Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate


I have recently purchased a Crestworth Princess; I was very lucky to find this late one night on ebay a month or so ago. This one is quite unusual as it has glitter fluid that is similar to my autumn leaves Astro-Nordic Glitterlite.

The history of this lamp can be traced back to 1965 as it has been in the same ownership since then; It was originally owned by the father of the lady I purchased it from. She was under the impression that it was an American lamp as her father brought it to the UK from America on a trip he made in 1965. She was a young child at the time and only remembers it having the glitter it has now and never lava.

The lamp has been well looked after and shows little sign of its age considering the travelling it has done; as I well know it has gone from the UK to America and back again.

So I will now get to the problem I have: the liquid condensates at the top of the vessel, passes by the seal and runs down the outside of the bottle. I have removed the collar, seal and cross clamp from the top of the vessel and given all of it a good clean but this did not help, I then created a new seal that was not much better.

Can anyone suggest a good method of sealing my lamp?

I have seen a compression seal used on XXL Lunar bottles that could possibly be copied for mine although I would obviously require a larger diameter.

The lamp is disassembled at present whilst my house is undergoing renovation. Because of the fluid leak, I have had to decant it into a large sturdy sealed container. I will also be replacing the bulb holder and lead as these are no longer safe or fit for purpose.

I have included some pictures of the lamp as well as the current seal which it came with (please excuse the mess in the background).

Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.



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You are so lucky to find one of these!

Id be interested to see more about the compression seal used on XXL Lunar bottles

Wow, what a beautiful lamp, hope you get the problem solved :)

She's a beauty :) congratulations


The Crestworth Rocket (its real name), aka Princess, is a lamp that was never made to be sold.  This lamp was made in the early Crestworth years as a promotional tool  These lamps were taken about the (world?) UK, Europe and set in place at trade shows or in the window of busy city stores to promote the Astro lamp.  The idea being "let's get their attention with this monster sized lamp.....and then sell them an Astro".  This tactic being much like luring a man into the Chevrolet dealership with a Corvette on display and then selling him a Chevrolet sedan.  The lamps were brought to the location where they were to be displayed and filled on site.  Then when that presentation ended they were drained down, shipped off and refilled at the next display site.  So these lamps were never made with an enclosure that was meant to seal it completely, evidently it was not deemed necessary by Crestworth.  The American Lava Lite version, the Imperial, was sold to the public and it was sealed well enough that it could be shipped to customers.  The Princess should be sealed too in my opinion.

I too have a Rocket / Princess and have lovingly restored mine and I too found that the seal (just like yours) caused for condensation to form underneath the decorative copper top and then trickle down the cylinder into the copper base.  Over the years this caused the inside of the copper base to become discolored somewhat so I was determined to find a solution after I restored my lamp.

I devised a sealing system that is completely and perfectly hidden underneath the copper lid and it allows for no condensation to escape.  The best part is that is is completely removable so that at a later time if one wished he could put the original metal circle enclosure right back into use and you would never be able to tell that my enclosure was ever in use.  My lamp uses my enclosure and I put together others for another un-named collector who has it in use too on the Rocket/Princess.

I too rewired mine (for U.S. electrics) as the original wiring ( which I kept ) was unfit for safe use.  I put vintage cloth wound wire and a vintage Bakelite plug on my lamp with a new ceramic medium base bulb socket. The refitting of the electrics on these is very simple.

Here is my lamp and a bit of my story with it:  http://oozinggoo.ning.com/profiles/blogs/a-first-meeting-50-years-i...

If you wish, I will help you out.  Shoot me a PM and we'll go from there.


And this post right here ^ is why I am glad I found this forum of avid lava lamp fans. 

Lovely to see another princess aka rocket, mine was missing the sealing contraption on top, and had a round circle glass disc, i just use a sealant like on baths etc.

May i / we asked how much this beauty set you back?  Also word of advise if removing the bottle due to bulb replacement get some of them rubber coated gloves and stand the bottle on a cushioned service i.e not bits of stone etc that could crack the glass with the weight. 

Hi all, thanks for all your kind responses. I feel very lucky to have found this lamp to add to my collection and will certainly treasure it.

I was very lucky searching ebay one evening in July and you could say that I was in the right place at the right time; I managed to pick it up with a buy it now price of £500.

I have been deliberating for a while as to whether I should reveal how much I paid for it as I am aware many other people have paid and would pay a lot more to own one, but as I have been asked I thought I would reply.

Whilst I have not been an active user of this forum, I have a large collection of other Crestworth and Mathmos lamps which I will share with you all once my house renovation is finished and it is safe for my lamps to come out of storage. Unfortunately, this is likely to be next year now and is also when I plan to have my Rocket/ Princess restored and back in use; at present I have a lot of building work going on.

Marcel said:

I did the Lunar XXL compression seals. But I would not recomend them. It turnes out, that they will go loose over years.

I would try to restorate the original seal. Best for originality too.

Thanks for letting me know Marcel, I am now looking at a solution devised by Critter and mentioned above by Johnny who have been very helpful like yourself.


Compression seals are not made in a size that will fit a cylinder the size of the Rocket/Princess lamp. I like compression seals and did look into that too but they are only made in a small range of sizes.  I can say for sure that if one runs a Princess without a good moisture tight seal, and the condensation forms and runs, the lamp gets damaged over time.  The rubber gasket and metal plate that is original to these does nothing to hold in vapor and it causes problems.

The seal I have made does absolutely nothing to damage or alter the glass cylinder and can be completely reversed and put back to the original gasket and plate and no one can ever tell.  The original metal ring around the cylinder stays in place and is not removed at all.  One simply removes the rubber gasket (which was not fixed on the cylinder at all it just sits there) and metal plate.  I saved my gasket, circular plate and screws so that the next owner can have them too when that day comes. But now I can run my lamp around the clock for days and days and not worry about any more issues coming from condensation.

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