Intro: Walnut and Aluminum Lamp
This is going to be one of my entries to the Improve Your Room Youth Design Challenge. This project was inspired by domenic3’s LED strip lamp. I decided to see if I could create something similar that suited my needs a little better.
The changes I made to Domenic’s design are as follows:
1. I decided that I wanted to have switches on the base of the lamp because I hate having to pull three feet of cord out from behind my desk to find a cord mounted switch.
2. I figured that I would want two power settings, so that the lamp can function as a reading lamp, a work lamp, or be left on for ambiance.
3. I used aluminum flat bar instead of aluminum extrusion because that is what I had on hand and I can tend to control the bending better.
4. I wanted to leave the power supply exposed because I simply love the look of it! I really enjoy being able to see all of the circuitry through the slots.
Some parts of making the lamp were a bit tricky. Getting the curves to look right together took a long time. Making the walnut base fit seamlessly to the power supply was tedious. All of the wiring was very difficult to fit into such a small space.
Because of the materials I had on hand, I decided to go for an Industrial sort of look. I already had the power supply, the aluminum, the nuts and bolts, the toggle switches, the wire, and the LED strips on hand. I got the wood from the construction shop in my school. So the only things purchased for this project were the lamp cord and the rubber grommet, totalling about $4.
The thing that really made this lamp turn out well was all the finishing touches. I sanded the walnut down with a very fine grit sandpaper, and then oiled it to make the grain pop. I gave the aluminum bars a matte finish with a vibrating palm sander. The bolts that hold the arms to the base were polished on a belt sander to remove all of the engraved numbers. Then, finally, the bottom of the lamp was enclosed with a piece of sheet steel, with three rubber feet attached to keep the lamp from wobbling.
The switch on the large arm turns on the power supply along with the corresponding LEDs. The switch on the small arm turns on the attached LEDs and only works if the other switch is on as well. The power supply comes on instantly and dies out slowly, producing a very interesting effect.
I really enjoyed designing and building this project, and I hope that you like it too! Thanks for reading!