How To: Build A Plumbing Pipe Lamp

WARNING: The article below involves using electrical parts and wiring them up yourself.  We assume no responsibility for injury or damage to personal property.

I love a building project. Whether its building a whole new deck on the back of your house, or making a simple lamp, the pride you can take from watching something come to form makes you happy.  I have made 2 of these style lamps now and figured I’d share a fun, inexpensive project you can use as a functional yet stylish conversation piece, or even give as a one gift.

It all started when I saw some of these mass produced lamps in bars in NYC. They have a vintage, industrial, almost steam punk design to them and I wanted one.  I looked them up online and realized I wasn’t about to drop a few hundred dollars on a lamp I could make myself.  Granted, the design in today’s article is a very basic one, but it works for me.  The first one I made is a standing stick lamp that is 6 ft tall.  It costed a bit more (for materials) and was more involved, but for today we’ll keep it simple.  I got everything for the project at my local hardware store.


  1. [1] Lamp Kit $8.00

2. [1] 1/2 inch Plumbing Flange $0.50

3. [1] 1/2 inch Plumbing Pipe $1.00

4. [1] 1/2 inch Plumbing T connector $1.00

5. [1] “Edison” style light bulb $3.00

6.  [1] 4×4 post cut off $Free!  (Had it laying around)

Total Cost: $13.50


This part is pretty simple as the pipes just fit together like a puzzle.  Once you have the basic layout, string the lamp cord through the maze (disassembled!)  then fit the pipe pieces together.

Wiring the pipes while disassembled is recommended

Once you have the wiring through the pipes, you have to attach it to the bulb base.  In my kit, there is a gold screw, and a silver screw.  Connect the grooved (neutral) wire to the silver (neutral) screw, and the other wire (hot) to the gold screw (hot).  If this in any way confuses you do not continue at this point.  I hold no responsibility for anyone trying this who doesn’t follow the instructions resulting in electrical shock, fire or any other accidents.  Follow the instructions of YOUR lamp kit specifically. 

Don’t fuck this up

Once its wired up, put the pieces of the lamp receptacle together, then screw the pipe pieces together. Then you can mount the base of the flange to the wood block. Use a bit of tension to hold the bulb receptacle in place.  I put a bead of caulk afterward for strength.  At this point, your lamp is basically complete.

I used 4 small screws to attach the lamp to the base, feeding the plug out of the bottom

Just add the light bulb and turn it on.  It if it doesn’t come on, check your wiring in the bulb receptacle.  I went with the “Eidson” style incandescent bulbs, but they now have Edison style LED bulbs that mimic the look of the vintage bulbs. I’ll be getting them when these burn out.

Details of the filament of the bulbs. Looks really cool in person.


This lamp is fun, pretty cheap, and pretty easy to make.  You can take things to the next level wiring up multiple bulbs and making it bigger, even just buying the electrical supplies instead of the kit. This thing gets compliments all the time, and would make a cool gift for someone.  They even have valve rocker switches available online for a really industrial look.  Hope you guys enjoyed today’s project.  If you make one, post it up in the comment section.

-J. Nyx



Author: Jnyx

Fitness addict, DIY guru, tech nerd, member of Memesters Local 419.