Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Basically I have been thinking - what could be future of lava lamps?

As we know lava lamps have been around for 40+ years and due to there simple concept and innovative design they have remained a timeless lighting piece for generations, even though now lighting and technology have made major advances. Since the lava lamp was first invented the concept still remains the same and is constantly being evolved - manly by us (the enthusiasts) who will rebuild and re invent our lamps. I would argue that we push lava lamp ideas more then the manufactures.

Therefor since the lava lamp is such a simple concept (there is no moving parts, no hi tech electronic equipment - just light and heat) will there be a time when all the ideas have been done before - i.e. all possible creative ideas, bigger lamps made and re worked classic ideas etc.

If this happens - what will happen then, would lava lamps just fade away - probably not, however could technology help to evolve the concept. I.e. micro chips with LED's in the wax which detect there location in the globe and change colour according, could they be pre programmed to create not just a ingenious lava lamp but a entire light show. The technology could be taken further by the chips having heat creating and cooling devices which could manipulate there location within the globe.

this technology might not be too far away because already the Smart Astra is computer controlled to detect and control its temperature and control the LED's.

I don't have a exact reason for posting (sorry if I have gone on a bit) it but I think it might be a interesting topic.


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Mathmos has already brought out the Smart Astro which has a heating plate and LED's to change the colour. This was simply a brilliant lamp. Only problem was, the three we purchased all had to be returned. The simplicity of the original lamp is best, no heating plate and computer chips to fail.

dito susan, a good idea just poor production / quality of the china made parts, now been a month since i sent my faulty one back and mathmos cant be bothered to contact me, ive phoned several times to find out if it can be fixed, only to get told different answers.  if they fail to contact me next week i will contact cressida personaly, im dissapointed, seems there more interested in getting there jellyfish thingy out, c'mon poofs dont do jellyfishs LOL
Susan said:
Mathmos has already brought out the Smart Astro which has a heating plate and LED's to change the colour. This was simply a brilliant lamp. Only problem was, the three we purchased all had to be returned. The simplicity of the original lamp is best, no heating plate and computer chips to fail.
dont do jellyfishs LOL
Yea true - I think Mathmos can seam to be out of touch with the lava lamps as they keep coming up with more random LED stuff. I think the Smart Astra can be fantastic but with a high price tag and cheap parts that's just not the Mathmos way.
i think mathmos will improve the smart astro's hopefully with the 2nd run later this year, i think the problem was they were rushed out without proper testing of the quality of the led/heating side, maybe get that part made in the u.k as well but then i spose the cost of the lamp will rise hence imported in.  if led's is the way things are going mathmos is gonna have to produce a much cheaper led lava lamp for general public.

Tim Gill said:
dont do jellyfishs LOL
Yea true - I think Mathmos can seam to be out of touch with the lava lamps as they keep coming up with more random LED stuff. I think the Smart Astra can be fantastic but with a high price tag and cheap parts that's just not the Mathmos way.

iI have had a fair bit of experience with LED's in the past and for use on a lava lamp they are not that expensive. - Considering that its probley only about 20 LED's  for the astro and that the bin rate (the accepted quality of each led from a certain batch) of the led's will be low as it is just for cloure wash, also they are probley made in China makes the led's cheap (this is not much of a problem though).

The heating element is probley quite a standard item and would also be made in China so it too would be cheap.

I think the problem is that there is a software and / or hardware issue as it seams as though they are over heating - this would be due to a cheap or faulty heat monitor or that the software still has quite a fue bugs which would mess with the whole item.

Its price tag is probley affected by the fact that it is assembled in the UK and that the base is made in the UK and the lava is the Mathmoss formula. It is affected by the number of units sold - as it is new the quantity sold is low in comparison to the astro, so the more people buy then hopefully the price will not rise or will even fall due to competition with the sellers.

On the topic of the future of lava lamps and the innovation of design being driven by use; the consumers, and us, the enthusiasts -

 

I blew out my first three simple glass shapes last week for making lamps.  I will be filling them with home-brewed goo and water today (thank you to all the people here with fantastic recipes and know how!).  I hope to have pictures posted this evening and if all goes well I will be back in the glass studio tomorrow created some more daring and wild shapes to play with.

 

So in truth, to me, the future of Lava Lamps lies not in the innards which as you mentioned are simple and timeless, but in the design of the bottle and the stand.

 

Love and Light,

                 Jonathan

So in truth, to me, the future of Lava Lamps lies not in the innards which as you mentioned are simple and timeless, but in the design of the bottle and the stand.

 

 

 

That is true as the design has to progress and change for them to still be a wanted item but as Bohdan said the fact that tungston lamps are on there way out could shape the lava lamp further. - Eather there needs to be other lamps used - e.g. halagon, discharge sourses etc or it will become more about LED's and heating elements.

 

I like the sound of blowing your own glass globes - how have you got acces to a glass factory / worckshop?

I am a glass blower, I work at a school that teaches glass blowing courses.  The first test run is in the works.  Wax is cooling after the first failure of the SG of the wax not being high enough.
the future of lava lamps could be in the formulation of multi coloured wax, there must be a way some how

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