Jar on a Log

Introduction: Jar on a Log

About: I just love to make things! I really don't care what it is.

This instructable is being made in retrospect. Thus, I don't have a ton of pictures of the creation process. However, I will do my best to explain how I made, and how you can make your very own "Jar On A Log".

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Step 1: Materials

I am very fond of using materials that I have on hand for projects. Not necessarily for the sake of recycling, although that is nice; but mostly for the sake of my budget. So here is the materials list:

1. An old lamp to dissect. (I used a little 40w 120v desk light)
2. A log
3. A jar with a lid
4. Polyurethane
5. Fabric for the base
4. Glues of various kinds, but mostly wood glue.

Some tools that are helpful, but not necessary:

1. a router
2. a chop saw
3. A power drill with a paddle bit

Step 2: Preparing the Base

Really the first step is to dissect your lamp to retrieve basic components, such as the light socket and the light switch. However, since this process will be different for each lamp I will not mention it here.

To make your base you will want a log with a width that looks good to you. Symmetry is not very important in this project, so I did not take many detailed measurements. I think I even mounted my light bulb a little off center, but more on that later.

Pick a log that appears to have a tight grain and minimal cracks. I just got a log from the firewood stack, so I have no idea what kind of wood it is.

Cut a couple inches off the end of your log so as to get past any surface cracking or discoloration. My log ended up having some really unique insect lines and holes in it that really add character to the wood.

Then cut a ring off about an inch in thickness. (again I did not measure, just an eyeball estimate) I used a chop saw for this, but you could do it with chainsaw or band saw as well. Heck, if you want to you could use a hand saw.

Next make sure the base sits level on a flat surface without any wobbling. Sand and file to workout any rough edges.

Next take your router or power drill, if like me, your router bits are no sharper than a butter knife. Bore out a hole with a paddle bit of an appropriate size for your light socket. I put the hole roughly in the center of the base.

Since I was using a drill and cold chisel to get my hole the right size I ended up making it to large, which made glueing the light socket in harder later on.

You also should route out a groove for you wire to run under the base with causing it to wobble. I did not have a router in useful condition, so again I used my drill. To do this I simply clamped a 2x4 to my base and drilled a hole in between them to create the groove.

You should now have a base ready for finishing and adding the hardware!

Step 3: Finishing the Base

I just applied three coats of polyurethane to my base to give it a little sheen and to bring out the grain of the wood. I applied the poly more heavily on the sides of the base where the bark had been (it fell off) so as to smooth it out somewhat.

Step 4: Hardware Installation

Yay!! Now we are ready to install the light socket and add the jar!

First insert your light socket into its hole in the base and arrange all the wires to their intended positions. Make sure all your wires are insulated well. (I wrapped all wire splices in electric tape just to make sure)

Next, glue! Like I said previously I had an erroneous amount of extra space surrounding the place I want my socket to be placed. So after a little experimentation, I used lots of hot glue to fill in the cracks and secure the socket. It worked gloriously. Although I would probably use silicone if I were to do it again.

Now onto the jar.

If you have a two piece jar lid then no worries, just scrap the center of the lid and glue the outer piece around your socket.
If you have a one piece lid you will need to bore out the center of the lid so that it encompasses your light socket.

I also put some felt on the bottom of the base to make it more user friendly.

After this all you have to do is screw your light bulb and jar on, plug your light up, and enjoy. Satisfaction is yours.

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    2 Discussions


    5 years ago

    Thanks! Glad to hear you got the bill passed. :)


    5 years ago

    That is very cool! Better-half approved, so I can get unquestioned garage time. LOL