Introduction: Clarinet Lamp

A clarinet lamp is a nice touch for any musician's room.

In this instructable I will walk you though the process of creating a functioning lamp out of a clarinet.

Warning! Improper wiring of your lamp could lead to an electrical fire. Be very careful when performing these steps.

Step 1: Gathering Materials

To create your clarinet lamp you are going to need several things.

First, your tools:

  • Phillips Screwdriver
  • Cutting tool (scissors, knife, your choice)
  • If using a stock stand:
    • Hand drill
    • 1/2 inch Drill bit

Then, the raw materials:

  • Clarinet
  • Clarinet Stand
  • Light Bulb (of your choice, 60W LED suggested)
  • Lamp Kit
  • Lamp Shade
  • Electrical Tape

Items of note:

  • The Clarinet - Please do not use any instrument that is in playing condition!
    • The clarinet is a respected musical instrument. Turning one that is functional and in great shape is taking a playing opportunity away from a potential student. Retiring an old clarinet that is beyond repair is a great choice for your lamp.
    • Another option is acquiring a cheap plastic clarinet sold on sites such as Amazon or eBay. These instruments cost roughly $80 and are of such poor quality they are not recommended for use, even by students! These also have the novelty of being available in a variety of colors!
  • The Clarinet Stand
    • For this project there are a few options for the instrument stand:
      • I use a custom 3D-Printed stand which allows for the cord of the lamp to pass through without interfering with the functionality of the stand.
      • Using a stock clarinet stand
        • You may acquire this from many retailers, such as Amazon.

Step 2: Assemble the Clarinet

There are only three pieces of the clarinet that are going to be used in this lamp. those pieces are the:

  • Bell
  • Lower Joint
  • Upper Joint

If you do not know which these are, you may refer to the images shown.

To join the pieces together, align the lower and upper joints as shown, and gently push the pieces together with a slight twisting motion. The pieces are properly assembled when the bridge key from the lower joint meets with the bridge key from the upper joint (as shown).

The bell is joined in a similar manner, connecting to the bottom of the lower joint.

Step 3: Preparing the Clarinet Stand

If you have have chosen to 3D-Print your clarinet stand, there are no additional steps you need to take to prepare your stand. Simply print the file in the manner you are accustomed to using. My recommended resolution is .2mm. No supports are needed.

For those using a stock stand:

  • There are several options to prepare your stand:
    • Do nothing - It is preferred to modify the instrument stand for a clarinet lamp, but not required. Modification allows the cord to pass through the stand without interfering with its function. The cord on a unmodified stand will cause the clarinet to lean to one side, but will still be stable.
    • Drilling a hole - Drilling a hole in the stand will allow the cord to pass through the stand, keeping it out of the way of the clarinet. The instrument will be able to sit level on the stand.

Drilling the hole:

Tools Needed: Drill, 1/2 inch drill bit

  • The hole should be drilled near the base of the stand, passing as closely to the middle of the stand as possible. The picture roughly shows where you should drill your hole.

Step 4: Stringing Together the Pieces

Materials Needed: None
Tools Needed: None

Now that you have your clarinet, instrument stand, and lamp kit, it is time to bring them together.

  1. First, pass the exposed ends of the wire up through the bottom of the instrument stand.
  2. Pass the exposed ends of the wire up through the bell of the clarinet.
  3. Pull the ends of the wire through the top of the upper joint of the clarinet.
  4. Push the ends through the bottom of the socket cap.

Step 5: Wiring the Lamp

Materials Needed: None
Tools Needed: Phillip's Screwdriver

Before wiring the socket, it is important to secure the wires. This is done with an Underwriter's knot. Separate the ends of the wire approximately four inches deep. The process for tying an Underwriter's knot can be found in the picture. Leave enough free wire to attach the ends to the socket interior.

After tying the knot:

Note that there is a ridge on one of the split wires.

Note that on the socket interior there are two colored screws, one silver, one brass.

Take the wire without ridges and twist the uninsulated ends with your fingers. Wrap this end around the brass colored screw in a clockwise direction. Tighten the screw down in a clockwise direction over the wire.

Repeat this process with the portion of the wire with a ridge on the silver screw.

Step 6: Assemble the Socket

Materials Needed: None
Tools Needed: None

Push the socket cap up as far as possible towards the socket interior. You may need to manipulate the Underwriter's knot to do so.

Next take the socket shell and push it down until it snaps into the socket cap. It is secure when you cannot separate the pieces by hand.

Step 7: Securing the Wires

Materials Needed: Electrical Tape
Tools Needed: Cutting Tool (such as scissors)

It is suggested to further secure the wires so that can't be pulled out. To do this place a short piece of electrical tape (approximately 3 inches) so that it touches both the bottom of the socket cap and the wires. Fold the tape over so that the adhesive sticks to the adhesive of the rest of the tape. Wrap the rest of the tape around the socket cap and wire so that it is secure.

Step 8: Mounting the Socket to the Clarinet

Materials Needed: Electrical Tape
Tools Needed: Cutting Tool (such as scissors)

Gently pull the wires from the bottom of the clarinet until the socket cap is flush with the top of the clarinet.

Using electrical tape, wrap around both the socket and top of the clarinet. Wrap around the joint several times until the connection is secure and the socket is immobile.

Optional: For aesthetic purposes, wrap around all of the cork, making the joint one solid color.

Step 9: Finishing Touches

Many lamp kits utilize a different harp system and lamp shade. For the one pictured, simply slip it over the socket and it will be mounted.

Screw in the light bulb of your choice (I recommend a 60W LED bulb) and your lamp is finished!

Reminder! Improper wiring could lead to an electrical fire. If you have any doubt in your wiring of this lamp, please verify it before plugging it in.

Thank you for reading!

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