Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Hi! Recently I found a great vintage Lava Lite Century model, dated 1974. It has blue liquid with yellow wax and one serious flaw—all of the wax floats to the top and stays there. I know several lamps have the issue where some floats and some stays at the bottom, this one has zero wax at the bottom. The liquid is not cloudy at all, in fact it is clearer than any of my other vintage lamps. The wax was floating when I purchased it with kind of a disgusting granular looking appearance (but it was in one blob). Curious if there's any hope for restoration or if the wax is just shot?

Things I have tried:

  1. Melt the wax with a hair dryer. This improved the appearance and texture of the wax 100%. But it just stayed at the top.
  2. Cycling the lamp. I left it on for 8 hours or so until all of the wax liquified. But it stayed in place at the top.
  3. Super Cooling. After cycling the lamp I popped it in the fridge. The liquid became even clearer than it initially was, but the wax just floats. I even tried turning it upside down (gently) to cool, but the cooled wax just floats back up when turned over.

My theory is whatever modifies the wax's density has completely separated from the wax into the liquid, but I'm curious if anyone thinks boiling the wax with the liquid removed would help? Or is she just past her prime?

Thanks for any help!

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Interestingly, the wax didn't return to an entirely solid state when cool. It was sort of a soft, granular state. I tried the melting method over boiling water and stirred the wax to integrate it while liquid. We'll see what happens! The odor from inside the lamp is very strong and noxious, like paint thinner. The smell mostly seems to be coming from the wax. The separated liquid has a sweet hot-plastic aroma. Not sure what the chemistry of lamps from the early 70s is.

Mr MaGoo said:

Since you popped the top on the lamp, you could drop the fluid level to just above the wax at the bottom.  With the lamp open, place it back on the base and light it up.  The was should then melt, take a straw, stick something rigid and gently stir wax while in liquid state.  Then turn of let it cool down and solidify, then add distilled h2o back to top and turn it back on and see what it does.  Then we can go from there. 

MaGoo!

After boiling and cooling the wax alone in the jar, I refilled it with 100% distilled water and put it on a base to warm up. The minute wax warmed up, it all shot to the top and has stayed there. The pic was taken after the wax was fully melted. I'm guessing the wax is shot?

Mr MaGoo said:

Since you popped the top on the lamp, you could drop the fluid level to just above the wax at the bottom.  With the lamp open, place it back on the base and light it up.  The was should then melt, take a straw, stick something rigid and gently stir wax while in liquid state.  Then turn of let it cool down and solidify, then add distilled h2o back to top and turn it back on and see what it does.  Then we can go from there. 

MaGoo!

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