Introduction: Edison Lamp Made With Wood and Faux Copper Pipe

About: My Name is Kat, and I am an avid Diy"er. I enjoy creating with my hands, and I love when an idea becomes a finished work of art. Over the years, I have taken the time to make the perfect gifts I give to l…

This is a quick and simple project that anyone can do with few tools. I have been seeing these lamps all over the place as of late, and I simply love them, so I decided to make one for myself. I decided to use PVC in this project because I have so much on hand, but this could be made from a variety of different pipe material.

Here is what you will need.


1. 1/2 " PVC (A total less than 2 feet was used in this project)

2. Four 1/2" PVC elbows

3. One 3/4" to 1/2" PVC Adapter

4. One Light socket

5. One Light Bulb ( Used an Edison bulb from Lowes)

6. One piece of wood for the base (My piece of wood measures 9 1/4" L x 5 1/4" W)

7. One Metal Floor Flange

8. Can of Rust-oleum Cooper Spray (This can be any brand)

9. One 1/2" PVC adapter with the threaded insert.

10. Four wood screws

11. Cork to cover the bottom of the light base (This is totally optional and other materials can be used like felt.)

12. Wood Finish. (Whatever wood finish you prefer - I used Johnson Paste wax)

Tools Used:

1. Circular Saw

2. Screw Driver

3. Craftsman rotary tool with a straight bit (Dremel or other brand)

4. PVC Pipe Cutters

5. Measuring Tape

6. Sander

7. Drill bits, and a 1/2" spade bit

8. Hot Glue gun (or any other glue you prefer)

Step 1: Gather Your Materials, Plan Your Design, Then Paint

I grabbed some wood cut offs, and old shop light, PVC pipe and fittings, and I started by playing around with several different designs. (The first two photos of this Instructable shows the two designs I came up with.)

I decided to make random cuts of the PVC and piece them together until I has happy with the result. If you only have limited amount of PVC to work with, then you may want to carefully plan out your design. Because I have so much of this stuff just laying around my shop, I decided to just play around with it and see where the inspiration takes me.

Because the PVC will hold together tightly without gluing, it is quite easy to switch pieces about until you come upon a design you are happy with.

Once you are set on your design, take your PVC outside or in a well ventilated area and apply the paint. I painted everything including the metal base and 4 screws that would secure the lamp to the wooden base. I used Rust-oleum Copper paint and primer in one. It dries to the touch in 30 minutes, but will be fully cured in 24 hours.

Step 2: Preparing the Base Then Stain

For the base I used a scrap piece of 1 x 6 pine that was a cut off from another project that measured approximately 9 1/4"L x 6"W. I left the length the same, but shortened the width to 5 1/4" using a tape square and my Dewalt cordless circular saw. I then gave the wood a good sanding with 220 grit sand paper being sure to only slightly round over the edges.

I placed the Metal floor flange center rear on the wood and marked the holes for drilling. After drilling the holes on the top, I turned the wood over and drilled a slightly bigger hole on the bottom with a 1/2" spade bit. (This hole is where the wire for the lamp will exit the wood, and I want to tie a knot in the wire to keep the cord taught.)

So that the cord would lay flat on the bottom, I needed to route a grove for the cord to lay in. Using my Cratsman rotary tool with a 1/4" straight bit installed, I routed a channel from the hole to the end of the board. I went only deep enough for the cord to lay flat.


I used Rust-Oleum Dark Walnut Stain (Easy to use - wipe it on, let stand for 2 to 3 minutes then wipe it off. Dries in 1 hour) After the stain dried, I went over it with paste wax to give it a smooth satiny feel.

Step 3: Preparing the Light

Take the lamp and disassemble it. In order to get the cord through the pipes, you will need to cut the wire in two. (The cord socket will not go through the 1/2" pipe so this step is a must) If you are not familiar with wiring, to make it easier on yourself, clip one wire shorter than the other, that way you will know which wire belongs where when you go to assemble the light after threading it through the pipes. (Tip: Thread the wire through each pipe individually, then secure them together, as you will never get the wire to bend around, up and down through the pipe fully assembled.)

After the wires have been fished through the pipes, you can attach the two clipped ends back together making sure they are tightly secure and no copper wire is exposed, and attach all the PVC pieces that make up the lamp together. The PVC will hold securely with out gluing.

Where the wire exists the bottom, I guided the wire through the channel, then placed a touch of hot glue on it to secure it in place. I then used some adhesive backed cork I had left from another project, and covered the bottom of the wood. Your lamp is now finished.

Install your light bulb and turn it on and watch it light up!

Step 4: Finished Project

Here is the final design. The first image was the first design I came up with, the other images are of the final design I decided to stick with.

Thank you for taking the time for looking at my tutorial. Any questions just ask!

Hand Tools Only Contest 2016

Participated in the
Hand Tools Only Contest 2016