DIY oak wood light fixture
The wooden light fixtures have two major advantages: in addition to ensuring the lighting of the rooms in which they are mounted they also play an essential decorative role. Basically, they can be the most important element or the central element of any room (living room or dining room), so it is impossible not to be remarked.
That’s why we will show you this DIY project of wooden modern light fixture. The design is as modern as it is simplistic. We didn’t choose the design (it was our customer’s idea), but we built it.
We used oak wood because it is a very stable wood. The oak wood is more stable then other essences. We laminated the oak wood planks in order to add more strength. For that, we used a homemade clamping system that allowed us to laminate easy and quickly. The DIY clamping system consists of a lot of homemade double C clamps.
We glued two oak wood planks of 2 cm thick and 6 cm wide, for each module of the light fixture. We wanted to use modules of 4 cm thick and 6 cm wide, with lengths of 120 cm. For this type of light fixture we needed 3 identical modules. The three modules of the hanging lamp will be installed on different levels.
We cut the laminated oak to the exact length of 120 cm and then I started to shape them. We set the length of the channels and we marked their edges taking care that our milling machine does not exceed these markings.
We first routed the channels for sticking the LEDs strips and the plexiglass strips and then we rounded the edges of the modules. We had to build a template from a 18 mm plywood board, which would allow us to round the edges of the channels, because we used a milling bit with a smaller diameter than the width of the channel.
We did not use the template for milling the entire channel, but only for its edges. It was much simpler to use the parallel guidance of the milling machine to make the entire channel, than to use the template. After we checked the first milling with the template, we made the other 5 with maximum confidence. This plywood template saved us a lot of time. As I said in other previous posts, any kind of templates or jigs help you save time in case of repetitive operations.
For milling the full length of the grooves we used the parallel guidance of the milling machine. For each groove we used two identical planks as support for the milling machine, so that the contact surface to be as large as possible. So that, the milling machine was easily kept in balance. Thus the grooves for the LEDs strips was routed very quickly. Obviously we made several milling cuts with different depths, but in the end everything was all right.
We did a small milling cut on the edge of the base groove, for the plexiglass strips . Only one cut for each channel was enough.
For the rounded edges of the light fixture modules, we have drawn some semicircles to see which one best matches the roundness of the channel. We made several attempts with various round objects, but in the end we used a milling bit for hinges because it had the right diameter.
First, we used the sliding circular saw to cut the surplus of wood, and then we used the band sander, with 60 grit sandpaper, to give them the shape, as quickly as possible. To do this, we fixed the band sander on a PAL board. So that, it was very easy to us to control the stratified oak wood planks. We sanded very quickly the edges of the stratified wood planks to the needed shape we have drawn.
We filled the small imperfections of the wood with a knife putty and we sanded all the three modules of the lamp with 120 grit sandpaper. For the final finish we used the orbital sander for the wide sides, and the straight sander for the rounded edges. We manually rounded a little the sharped edges.
At the end, we made another milling channel for the electric cables and we drill holes for passing the electrical cables that connect the LEDs strip with the electric cables from the ceiling.
To hide the electric cables on the ceiling, we made a mask out of white painted MDF (fits the white paint on the ceiling) and wood (fits the oak wood light fixture). The wooden board has 6 holes for the electric cables and steel wires and another 4 holes for the screws with which it will be fixed on the ceiling.
And the final result: