Wednesday, July 13, 2011


So today, I got right on the light fixtures, and quickly discovered I needed an 11/16th spade bit and when you need an 11/16th spade bit, there really is nothing else for it, so... shopping trip.

While shopping, I also discovered a possible item that I could adapt for the lens cover I desire- a glass cutting board: the one at the hardware store was not a good size for it, but I shall search the net for one that is.

Drilled a hole for the center where the bulb holder assembly snaps in, and it didn't care in the least that it was a circle rather than a squared X-shape, used the included base to mark the points for drilling and used a compass to set it in the center of the pizza pan. This removes a considerable bit of the overall thickness of the light unit, changing the base from a bit over an inch to virtually nothing.

Got it all together easily enough, but then tried to squash down the brackets some more and that led to disaster resulting in the complete destruction of the frame work and a visit to the trash can.

After that, I reconsidered and realized that since this particular bulb assmebly is screwed together (as oposed to riveted) I could disassemble it and rebend it to a shorter length, which I did using a vice-grip, my metal anvil/vise and a hammer, and a bit of carefully applied force. I then drilled new holes for the tiny bolts and reassembled the bulb unit.

I decided to not bother with shortening the upper section of the bracket as I had attained a satisfactory thickness in the overall piece now, about 3 inches. I will also note that this new light assembly was a bit shorter to start than the others in the house, which are about 6 1/2 inches.

I have now created a rather nice fixture that intrudes only 3" from the ceiling.

By that point, by back was killing me, so I had to quit but am hoping to install two of these later tonight or maybe in the morning.



Tuesday, July 12, 2011


I have low ceilings.

I live in a mobile home- part of the deal.

But when you are tall, and then have a light fixture sticking down, it can get distracting.

Thus, for some time, I have been looking at some way of addressing this situation. My first idea was to build a light box that I could set into the ceiling, and I did come up with a fairly simple and workable design, but I could find nothing that even came close to being adaptable to it, and the costs of sheet metal being what it is, I was a bit hesitant.

Low profile light fixtures seemed to all be a lot more expensive than I was willing to pay, multiplied by four or five...

But last night, I was studying the existing fixtures, the "working parts", and since they had been designed for tradictional large and hot running incandecent bulbs, I saw that they extended down from the fixture with a lot of extra space now that they are sporting tiny cool running twisted compact flourescents.

A bulb went off in my head!

I grabbed my duct work crimping tool and went to work!

That allowed me to readily tighten up the space that these bulb holders stuck out from the base.

I then had the idea to replace the base with a $3 pizza pan from Wal-Mart and not only greatly flatten the whole assembly out, but also create more reflective surface above the bulbs!

I am very excited about this! A fairly simple solution and I will not have to face the many added challenges of manufacturing and supporting a metal box inset into the ceiling!

I have an idea for a lens cover, but have not found any material that meets my desires yet, but for the meantime, I will be able to simply use the glass covers that are already in place, ugly though they may be.



Wednesday, July 06, 2011

I spent the 4th of July (and the 3rd, 2nd and 1st) with friends at Disney World, but on the night of the 4th, we were at Epcot for Illuminations and the 4th of July extra, herein represented in an edited form! Enjoy!

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