Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

I'm new to this site, not a collector just a retro do-it-yourselfer. I acquired this Grande lamp for free from a neighbor I think it is really cool being so big but it came with a burnt bulb and a boxed burnt bulb so...2 burnt bulbs. I got discouraged when I realized it used a 100W bulb which is too much to run consistently just for effects which is when I started doing research on how to "green" the lamp up. 

Not sure if anyone can decode these numbers to tell how old the unit is I believe it is all original.

In my research I realized you can re-goo them and the kits have lighter wax which requires less wattage then the factory goo does so I plan on doing this I saw kits on eBay for about $30 not sure if that is enough for one of these sized lamps. I want white lava since my walls and furniture are white which goes good against the stainless it will make for a very contemporary lamp, then I'm not sure if the re-goo kits keep the water clear for much longer periods of time but I'm unsure I may want the water to be Caribbean-teal color like the liner on a pool. 

Then I was thinking about trying to insulate the base to make more efficient use of the heat loss through aluminum which is a conductor of heat. I will install a twist knob "pot" style dimmer on the base of the lamp itself, as far as the bulb goes not sure if they more a better light bulb then the basic 100w they sell for use in these? I thought about retrofit combining LEDs and a heating coil but probably would not make any difference in electricity consumption. They don't make a better designed coil ring I should install with the goo kit do they??

Long term goal with the lamp is to turn it into a usable bedside end table like the colossal/colossus lamp probably the same width glass ring with a smaller hole in the center for more usable table area. The thing I can't figure out is how the glass rings stay on the floor sized lamps does anyone have any close up pictures of how it is mounted? 

I can't even find one on eBay for sale, I assume they don't make them anymore? Here are two I found on Google which I Photoshopped feel free to use them elsewhere on this website in a gallery or something...I corrected the color of the images and then added depth of field to them:

 

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two thumbs up !!! Thank you for the step by step with photographs !!!!

looks good, and that screen should catch some of the larger bubbles in the wax.  looking forward to more photos of this interesting lamp.

I expect the spring water will work, but the point of distillation is to remove minerals, not to kill things. You can't kill minerals. =p

Thanks guys, took me hours! Not done yet I still need to finish surfing it and plug the top, then moving onto electrical a heavy duty grounded cord with a HQ dimmer unit in the base. Don't forget the glass ring-table I will return to that glass shop and have a thick glass doughnut cut but I am still unsure how they stay balanced on the colossus is a mystery to my research. 

I ran it last night for the first time, definitely warms up faster then LavaLite magma does but certainly is not flowing like it yet. It was very clear which was awesome it left the bottom transparent and slowly turned white as it made its way to the top cooling off, and by the end of the cycle it had turned mostly white. The first few hours it just released air bubbles like crazy which were gone by the end of the cycle. 

I am really not crazy about the color when it is illuminated, it's not true white which is partially due to the color temperature of the incandescent bulb. Once it is molted the color lightens up and it becomes a brighter white but still...

I am guessing I can go about correcting this one of two ways or both, add a SLIGHT bit of blue to the wax to compensate the yellow hue or use a heatproof bulb screen even paint a transparent blue on the globe bottom inside the base. They make bulb skins for par lamps in theaters and DJs

It really just did a constipated flow last night emitting half dollar sized balls of wax for a long time no big stretchies yet, and there appears to be many tiny tiny balls of wax from time to time when air bubbles release from the wax so do tiny dots of wax. 


Basically, from what I can tell with mine, they balance by blind luck and not getting bumped.  There is an "L" shaped ring that sits atop the base, that supports the inner 1/4" of the table, and the rest hangs out into thin air.  The worst part is they can bump against the table if you unbalance them, so I'm trying to figure out some sort of clear pad to wedge between the table and the globe to minimize/prevent this.

I'm also seriously considering taking the tables off and not using them.  They look great but are serious dust catchers in my house.


PinkFloyd Effect said:

 Don't forget the glass ring-table I will return to that glass shop and have a thick glass doughnut cut but I am still unsure how they stay balanced on the colossus is a mystery to my research. 

Can you post pictures of what you are referring to please? 

I will try when I get home, but it doesn't photo real well.

I bet if you were to ask the same shop which ground the broken neck down, that they would have good advice or ideas for making the glass table stay on the lamp!

So here are some running pictures, this first one was from cycle #2 both the first and second cycles did not do much; the globs were small and the majority of the magma stayed on the bottom in a large mass. 

By the third cycle the globs were larger and there was more stretching, I have stopped running it until I plug the globe because the water evaporates and hits the top of the cap then drips down the outside of the globe:

Overall I am happier with the flow as it is being broke in, but I am not happy with the shade of white being off. Although it may look clear when you look up close with the light on you can see particles in the water along with stands of tiny piece of hair or fabric that seemed to get worse as the cycles furthered it has to be coming from the wax the cap has been on it the entire time and I have a dust free room with an air filtration system. Also starting with the first cycle as soon as the globe heated the streaks came back inside the globe like before I rinsed with cold water...the streaks and particles are not viewable in the photos. 

Ive found that fuzzy, dusty stuff that floats on the water actually came from my surfactant bottle when i did my gookit. I saw some stuff floating in the surf bottle after i noticed it inside the globe.

It's total bullshit I am not impressed with the quality control of Magma Towers kits. 

Meh, i feel you on that. I was a little upset when i saw the things floating too, i got it in like 2 lamps too but they went away after cycles or got stuck to the wax, idk either way they kind of disappeared. However i didnt expect much from their quality control since theyre not really a huge publicly known company, they developed this formula for their displays and i feel like on the side they sell it in small amounts for people like us, however i would like to see them filter that stuff or something. Also when i ordered from them that was the least of my concerns, all of my dyes opened and spilled during shipping so i had to call and have them send me new ones, also when i ordered i got the "77" stuff that was useless in 52 and 32 oz globes so i was more upset about that than the fuzzy stuff but i feel you, it takes away from the crystal clear liquid..

Also to prevent liquid evaporation you can just loosely fit the plug on the opening so that it catches condensation and it will drip back into the globe.

PinkFloyd Effect said:

It's total bullshit I am not impressed with the quality control of Magma Towers kits. 

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