Everything you might like to know about how to make a wine bottle lamp including what kind of problems you will run into. We opted to use an Edison-style bulb instead of a lamp shade, but you can easily modify the instructions below for your own ideas.
How to Make a Wine Bottle Lamp
The most challenging part about making a wine bottle lamp is cutting the glass bottle. Bottles are tempered glass and because of this, it is difficult to make a clean cut into the glass. After trying it ourselves, we advise that this is a job for a hobbyist: someone handy with a drill press, mechanical oil and a 3/8 inch diamond bit. We even called 3 local glass shops who either refused to cut the bottle or charged a high fee to do so. So with all this in mind, let’s get started:
What You’ll Need to Make a Bottle Lamp:
Required Lamp Parts
- $3 Socket with Switch
- $3 Lamp Cord
- $2 Lamp Nipple 1/8 IP
- $13 Vintage Filament Bulb
- Slip UNO Fitting Lamp Shade* (*not required)
(without cost of drill bit)
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Step 1: Drill Some 3/8 Inch Holes
We highly recommend using a drill press to drill holes into a wine bottle. If you do not have access to a drill press you can use your handheld drill, but be warned, it’s not easy this way. Use cutting oil to keep the bit cool and cutting properly. Keep the RPM of the drill relatively low. With a drill press it will take about 2 minutes to cut through a bottle, a handheld drill will take about 5 minutes.
To set up cutting, you’ll need to clamp the bottle down in some way or wedge it between two heavy things. For handheld drills: Place a piece of masking tape over the spot where you’d like the hole. This makes it easier to start the hole. Then drill the hole slowly, with even pressure, stopping only to add more cutting oil as needed. We went to our friends at Zotlasers.com who have a drill press.
You’ll also need to drill a 3/8 inch hole vertically through a cork. This will be the device that holds the lamp nipple steady inside the wine bottle.
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Step 2: Insert lamp nipple into cork
Insert the 1/8 IP lamp nipple through the cork so that enough is coming out the top to screw on the bottom of the lamp socket.
Step 3: Connect electrical cable to socket
Run electrical cable through the hole in the bottom of your wine bottle to the lamp nipple cork part and into the lamp socket. Make sure that all the parts are connected before screwing the electrical cable to the socket. The electrical cable will have 2 wires and one with a ridge; it’s advisable to connect the ridge wire to the brass connector in the socket for a proper current flow path.