Posts Tagged ‘jack stand’



November 19, 2016

Sometimes an idea gets so firmly ahold of me that it drags me down a pricey rabbit hole, kicking and screaming the whole way.

In the beginning it seems harmless, a modest acquisition that shows promise. But then it starts to make demands. It’s like adopting a rescue dog that’s so cute and friendly you can’t resist, but it’s not young. So there are vet bills and meds, and pretty soon you’re thinking, What was I thinking?

But you love it, so on you go.

This project started with a pair of jackstands from an estate sale. Then I got the idea in my head that they had to have Volkswagen hubcap shades. I found a pair on eBay, for not too much (as hubcaps go), but I could tell they weren’t in the greatest shape. I thought I’d go rustic. But once they arrived I just couldn’t do it. They were less rusty than crusty.

So things sat.

Eventually, I decided to paint both stands and shades, which meant getting the hubcaps sandblasted. And that meant venturing – twice – into the wilds of San Leandro (though the folks at Myers couldn’t have been nicer) and parting with a chunk of change. Then filling the pits and low spots. Then sanding the filler. Then priming and painting.

In the meantime, the shades wanted accessories of their own: high-end acorn nut finials and teeny VW bugs for pull-chain ornaments. And then, when I thought I was finished, I realized I really needed some way to keep the legs from scratching the tabletop. Trying different things took another couple of weeks.

But in the end they got done.

Learn more about the Roboto Ronin in my Etsy shop.


Pair-shaped, part III

February 4, 2014

jstandcropWhat do you do when you find a couple old jack stands at a salvage place? If you’re me, you decide to make lamps out of them – and then start hunting for hubcaps.



Why hubcaps? For shades, of course. But they have to be just the right ones. It’s surprisingly difficult.

And it turns out that, when you find them, they look like they’ve been coated with marinara sauce and allowed to cure for, say, a century or so. Yuck.

But there’s some satisfaction to be had from playing with paint remover – and spray paint. The jack stands weren’t quite as crusty as the hubcaps, but I decided to repaint them as well, in two different blacks: one flat, one glossier and slightly textured.

Figuring out how to suspend the hubcap shades was also a bit of a challenge. It took some trial and error – as did compensating for the slight off-kilterness of the stands. Overall though, now that they’re done, I’m pretty happy with the result.

War of the Worlds jack stand and hubcap table lamps

War of the Worlds jack stand and hubcap table lamps

All they need is a Tom Cruise bobblehead fleeing in terror. Keep an eye out for me?