Motion lamps feature a printed microfilm or paper cylinder set over a small light bulb. The cylinder is attached to a round metal plate at the top with fanlike sails cut into it. The heat from the light bulb turns the metal plate and the paper cylinder. The printing on the paper may be a nature scene or a design that mimics movement like flames or waves, or the lamp may project light through silhouettes cut into black paper. You can make one of these lamps easily at home as an addition to your decor or as a rainy-day project for your children.
Things You'll Need
- Aluminum pie pan
- Flat, wood disc lamp base
- Permanent marker
- Utility knife
- Wire hanger
- Wire nips
- Hand drill
- Drawing supplies
- Heat-proof transparencies
- Spray adhesive
- White school glue
- Light bulb
Place the flat, wood disc lamp base in the center of your aluminum pie tin. Trace around the base with a permanent marker. Remove the base and cut out the aluminum circle.
Make a dot in the center of your aluminum circle. Use a ruler to draw lines that section the circle into eighths. Poke through the hole in the center and cut along the lines with your utility knife, starting about ¼ inch from the center hole and stopping ¼ inch from the edge.
Push down on each of your slits, creating fan sails. Snip ¼ inch wide fringes into the edges of your aluminum circle and bend them downward. Set the aluminum circle aside.
Drive a screw into your wooden lamp base about ½ inch from the center. The screw head should have about enough space underneath to admit the edge of a nickel.
Snip away the bottom portion of a wire hanger. Wrap one end of the resulting wire under the screw head from step 4. Bend the wire up with pliers so it stands vertically. About 7 inches up the wire, bend the wire at a 90 degree angle. Bend it at a second 90 degree angle about one inch from the first bend. The result should be an L-shape. Nip the wire about 1 inch from the second 90 degree angle.
Draw or paint your desired design onto a piece of paper. Allow it to dry. Spray a heat-proof transparency with spray adhesive and press your paper onto it. Allow the glue to dry for about an hour.
Bend your paper into a cylinder with the transparency inside. Secure the edges with paperclips and fit your aluminum circle into the top of the cylinder, adjusting the cylinder to fit snugly around the circle. Glue the circle into place and glue the edges of the cylinder together. Allow it to dry overnight.
Screw a light bulb into your disc base. Set your shade over the light bulb, feeding the top of the wire through the hole in the center of the aluminum circle. Turn on your lamp and watch the shade spin.
- Photo Credit Light bulb image by Mart61 from Fotolia.com
How to Make a Lava Lamp
Have your kids make a lava lamp out of materials around the house to introduce them to this groovy relic from the...
How to Make a Beaded Lamp Shade
Do you love bold colors, beads and your very own style? Then you will enjoy making a beaded lampshade with a Bohemian...
How to Make Paper Lanterns for Kids
Paper lanterns make a great craft to do with kids. Different types of paper can be used such as scrapbooking paper, plain...
How to Make Any Light a Motion Sensor
If you have ever walked into a dark room and stumbled, you have seen the need to convert a lamp to a...
How to Make a Heat Lamp
Heat lamps are required to keep small animals, birds and reptiles warm. Heat lamps can also be used to keep working areas...
How to Reset a Zenith Motion Sensor Floodlight
The Zenith Motion Sensor Floodlight is designed to turn a floodlight on when an object passes in front of its built-in sensor....
How to Make a Spinning Lamp
Motion lamps, which were popular in the 1950s, consist of cylindrical lamps with colorful acetate insets. The heat from the bulbs inside...