In this instructable, I’m converting an antique brass blowtorch into an accent lamp. I used a flicker bulb to simulate the flame that would have come out of the head of the blow torch.
I also wanted to have the electrical wiring hidden inside the torch in order to have a better finished appearance.
The old blow torch was purchased at an estate sale for ten dollars. I have roughly ten dollars in the rest of the supplies, So the entire project was completed for around twenty dollars.
Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.
Step 1: The Parts
The major parts are:
An old brass blow torch.
One 3 watt decorative flicker flame light bulb.
One 2 inch keyless candelabra light socket.
One lamp cord with inline on/off switch (white).
One rubber wire grommet.
Two twist on wire connectors.
Two feet of appropriate electrical wire (brown).
Step 2: Take It Apart
I began by disassembling the blow torch. The parts had been together for some time, and it took effort to get them apart!
Step 3: Cut the Wick Tube
The tube containing the wick was shortened to just below the threads that attach the head of the torch to the body.
Step 4: Make a Path for the Electrical Wire
The torch head should be secured in a vice, or clamped to a workbench for this process!
The wick tube was drilled out lengthwise in order to obtain a direct path for the electrical wire to travel from the bottom to the front of the torch head.
The drill bit needed to be large enough for the electrical wire to be threaded through the hole without binding.
Care was taken not to drill through the top of the torch head.
A curved file can remove sharp edges from the hole that was just drilled from the wick tube into the torch head, preventing damage to the electrical wiring.
Step 5: Attach the Socket
The brown electrical wire was pushed up through the wick tube then pulled out of torch head and attached to the socket connections.
The cardboard insulator was placed back over the socket and a layer of electrical tape was placed over the insulator. The flicker bulb was then screwed into the socket.
The bulb was installed before sliding the socket into the torch head in order to position the bulb for its best appearance. The flame-shaped filament is a profile, and if the socket is not positioned properly, the bulb will not look right.
While pushing the socket into the torch head, I pulled lightly on the other end of the electrical cord to remove any slack. Attention was paid to the location of the bulb in order to keep it positioned properly.
There was about eighteen inches of the brown wire below the bottom of the torch head assembly.
Step 6: Drill a Hole for the Wire to the Plug
A hole was drilled into the back of the blow torch just below the handle.
I used a punch and hammer to form an indent and keep the drill bit from slipping on the brass body. The rubber grommet was placed over the lamp cord before that wire was threaded into this hole. The rubber grommet is used to protect the electrical wires from the sharp edges of the hole that was drilled into blowtorch body.
Knowing that this lamp would be displayed on top of an upright freezer in the garage, I used a white lamp cord. A brown cord could have been used if that would have looked better in a different setting.
Step 7: Fishing for the Wires
I pushed the brown wires that were connected to the bulb socket into the top of the blowtorch body. The torch head was fully inserted into the brass body and screwed snug before pulling the wires out of the pump mounting hole.
Both of the electrical wires were then pulled out through the hole on the top of the blow torch body that the pressure pump screws into. I bent a bicycle spoke into a hook, and it was easy to fish both of the wires out. A wire clothes hanger would work just as well.
Step 8: Connecting the Two Wires
I cut away some of the excess brown wire that is attached to the socket.
The two sets of wires are joined with twist-on connecters. I secured the two wires together with electrical tape just below the connection. This was done to prevent any strain on the connection.
Step 9: Install the Pump... and It's Done!
The wires are then slid back into the body of the blow torch, and the pump is screwed back in place.
The rubber grommet was seated in the hole of the blowtorch body, and that was it!
I could have cleaned and polished the brass parts of the lamp. But this one is going to be displayed in my garage, so I decided against polishing and instead just did a light cleaning, leaving it with that worn and rustic appearance.
Thanks for looking!
Runner Up in the
Lamps and Lighting