Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

After many months of frustration I have finally figured out the cure for wax sticking to the glass. I am confident that this will work for most people. Its very simple actually. Empty the globe and fill it completely full of gasoline. Let it sit over night, rinse it out with dawn dish soap, then refill the globe with the original contents. When you refill the globe be sure to put a little bit of liquid in it first and swish it around because the gasoline strips the lamp of all surfactant. I usually put half as much liquid in as I put wax in, then once the wax has cooled off and hardened I pour the rest of the liquid back in. When you pour in the wax try not to get it on the sides of the globe. This works so good the wax doesnt even stick to the bottom of the globe.

 

Thats it. Simple yes?

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Sounds like a good, simple solution. Have you tried kerosene or diesel fuel? Not as volatile but maybe not as effective
I only tested two chemicals, paint thinner and gasoline. I put a drop of wax in a little dish and compared the dissolve time. They both work but gasoline dissolves the wax at about 5x the speed. The wax is completely dissolves in both solutions. I am sure other chemicals will work, any petroleum product above the density of water should dissolve paraffin wax. I think thats how it works anyways.
That is along the lines of what I was thinking. Some people might shy away from using gasoline though.


アンドル said:
I only tested two chemicals, paint thinner and gasoline. I put a drop of wax in a little dish and compared the dissolve time. They both work but gasoline dissolves the wax at about 5x the speed. The wax is completely dissolves in both solutions. I am sure other chemicals will work, any petroleum product above the density of water should dissolve paraffin wax. I think thats how it works anyways.

WD-40 works too. I've used it on some nasty globes and it cleans them right up. It also helps to get some bottle brushes to really get the inside of the globe clean. I picked up a few from this brewery website for a couple bucks each well worth it. Also boiling hot water also seems to do the trick too. When I dump wax out of a globe I'm redoing, I usually use the water in the pot that I used to melt the wax.

umm, there is an even easier way. Get the globe hot. Spin it for a while, and the wax falls of the sides. I did this to my wizard.
This is for extreme cases of wax sticking to the glass caused by residue left on the glass. Trust me, if it was always this simple I wouldn't have spent months trying to find a solution.


Kempton said:
umm, there is an even easier way. Get the globe hot. Spin it for a while, and the wax falls of the sides. I did this to my wizard.

What works for me is to clean the empty bottle with Gunk Engine Degreaser. I heat the empty bottle with hot tap watter then spray in the degreaser. Let it sit for five minutes and then rinse with hot water. It absolutely strips the inside of any residue of old wax and oils. Cleans the coil too. Then I rinse the inside with a little bit of a Dawn Soap solution.

 

Also, anytime you are adding wax to a bottle you must use a small funnel with a rubber tube attached to it that just reaches the bottom of the bottle. 

Warning. I tried foil wrapping to solve the sticking wax problem on 2 old lamps I had. Worked okay on one but the other... the top blew off and caused a mess on walls and ceiling.( red wax white ceiling and walls). Luckily no one was close by when it occurred. Crazy clean up and now I need to paint. Grrrr. I recommend using this method with extreme caution!! The globes had never been tampered with prior to applying the foil in case someone suspects improper seal.

Oh my...

Ohhhh I hope this will work on my metallic Astro!

When I restarted my Imperial I had the same problem.  But, it was self-created.  In my ignorance I was thinking, "Hmmmm, if clean is good...then really clean is better!"

Well, bad plan.  It stuck like crazy.  I followed this process on the second try and it worked great.

I've got another solution which worked for me.
I've got two globes, each with sticking problems. I've tried everything - thinners, gasoline, degreasers, even solvents which dissolves plastic... nothing really helped here. Now my problem is solved - i used sodium hydroxide (NaOH). You can buy it in granules - it's used to clean blocked tubes and sinks, I dissolved a bottle cap of it in 0,5 litre of tap water (my globes size).
WARNING: SODIUM HYDROXIDE IS CAUSTIC AND CORROSIVE! SAFETY FIRST!

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