Instructables
Picture of Tin Can Reading Lamp
A good reading light is hard to find. I don't find regular table lights with shades comfortable for my eyes, halogens are too hot and harsh, indirect light is too diffuse... This lamp, using tin cans, a 3w LED bulb and a few simple materials and tools give you just the right amount of light, exactly where you need it. Could not be more efficient or restful for your eyes, especially when you turn off all the other lights. Cheap to make and to run (the same number of watts as regular incandescent night lights!) and cute in a WallE sort of way.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
DSC_0047.JPG
Two clean 16 oz. cans
One 24" gooseneck pipe
One 1/8 IPS threaded pipe (approximately 4 1/2")
One edison socket with a 90 degree 1/8F cap
One toggle switch
Two female connectors (1/2" or 1/4" pieces of pipe threaded on the inside)
Electric wire and plug (I used an old unused extension cord I had hanging around, and for inside the lamp, when I found the extension cord too thick to wire easily, I cut up an extra computer power cord I had and used the smaller wires from that).
One weighted base
An LED JRD bulb
Not pictured in the group photo, but important nonetheless, a small rubber ring to protect the electrical cord as it enters the can.
Also forgotten in the group picture, you'll need 2 or 3 wire connectors

I tried to use as many items as possible from old, broken lights and appliances (including the light base -- it had been in my closet for years waiting for its turn to shine...) but some things I got from
www.GrandBrass.com
and the light I got from
www.donsgreenstore.com
Hurry, though, because Don is selling off his inventory and moving on to other things... you'll be able to find similar lights elsewhere, but you won't find such a good deal.
nosemeat5 years ago
This looks great! btw, where did you get that 24" gooseneck?
belsey (author)  nosemeat5 years ago
I got it here
sorry could u put a link cause the ref link u got for some reason wont open for me
belsey (author)  guysmilez1 year ago
Guess that link expired... Try this one
belsey (author)  belsey1 year ago
Hmm, that doesn't seem to work either, so cut and paste this into your browser: http://www.grandbrass.com/catalog.cfm?category=Pipe&subcategory=Flexible%20(Goose%20Neck)%20Pipe
awesome yeah for some reason my chrome browser wont launch the embeded links but the paste worked thank you again. hopefully they will sell by roll thats what im trying to get ;-)
sebovespa4 years ago
good idea. in malays we say "idea bagus"
Congratulations on being featured on ABC News!
moisture5 years ago
Hi Belsey, I missed this in your instructions and I was curious: how did you weight your lamp's base? Also, I remember from the comments on the fire lamp instructable, there's supposedly a need to ground the metal frame. Any short circuit in your wiring (however unlikely) will then knock out your house's fuse rather than turning the whole lamp hot. I think that's the rationale, anyway.

I looked at your website and saw the clarinet lamp; wow, this site would go berserk if you posted that. It looks great. I think you should make another. If I come across a musical instrument, I'm going to do it.
I made a clarinet lamp about a decade ago. I found an old clarinet at a garage sale. The fingering was an old German style that is not used, so my kids couldn't use it. I put it horn side down on a black cermac disk. I got the lamp shade at a thrift store. Now...what I really want to make is a Leg Lamp just like the one from The Christmas Story. Anyone have any ideas???
belsey (author)  moisture5 years ago
I didn't weight the base -- that was a part I scavenged from an old broken lamp someone had thrown out. Keep your eyes open and I'm sure you'll be able to find parts, or else brass lamps (the web link is on the instructable) also carries them. Yes, I did think about grounding the lamp. It would be quite easy, just use the piece of wire with the 3 prong plug left over from your computer power cord, strip the end of the green wire and wrap it around the treaded pipe inside the base can so the wire will stay in contact even when you screw on the weighted base. I chose not to because a three prong plug can sometimes be a pain to plug in: most extension cords are 2 prong. But grounding it would definitely be safer and it's easy to do. I am fond of my clarinet lamp, but I didn't think it would make a great instructable because the whole thing depends on finding the instrument. It's not a project which can be reproduced easily. I'm glad you like it though. Good luck finding an old broken clarinet!
pjean5 years ago
This is adorable! Great project to do with my kids.
JellyWoo5 years ago
great job! won't this get overheated?
belsey (author)  JellyWoo5 years ago
Not if you use this LED bulb. After a few hours of use the can is just pleasantly warm to the touch. I wouldn't use a halogen or regular incandescent bulb with this light because they would definitely make it burning hot.
JellyWoo belsey5 years ago
oh, okay, thanks for the help.
mweston5 years ago
Simple yet elegant... Very well done!
ha ha very nice.
bumpus5 years ago
Very well done! I especially like the head-board in the last picture, rather rustic-modern. :D
mg0930mg5 years ago
Awesome Job! I will try to get the stuff to make this soon.
shooby5 years ago
Nice work.
Daur-Celt5 years ago
Awesome... Kinda of industrial meets recycling. Nice clear cut 'ible. I will definitely be for making this one.