Designing a lamp for modelmakers. I would appreciate your help

Hello everyone,

I am a design student in Italy, currently taking a product development studio for which I have to design an adjustable, LED table lamp. We were free to define a context of use for the lamp and my group and I naturally gravitated towards handcrafting activities. More specifically, we decided to focus on the fine detailing (painting, cutting, engraving, sanding) of components in model-making (plastic models, dioramas, architectural models …).

We have just completed a market analysis and identified a few features we would like to implement. However, we need to verify their relevance to model-makers. I’ve interviewed two model makers from my groups’s close circle. While their input clarified certain needs, we remain undecided (Two people isn’t much to start from).

I would really appreciate any suggestions and remarks. Or, if you have the time, We also have a form composed of a total of 13 questions.

Thank you in advance to everyone,


Sounds good, lightning is very important.

Note that there the question 13 refers to 11 while it should be 12, and 6 does not allow multiple selections.

Hi Tarek, I use this model (Casalife SL-2347, 72 x 0.06W non-replaceable LEDs) with magnifying lens…

The magnifier is extremely useful and the white light is excellent. The problem is how to bring the light/magnifier closer to the subject. Most model-makers’ workbenches/desks tend to become crowded so the actual working area is typically small & restricted. With this lamp, you have to manhandle the whole lamp to first move the base further away and then bend the arm down when you don’t want to move the object being worked on – this takes up too much space. I would much prefer an angle-poise arm on a clamp to fix it to the side of the desk - this would make the base redundant and free up more space to work.

Ideally the support arm should also be telescoped so that the head could be raised maybe up to 60cms above the desk surface, and like the Casalife model should be able to be angled sideways too. These two features could also be used in combination to soften the light intensity – I may be mistaken but I don’t think a dimmer control is possible with LEDs.

And if it could make big cups of coffee too I’d buy one immediately :coffee:


Hello, thank you for completing the form. I have amended both mistakes. thanks for pointing them out!

Reminds me of War of the Worlds. As I indicated in the survey, I use multiple light sources at one time. This reduces shadows and help me see the small details I’m working on.


I can second Tim here!
That’s my working space- not more than 10% of the total desk area:

Form completed, good luck!


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Form completed and submitted.

I use the general ceiling light fixture (high hat with flood bulb)
Two articulated task lights each clamped to desk.
One is OttLite with attached magnifier. Magnifier is so-so. I am replacing it with head-mounted magnifying loupes.
Other light is generic task light with incandescent bulb. The combination of the two gives just okay light intensity. Individually they aren’t enough.

On a related note, in my dental operatory I use a ceiling mounted LED with adjustable intensity. The amber LEDS are used only when working with light cured material to prevent premature setting. It provides very good (5500K) light but I still use a head mounted LED lamp on my magnification loupes.


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Some questions that this forces you to answer to not have accurate answers offered. I work under daylight bulbs. A question not asked is that I have three elbows and it could do with more that are easily lockable in order to get the desirable position.

Form completed and submitted.

Personally, I stay away from clamp-style articulating desk lamps. Most I’ve used (3 out of 4) haven’t held up very well. The hardware is usually cheap metal or plastic at the clamp/pivot point — had one break and crash down on my table once. I have one remaining clamp-style desk lamp, the only one that has solid components and has withstood the test of time — over 25 years old.

• Philips Hue Smart Bulbs (x2) in central ceiling light… motion sensor or manually activated.
• Philips Hue Smart Spots (x3)… Siri voice control: ON/OF and color temperature control.
• Small 3”x3” LED goose-neck light with small 5”x5” footprint w/USB-A outlet.
• VOCOlinc Smart Switches… outlet control throughout room.
• Light-blocking curtains maintain light consistency throughout the day (South facing window).

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Hee-hee! My workspace is much worse! Almost embarrassing! :open_mouth: :roll_eyes:
:smiley: :canada:

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As for adjustable lamps (Luxo style) that fit into a desk clamp (I understand the failure of the clamps), they all have a post at the bottom of the lamp that fits into the bracket clamp. I drill a hole in the table top big enough for that post to fit into - problem solved! No more lamps falling over!
:smiley: :canada:

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Not for the three I’ve had to toss. The pivot rod was rolled metal and not solid steel. They broke at the weak point above the post with just normal use. I recommend regular inspection if you have one of those. The older model which I continue to use has much better hardware. :hammer_and_wrench:

Created my own using a LED light strip & Aluminium extrusions - is for sale | HugeDomains -



I see a trend which I follow. Multiple lights. All my lights are LED’s, main room is a regular ceiling mount w a dimmer, I replaced the standard light fixture and switch prior to the remodel on that room. West facing window that is above eye level (split level house, my room is in the basement and the window sits ground level which around 4ft off the floor. Around my desk on the left is a standard floor led lamp w flexible head that I’ve angled so the lamp floods from my left as much as possible. On my immediate right is an Ottlight w something like 6-9 light settings, I prefer a pretty bright setting w my old eyes (already in bifocals at 52), and recently added a 2nd model of Ottlight that sits dead center in front of me w two wand like light bars that I can adjust. I prefer as much light as I can get without being glaring and the two Ottliggts being on my right and dead center about shoulder high when sitting seems to have cut down on the shadows that the ceiling and floor lamp caused. Since we finished this room I opted for a pretty bright ceiling white paint and a lighter grey on the walls, they seem to compliment my lighting also giving it a bright airy feel.


I just ordered alot of new parts in hopes of making my bench more clean and more useful. I am planning turning all my bench tools, and lighting into a moduler desk top system. I am hoping to incorporate my lights, tools, instructions stand, strip power outlets , camera mount and a paint vent all on one aluminum extrusion frame. I am still waiting for a few more parts but I will be posting my creation once all my parts have arrived. I think the model hobby needs a good lighting option.

My biggest problem is probably the same as most builders, no matter how big your bench is it shrinks as you work. My plan is to incorporate all the stuff that has a footprint on my bench hook on to one modular frame so it frees up work surface. Not sure it will be life changing or anything but it can’t hurt

As far as the lighting goes. I think a remote would be the best for my needs with a full spectrum light adjustments like most all new high-tech lights.

Things I hate about my current bench lighting

  1. It shines into my eyes when I have it up to high and it gets in the way when it’s lower
  2. It casts shadows
  3. burns up room on my bench
  4. Cords are to short and end up with power strip or extension cords.

My dream lighting sounds crazy but I think I would really like my lighting on each side of my chair head high spoting right where my hands are working. I think if the light was shooting from my eye line it would always be perfect. Haha now good luck figuring out how to make that happen I will buy one!


How about a headlamp? All sorts exist. The type that fits on hobbyist magnifiers, those that hikers wear, and the surgical type worn by some doctors/dentists.

Haha yeah I thought about that already but I don’t feel like wearing head gear when trying to relax and kick back. I am the guy that turns on the TV and multi-tasks with my kit building. That kinda leads into my lighting problem too because I like to keep the room light off so I can see the TV good and I use desk lamps only. I do get way better lighting with the room light on but for some reason I ended up turning if off a few years ago and very seldom turn it on now.

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I’ll be retiring in the near future and I will be using these. Might as well. They’re already paid for.
Mine are an older model with a power cord running to a battery pack.

I have these and they work FANTASTIC! Every model maker should try them at 15 bucks you can’t go wrong with them. The 1day day I got them I bought a 2nd pair and sent them to my dad just to work around his shop. There great!

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There is not a universal solution. A true white light or what I call a 1:00 PM sunlight would be good.
I would want a hanging LED light bar. A hanging light bar means my desk top is free of a lamp stand.
A bar that is 4 foot wide would be great.
One that I can raise and lower easily is good.
One that the intensity of the light is adjustable is preferred.
One that is built to last 50 years is desirable. No cheap designed obsolescence
An adjustable shade option would be nice…
Cost of the lamp would be reasonable to the average person.
No special order custom set of LED’s. Replacements must be widely available.