Rock Salt Lamp Stand

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Project by TZH posted 09-03-2018 03:11 PM 1215 views 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

It’s been awhile since I last posted mainly because I’ve been laid up with back and knee issues thanks to my 130 lb puppy that took me for a ride while I was holding his leash to keep him from jumping up on and knocking over a friend he was very happy to see.

Anyway, my sister asked me to make a stand for a rock salt lamp she was giving her son as a birthday gift. A good year and a half later, it’s finally done and will be sent to him this week sometime.

I have about 8 hours into this project, so I now know I can crank similar lamp stands out in fairly short order if requests start pouring in (yuk, yuk). It’s a good thing I didn’t quit my day job. Oh, wait….I’m retired!

The wood is juniper, and the carving to make it look like a mini-volcano or a mini Devil’s Tower (take your pick) is mine.

Juniper round getting flattened top and bottom using my router planer:

I used angle grinders with chainsaw and wire wheels to do the rough carving:

This was followed by buffing with a very cheap wire brush knock-off I got at Harbor Freight that has plastic bristles. They served the purpose of buffing without removing any ridges/striations I’d worked so hard to carve into the piece. Worked like a charm.

Also had to clean out a couple of crevices before varnishing. As those who’ve worked with juniper well know, this wood is notorious for nooks and crannies being filled with a combination of bark and dirt. This time the two worst crevices were pretty cooperative, and cleaning them out wasn’t too difficult with the smallest chisel I have. In order to do that and do all the rough stock removal, I rigged up a simple jig using pipe clamps to hold it steady and vertical while carving (this photo also shows the angle grinder with chainsaw wheel I used to carve off rough stock):

Finished with carving and buffing:

Anyway, volcano or mini-Devil’s Tower?

As always, the photographer (me) really sucks, and takes absolutely NO responsibility for how badly these pics turned out!


-- Where The Spirit In Wood Lives On

6 comments so far

View therealSteveN's profile


8900 posts in 1821 days

#1 posted 09-03-2018 03:47 PM

Can’t be the Devil’s Tower, it’s not Mashed Potatoes, so I guess it has to be a volcano.

Interesting piece. The question keeps going through my mind, so I’ll ask. Do you treat it with anything to make sure all the tiny wildlife are killed off before bringing them into the house? I can see bugs aplenty running around as soon as the temperature is agreeable.

Thanks for posting

-- Think safe, be safe

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30646 posts in 3585 days

#2 posted 09-03-2018 05:21 PM

Well done, like it a lot

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Druid's profile


2205 posts in 4042 days

#3 posted 09-03-2018 08:38 PM

Good to see a new posting, and I’m sure that your nephew will love it. ;)

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

View leafherder's profile


1986 posts in 3199 days

#4 posted 09-03-2018 11:13 PM

If I recall my high school geology class correctly – Devil’s Tower is an extinct volcano – so the answer to your question would be BOTH!. But with the rock salt lamp on it does look like flames so I’ll go with active volcano. Great job, thanks for posting.

-- Leafherder

View swirt's profile


6649 posts in 4219 days

#5 posted 09-04-2018 12:57 AM

Sorry to hear you’ve been sidelined for a while. I hope you are on the mend. I like this project. It looks great.

-- Galootish log blog,

View TZH's profile


630 posts in 4387 days

#6 posted 09-04-2018 01:50 AM

therealSteveN, with juniper my experience has been that any bugs there might be are between the bark and barely into the sapwood. I’ve done quite a few projects with juniper, and have yet to have any bugs in the house (knock on my noggin). So, in answer to your question about treating it, no I didn’t.

Thanks to everyone for the positive feedback. It’s nice to be back.


-- Where The Spirit In Wood Lives On

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