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Topic: Everyone has a camera phone - try a camera lamp!  (Read 1665 times)
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« on: December 31, 2012 09:31:42 PM »

Awhile back I saw a photo of a camera that had been converted into a lamp. I think this is the one:


I knew my father needed one for his desk because he is a photojournalist. (It turns out that the photography gene skips generations, so sorry for the quality of my pics.)

After some fumbling trying to take apart an old film SLR that my husband had from a previous geologic era, I found that the innards were cast as one piece and could not be removed to make room for a standard lamp base. So I drilled a hole in the door, glued the shutter open, and fitted it with a bracket cut down from a $2 thrifted Ikea lamp (one of those little three-light wheeled desk models, I think - it was missing some parts so it was hard to tell). Attached the socket, glued a rubber o-ring on the lens bracket to cushion the shade, and stuck it on a mini-tripod I got for $5 off of Craigslist. Then I soldered the base into a 12-volt power supply salvaged from my mom's defunct Netbook (DH's brilliant idea!). It was pretty straightforward once I stopped trying to make it into rocket surgery.

The bulb is recessed in the shade to make a nice, tight spotlight. It holds the shade in place, so they pull off and push on together for easy bulb changing. It takes a standard 15-watt, 12-volt bulb; the DH and I just happened to have rescued several cases of these from a debris box outside a restaurant that was being gutted a few weeks ago. (They were still in their boxes, unused and pristine, but it seems that commercial property owners prefer to junk everything over donating perfectly good materials to Habitat for Humanity. Because we need bigger landfills, and because poor people should have to pay top dollar to bring their houses up to code.)

Cord and plug were appropriated from a much uglier lamp, but I paid for a new inline switch to make it all matchy-matchy. All told, the cash cost was $11. I have seen old 35 mm cameras for $10 at the thrift store, and many e-cyclers are happy to give away random power supplies, so it is doable for under $30, minus tools and time. Most of my time was spent finding parts. The construction probably took all of three hours, and most of that was waiting for the glue to dry.

Dad loved it! He thought it was much harder than it was, and I didn't even tell him it was so cheap.

I recommend this as a project for anyone with basic wiring skills and a passion for scrounging!

« Last Edit: December 31, 2012 10:22:06 PM by apis_melis » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013 01:18:27 AM »

This is inspirational and looks very professional

Look twice, buy once. Nooooo
Look twice, decide I can make one instead.
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« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2013 03:30:40 AM »

As a huge camera junkie, I am going to try build one right away!

Corner Desk... A Must For Home Offices.
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2013 11:32:56 AM »

Thanks Antidigger!
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2013 11:34:58 AM »

Have fun, drogjami! I would love to see pics of what you come up with.
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