Friday, July 19, 2013

Rewiring an Antique Lamp

 I picked up this gorgeous lamp at a yard sale years ago, minus the shade. I found the shade at another sale and am loving the two together. The lamp had old wiring that was crumbling and in much need of replacement.
I finally decided to tackle this job so we could actually use the lamp, instead of just looking at it. It's really not that hard to do if you know some basics. Here are some things I learned in doing this project.
1. You can buy lamp cord at a hardware or home improvement store. Make sure you get the right cord for the job, as in the right size. I had to get a smaller cord as I found out quickly that the other I had purchased was just a tad too big.
2. light sockets come apart so you can rewire if necessary. There are two screws that will hold the wire in place. Lamp cords are made of two bundles of copper wire. You can cut down the center to the right length needed and strip each end only enough to be able to wrap each side around the little bracket that holds the screw to tighten down and hold the wire in place. I found out the hard way that you should only strip the wire about 5/8 of an inch, otherwise you will have exposed wire that can touch each other and blow a fuse as well as ruin a plug. My hubby kept saying that I should take the lamp to a local electrician, but that would have cost a pretty penny I bet so my stubborn, do-it-yourselfness came out in full
3. You can also buy the pronged plug  and wire them the same way. I knew this as I fixed my old sewing machine by replacing the pronged plug because the wire had been tweaked so long the plug no longer worked right.
4. Fixing a lamp or appliance this way saves not only money but landfill.

Next time you are out and about a spy an old something that needs new wiring, something you could put to good use, take it home and see what you can do. You may find it as easy as pie, and gain a new skill in the process. 

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