The majority of the lamp is made of 1/4" and 1/2" Baltic Birch plywood. I love using this stuff to make things - a quick skim of my other instructables will confirm that! It's strong and stable and easy to cut - and it's made of a renewable resource! What's not to love? Wood dowels serve as the joints. The springs and socket were stolen from two old lamps; one skillfully located at a thrift store by my wife, and the other was just taking up space in my house (and also "donated" by my wife). The LED lamp draws just 3W to produce 180 lumens, enough to illuminate a small work area. It was bought at DealExtreme, but nearly any LED bulb with an integrated reflector would work just as well.
Total cost for this project was $25-$30.
Now, you may be thinking, "Hey - this looks ideal for a laser cutter or CNC machine!" Well, you're right. At the moment my designs need a bit of work so they're actually compatible with an automated system - anyone willing to do the conversion? There's a 3-month pro membership for the first person who does!
So, have you got access to a scroll saw and drill press? That's pretty much all you need to make this awesome lamp!
UPDATE: KChappers generously converted my designs to .dwg, .dxf and .cdr formats for your CNC, laser cutter and 3D rendering pleasure. Thanks so much!!
Step 1: The Design
When designing the lamp, I took measurements from an existing lamp I use at my workbench. I noticed that all of the "arms" are made of equal-length sections, connected by triangular "joints." This made the design relatively easy - just two parallelograms with a "shoulder" at the base, an "elbow" in between, and a "wrist" where the arm connects to the reflector. Indeed, you will notice that is exactly how I labeled the parts.
In addition, there's the base and various spacers.
Everything is designed to be cut out of either 1/4" or 1/2" plywood. Since there are many identical parts, you can stack the 1/4" wood and cut it in pairs. Not only is this faster, it also ensures that the joints are precisely aligned (this is important for the arms and joints especially).
The patterns are intended to be printed out on 11x17" paper - if you don't have this capability at home, any business supply store or print shop will be able to print the patterns for you. I printed mine at work.
Also note that you may need to modify the design of the reflector section to suit the lightbulb socket you've got - the diameter may need to be increased or decreased, for example.
Included below are the preliminary patterns - I plan to clean them up soon, to make the whole thing easier to build!
A HUGE thanks to instructables user KChappers, who cleaned up, organized and converted my designs into .dwg .dxf and .cdr for me!