UKC hive mind, unleash upon me your creative juices!
For years I've wanted to make my Dad a fun art piece. When I was a kid we always used to collect beach glass, and I want to make a display of it all for his birthday next month. I envision a glass vase with a bright led bulb in the centre so I can fill the vase full of the beach glass and at night he can turn it on and get a lovely coloured light eminating.
I've never found anything that could be suitable. I cant drill glass and they don't really make anything for this purpose that I'm aware of. If you had any *bright* ideas to get a bulb wired into a vase I'd appreciate it!
What about some kind of self-contained solar led light - the sort that gather solar power during the day and come on at night? I have a security light that does this (well, it would if it wasn't broken). No wiring to worry about then.
My wife made this, it’s been in the garden a good few years. Glass collected from the East Sands (St Andrews). It’s a ceramic floor tile, layer of cement. You could do a mosaic, of his name, birth sign, whatever. Have a small spot light shining on it (or a solar powered light near it).
I have recently been wondering about drilling a particular glass bottle in order to convert it to a 240V lampshade. Googling now, there are lots of on-line suggestions about how to successfully do that. Possibly worth a try.
A quick google of "Drillbits for Glass" will give you a bunch of options to drill glass with, probably best to experiment on a scrap bit of glass of a similar thickness first. Also LED strip Lights will produce less a fair bit less heat than an LED Bulb.
> I've never found anything that could be suitable. I cant drill glass and they don't really make anything for this purpose that I'm aware of. If you had any *bright* ideas to get a bulb wired into a vase I'd appreciate it!
As others have said, yes, you can drill glass. Get a diamond-tipped bit from your local DIY or tiling shop and take it slowly. The awkward bit is starting off, unless you have a drill press - you can get suction jigs to guide it, but they only really work on large, flat surfaces. Best to start with the drill at a slight angle to start a groove and then ease it upright, or just use an old bit of wood with a guide hole in it.
As others have said, do a search for glass drills, they exist and they work. There are also loads of online craft tutorials on cracking glass vessels, either scoring first or using heat, it's easier than you might expect. If you're going to sandpaper or stone the cut edge, do it wet.
That said, I think you need to think about the heat. You either need to have the vessel properly open top and bottom (like a wine bottle lampshade, you cut the bottle base off) or you need a lower power lamp. Mains LED bulbs run right on the edge of cooking because that's cheap, they need convective cooling to survive.
LED string lights would produce a different effect and not get hot. If you used an upturned Kilner type jam jar you wouldn't even need to drill the lid, just pop the disk bit out.
Not perfect holes but I got the hang of it. I found better success using two strips of duct tape, as the masking tape just came off when wet, and starting the hole using the drill at an angle before going vertical.
Go for a 12v flexible led strip and layer the LEDs throughout the jar and coloured glass to give light all around. They run cool and can be pretty bright. A small power block will give you the 12v supply. (I had a strip lighting the kitchen area of my VW van and ist was nice and bright)
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