Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Rain lamps where to buy the right type of oil in the UK

Hello folks
I have a pair of rain lamps, i was given a bottle of mineral oil with one of the lamps but it has been used a lot and turning brown.
I would like to use some new fresh oil on the lamps,but i can't seem to find the right type of oil, i bought a bottle of mineral oil off Ebay but it was too thin.Does anybody in the uk know where to purchase the oil from.
many thanks Paul.

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i used baby oil in mine and it works fine and smells nice to
Hi Guys thanks for your help,i will check them out.
many thanks Paul.
Yeah, "mineral oil" (US term) aka "liquid paraffin" (UK term) sold at druggists/chemists as a laxative, is what you want.

In the US, buying used rain lamps can be a pain in the tail. Former owners often put much thicker oils in them, which soon congeal into a lumpy mess. Since they're sort of equated with an Italian look (in the US, think "Buca di Beppo") filling them with olive oil is a rumor-that-won't-die. As well as gunking up the pump and the spouts at the top, it turns the nylon lines yellow. As well, these things are dust magnets. Most of those in my collection have had to be cleaned and then restrung, both are seriously annoying jobs. Restringing is difficult because the whole lamp will contain only one or two pieces of line; you must string from top to bottom, then bottom to top, tighten both, repeat, tighten all four, repeat and tighten all six, and so on. Blargh. Putting water in them is also bad (dry thoroughly after cleaning before use) as the oil passes right over the motor's coils. My biggest, a three-foot gilded chain-hung monster with a clear statue and circular grow-light fluorescent tube which gives the statue an odd greenish glow, required all that work, and then the pump conked out, and I really don't want to work on it any more - I just want to sell it.

Yours are both the UK-made models, does either have a label? I know nothing about foreign manufacturers - in the US we had Creators' Lamp Co. (later a Haggerty division alongside Lava-Simplex), Johnson Industries, Spring Lighting, Cheyenne, etc. Your larger model is a copy of a Creators' midsize model with the Diana figure, the smaller one is unique but also with Diana.
Hi Jonas
Thanks for the info on Rain lamps,i checked the lamps for any names.There is no makers name on the large lamp,but the motor say's made in England.The small lamp has a label on the bottom which say's made in Italy distributed in the UK by Intergift company.
many thanks Paul.
Made in Italy. Hmm. That's the first Italian lamp I've seen. Have seen two or three made in the UK, and one from Mexico.
Did anyone catch that fab looking Rain Lamp in that film Family Business? (I think that's what it is called). The one with Matthew Broderick, Sean Connery and Dustin Hoffman as a family of criminals. It's in the the Chapel of Rest scene.

J
No, sorry... But there's an episode of X-Files which centers around a man who fancies himself a rainmaker. The agents visit his office, and it's full of rain lamps of all sorts. Also, in the (I thought awful) film "Night at the Roxbury", the two families hope to merge their plant store and lamp store into the world's first "plant-lamp store" (or "lamp-plant store", they argue over which comes first) and the lamp shop has some rain lamps.

I think these were, at least in the 70s and 80s, marketed mainly in lighting and furniture stores. Unlike today where lava, glitter, rain lamps etc. all fall into categories (and are marketed to) "dorm room decor" or "party lighting", most of these were originally marketed as upscale home decor. And rain lamps in that era were expensive - between $100-150, in two wholesale catalog pages I have showing many late 70s-early 80s Creators' models. Even in Montgomery Ward catalogs and some JCPenney, which sold some Johnson Industries/Cheyenne models, prices started around $80. And that's not including the gigantic, custom gilded swags (mine is almost too big to hang safely), 6'+ floor models, and grandfather clock rain lamps. No idea what Spring Lighting or MasterCrafters ones went for.

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