I wanted to make a beautiful cylinder of sanded, polished wood, shorter than it was wide, into a battery powered lamp, turning our first fabrication project of creating a duct-taped circuit-style flashlight on its head and instead create something of quality, with heft. Grace of form. A spare Noguchi-inspired shade. Underneath concentric rings of delicate pink, amber, blue gels.
...So...didn't turn out like that. I looked for turning wood for too long without succeeding in buying anything. Also turns out I needed to know how to lathe and I don't. Yet.
I decided to prototype the form.
I used a clear acrylic pipe-coupler-type cylinder. It didn't occur to me to have them cut it there. I spent a lot of time on, and needed help, using a hacksaw and handscrew clamps to do it myself - it was brittle. Rotary sanding the ends was interesting. In trying to drill a hole to accommodate the switch I cracked the acrylic tube.
In switching to a tube from a solid cylinder I realized I needed a good way to hold the circuitry in place. I used a mesh and the rim of an aluminum sieve. The only aspect of my iteration I favored was the hand-sanding of the acrylic to give it a beach-washed glass look. I also kind of liked the concept I came up with of using netting to cradle the innards.
If I were to attempt another iteration of this lamp I would start with a foam block and rough it out or I would settle for an imperfect but nicely rounded blob of wood before tackling the lathe.
It was a humbling experience. Technique, experience, know-how, planning are important. Throwing lots of time and money at something at the last minute is no replacement.