Pipe Lamp




Introduction: Pipe Lamp

About: I'm a full stack web developer focusing on security and privacy.

A few weeks ago on Boing Boing, they showed off some pipe lamps being sold on etsy. At 200 bucks each i figured i could make my own for a fraction of the cost and have fun doing so.

These lamps are functional and cheap! it cost 30 bucks to make one lamp.

GENERAL WARNING: Although this project involves very little steps it does involve AC power. Please use caution when doing projects using AC outlet power. If you are not comfortable with simple wire soldering and heat shrinking, please use caution with this project.

Step 1: Supplies

For this instructable you will need the following, note that the pipe choices can vary depending on what kind of lamp you want.

Various sizes of galvanized pipe to build your lamp base. (i used 1/2")
1 candelabra style bulb fixture (i chose this one for it's small size)
1 candelabra bulb
AC plug with in-line roll switch
Heat shrink

tools needed:
Soldering iron

Step 2: Bulid the Lamp Base

first you want to build the lamp base and see what the final product will look like. Once you have something you like you can tighten the pipes together.

Step 3: Wire the Socket

Next fit the bulb socket into the end where you want the light to shine from. Next solder the ac plug to the socket wiring.

Heat shrink your wires afterwards for safety.

Step 4: Put the Bulb In

Lastly install the bulb and turn it on! The first time i turned it on i was sure to have a circuit breaker attached so i could avoid any problems if i did something wrong, but i didn't need it.

If you have ideas for cool and interesting lamps post them in the comments below.

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60 Discussions

Is the bulb socket threaded if not how did you install it in the coupling

Hi Big Jack, Thanks so much for the info on the pipe lamp, you did a great job and I will make some myself. Shirley Worden

Is it necessary to solder the socket?

Its very funny, i make a very similar design (Parallel universe) . Me
too used a socket for led, but a have a problem because my lamp
overheats. I will try with a Halogen Bulb.

What are those round pipe holder bracket things called? I tried looking up pipe bracket, pipe mount, and pipe holder and couldn't find them.

1 reply

How did you mount the light socket in the pipe?

BTW, great job! It looks really nice.

There's no need to stuff a plastic socket into a pipe fitting. Standard lamp pipe is 1/8" and 1/4" npt. It mates perfectly well with pipe fittings of the same size. I just use a reducer and connect a proper lamp socket.

For those who haven't discovered it yet, GrandBrass.com has the best selection of lamp parts in the universe and great pricing as well. It also has groundable sockets.

I also agree that this thing really needs at least a grommet or preferably a strain relief at the bottom. Unless it NEVER moves, this has probably cut through the insulation by now.

1 reply

it is pretty cool....i think it would look equally as good with painted pvc

I love this idea!!!

to personalize it for myself. I would have a flexible shaft on it....but I love the idea!!
TY for sharing. 8)

How did you secure the light socket inside the pipe? I've been trying to figure out how the maker of Kozo Lamps did it, and I can't figure it out! Any ideas?

Q for whoever wishes to answer.

is it NOT a good idea to use schedule 40 pipe for a lamp?
Schedule 40 pipe is that white thick walled plumbing pipe used for water
lines usually.

I'm just wondering if the lamp would get too hot for that,..

Or if it would not be stable enough(IE: be susceptible to tipping over too easily & causing problems that way)?

it would only be dangerous IF, if the insulation around the wire was penetrated exposing the bare wires....THEN, the whole lamp has the potential of being electrified.. Beyond that, I do not see how it it possible.

As long as the insulation covering the wires themselves is ok, you'll be fine

Also i don't see why he needs to join two cables. Couldn't you just run the flex right to the top of the pipe and connect it to the lamp connector