Yoshizen's Blog

Home-made Light-stand (2) — Copper Clad Cable Spiral Lamp

Clad Cable Spira Lamp(1)lA09A0323

This Spiral cable Lamp was the earliest I made in England.   While stay in London, I used a

Film Labo’ where many Japanese photographer were taking their film to be processed.  

Photographer is the observer of the world and the human life.   And the people who is

developing  their films are yet another kind of the observer.  —– By watching the subjects

in my film, the owner of the Labo’ seemed to have noticed who I am, and asked me  

“Do you know electronics ?”  “Yah, a bit”  “Do you know about this machine ?  Can you repair ?”

—– It was a hefty spot welder.   Hefty because of it got really hefty transformer inside, still

its structure is rather simple.   “OK, I’ll check it with my tool tomorrow”. = Next day, I found

the welder’s brake down was caused by a micro-switch in the timer controller and I replaced it.

= Here, working again.   The owner was very impressed,  not only a photographer carrying a

test equipment but actually able to repair the machine.   (He knew, knowing and able to do is

not the same thing.)   “OK, in exchange, you develop those  10 films free”  “Oh, sure”  

I like a kind of relationship which doesn’t involve a money =  I help you, so you help me.

And I started to use their small room in their studio as my office and in exchange,  if

anything repair kind of needs happened, I’ll help them.  Almost like an in-hose engineer.  🙂

(That’s how I got an experience to deal with 2500 V,  5000 WS studio type flash etc )

Clad Cable Spiral Lamp(2)418-001

But to carry out some repair, in a awkward corner of the big studio space, or under the film

processing line,  I needed to have a work-lamp.  I made this Spiral Lamp of which all the

materials were piled up in a corner of the studio where used be a huge vegetable storage

in a corner of  “used to be the Covent Garden Flower and Vegetable Market”.  

(So, I know the Before and After of the Covent Garden Market !  🙂 )


Copper Clad Cable is not common Japan where the main voltage is 100 V.   So, I first seen it in

this country.   The cable was covered by a copper tube hence it is quite solid and fire resistant,

still having certain flexibility or able to bend.  Most of work lamp was wire caged to protect

glass light bulb = so, I got an idea to use this cable itself to make protective cage around the bulb

—– then wall mount switch-box was fixed as its base. (Socket was fixed to the end of the cable

using Epoxy glue).  —– this is yet another minimalist’s approach though, all what we need are

there and perfectly functioning.  It may looks odd and a bit awkward to change a bulb though,

it worked perfect for my purpose.   Is there anything  wrong with it ?


PS :  A quite few people, even the electrician who came to my room to re-wiring and the readers,

questioned me, how I could make the Spiral so neat ?  = Cable (Piro) was first close wound around

a gutter-pipe about 8 cm, then it was pulled and expanded.   Then both end was bent to the

wanted shape.  (Of course, the both end, the copper tube was peeled off and the conductors =

two cable were covered with proper  insulator sleeves and made proper electric connection.)

Though, I wouldn’t encourage the reader to do this kind of work, unless the person got enough

skill like a qualified electrician.  To play with main power is a very dangerous business.  It kills. 




8 Responses

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  1. jag said, on August 14, 2013 at 07:40


  2. elenacaravela said, on August 14, 2013 at 22:54

    Oh my! A series of very cool lights!

    • yoshizen said, on August 14, 2013 at 23:53

      Thank you Elena. You are the first person who said “Cool”.
      Most of others said “Funny”, “Made it so cheap, very clever” etc. 😀

  3. Lemony (Gr)Egghead said, on August 15, 2013 at 14:56

    I know I always say it, but you’re amazingly resourceful. It works perfectly and it’s such a great shape.

    • yoshizen said, on August 15, 2013 at 15:38

      Thank you Lemony. On the beginning, I thought, it’s just a cheap temporally thing though,
      when I see this again after so many years, I found, It’s not too bad piece. 🙂

  4. Grisel Taybron said, on August 26, 2013 at 23:00

    Generally I do not read post on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very forced me to try and do it!
    Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thanks, very nice article.

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