Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

It's been three weeks since I made this lamp, and now the wax is sticking to the sides. Why is this happening? I meticulously cleaned the bottle and coated it with surfactant before adding the wax, and this is the result. Is there a way to solve this issue without having to start over again?

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You said: The base is made of a 398ml steel food 

What canned food item did you find that fit?

The can I used was T&T branded baby corn. However, there can be other brands of food with the same type of can. The can not only has to have a volume of 398ml, but also a revolved indent around one end. The bottle then can fit snugly into that end. Be aware that some 398ml cans have that kind of lip while others do not, so do a little research at your local grocery store and feel both ends of the can for that indent. 

Thank you

If you have a heat gun use it to heat the outside of the bottle when the lamp is running.  It should melt back into the wax.  Keep doing this until it stops sticking.  The heat gun I used is from HobbyLobby and with coupon 40% off so it only cost around 7.00.  Worth a try.  I use it all the time to melt wax from vintage  lamps I purchase online.  Sometimes the older lamps tend to leave wax at the very top of the lamp that never melts back into the wax so I fire up my heat gun and apply it to the area for a few seconds and it does not take long to melt it back into rotation.  I only heat the globe with heat gun after the lamps been running for a few hours so when the wax melts off the sides it instantly mixes with flowing wax.  Makes my older lamps look new.  I've never had a globe break on me but never applied the heat longer than 20 seconds per area.  I don't think the heat gun is strong enough to break glass unless it was cold.  Hence the reason I use it when the lamps been running so globe is very warm or even hot.

I didn't need a heat gun at all, I just cleaned it once more with boiling water and now it's looking better than ever...for now. Hopefully this will last.


OK, Richard may not have needed the idea but I can't wait to try this - it seems so obvious retrospectively.... just get the bottle/contents (or globe, as you guys say!) good and hot first - I'll give it a go soon - thanks!


The Lamp Caretaker said:

If you have a heat gun use it to heat the outside of the bottle when the lamp is running.  It should melt back into the wax.  Keep doing this until it stops sticking.  The heat gun I used is from HobbyLobby and with coupon 40% off so it only cost around 7.00.  Worth a try.  I use it all the time to melt wax from vintage  lamps I purchase online.  Sometimes the older lamps tend to leave wax at the very top of the lamp that never melts back into the wax so I fire up my heat gun and apply it to the area for a few seconds and it does not take long to melt it back into rotation.  I only heat the globe with heat gun after the lamps been running for a few hours so when the wax melts off the sides it instantly mixes with flowing wax.  Makes my older lamps look new.  I've never had a globe break on me but never applied the heat longer than 20 seconds per area.  I don't think the heat gun is strong enough to break glass unless it was cold.  Hence the reason I use it when the lamps been running so globe is very warm or even hot.


After I do a goo load, if it looks like it has bubbles, I put the half full globe in a bath of water on the stove,

I first, get the pot of water boiling then,  turn it down to a mild simmer

I let it sit there until all the goo is floating to the top and all bubbles are gone, turn off the heat and walk away.

Next morning, the goo  is in the bottom and ready for the remainder of the fluid to be added

Not sure if this will help the sticking

That is usually accomplished with a heavy coating of SURF
andy ross said:


OK, Richard may not have needed the idea but I can't wait to try this - it seems so obvious retrospectively.... just get the bottle/contents (or globe, as you guys say!) good and hot first - I'll give it a go soon - thanks!


The Lamp Caretaker said:

If you have a heat gun use it to heat the outside of the bottle when the lamp is running.  It should melt back into the wax.  Keep doing this until it stops sticking.  The heat gun I used is from HobbyLobby and with coupon 40% off so it only cost around 7.00.  Worth a try.  I use it all the time to melt wax from vintage  lamps I purchase online.  Sometimes the older lamps tend to leave wax at the very top of the lamp that never melts back into the wax so I fire up my heat gun and apply it to the area for a few seconds and it does not take long to melt it back into rotation.  I only heat the globe with heat gun after the lamps been running for a few hours so when the wax melts off the sides it instantly mixes with flowing wax.  Makes my older lamps look new.  I've never had a globe break on me but never applied the heat longer than 20 seconds per area.  I don't think the heat gun is strong enough to break glass unless it was cold.  Hence the reason I use it when the lamps been running so globe is very warm or even hot.

I do have bubbles in the wax, but they don't seem to be a problem.

Oh and I forgot, the base also has a tuna can under the larger can, as shown in the previous pic. That can is where you attach the bulb socket through. A hole is then drilled through the side and the cable is threaded through.

I take back what I said about bubbles in the wax. They seem to make the lamp appear to overheat. I measured the temperature and it is 47 degrees Celsius (within the threshold). I want to boil out the bubbles, but I'm not sure if this VOSS glass will hold.

I am now cooking the goo. I no longer see any bubbles, but wax is still opaque. Is this good enough?

way too much surf

Turns out that surf was trapped in the goo , so when I cooked them out, all the surf got released. I have dumped a third of the liquid and refilled with distilled water.

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