another batch of A&C styled lamps

  • Advertise with us
Project by splintergroup posted 09-22-2020 08:20 PM 1513 views 6 times favorited 21 comments Add to Favorites Watch


This is what I’ve been spending weekends over the summer working on.

They are very similar to the previous lamps I built with a few exceptions so I won’t deep dive into the details as much (see the previous project post for more gritty detail)

I’ve changed a few of my jig designs and added several more, but this will be the last of this inlay design I make for a while as I dream up new and more painful challenges 8^)

Glam photos follow below.

I made four this time since they are good sellers and with the sometimes complex tool and jig setups, it just made sense to batch them out.
I certainly saved some time, but OMG, cutting all these parts was mentally draining!

Here are some numbers:

Total wood parts per lamp
shade: 32
stem: 21
base: 21
total: 74

That’s almost 300 parts to cut, shape, glue, sand, route etc. Ugh!
I keep fairly careful records and the material costs for everything runs about $120 per lamp
The mica, lamp cluster, and fabric wrapped “vintage” power cord make up nearly 1/2 of this.

Anyhoo, enough complaining.
The two inlay wood types are birdseye maple and Bolivian rosewood. Lamp body is walnut, mostly rift sawn.
Poplar makes the stem core and a plug for the base just to save some coin on expensive walnut.

A difference this time is I saved many hours by not applying a top coat finish, everything was oiled and waxed. This has convinced me to give some of those “hardwax oils” a try in the future. This was just plain Watco and Minwhacks “special” dark. I went through some pains to avoid getting any oil on the inlays since the oil would really darken and obscure the woods, especially the rosewood.

I used splines to reinforce the base sections, probably overkill but since I want these to last a long time and the base is all mitered sections, splines it would be.

They are made from the same wood as the inlays, serendipity!

The above photo really shows how the light angle changes the woods appearance, it was all cut from the same board.

The shade hold down is super solid and the top finial nut was actually easy to make. A tip o’ the hat to Dave Polaschek. and Pete (PPK) for suggesting the finial style last time 8^)

I’ve experimented with different stay designs on each iteration, knowing full well that the style I used here is really what I should have used all along:

Even though they are effectively hidden under the shade, these “class up” the exposed edges better than a bead of silicone or hot melt. They are made from 1/4” walnut with a chamfer along the face so the brads used to retain them penetrate the frame at a useful angle.

I drilled 176 total pilot holes through all 64 stays (three brads per stay, two on the top) using the drill press and a very tiny bit. The 5/8” brads were pressed into the pilot holes and with some grunt work, pushed into place with a small nail set (no hammering required).

Thanks for looking and any comments!

21 comments so far

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27002 posts in 4392 days

#1 posted 09-22-2020 09:16 PM

Great lamps, Bruce. Real nice detail in them!!

cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View recycle1943's profile


5972 posts in 2909 days

#2 posted 09-22-2020 09:33 PM

Really attractive lamps, great write up, thanks for sharing

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

View MrWolfe's profile


1669 posts in 1410 days

#3 posted 09-22-2020 09:51 PM

Wow Bruce, these are gorgeous!
Beautiful and great attention to detail.
Pic # 8 really captures the rich character of the wood.
A pic in a darkened room with the lamp lit would be cool.
Beautiful design.

View splintergroup's profile


6043 posts in 2509 days

#4 posted 09-22-2020 09:56 PM

Thank you fellows!

I’ll get a lighted pic up soon 8^)

View JCantin's profile


185 posts in 4699 days

#5 posted 09-22-2020 10:02 PM

Would you mind sharing what you sell these for Bruce? Really nice.

View splintergroup's profile


6043 posts in 2509 days

#6 posted 09-22-2020 10:41 PM

Would you mind sharing what you sell these for Bruce? Really nice.

- JCantin

Thanks JC.

Previously I’ve been selling them for $300, but with the gallery getting a 15% cut I’ll probably ask $330. I usually offer a 10% discount for buying a set.

View wildwoodbybrianjohns's profile


2848 posts in 834 days

#7 posted 09-22-2020 10:41 PM

Fabulous details, Splinty! All those angles on the shades are amazing, but my fav detail is how you chose to expose the cores in the stems/necks – or whatever the correct term for that part of the lamp is.

Outstanding work, once again.

-- WWBBJ: It is better to be interesting and wrong, than boring and right.

View splintergroup's profile


6043 posts in 2509 days

#8 posted 09-22-2020 11:19 PM

Mucho thanks Brian! Plenty of ways to dress up the stems, the problem I’ve been having is the inlays are just a tad too wide and I get uncomfortably close to the edge with the template (it also tends to show any slight off centering)

Here are some lit-up shots. Difficult to get a good exposure and all the color balance issues, but it’ll give an idea.
The bulbs are “vintage” style LED. Basically a clear glass globe with a warm color. Not the best for reading but if the customer wants to read with them, it’s not rocket surgery to swap them out. Only thing I recommend is to use LED versus incandescent do to the heat. The mica will darken in areas since the bulbs are close if the heat stays too long.

View MrWolfe's profile


1669 posts in 1410 days

#9 posted 09-22-2020 11:42 PM

They look great lit up.

View Dark_Lightning's profile


4949 posts in 4396 days

#10 posted 09-23-2020 12:27 AM

Gorgeous! I’ve been thinking about making some of these, but these are so nice I ought to just buy them and get it over with!

-- Steven.......Random Orbital Nailer

View pottz's profile


21354 posts in 2271 days

#11 posted 09-23-2020 12:45 AM

damn splint you never fail to impress with these lamps,i just wish i had a place to use some myself,id be on it.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View LittleBlackDuck's profile


8249 posts in 2108 days

#12 posted 09-23-2020 01:23 AM

Vere, very, cery “bright” design and execution splinter... the quality of those lamps leave me in the dark.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View swirt's profile


6816 posts in 4259 days

#13 posted 09-23-2020 01:56 AM

Awesome work. They look great.

-- Galootish log blog,

View grovemadman's profile


963 posts in 5059 days

#14 posted 09-23-2020 02:40 AM

Hey these are really nice! Great work!!!

-- "It is the job of the woodworker to hide his mistakes and keep a tight set of lips about them!"--Chuck

View EarlS's profile


4817 posts in 3635 days

#15 posted 09-23-2020 11:19 AM

You’ve got me pondering whether I should make a base for my A&C lamp and get rid of the resin (fake wood) base.

Really nice work (as usual). All of the little details, beveled edges, splines, base details, tapered column, add up to a fine looking lamp at very reasonable price given what the local Stickley furniture store is selling A&C lamps for these days.

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

showing 1 through 15 of 21 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics