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  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Seattle, Wa, USA.
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    682

    homemade outdoor lighting

    I am going to be putting some outdoor lighting in my yard soon and have been less than happy with the price and quality/design of the outdoor lights that I have been looking at. I was thinking about designing and building my own lights. Has anyone done this?
    The main thing that I am worried about is preventing water from getting to the lights.

    Thanks,
    Mat

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Lindenhurst, IL, USA.
    Posts
    125

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    I remember a construction article in one of my mags for outdoor lights, made of wood and quite nice. I'll see if I can find the article for you.

    Big Paul
    http://community.webshots.com/user/big_paul
    (Updated 10 Jul 02)

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Denver, CO, USA.
    Posts
    982

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    Are you talking about tea or walkway lights, patio lights, safety lights?

    I also saw an article demonstrating how to make walkway lights out of cedar and mahogany, they were about 4ft tall and looked great. I think it was in Handyman mag a few months back. I too will look through my archives.

    Billy B.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Chicagoland, IL, USA.
    Posts
    332

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    I built 4 lights to surrond my patio about 10 years ago. I used 4 x4 pressure treated lumber and low voltage lights. I routered the sides of the posts and mounted lights on the side.

    The good:
    Low voltage is easy to install, and safe. I cut a stopped daddo up the back and ran the wire inside the groove. I capped the posts with brass which keeps them from rotting.

    The bad:
    The bulbs are not as reliable or as bright as 110v. If I was to do it again I would probabbly use 110v lights and make a little pagoda to house the light.

    BTW: Cedar is a nice wood to use but in direct contact with the grouund has a tendenacy to rot, unless well drained. I like the IPE idea. I saw some outdoor posts made of that today, very nice.


    Dave


  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Seattle, Wa, USA.
    Posts
    682

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    I was actually thinking of running the wiring up through a metal tube that was inside the main post of the light. That way, I could have the actual wood stop at ground level and have the metal tube extend into the ground.

    Mat

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Chicagoland, IL, USA.
    Posts
    332

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    The metal tube is a good idea. My posts are about 3' above the ground and another couple under. I didn't have a drill that long to hide the cord in the middle! Although, they do sell long drill bits ~4' for alarm system installations. If you make the box out of individual pieces it will look nicer and you'll have more design flexibility. I learned a bit more about woodworking in years since I made those, and would approach the task differently now. I would add more style to the design rather than just functional. :)

    Dave

  7. #7
    Member
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    Dec 2002
    Location
    Northeast MA, Massachusetts, USA.
    Posts
    182

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    These are outdoor lights that were in Woodsmith a few issues back. Is it the style you are looking for?

    http://store.yahoo.com/backissuesstore/wsback141.html

    Norm


  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Seattle, Wa, USA.
    Posts
    682

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    Pretty close. I was envinsioning something a little more decorative using copper accents but those are the basic idea.

    Thanks,
    Mat

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Seattle, Wa, USA.
    Posts
    682

    RE: homemade outdoor lighting

    The idea that I have come up with is a fusion of mission and japanese style pagoda lights. about 2' tall. See the extremely rough drawing for an idea of what they look like. These lights will be run around the permiter of the yard.
    I was thinking about using either teak or ipe for weather resistance. I also wanted to use copper for accent pieces and to deflect the light down.



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