Introduction: Bat-signal Night Lamp

Want to contact Batman for help? Do the Joker and Bane scare you at night? then this Bat-signal is a perfect night-lamp for you! This is a low-powered replica of the bat signal which can be used as a small night lamp at home. A fun and exciting project to do for all batman fans!

PS: the Bat-signal is a distress call by commissioner Gordon of the Gotham city police department. It is used as a method of contacting Batman.

Step 1: Materials

  • Empty cardboard roll
  • Glue
  • Foil - aluminium or tin
    Silver paint
  • Butter paper/ Tracing sheets
  • Black paper sheets
  • Scissor and blade
  • black acrylic paint
  • permanent marker
  • a light-bulb holder with a low wattage light-bulb
  • a long wire with a plug
  • empty small plastic bottle (as stand)
  • electrical insulating tape
  • empty matchbox - small
  • another box (as base)
  • Enthusiasm!

Step 2: Cutting the Cardboard Roll

To make the body of this lamp, i've used an empty cardboard roll of a scotch bottle. but honestly, anything will do! you can use a pringles box, an empty shuttlecock box, or anything that comes to your mind. Plastic bottles should not be used as they may melt due to the heat, hence stick to cardboard rolls.

on the cardboard roll, demarcate one side as the top and one side as the base. then cut out small strips of cardboard as shown in the above images. you can use a blade/craft knife to cut cardboard.

After cutting out the strips i peeled off the shiny glossy outer coat to reveal the brown cardboard below.

Step 3: Gluing the Silver Foil

This is a time-consuming step. cut out strips of foil and slowly start gluing them to the cut-out cardboard roll. This helps in adding a metallic feel to it.


If you have metallic silver paint, you can even paint the roll silver. however, I made do with what I had.

Step 4: Adding the Butter Paper and Black Strip

This is mainly to diffuse the light from the light source and provide even illumination.

  • Place your cardboard roll on butter paper/ tracing sheets and trace the circumference of the roll. then slowly start cutting slightly away from the circle marked. Make sure you cut about 1 cm away from the marked circle ( this is so that we have little extra paper which will be used to stick it to the roll).
  • Then cut out wide strips of butter paper to cover the strips of cardboard that you cut. (You can cut out one single piece of butter paper which will cover all the strips). make sure you stick these strips of butter paper from the inside and press them nicely to the cardboard. Use as much glue as necessary as this is an important step. Be very neat while sticking butter paper, as this adds to the aesthetic appeal of the night-lamp.

Tip - if you can't find butter paper you can use normal white paper sheets. They look equally good.

  • Cut out a long 1-cm wide strip of black craft paper and glue it around the circumference on the top. This covers the untidy area where we stuck our butter paper.
    Also glue a rectangular piece of black craft paper to one of the sides- this acts as the base of our generator (which we'll add later).

  • Cut out the bat silhouette from black craft paper and leave it aside. Stick this only when your whole lamp body is ready. ( I did the mistake of sticking it earlier).
    I've used one from Dark Knight , because lets face it, it is the sexiest silhouette ever!

Step 5: Preparing the Back

My cardboard roll itself came with a lid. hence, I used that lid as my back lid. Cut a big hole in the centre of the lid to place the bulb-holder. after cutting, cover the circumference with electrical insulating tape to prevent any leakage of current (just an extra safety precaution).

After this, paint the lid black on both sides using black acrylic paint.

Step 6: Attaching the 'generator'

A generator appears below the bat-signal projector in the movie, hence I've added it too just for authenticity.

Take two matchbox trays and stick them end to end. Then invert them and cover them black. apply glue to the edges of these trays and stick them onto the cardboard roll ( on the black paper patch we put in step 4).

optional step - Take a big piece of black craft paper and cut it into a rectangle slightly bigger than the matchbox tray generator. This acts as a cover for our generator. Glue this onto the matchbox and press the ends properly.

Step 7: Making the Stand and the Base

To make the stand i used a small sized energy drink bottle. i cut it up and used only the base. make sure to cut it diagonally so that the lamp gets a little incline (refer to pictures).
Then paint it black using acrylic paint and glue it to the cardboard roll ( below the matchbox 'generator').

To make the base I used a small box and painted it black. Then simply stick the stand to the base using lots of glue and your body is done!

Step 8: Electrical Work and Final Lamp!

Attach the wire to the bulb holder on one end and to a plug on the other. for my night-lamp I've used a small 10 watt bulb- this is to prevent a chance of overheating. You can also use an LED bulb.

You can also make the whole night-lamp battery powered.

do vote for it in the glue contest! :)

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