Step 9: Gluing

It's important to know where to put glue, and where not to glue.  Otherwise, the arm may never move!  Assuming that everything went well at the assembly stage, partially disassemble the lamp by removing the base and the reflector.

Glue the reflector "fingers" by applying glue to all of the mating surfaces.  Wipe off any excess glue.  The shape of this piece makes it hard to clamp.  But fear not!  Grab some twist-ties (or solid core wire, in a pinch) and use one or two per finger to hold the finger tightly to the ring.  The light fixture will not be glued in until the wire has been run.

Next, glue in the "toes" to the base.  This is pretty straightforward, remove one toe at a time, apply glue to mating surfaces, and slide together again.  If the toes fit loosely, make sure they are all coplanar and the base sits level.  Prop or reorient the base as it dries if necessary.  Make sure to wipe up any excess glue before it dries.

When the "toes" are dry, glue the "counterweight" to the bottom of the base.  Note that this isn't necessary if the base will be clamped to the table.

And now, for the arm itself.  The general rule to follow is to only glue the 1/2" dowel to the outer-most arm piece.  Remember, these joints must swivel!  Gluing the outermost pieces only ensures that the arm won't fall apart.  Set the arm on its side and remove arm sections until the tops of the dowels are exposed.  Apply glue to the inside edges of the arm or joint pieces, following the rule above, the slide them on.  Doing it this way will ensure that any glue squeeze-out is pushed out where it can be wiped up, rather than into the joint.

Flip the arm over and do the same thing.  Check each joint to make sure the pieces are pressed together.

Now glue the arm onto the base.  Again, apply glue to the mating surfaces, and slide together.

The dowels are last. Take the dowels from the upper arms, and glue the 1/4" pieces in the exact centers of the 1/2" pieces. You'll then have two dowels, one with a 1/2" long section glued to the middle, and one with a 1" section glued to the middle.  The first of these is glued in place to the 1/2" thick arm, closest to the elbow.  The second piece is centered and glued to the parallel straight arms, closest to the "wrist."  Make sure the notches cut into these dowels face away from each other, so they are able to hold the springs. 

Last are the dowels that hold the springs for the "upper arm," between the shoulder and elbow.  On one half, glue in place a 1/2" long drilled out dowel.  The exact position of the piece glued to the parallel arms will depend on the length of the springs.  Now, apply glue to the dowels themselves, slide them halfway through the holes, and slip on the springs.  Push the dowel in the rest of the way to lock the springs in place.  This part is rather fiddly, and a pair of needle nose pliers might be helpful.

Once all of the glued joints are dry, sand them to remove any glue residue that might remain.  If any of the dowels stick out a bit, you may sand them down or cut them flush with a fine saw, or leave them alone.  But, if protruding dowels prevent the arm from moving, you'll need to trim them flush.
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You know those children's puzzles you can buy that are made from sheet wood and you can punch out the pieces to make dinosaurs or whatever? You could make a kit like that but for this lamp and sell it!
Cool idea! But I have no time for that at the moment.<br><br>I give you permission to go ahead with your idea. :)
<p>Does anyone know how to convert this to a wall mounted lamp? Would reversing the lamp in the base allow the lower spring to be above the arm, so that it supports its weight rather than pulling the lamp further towards the floor?</p>
<p>oh, sorry</p>
<p>LOL, having trouble with comments?</p><p>The lamp uses just 1/4&quot; and 1/2&quot; wood. The images in Step 1 show what pieces to make from what thicknesses.</p>
<p>Sorry, I think I missed how to tell which pieces are on 1/4 inch and which are on 1/2 inch birch?</p>
<p>Sorry, I think I missed how to tell which pieces are on 1/4 inch and which are on 1/2 inch birch?</p>
<p>Sorry, I think I missed how to tell which pieces are on 1/4 inch and which are on 1/2 inch birch?</p>
<p>This is by far my favorite instructable I've dound so far but sorry, I probably missed something, but how can you tell which pieces are 1/8 inch and which are 1/4 inch Baltic Birch?</p>
<p>This is by far my favorite instructable I've dound so far but sorry, I probably missed something, but how can you tell which pieces are 1/8 inch and which are 1/4 inch Baltic Birch?</p>
<p>This is by far my favorite instructable I've dound so far but sorry, I probably missed something, but how can you tell which pieces are 1/8 inch and which are 1/4 inch Baltic Birch?</p>
<p>This is by far my favorite instructable I've dound so far but sorry, I probably missed something, but how can you tell which pieces are 1/8 inch and which are 1/4 inch Baltic Birch?</p>
<p>very excellent!!</p>
Just finished most of mine! Great little build! Thanks for the instructable!!!
<p>I just realized I forgot to reply. Very nice work - laser cut wood?</p>
<p>Very, very nice!</p><p>Woodpunk, I like it!,</p><p>Wood as most of us here know is easy to work with and cheap. I plan on soon going into knifemaking as a hobby, and as a teenager, I really don't have a shop. I am into architecture a little bit, and was wondering what style I should build my workshop in. I plan on making a few of these lamps and putting them around my shop, along with 'keeping the theme'. Thank you very much!</p>
<p>What style workshop? Whatever you like! My workshop is actually very boring. Just lots of workspace and cupboards.</p>
<p>amazing </p>
might want to source the light from another vendor... deal extreme takes forever.
Indeed they do. I have since replaced the bulb you see in the instructions with a nice one made by Philips, bought from Home Depot. I'm actually using the lamp daily at work.
www. ic station.com has done good selections as well and shipping is consistently approx two weeks
<p>That is good desk light .</p>
<p>So many shiny medals! such a detailed instructable Good Work!</p>
I've downloaded the DXF files and they look awesome (as does your total lamp design!) but question:...What are the notches for? Do they clamp to opposite ended to ratchet when attached? And the rectangles out of the circles? What are those vectors in there for?
I think you can ignore the notches. The rectangles indicate a hole that needs to be drilled through the side of the piece. PRO TIP: cut those pieces out as squares, do the side drill, then finish the circular cut around the circumference.
Thanks bro! I'mma throw it on my cnc machine and cut it for ease. I have a drill vise to drill those pieces after they are cut
...see attached picture I've attached
Here are some DXF files that can be imported into CAM program. The vectors are all closed so the toolpaths can be added easily. The they are organized by 1/2 inch parts and 1/4 inch parts. The units are inches.
JEFF - Hi - KChappers posted the .dxf and .dwg files for yourLED desk lamp a while back ( along while) I am having trouble downloading these files - any tricks to it ? I am new to the instructables site and was not sure if there was some steps I was missing - I teach high school woodshop and just got a laser cutter for the shop. this would be an awesome project to show its capabilities - any help would be much appreciatiated. Thanks !
I'll probably sound really dumb, but where do you buy Baltic Birch Plywood? I can't find it at Home Depot. Do I have to order the wood online? Or is it at arts and crafts stores?
Check the yellow pages for a lumber supplier, specifically one that sells wood to furniture makers. If the city you live in is large enough, it will likely have more than one big-box hardware store, too. Check them all!
Hi! I saw this mentioned on popular mechanics, (http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/how-to-plans/woodworking/8-diy-gifts-for-friends-and-family?click=pp#slide-1)<br><br> and I have access to my schools laser cuter. (Trotec speedy 100) I am extremely interested in this project and think it is an amazing idea. I have autocad and am planning on designing this in the program for cutting with 1/4&quot; wood and will just glue identical pieces together were 1/2&quot; is required. I had a few questions though. How easily does it tip over? Maybe I missed this, but are there dimensions anywhere? I reeeeely need these to be able to make the file. If I finish the file I will gladly upload it. I realize that someone else has already uploaded a file, but it is not to scale. Thanks for helping everyone!
Awesome! I didn't know my project got a mention on popular mechanics! <br><br>Yup, definitely cut from1/4&quot; wood and glue together as you've said. The bottom half of the arm can be extended up to 90 degrees with respect to the table, after that the lamp begins to tip. If you made the base heavier then you could extend it further.<br><br>There are templates in five different formats. My originals fit on 11x17 paper, to give you an idea of scale. So, the .pdf and .ai files are 1:1 scale.
I just go back from staples and got the sheets printed out. It was only $1.30 :-) I will start making the files over break and will upload them when I am done.
To confirm that the sizing is correct, is the length of one of the arms from end to end 14 5/8&quot; long?
Yup, that is correct! I measured it on the model I built.
I have everything traced out but I need a few measurements. What is the length or the counter weight and how long are the reflectors if measured directly from one end to the other. Also, are all of the whole that are drawen in the exact size, so if I cut it out with the lazer it will be just as big as if I drilled it?<br><br><br>
The counterweight is about 6.75&quot; long. The length is not overly critical, and you could even stretch it to add weight. The reflector &quot;fingers&quot; are a bit over 9&quot; long.<br><br>The only holes whose diameter matters are the joints; they are supposed to be 1/2&quot;. All the others are just for show, so if they look about right then they'll be fine. You might want to measure the diameter of the wood dowel used for the joints since 1/2&quot; wood dowel can vary a little bit, especially when choosing between softwood and hardwood dowel.
Where did you measure the fingers from? Also I notice that there is a smaller hole on the wrist, shoulder, one of the reflectors and on two of the spacers. What sizes are these holes?<br><br>
ok I figured out the fingers, but I still need the answer to what size the small holes are.. I also have a new question.. were the arms designed to be 15 inches because my program says they are, but the print is 14 5/8&quot; other than that everything it to scale except for the base
The holes for the wrist are smaller; though I forget what size I drilled them. They are large enough for a large machine screw. Max 1/4&quot;, though 3/16 is probably correct. <br><br>The critical dimention on the arms is the distance between the pivot holes. Mine are 12.5&quot;.
thanks! ok figured it all out... how do I send the file to you?<br>
How much did you pay for the led? I also got the file done .... how do I send it to you?
I think it was $13 or so. There are lots of different bulbs available at www.dx.com, though stock is improving at most hardware stores as well (though they are more expensive). I'll send you a PM regarding the file!
The procces of assembaling the lap has begun! and man does it look awsome. I will send you a picture of it compleated,but I still need to...<br>Put a finish on it.<br>Glue the parts.<br>Find lead for the counterweight.<br>Buy a mount for the bulb.<br>Recut one of the arms
I`m done! :-) I am waiting for the light to be shipped to my house and then I will post the pictures.
Its done! Here are the photos.

About This Instructable


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Bio: By day, Jeff is the Jack of All Robots at Clearpath Robotics. By night, a mad scientist / hacker / artist / industrial designer wannabe!
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