Wooden Light Stand Workshop Projects
A few months ago I bought a new video camera for the YouTube videos that I do. My choice of camera was based on a number of factors, not the least of which was that it has very good low light performance. The new camera is a large improvement over my previous camera in that regard, and makes it possible to shoot video without too much auxiliary lighting. Most of my recent videos were done with only the normal shop lighting, and I have found that to be adequate in most instances. There are situations where I need extra light, and having a portable light source would be handy. I had a look at what is available in work lighting stands, but only found ones that use the halogen bulbs that burn out every few days and cast the wrong colour light. These are also fairly expensive, but also reasonably rugged, which is important for a workshop situation. Another disadvantage in that their range of movement is limited to around mid-waist to head, and if you want to illuminate something that is close to the floor, these stands are not suitable.
I wanted something that was inexpensive, well made, easy to move around and easy to fold up compact to store out of the way when not in use. An important feature would be a wide range of motion – to shine down from high above, or get right down to the floor, if needed.
Lastly, it should use one standard light bulb.
Before SketchUp, there was pencil and paper (plywood, in this case) and that is how I laid out the knuckle for the legs of the stand:
I then cut it out on the band saw to use as a template to lay out two on a piece of 3/4″ thick plywood:
Two triangular pieces are cut out also.
Slots are cut for common 3-1/2″ nails to fit in:
These are the pivot pins for the legs.
The legs are cut out and drilled through for the pivot pins:
It goes together like this, and the top piece sandwiches the pivot pins in place.
The first of the two triangles is glued on:
The legs folded. The ends of the nails need to be cut off, and the knuckle can be sanded to clean it up a bit.
The other triangle is glued and screwed to the bottom of the vertical member, then screwed to the leg set:
The boom needs a 1/4″ slot through most of it’s length, and to cut that, I used the table saw:
I then used a 1/4″ thick piece to close the open end.
While the glue was drying on the boom, I added a 1/4″ bolt to the top of the vertical member. The head of the hex bolt is glued into a round counterbore is a piece of hardwood with construction adhesive, and this locks it in place and stops it from turning.
A regular octagon box is screwed to two pieces of pine that make up the tilting head of the lamp:
This then mounted on the end of the boom. I’m not sure why I left the ends of the lamp head long, but it looks ok and is not in the way of anything. I may find a need for it to be this long, so I’ll leave it alone.
To make the reflector for the lamp, I’m using thin aluminum roof flashing (left over from doing my roof). I used my beam compass to draw the outer circle:
And then the inner circle.
The outer circle is cut with metal snips, and I made a cut from the edge back to the centre. I formed the right shape cone and marked where it overlapped:
This was then cut, leaving a 3/4″ wide tab to attach it to the other edge.
Short sheet metal screws hold the seem together:
The edge of the reflector is fairly sharp, so I thought it would be a good idea to cover it with something. I bought 5′ of 1/4″ plastic tubing and made a slit in it to fit over the edge of the reflector. Here I’m using a piece of 1/8″ thick steel to guide the blade:
This worked out nicely, and will probably save my head from a few cuts.
To fasten the reflector to the lamp holder, I used construction adhesive. The problem was to hold the reflector in place while the glue dries, so I came up with a simple solution. I took a nearly empty caulking tube and cut about 1″ off the end and used that with a CFL bulb to clamp the reflector in place:
The broad base of the bulb matches the diameter of the caulking tube, and hold the reflector securely in place.
I then ran a bead of adhesive around the outside of the reflector where it meets the lamp holder:
After the outside had dried overnight, I removed the piece of caulking tube and ran a bead on the inside.
I’m finding many uses for the lamp around the shop. Its flexibility is a great asset.
It goes low:
And it can just as easily be adjusted to go high. This is particular handy in the workshop when doing some intricate work and you need some extra light.
To keep the boom from slipping after the knob is tightened, I added a washer made from rubber inner tube:
A very good all-round lamp that was inexpensive to build and will definitely come in handy around the house and shop.