Sabbath Lamp

Sabbath Lamp

Sabbath lamp
There is a prohibition against turning on or off circuits or switches on the Sabbath. Because of this, there exists something called a Sabbath Lamp or Kosher Lamp. This is a lamp that stays on all of the Sabbath, thus avoiding the prohibition, but has a rotating shade that can block all the light if necessary so the that the lamp can be turned off. The shade is made by having two layers, each with a gap cut down the length. One remains stationary while the other rotates.

View through the outer "window". This matched a hole in the base...

The lamp socket was taken from an old lamp, as was the plug while the switch was taken from an old hair dryer because the original one was too tall and repeatedly broke. The inner, stationary cover was made out of a can and a piece of thin plastic was used as a diffuser so the light given is more even.

... The hole in the base. The white is the diffuser I put on to give a softer, more even glow.

The outer layer was made by gluing lengths of dowels together with a top of ¾ wood. The inside of it was covered in black paper to block any small amount of light from getting through cracks. Both the choice of using an octagonal base and the outer walls were purely aesthetic.

Dowel wall

Holes were cut into the bottom layer of the base and the electronics were placed there, making the lamp as a whole look nicer.

Electronics built into grooves cut into the base

This project was fairly different from my past ones because while I usually am only concerned with function, for this project I also took into account form. After some thinking, I decided the vertical dowels would look nicest while still blocking all the light. A fluorescent light was used both to save energy (the lamp is on for a whole day) and because it produces much less heat, saving the diffuser from melting. To save energy, a timer can also be used to turn off the lamp when it wouldn’t be necessary, like in the middle of the day.
For more details as well as a video, please visit here.


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