Pair of lamps

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Project by ferstler posted 03-15-2011 08:16 PM 1390 views 1 time favorited 1 comment Add to Favorites Watch

I recently purchased a new table saw, a Ridgid 4510 jobsite model that fits into my small shop with no problem. I already had a small Ryobi BTS-20, but I needed a somewhat bigger saw, and having two of them allows me to put one blade in the new saw for special work (a 24-tooth Freud Industrial ripper) and another blade in the second saw for general work (a Freud Diablo combo blade).

Anyway, my first project with the new saw involved making a couple of lamps for our guest bedroom. I chose cedar for the wood, because I intended to just urethane it and not use any stain, and cedar really responds to that kind of finishing nicely, with no blotching problerms and the like.

I got a big, rough-cut cedar board at the local Home Depot and planed one side with my Ridgid jointer and then ran the other side through my small Ryobi thickness planer. With the board thus smooth finished, I used my Ridgid 12-inch sliding miter saw to cut the boards into the lengths required for the main sections and then used the new Ridgid table saw to cut them lengthwise as required. The bases and tops were also cut with those saws. The finials for the shade tops were made out of leftover cedar “chunks,” with one given beveled edges via my Craftsman 6×48/9-inch disc sander and the other rounded off freehand with the same sander. Small bolts were glued into recesses in the finials so that they could be screw-mounted to the lamp harps. Circular recesses were machined into the bottoms of the two bases with forstner bits (mounted on my Ridgid drill press), allowing for a flat bottom with the wires exiting, and small holes were drilled horizontally into those recesses to allow those wires to exit at the bottom-rear of the lamps.

Once the boards for the main bodies were glued up I used the new saw to cut bevels along the edges of one unit and used my Delta table-top shaper to roundover the edges of the other unit. I then used the shaper to cut decorative vertical V-grooves in the bevel-cut unit and used a rounded bit to vertical cut half-round grooves in the second. The bases and tops were beveled and rounded over accordingly, and so we had two lamps: one with a rounded-edge and rounded groove theme and the other with beveled edges and V-grooves to complement the bevels. The tops were installed with glue and screws that were recessed, with short dowels inserted and then cut off flush, to give the impression of full-dowel joints. The bottoms were held on just by screws, since down the line if one wanted to have shorter lamps the bottoms could be removed and the lamp bodies cut shorter, with the bottoms then reinstalled.

Each unit was given two coats of brushed-on Minwax urethane, and then, after a steel-wool rubdown, given two more coats of the spray-on version.

The electrical and finishing work was straightforward: sockets, screw shafts, harps, and of course shades. The photos show the lamps in our guest bedroom (also in the picture are two end tables that I made some time back, as well as picture frames – and photographs – that I also made), with a second showing the initial wood sections before the tops and bottoms were installed, and the third showing the finished lamps, minus their shades.

The project was fun, went fast, and allowed me to enjoy the new saw.

Howard Ferstler

1 comment so far

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4145 posts in 3620 days

#1 posted 03-15-2011 08:55 PM

Can’t beat the joy of a new tool, great job on the lamps too…

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

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