Steampunk Ceiling Light

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96 mounted 4


Next I wanted to make a ceiling lamp for the guest bedroom.

5 light base

I am going to use this base from an old globe. I will use this as the base for the ceiling light.

6 light arm concept

The concept is to create three wooden arms that will mount to the base. One will hold the bulb inside the glass sphere shown here. The other two will point back towards the sphere.

1 Light forearms taper cut

First I taper cut some oak that will create the three forearms.

2 light forearms router

The edges were notched using a router. All of the arm edges will have quarter inch brass rod inlaid  as shown here.

The upper arm of each were cut and notched as well. The upper arms were not tapered.

7 making base blocks

Then wood blocks were cut that will be mounted to the base and be the attachment points for the arms.

8 base blocks mounted

The blocks mount with 1/4 inch screws to the base.

9 Steel base block

For the lamp arm I decided to remake the the block from steel. The lamp will be much more heavy. Thought the oak block might split from the pressure.

11 arms mounted12 arms mounted

These are two views of the upper arms mounted to the base.

13 forearms trimmed to size

The two forearms that will not support the lamp were trimmed down and rounded to shape.

14 measuring for length

I used a paper tube the same diameter as the lamp sphere to figure out where to mount the forearms.

15 steam up forearms

The forearms were drilled. Some gears were added to steampunk it up a bit.

16 Arms mounted with brass

This is a close up of the arms mounted to the base with brass plates.

17 Forearms and arms mounted

Brass plates were also used to attach the two forearm pieces.

18 Forearms and arms

This is another view.

19 Lamp forearm

The forearm for the lamp was pre-drilled to accept a 1/8 NPS threaded lamp rod.

A 1/8 inch copper plate will be used to mount the rod to the forearm.

24 lamp mounting plate 3

Here the copper plate has been cut to size ready to be attached.

25 lamp mounting plate 4

The lamp rod mounted to the forearm.

26 lamp housing and socket 127 lamp housing and socket 2

A  1 and 3/4 inch piece pf copper tubing will be used to mount the bulb socket to the lamp forearm.

28 lamp housing bracket

This lamp washer and the copper tube were drilled to accept brackets that will hold the washer to the tube.

32 housing brackets29 lamp housing bracket 131 lamp housing bracket 2

Quarter inch brass flat stock was used to create the brackets.

33 Lamp housing bracket 3

The brackets attach at the edge.

34 lamp housing mounted 1

The lamp socket mounted to the lamp rod.

35 lamp housing mounted 2

A view of the lamp housing from below.


I did some more work on Sunday. I have started to work on the finish surfaces as well as the mount for the glass globe.

36 Base blocks painted

Here the base mounting blocks have been painted black. You can also see the brass acorn nuts that will be used in the final mountings.

37 Varnish and Stain

The two upper arms were stained and varnished.

38 glabe support 139 Globe support 2

Mounting rods for the globe were cut to length and drilled. They are seen in the picture on the bottom temporarily mounted.

41 globe support 3

The globe will rest on these rods.

42 Globe support 4

Right angle pieces will be attached to each support.

43 Soldered globe support 1

Each right angle vertical piece was then drilled and soldered into place.

44 Soldered globe support 2

The tops of each vertical rod were drilled and tapped to accept 6-32 brass set screws.

45 Globe on support

Here the globe has been mounted to the support with the set screws holding it in place.

46 Globe arm in place

The forearm for the lamp/globe support was held in place in order to mark it for cutting and mounting permanently.

47 Globe arm glued

The forearm piece was cut and slotted then glued into place.

48 Arms stained and varnished

This is a view of the base with the three arms mounted. Two have been stained and varnished, but are missing the forearm pieces. The third is the lamp arm with the upper and fore arm pieces in place. This will be stained and varnished next.

49 base after mounting

Close up of base with arms mounted.

51 forearm brackets

Mounting bracket for the forearms of the non-lamp support arms.

52 Lamp arm mounted

Close of lamp arm mounted to the base.


53 lamp bracket

I was looking at the mount for the lamp on the third arm and realized that the whole lamp assembly would be supported by these two small wood screws.

55 lamp flange 254 bracket with flange


So I soldered some brass plates to the copper mount in order to make it into a flange. This will be attached onto the end of the arm. Now it will be held in place with two screws through the flange and the end of the lamp arm.

56 holes wrong in flange

Then I realized that I drilled the holes too far apart.

57 Holes moved

So I re-drilled the holes and added some patches to the old holes.

58 Light so far

In the mean time I had stained and varnished the remaining wood pieces. Here is the hole thing reassembled temporarily. Now you can get a better picture of what the light will eventually look like. Next up is apply the quarter inch brass rod inlays to all edges. Then the light still needs to be wired. Finally there will be some other embellishments.


59 Wiring Lamp 161 Wiring Lamp 2

I decided to work on the arm that holds the lamp first. Here I wired the socket and lamp holder.

62 wiring lamp 3

Here you can see the lamp socket inside the holder.

63 Cutting Brass

The next step is cutting and fitting all of the brass inlay pieces for the lamp arms. Here I am cutting an angle onto the first piece.

64 Brass 165 Brass 2

After cutting the angles, the pieces were put in place to check fit.

66 Brass cut67 Brass Drilled

AT the top all of the brass inlay pieces for the lamp arm have been cut and shaped. On the bottom they have been pre-drilled for attaching to the oak arm with #4 1/2 inch brass wood screws.

68 Attaching brass

The brass was held in place with clamps. The wood was then drilled and the screws added.

69 Brass complete 171 Brass complete 2

These are two views of the brass inlays screwed into place on the lamp arm.

72 Lamp arm gears 173 Lamp arm gears 2

Gears were added in the area of the joint to make it look like the joint is mechanically adjustable.

75 Lamp Arm Complete 2

The completed and wired lamp arm. The cloth covered wire goes through two brass eyes and into the base.

74 Lamp Arm Complete 1

Another view of the completed lamp arm

76 Lamp arm complete 3

A shot from the other side. Next I’ll be working on the inlays for the other arms. Pretty close to being done.


Today I completed the brass inlays on the other two arms.

77 Forearm inlays78 Fore arm inlays complete

I started by completing the two forearm pieces.

79 Fore arm inlays mounted

This is the forearm mounted.

81 Forearm mounted

This is with both mounted. Then I took the arms back apart in order to add the inlays to the upper arms.

83 upper arm inlays

This is the first arm completed.84 All arms mounted 1

Both arms completed and mounted.

85 all arms mounted 2

This is another view.

86 Light test 1

This is a picture of the lamp test.

87 light test 2

And finally one more of the lamp test.

All that is left to do is make a 1/8 NPS threaded finial in order to mount it to the ceiling.


91 Finail Placement

The brass knob in the center of the light I found in my metal scrap. I think it will amke a perfect finial. Just need to drill and tap it.

On the left boring the brass finial and on the right tapping.

92 finial with rod

After completion I threading I attached the lamp rod and holder into the final. This rod will hold the light to the ceiling.

99 mounted 7

Finally, the lamp mounted and lit.

98 mounted 6

A view from the other side.

97 mounted 5

Here the light is turned off.

96 mounted 4

Another with the light off.

95 mounted 3

Another view.

94 Mounted 2

And another.

93 Mounted 1

One more

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Published by Jeffrey Sodemann

60 year old polymer chemist.

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