Claremont Designs


Setting the Depth of the Top Reveal on an Edison Lamp

Selecting the depth of the reveal is partly for aesthetic reasons and also for a simpler build out process.  I hinted at these reasons in a prior post about updating the Edison lamp prototype.  Probably the first 5 versions of the lamps I built were similar to the prototype.  Since then, I’ve set the Edison lamp top about an 1/8th of an inch lower.  It’s a minor change but it has significantly reduced the number of times that I’ve had to rebuild a lamp – frequently the corner of one of the pins would chip out when routing the channel for the top.

By lowering the top a fraction of an inch, I’m able to route the front and back of the lamp without using a plunge cut.  On the sides the plunge cut is still required.  Basically what I’m doing is dropping the lamp side down on top of the router bit.  The photos below show the result of the plunge cuts.  The first photo shows the result of two plunge cuts and a little clearing between the cuts.  Technically a single cut on each side would be more than enough, but I’ve taken the belt and suspenders approach.  To make sure that I don’t extend my cut too far, I clamp a stop block to the router table fence.

From there I’ve flipped the side over and drawn lines on the top of the lamp sides.  The lines are shown in the second picture below.  I align the marks with router table fence where the cuts start and stop.  In the picture the left side of the piece is complete.  From here I repeated this process of plunge cuts and marking the sides on the right side of the piece.  Finally I remove the stop blocks, plunge the piece over the existing cuts and then route the piece between the plunge cuts on each side.

This whole process takes maybe 15 minutes to complete properly, but any missteps can result in having to start the entire build over again.  Thankfully by dropping the top a fraction of an inch, the number of rebuilds has dropped to zero.  Final picture below shows the end result – the latest single bulb koa Edison lamp to leave the shop.

IMG_0022 IMG_0025 SONY DSC

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3 New Lamps Have Left DC

I’m still working to get this blog in sync with actual activity happening in the shop, and it is now close. The photos in this post show the last 3 lamps that have been shipped off to customers. Nothing too unique about these builds, other than one lamp was shipped off to Canada (little pricey and a lot of paperwork) and one of the walnut lamps was done in just boiled linseed oil (wanted a slightly different finish than normal). Currently in the shop are 2 more lamps (one in walnut and one I’m trying out of lacewood) and a bunch of walnut strips that I’m turning into cutting boards.

I’m guessing now that the next post won’t be that meaningful either. Hopefully by the end of October I’m back with posts that highlight the build process as much as the finished goods.




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Designing a New Lamp

Stuck in jury duty today, so I figured I would take the opportunity to update this site on something other than just Edison lamps. I feel like site has become an onslaught of WIP and final photos posts associated with those lamps. I do enjoy building them, but I feel like that is all that makes it to this site. I have a backlog of WIP projects that have taken a back seat to customer projects. Not complaining; just noting.

For a while I’ve been wanting to try some new concepts in the shop. Staying within the lamp theme, I decided to try a new design. The sketch below shows my initial thoughts on the profile of the lamp. The base of the lamp is loosely inspired by the base of the kinesis chair by Thos. Moser. I was lucky enough to spend a week in the shop with David Moser and many of their craftsman up in Maine. While I certainly picked up a new skill or two, what I most realized was that I don’t spend much time in the prototype phase refining the design. I think for this lamp I will try to truly prototype it. I both want to refine the shape and proportions, and I want to do it out of some cheaper stock.

For the return at the top of the lamp I was again inspired by a Thos. Moser design. This time it was the vita chair. In particular, the intersection point where the back sweeps into the front leg and then comes back to form the back support.

The shade itself will try to blend in the concepts of the kinesis base and the look of old victrola phonograph horns. I have been wanting an antique phonograph for years, and this might just have to help hold me over a little longer.

The sketch isn’t perfect, but it’s enough to get me started. Hopefully I’ll be able to spend a little more time on the design this weekend.


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Edison Table Lamp

The Edison table lamp is a simple box that features through dovetails. The box is built from scrap walnut that I had lying around the shop. While fairly easy to put together, the wiring and alignment of the light sockets managed to kill most of my time in the shop today. It will be a great addition during the winter months, because those bulbs put out a lot of heat.

If anyone is interested in buying this lamp or one similar I’ve just listed this on Etsy for sale.