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Lamp Repair & Projects
STRESS CRACK REPAIR
Great information from R. Will Newman in Georgia
"I wanted to share something with you that I have found very useful while working on these old lamps. As you know it is quite common to find stress cracks in the brass fonts and it is not always easy or feasible to solder them or use the two part epoxy putty (which works well on perfection heater fonts).
[Remove all of the wick raising parts you can remove, especially wick sleeves. Remember, the lamp fonts were made first then the wick raising parts installed. Hence, all of the parts inside the tank CAN BE removed from the font. Note also that the tank MUST BE clean and dry. The tank can be cleaned with a hot soak in citric acid bath, rinsed with gasoline and then cleaned with acetone, and with any method used must then be thoroughly air dried PRIOR TO adding the Red Cote to the inside of the tank. Miles]
EASY SOLDERING REPAIR
Sometimes it is necessary to effect simple lamp repairs just to get an old lamp back into working condition. The first example will be a Lampe Florentine.
The photo above shows the missing post in the font. Not only would fuel pour out but the font itself is not stable. I had to use brass, of course, to make a new post. Measurements showed that a .30-06 cartridge case would fit fine. The case was trimmed right at the shoulder using a Dremel tool with tiny cutoff wheel. The photo above right shows there was still too much space between the cartridge case and the font.
I used an old Lyman 310 Tong Tool and a .44 Special expander to put a bell/flare on the top of the case. The second photo above shows there is still room around the cartridge case for solder, and the 3rd photo shows the bell or flare fits perfectly into the bottom of the font. The photo above, far right, shows the cartridge case with the head trimmed off and soldered into the font. The case has enough height above the font so fuel can be poured in without spilling and the case fits tightly enough to the rod to keep the font stable.
Wooden stands and wood lathe projects
Many store lamps have a wick lift rod which extends beneath the drip cup. An elevated wood stand solves that problem when using a store lamp as a table lamp. Other types of lamps can also benefit from a wooden stand. If you have a wood lathe or have a friend with one, these projects are simple elementary wood turning.
I made the base above for a 30''' Central Vulcan lamp because a hot-rod lamp like a Vulcan projects a lot of heat downward through the draft tube. That can be hard on a nice wooden table, but a lamp stand solves that problem.
Wick sleeve cleaners
Soldering Stress Cracks in oil pots