Materials: 1/4 of a #6 cyl.;
1/4 of a 1 1/2" cyl; 6" of rod. A Chinese carved jade lamp in plastics—that brings up visions of a beautiful and unique project, but an expensive one. However, it need not be anything like as expensive as you might imagine, if you learn the principles of plastic design, which are to use the material for its color and beauty alone, and not for
"structural" or "bulking" purposes—use air, or cheaper materials for that. If you study the commercial plastics novelties on the market, you will see that the amount of plastics the average amateur uses in one project would make ten dollar items in the store.
Fig. 38. Design and dimensions for the Inexpensive carved lamp described in Project 28. The clear portions are In relief, the shaded portions routed out to a shallow depth, and either polished or left rough in contrast to the polish on the relief portions.
The correct principle as stated, is to use thin sections of material, in the proper places, and make up the difference with air and cheaper materials. This lamp, is an excellent example. Figures 38 and 39. The heavy-looking base is a block of wood, well-finished. The rest of the lamp, while solid plastics, weighs less than a half pound, yet looks bulky and provides a brilliant flash of color and an intricate design.
The plastics required consists of one-fourth of a No. 6 cylinder, 1/2 of a No. 3CP cylinder, and two 3 1/2" sections of round rod. Assembly consists of two machine-screws thru the base extending up into threaded holes drilled partially thru each of the pieces of rod. Then these are mounted in this manner, just far enough apart so that the section of bracelet-cylinder can be set on them and reach the base block. The bracelet-cylinder is then cemented to the pieces of rod, which anchors it firmly although for further safety, another screw can be put through the center of the cylinder where it touches the block, into the wooden base, and if you have any little metallic Chinese ornament around, or wish to carve one out of a piece of plastic, this can be fastened there in the center of the cylinder by means of this screw and cement. When this much is done, and a half-inch hole drilled in the top of the cylinder a short nipple of fixture-pipe is run thru this hole, thru the 1 3/4" section of 1" tube a washer put on the top, and a regular pull-chain socket screwed on the top of the nipple. The shade is of the spring-clip type, and is clipped directly onto the light-bulb.
Fig. 39. The finished lamp. Project 28.
PLATE 3Q. (Above). Photograph of the original jade vase in the Wo dward Collection in Brooklyn Museum, and (PLATE 3R, right) the copy, in simplified design, made of plastics, as described in Project 27. PLATE 3S. (Below). A group of three lamps made of crystal-clear material, sheet and rod. The base of the lamp in the center is made from half of a section of cylinder.
PLATE 3T. Popular types of buttons, ornaments, etc., from cast resins.
PLATE 3U. (Above). The combination smoking-set described in Project No. 29.
PLATE 3V. (Above). The clock described in Project No. 30.
PLATE 3W. (Above). The cream-and-sugar act, made of half-inch sheet and flirted cylinder. Project 31.
PLATE 3X. (Below). Various salt-and-pepper designs (some are also sketched! in Figure 44. The crystal-clear material, when first machined, has a frosted-glass effect as in the center pair. At the lower right are the coasters mentioned in Project 18. Their bottoms are thin crystal sheet, with scribed parallel lines.
The carving on the bracelet cylinder is done before any part of the assembly, after the height of the rods on each side is marked on the cylinder, because no carving is done below this line. At first glance this carving may look terrifically intricate and difficult, but it is really very simple and easy. The best tool for it of course, is a motor hand-grinding machine, although a carving-spindle in a lathe is also a good method (there is a description of carving and how to make carving tools in the chapter on Carving). Even if you do not have power equipment, the material can be worked with hand-carving tools. The design to be carved is illustrated herewith, the shaded portions being recessed, and the dragon and petals being slightly rounded. The good-luck sign in the center is left flat on top, merely being outlined with the carving-tool. If you have difficulty in buffing and polishing the recessed parts, leave them dull, and polish only the upstanding parts, which gives an interesting effect.
In Plate 3S will be found a reproduction of a group of lamps manufactured by one of the exclusive lamp-houses to sell at high prices, made entirely from plastics, with incidental ornaments of other materials. The construction of these lamps is so obvious from the illustrations that it is hardly necessary to detail them here. They consist of standard shapes of cylinders, sheet and rod, in transparent, opaque and translucent colors. Those made from plain crystal blocks, rods and half-cylinder are particularly striking in a modern setting. In using transparent materials, bear in mind that the interior of a bored hole cannot be polished, but leaves a "frosted" effect, covering the pipe or wire, and used in the general color-effect. None of these lamps are particularly expensive or difficult to make, and any of them are well worth making.