Shop lighting upgrades

Before polishing the guitars, I decided to upgrade some shop lights.  I have very poor natural light in my shop unfortunately.

I stole two task lamps from above one of my benches.

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I had a thrown together lamp that I would roll around.  I made a new base and added the two additional task lamps.  I even made the center one on a height adjustable pole.

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Over the bench, I made some new pendants from some old high bay lighting fixtures that were destined for the scrap yard.

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Now just to experiment and find the right bulbs, especially for the portable lamp.  I’d like it bright enough to do surgery if I turn them on. 

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Intermission for non guitar stuff

While my lacquer was curing for two weeks I took the opportunity to do a couple things around the house.

I installed an automatic gate opener for my drive way.  Of course I picked a particularly cold week to run 125′ of partially buried power cable and bug together a bunch of electrical connections.  Oh well… its done.  No pics.  Not that exciting, except to me, not having to get in and out of the car a few times every time I want to leave the house is a pleasure.

Another project on the back burner for about 2 years was restoring an old copper fixture that was original to my house.

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I guess when having electric lighting was a status symbol, this was probably extravagant with 16 bulbs in it. Originally in the dining room, the bulbs were facing down and exposed, and it hung about 8” off the ceiling. I ended up moving some fixtures around and replacing this with a much nicer chandelier from another room.  I decided to restore, then install the fixture upside down, so the leaves would show and drop it about 2′ off the ceiling.

About 2 years ago I pulled this out of the basement and took it apart. Most of the copper leaves needed to be resoldered where they met the center hub. I guess the weight over the years took its toll. That was about as far as I got.

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Yes, I use my buffing wheels in the paint booth.  Keeps the dust down.  I still wear a respirator though.

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The brass sockets are my favorite part.  No one will see them with its hung upside down, but they just don’t make parts like this anymore.  The Edison and other text makes it even better, besides how well made and solid they are.  Only rewiring some of the bulbs, there are an additional 8 short sockets that I didn’t polish up.  They are in a box with the remaining sockets if I need spare parts.

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The copper leaves came out well. They are definitely hand hammered.  Each one is a bit different.  Those creases are hard to get into, and they like to hold excess buffing compound.

Came out pretty well.  I only wired 4 sockets and it was still a pain in the butt and a tight fit.  Maybe I was a bit overzealous using 14 gauge to each bulb and a 12 gauge feed? Only used 40 watt bulbs and its almost too bright for me.  Guess I need a dimmer.

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Guitar stands so I can move them out of the shop

Finished my guitar stands and finally moved them out of the shop.  The humidity in my house is pretty close to what it was in the shop when everything was glued up, which makes me fairly comfortable.

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Didn’t really plan on the guitars matching the woodwork, but it kind of seemed to work that way.  This is my music room, though I still need to move a few pieces of furniture in, which requires either finding or making a new table.  That’s a whole other story.

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Actually I have a picture rail in that room.  I put the guitars in and thought “why didn’t I just make hangers for them for the picture rail?”, it would have been much easier.  I’ll probably make some one of these days.
Finally, I was able to really clean up the workshop in preparation to make a mess again in the very near future.

New use for an old pharmacy scale

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Short break from guitar stuff. Found this cool apothecary scale at my favorite antique place while I was looking for big jars for terrariums. Removed some minor parts from the bottom to convert it to a Wardian case. Now to … Continue reading

Most of my hand tool storage. My take on a french cleat.

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Workshop getting closer.  Added some more lighting.  Finished storage for most of my tools.  I need to find the doors in the basement and put them back on. Working on some wood racks in the other room, which is stacked with stuff, as are my cabinets.  Then I can get down to working on something other than the shop.