Friday, 1 April 2016

Home made light fitting brackets...

Our wombling continues, and this time it's fixed a problem we've had for a while, well it's not really a problem so much as it's more about the look of three light fittings we have in the house, see we've been here for a while (more than five years) and for the years we've been here three of the lights we've had in the house have been left, and by left I mean bare bulbs hanging from a bog standard white light fitting.

I really don't know why to be honest, it's not like we haven't decorated, we've painted, laid new floors and loads of other stuff (including change light fittings) so I don't know why these three have been left alone.

Not that it matters as we now have these hanging in place of the boring white fittings and bulbs hanging forlornly from the ceilings.

New lights (to us anyway) -

In good condition and free.

Yes we got three of these fisherman style light fittings from free cycling, and although the fittings themselves were fine (they just needed a clean and a polish) I discovered a small problem, that being we had three lights and only one fixing plate.

Fixing plate, of which we had one and needed three -

What to do, buy some? no that'd be too easy.

Before I continue I'd like to say that these are cheap to buy, you can get them online, and from diy shops (B&Q etc) for a couple of pounds, but did I buy some? no I figured I could make them, and I'm still trying to decide whether I should have just bought some, but I though well I have bits of scrap metal seems silly not to try, so I did.

I took an old piece of square steel tube - 

It came from an old metal desk.

Using the one bracket I had as a template I marked up the bit of tube, where to drill holes etc, then I set about making the hook part, which was easy enough to do.

Metal marked -

Bit of drilling and cutting to do next.

I marked out where I needed to drill the fixing holes, and also where I was going to cut the steel so I could bend a section out to make a hook for the light fitting to hang from.

Holes drilled, cutting next -

Two fixing holes and a third to mark where to cut to.

The idea here was to cut down the two lines either side of the centre line until I reached the hole and then all I'd need to do would be bend the steel out and into a hook shape (which I did with some needle nose pliers) and although they don't look as neat as the original one (and the ones you can buy) they work, and you can't see them anyway as they are hidden inside the fitting.

Metal cut - 

Not very neat, I did smooth the edges.

I used a cut off wheel in my multitool to make the cuts in the tube - 

Great for small jobs like this.

A pendant light suspension plate is born -

Not pretty, but they worked so I'm happy.

I made the next one with a slightly larger hook -

Ready for fitting.

Well the wiring block fits on the hook -

Seems an odd way of doing things to me.

These plates basically fix to the ceiling, and then a wiring block hangs from them, to be honest I'm not a fan of the system, but it works so I guess I'm happy.

Now before I actually put the lights up I figured I'd made the brackets a bit too quickly (and easily) and should probably test them first, so I fixed the plates I'd made to a bit of wood and hung the entire light fitting from it and tightened it all up and left it to see if the hooks would hold, and they did.

The lights (all three of them) have been happily hanging from the ceiling for a while now, they've been knocked and they are still nice and tight and where they should be, I filed the edges of the metal where I'd cut it as I didn't want any sharp edges rubbing against wires and I didn't want any cuts either, the edges of cut metal will slice like a razor unless you file it.

In all it took me about half an hour to make the two brackets I needed, which is how long it would have taken me to cycle to the nearest diy shop and back, yes I've saved about £4/£5  by making them myself, but it would have been easier to buy the plates.

I guess it's one bit of scrap metal that won't be heading for land fill, and three lights that were perfectly okay and destined for the bin given a new lease on life.

Still hanging - 

I can report all three are where they should be.

Thanks for reading.


  1. Ah you see but I disagree it would have been easier to buy them, because the ones you bought might have been a bit wrong, or you could only have bought 10 etc, Plus the whole going out and parting with money thing vs fettling things at home, no contest!

    1. 'A penny saved is a penny earned' is probably an apt quote.

      Thanks for reading.