I’ve had requests for these instructions ever since I posted Birth of a Mickey Lamp. Like I said in that post, our friend Gary made ours as well as several others. They’re very popular in campgrounds as well as out front of homes; in fact, Linda asked me last December after touring Fort Wilderness (as part of a press event, lucky grumble grumble) if these lamp posts are a requirement in FW. Why, yes they are. You have to have a certain ratio of lamp posts per campground circle.
So help fill the quota and make your own Mickey lamp post! You’ll need a few parts, some power tools, homeowners insurance that covers fires caused by your poor electrical wiring, someone standing by to call 911, and a strong thirst for magic and glory!
Or a friend like Gary to do it for you! (and no, I won’t give you his email address. That’s not fair to him.)
Here are Gary’s instructions — I added some helpful comments :
How to Make a Mickey Lamp
All the parts you need are available at Home Depot.
The Parts to make a Mickey Lamp Post
The key parts are:
||12 inch acrylic globe
||6 inch acrylic globes
||Globe holder (fitter)
[If you’re having trouble finding them, scroll down towards the bottom of this post for more details on how to get them. Now, to put it all together:]
1: Begin with the 12 inch globe. Apply masking tape across the top of the globe along the center line in order to mark the centers for the holes needed to mount the smaller globes. Draw a line at the “top dead center” of the lamp and then measure down 4 inches on each side and make another mark. This will mark the centers for each ear hole, they should be 8 inches apart.
2. Drill a small lead hole for each ear and then use a 3 ¼ inch hole saw to cut the ear holes.
[Did you do it right? If so, proceed to step 3. If not, head back to Home Depot for more parts and go back to step 1.]
3. Remove the tape and glue the smaller globes into these holes, clamp until the glue is set. (Gary uses LePage’s Flexible Plastic Cement. It comes in a tube, like airplane glue or styrene glue. We’re not sure if it’s available in the US or not, but any sort of styrene or acrylic cement should work just fine. He prefers a squeeze tube since it’s easier to apply.)
[What? You glued your hand to the lamp? Fingernail polish remover will take care of that. Go to a drugstore or supermarket. Once you’re free, catch up to the rest of us in step 4.]
4. Attach a standard plug to the globe fitter.
5. Now you need to attach the globe fitter to the post. I used a 2 inch piece of ABS drain pipe as my post. The mount is simply a connector which joins 2 pieces of this pipe. First remove the three clamp screws from the fitter:
[Gary said simply so you had no problems with that step. Right?]
6. Insert the ABS connector in the hole on the bottom of the globe fitter and drill small lead holes through the holes where you removed the clamp screws.
[You drilled through WHAT? Oooooo. I hope you have bandages handy. Moving on.]
7. Use small screws to attach the connector to the globe fitter. This piece will now slide on and off the ABS drain pipe which will be your post.
[Even I can do that one, peeps.]
8. Now drill a ½ inch hole about a foot from the bottom of the ABS pipe and feed the power cord up through the pole. Add a female receptacle to the end of the cord and you are done.
Well, not quite, but the rest is easy peasy.]
9. Plug the fitter into the female receptacle you just added, slide the globe fitter onto your post and install a 25 watt frosted light bulb. Place the globe on the fitter and enjoy your lamp.
You will need to devise a base for the lamp. I used a cast metal base for a patio umbrella (WalMart – about $20.00). You simply use a chisel to knock off the nut which holds the retaining bolt and the ABS post slides over the post on the umbrella base. I secure it with two long bolts and wing nuts. Be sure that your base is heavy enough to prevent your lamp from blowing over. The umbrella base has worked very well for me.
[Better than the base John and I first used. It was too light, blew over, and smashed the Mickey head. We had to beg Gary for his help again. That’s why I can’t give you Gary’s email. He changed it in case we broke this one.]
On my last few lamps I have added smaller bulbs to illuminate the ears as well as the larger globe.
10. Begin with a piece of metal strapping, about 4 inches long. Bend about ¼ inch on each end so that the ends will create a “friction grip” on the flange of the 6” globe which is now visible inside the 12” globe.
Make 2 of these pieces, one for each of Mickey’s ears.
11. Cut a length of outdoor Christmas lights so that you have 2 socket and enough cord on one end to attach a plug. Use pop-rivets to attach each socket to one of the metal straps you just made. Attach a plug.
Your assembly should look like this.
12. Here is a detailed look at the light socket riveted to the strap. Note the 90 degree bends in the ends of the strap which provide a “friction grip” on the flanges of Mickey’s ears, inside the larger globe. Bend them to provide a snug fit and just press them on.
[Scoff at your friends and family that said you couldn’t do it! Buy your friend who secretly did all the work a very nice gift!]
Here is more detail on the product codes (Home Depot) for the hard to get components:
12″ acrylic globe – SKU 312840
UPC 022678331576 Part # CP1265
Vendor – Adjusta Post – Price $15.96
6″ acrylic globe – SKU 312884
UPC 022678331620 Part # CP3086
Vendor Adjusta Post – Price $5.89
Globe Fitter – SKU 348480
UPC 022678331569 Part #CP1721P
Vendor Adjusta Post – Price $9.49
If you cannot get them through your local Home Depot, perhaps your store can order them in for you or do a look-up to see if they are stocked in a nearby store. The Home Depot near the Florida Mall stocks all the parts and always has plenty on hand. Details of that store: 7423 Southland Blvd., Orlando, FL 32809 (407) 859-3500
If all else fails, call the manufacturer Summit Lighting (a division of Adjusta Post), 3960 Summit Road, Barberton, OH 44203-1052. Their Customer Service number is (800) 321-2132. Maybe they can direct you to a retailer in your area.
Here is a picture of Gary’s finished lamp.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU to Gary for not only making our lamp post, but for nicely giving me these instructions to post!
Good luck to all those Mickey Lamp makers out there! And once again, no I won’t give you Gary’s email address!