Building simple light standsI wanted some more light stands to use outside my shop, but I didn't want to invest too much time or money. I often find lamps that people throw out, so I used some of those as a starting point for these light stands.
One of my lamps came from a "torch" style floor lamp. I glued tinfoil to the inside of the translucent lampshade to make it into more of a reflector. I figured the pole (which used to be vertical) would make a good handle for this one.
The other lamp was a conical lamp for hanging above a table. I also lined the inside of this one with tinfoil.
The wood for the bases is some poplar beams from a pallet. Poplar is not a very good or very strong wood, but just fine for a quickie project. I cut the ends at a 45 degree angle, easier to do on the bandsaw. I then smoothed it on the jointer.
You can never trust pallet wood to be entirely clean. A metal detector helps, but it won't always detect small metal splinters, nor will it detect sand. So I planed it on the right side of my jointer, where the knives are already nicked.
The post was ripped from a 2x4, also from the garbage. I whittled one end round with a spokeshave. I drilled another 1 1/4" hole in a scrap of plywood to check the fit. Once I can partially force the plywood on, it leaves some marks on the wood where it rubs, and that tells me where to shave it down some more.
This shot at right doesn't really look like it was taken at outside at night, but it was taken with the setup at left. With enough lights at different directions, the lighting looks fairly even, even without using soft box lighting. I have a 27 watt CF bulb (equivalent to 100 watt incandescent) in each lamp, for a total of 135 watts.
Ron Walters's scissor extending lamp
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