Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Lava Lite depresses me (when will I ever learn?)

It's my own stupid fault. I see cheap lamps and I get excited. Every single one I bring home is disappointing. I don't know why I even bother. If I get one that's clear, the flow is crap (well, they all flow like crap). Residue on the bottom. Residue on the inside of the glass. Horrible flow. Cloudy. Hazy. Overheats quickly. 

They're all getting returned...except one I'm keeping to test out pinholes on the base.


My very first "new" China Lava Lite. Got this summer of 2010. It didn't flow. Returned it the next day.


Next up, my China blue/white. Sent the base to Mike (blindfaith) this week. Globe is clear, flow is boring:


I think we all remember this one. I wrote up a huge thread about it. What a shame. Returned for full refund to Lava Lite. 

Orange/black 52oz. Horribly cloudy. Residue on inside. It was nasty to look at.


Exchanged for this:


^^ This one is clear, but has gunk in the coil/wax, which I just discovered this week:


Bought five of these for $8/each. The blue/white wouldn't stick to the coil, the purple/red was so cloudy you couldn't see through it. I returned those two. I might keep the remaining three for experiments or glitter, but they are pretty depressing to look at (pretty awful flow):

Lastly, I purchased this at Target last week. A little hazy, residue on the inside and the flow, well, you know the story...


I know I'm an idiot for even buying them, and it's weird how I try and justify keeping them ("well, they're not THAT bad" or "I could use this for parts") but that's a pretty sad reason to keep something that you don't like. 


I've been running these off and on all weekend and each time I look at them, they just disappoint me. 


No point to this thread...just wanted to share my thoughts. Friends don't let friends buy Lava Lite, right? ;)



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Its criminal really...I feel for you guys in the US. Hope Mathmos comes too the rescue soon.

It's beating a dead horse for me to even go on about it. Outside of us collectors, no one cares anyway. 


I even tried to get a decent shot of the yellow Designer, but you can see just how boring the flow is:

I know how you feel.  I have the same yellow one and it sucks.  Sends up one round blob every once in awhile in its hazy liquid.  No quality improvement in the Designer line it seems.

I'm returning the yellow Designer to Target tomorrow. No sense in keeping it when I can't stand looking at it. Why bother buying these when there's tons of nice vintage stuff to buy!

I just hope I learned my lesson. ;)

I know how you feel Erin, my Turquoise one like your yellow one, I am returning this week. I justified putting a GooKit in it with a better coloring to match and better flow, but just don't feel like dealing with it. LOL


We shouldn't HAVE to be dealing with it. Period. That's what I have to keep remembering when I want to buy one of these. It's one thing to fix up/restore a lamp from the 70s, but we shouldn't be tinkering around/buying for parts lamps made in 2011!


I did want to get pictures for reviews and such though. Now I KNOW for sure...

Its the same old rubbish all over again - we first of all say that there is no point because one batch is cloudy as ditch water, then get fobed of by LL saying they will sort it out. Then some less cloudy lamps come up and we buy then hopeing they will be ok - but the arnt and the cycle repeats it self.

Good call Erin by dumping the junk - find a decent vintage with the refunded money.

Saying all of this though I would only buy LL items which I like the base / design on and are prepared to goo kit.

I would like some bases to experiment with, for painting, but that's about it. 


As luck would have it, I did indeed score a nice midnight Century last night that's about the cost of all the returned lamps. :)

I would like to get the designer lamps, or one.. just for the base. i like how they put pinholes on them. but sadly i would have to drive 6-7 hours just to get them :P cause im not spending a whack ton on shipping lol
Do your own pinholes! I just did. :) The bases aren't really worth it, either.
I have to say, I have not purchased too many new lamps for all of the above reasons, but somehow they still manage to find their way on to my doorstep. I came home last week and for my birthday my boyfriend surprised me with a black/orange from Spencer's. He knows better too because he prefaced giving me the lamp with " I know you don't like the new ones but..." I will admit the black/orange always appealed to me, partially because of how dim it is. Anyway, the one he purchased was in the brand new 2011 LL packaging and it was ... hazy. So, we took the lamp back to spencer's and exchanged it for another one in the older packaging with the tacky purple lava logo that I opened to inspect. It was and remains crystal clear and the flow is actually quite nice. I was just surprised the older run was better than the 2011s, especially because of how decent the new purple/whites and red/whites are. Anyway, I am happy with my only China 52oz lamp.

I have warned people about buying me lava lamps, too. LOL My boyfriend always asks me "Why did you buy that?" when I bring home a new Lava Lite lamp. And then he accompanies me on the ride back to the store a few days later to return the thing. 


Some of the China lamps aren't bad - I have a blue/white one I bought several months ago that's decent. The flow is boring, but everything else is OK. I don't want to talk anyone out of buying anything, but I just want people to know the truth - and that's that there are beautiful vintage lamps to be had that blow these out of the water. This is NOT how lava lamps are supposed to look. Even when they get most things right (not cloudy, no shit floating in the liquid), they just aren't very fun to watch. Most of the lava hangs out at the top or bottom...one circular blob goes up/down every 30 secs. or so. 


I tried a black/orange (don't remember the date) and it was horrible. It was the only one my Spencer's had, so I didn't get another one. 


I returned all my China-made lava lamps yesterday, except the purple/white 52oz (base is being painted). I feel cleansed! And with the money I got back, I have this lovely lamp on the way. :)

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