So you need to charge more devices and have decided that, rather than calling an electrician to install a new outlet, you want a simple workaround? That’s great. The LampChamp can definitely help with that.
But as you’re embarking on this minor project, here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Pay attention to the bulb type that the lamp uses. This device works with standard bulbs, so don’t pick out a lamp with a candelabra bulb (or a tube light, for that matter). I went around and tried to use it on various existing lamps in my house, and I discovered that the sconce by my son’s desk uses a candelabra bulb. Also, you could buy a short bulb if the added height would make the bulb visible.
- Consider the lamp shade. Make sure it’s wide enough to allow clearance, not only for the LampChamp but also for the wire installed on its side. Here are some images of lamp shades that it works with.
And here are images of lamp shades it doesn’t work with (one of them clearly has the wrong type of bulb. Hopefully I don’t need to point out which one).
- If you’re considering installing it onto a ceiling lamp, umm, consider the appearance of a dangling wire from the ceiling tethered to your charging device. Then imagine someone walking by, inadvertently catching the wire, tripping and falling (and likely getting hurt, meaning you risk being sued), and subsequently yanking to the ground not only the charging device but also the ceiling fixture. Not to mention the dangling wire might be a bit unsightly. Unless it’s the same color as your walls. Then I’m sure it’ll look just fine. (But if you do go with this option, make sure to set up a camera triggered by someone walking nearby. That way you’re sure to capture plenty of great video footage. Who knows, maybe you’ll even win America’s Funniest Home Videos, assuming that’s still around, and the prize money can pay for damages… and settling the lawsuit).
- Use the switch on the side of the LampChamp to turn your light on and off. Don’t get all frustrated that you can only charge your device while the light is on because you keep turning the lamp on and off using the lamp’s switch, all the while questioning the purpose of the switch on the side of the LampChamp. Hypothetical scenario, of course. Totally didn’t happen to me.
- Find a lamp with a built-in shelf. Those are cool, and then you already have a place to store the device you’re trying to charge.
- Alternatively, you can make your own lamp. Buy a lamp kit at the hardware store for less than $15, spend way too much time and effort designing the shelving unit/table, spend hours cutting 2x4s, screwing them together (perhaps cursing over the fact that your drill lost its charge, bemoaning the fact that it doesn’t come with a USB charging port), sanding the edges, staining the structure, attaching shade fabric, and realizing it’s not perfect and that for how much time and money you spent on materials and assembly, you could have just gone to a few garage sales and bought a non-working lamp and replaced the lamp kit. Or just gone ahead and called that electrician.
- Retrofit an old piece of furniture to become a cool lamp table. This post will not explore how exactly you’d do this, but if you’re inclined to do so, make sure you buffer in the extra space for the LampChamp and charging wire. I’d post pictures, but I actually have a lamp that the device fits into, so I haven’t done this. But if you do, be sure to share your picture!
- Go to a fab lab (or get a hold of a laser cutter) and create a cool lamp. Then attach the LampChamp. Really, any lamp project can be made better with the LampChamp.
Clearly, the LampChamp can be the perfect solution for whatever level of DIYer you are. Whether you want to be boring and just screw it into an existing lamp (with a wide enough shade) or want to integrate it into your cool new project, the LampChamp is an easy way to add charging functionality to any lamp.
Oh yeah, the LampChamp sells for $30 for a pair on Amazon (I’ve also seen it on WalMart’s website), and lamps can come real cheap (unless you make it a big project and spend more money than you need to on a DIY project). So this is a good, relatively inexpensive project that can make you a true Lamp Champ.