This suspended lamp system consists of 4 cables connected to a wooden centerpiece. Four bulbs on lantern cables are threaded through holes in the wooden centerpiece.
This design is perfect for defining a space while also keeping the area airy.
Step 1: Building the Base
- Shopbot (or band saw + drill press)
- Lasercutter (or an amazingly patient and skillful artist)
- 1 piece of pine wood (1ft x 1ft x 1in)
- 4 metal carabiners
Instructions: Begin with a 1ft x 1ft x 1in wood base.
- I started by finding an image off the internet of a tree.
- Then I converted the file into an illustrator file.
- size the image appropriately to a 1ft square artboard, and create five inner circles (or more) that spiral and increase in size as you move clockwise around the square (as shown). Also create four corner circles (1in in diameter), one near each corner.
- As you can see, I created a square border with rounded edges.
- Next isolate the outer square border with rounded edges, the five inner circles, and the four corner circles in a separate layer and create a new file out of this new layer.
- I had access to a shopbot, and began by cutting out the border, inner and corner circles with the shopbot. I wouldn't suggest making sharp edges (squares) on the shopbot, since the machine seems to be better with rounded shapes.
- Once you have cut out the circles and the border, bring the base to a lasercutter, and vector engrave the design appropriately. I suggest isolating just the tree without a border or inner or corner circles, so that if you line up the image with the border incorrectly, it will be difficult for others to tell.
- Vector engrave your design on both sides.
- Finally hook the 4 carabiners through the corner circles.
- Congratulations! You finished the base!
Step 2: Maze Clips
- 3D printer
- Clear PLA
- As you can see from the maze design I aimed to create a clip that I could thread wires through, and that would hold these wires in place.
- On Illustrator: I began with a circle 1in diameter. Then I created smaller and smaller concentric inner circles. Next I connected the inner circles with lines radiating outwards. Finally I deleted certain parts to create a path for the wires to follow.
- For 3D printer settings:
- I would first begin by making the height of the piece 0.5in
- less than standard infill: 7%
- standard shells: 3 shells
- experiment until you find settings that with both allow the 3D printer to successfully print your object, and create an object that is also flexible.
- Create at least 16 of these maze clips. (print time should be around 5-10min per clip)
Step 3: The Metal Wire Coords & Hanging
- Metal Wire Cord. (approximately 1/8 in diameter) The amount depends on the room you want to build this structure in.
- String (a lot of it). to measure the amount of metal cord you will need.
- At least 1 adjustable metal double hook.
- A friend to help you measure the metal cords.
- 4 carabiners
8 ferrule loops
kickstomp shear (or proper wire cutters)
- Begin by defining fours hooks in four corners of the room.
- Overestimate the amount of string you will need, and cut four lengths for each corner of the room. Tie each of your four pieces of string to four corner circles of the wooden base.
- Ask a friend to hold the base at the height you desire while you loop each piece of string through the closest hooks in the corners of the room. Tighten, adjust, and finally tie each string to its respective hook. Test this system by asking your friend to let go of the base. the base should be suspended at the height you want by four taunt strings.
- Next measure four pieces of metal wire coord according to the respective lengths of string. Be sure to cut longer wire (by 6in at least) than you need. You can use the kickstomp shear, or proper wire cutters. I would suggest using proper wire cutters.
- Ask your friend to hold the wooden base in the correct position (hopefully in the center of the room), and set the wire on the ground next to its respective corner circle.
- Crimping Process: Take one piece of wire. At the end closest to the corner circle thread a ferrule loop 2in down the wire. Loop the wire into the carabiner in the corner circle. Thread the end of the wire into the other side of the ferrule loop and use the crimper to secure the ferrule loop. Repeat this process with the four other wires, but only crimp the ends near the wooden base.
- Next loop the wire through the nearest hook (1 wire per hook), and crimp once taunt (its easier said than done). Repeat with the two other wires, but stop before the last wire.
- With the last wire attach the adjustable metal double hook to the hook on the room. Then adjust the length of the last wire accordingly, loop the end of the wire around the end of the adjustable double hook and crimp once taunt. Now the wooden base should be suspended by the metal wires. Tighten the adjustable double hook to make the wires taunt.
- Great! You have now finished the main structure of your hanging lamp!
Step 4: Final Setup: Lantern Cables
- 4 black lantern cables (with on/off switches)
- 4 light bulbs (You decide the type! But I would suggest dim bulbs since there are no bulb covers.)
- 4 extension coords
- A friend (same one if possible)
- Begin by threading the lantern cables through the inner circles of the wooden base.
- Attach the bulbs, and position them in a spiral as desired. Begin securing the bulbs in place by attaching a maze clip through a carabiner closet to the corner circles, the lantern cable, and the metal wire (tighten).
- Attach extension coords to each of the lantern coords, then space four maze clips on the wire & lantern cable so that two are tightly held near either end of the carabiner, and two are evenly spaced between them.
- Adjust as desired.
- Congratulations, you have set up your hanging lamp system!