamp plugs into it with no need to rewire the lamp.
I didn't think it would work with this lamp but it may with yours.

I used your design. Very nice. I trained my dog to turn the light on and off. Now looking for a lamp for the other room.
Kage13302 years ago
Haha i rubbed my socks on the floor and shocked my moms touch lamp with my finger and i broke it! lol but now i have to pay :(
dimtick (author)  Kage13302 years ago
Wow. I had no idea that static electricity could fry the thing. This is my first time using a touch sensor. My house is all hardwood floors so hopefully no static :)
I would suggest one of the plug sensors but since your lamps switch is bad that probably won't work will it? Switch is $10 which isn't to bad. Just learn from my lesson and study the wiring before hooking it up so u don't fry the switch like I did :)
dsundström2 years ago
Oh how i wish we had Home Depot in this country. Sweden seems devoid of such kits. Not even the pro shops have them.
dimtick (author)  dsundström2 years ago
Can you order stuff from amazon? the first switch I got, I ordered online.
Of course i can. I just didn't think of it. You wrote it out plain for all to see, but somehow i missed it. The first kit is already on its way. Thanks.
Spokehedz2 years ago
This is SUCH a little nit-pick... Honestly, I feel bad for even mentioning it... But it is 'cord' not 'chord'.

One is a length of small wire/string, and the other is a grouping of complimentary notes on a musical instrument.

Everything is else is totally awesome though!
dimtick (author)  Spokehedz2 years ago
Thank you!
I can't spell to save my life. I've become dependednt on spell checker. If I type a word that's an actual word then I'm screwed.
by day I'm an architect, I'm trying to think how many projects I wrote chord, rather than cord? dozens, at least
:)
jongscx dimtick2 years ago
Oh goodness... isn't "Chord of Wood" also a building supply unit of measurement?
doughnut432 years ago
I have two made- in-China lamps that I like but I continually have problems with the switches. This sounds like an idea I need to try. The big thing that struck me though is the ongoing problems I have with switches on vacuum cleaners, appliances and tools. They just don't last anymore. Makes me wonder what kind of fire hazard todays electrical components are creating.
chief tyrol2 years ago
Awesome job. My grandparents had one of these types of lamps in their house, and I always loved it. Had I known making one was this simple I'd have done it long ago!
dimtick (author)  chief tyrol2 years ago
Thanks.
i recommend that if your lamp can handle it, that you use either the socket touch sensor or the plug in one. neither of those require any wiring at all. i didn't think those would work with this lamp which is why i went with the hard wired option which was also pretty easy once i figured out what i was doing
:)
acceptserg2 years ago
very interesting ^)