attaching lamp bases to wall?

I'd like to attach 8-10 lamp bases to the wall where a 12-foot valance will act as a shade. The lamps/cords won't be seen. I saw plastic lamp bases (at the BORG) with dual terminals where you can screw in lamp cord, and the lampbase has two screw holes for mounting. When screwed down, the connections are not exposed. Do I need an electrical box for this kind of lamp socket? It would be screwed onto drywall or painted wood. Also, I'd like to know how close a 60w. bulb can (legally/safely) be to a painted wooden surface.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

It sounds as though you will be using portable lamp cord for a permanent installation. Not good or permissible.
The correct way to do this is by using cable approved for this use such as Romex or BX going into 4" octagon boxes and using keyless lamp sockets to screw your bulbs into.
600 watts is a lot of heat. Can you substitute compact fluorescents?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The sockets he is proposing are fine- using zip cord to wire them is not. I've seen socket strings like that used in barns, 4-H carnivals, etc, for forty years. Can't remember the proper name, but the stranded stuff on rolls of the right gauge is what I usually see used with those. Ends up looking sorta like Knob and Tube. Slightly smaller candelabra-base versions can be found in the boxed-in area of most of those 3-door medicine cabinets with the lights on top.
But, having said that- 8 or 10 bulbs over a 12-foot run, using 60 watt bulbs, is massive overkill, and likely to start a fire from heating whatever is close. No idea what code says, but I never put a regular bulb closer than six inches or so to any surface. Try grabbing the U-shaped thing that holds the lampshade on a table lamp, or the shade on a drop light, sometime- anything near bulb gets HOT. Valance implies drapes. Can't see the room from here, but this sounds like the type of application where low-volt halogen pucks, or maybe even rope lights, would work well. In the late 50s -early 60s, a common living room light was a blond wood valance over the top of the curtains, about 8-10 inches tall, with single-tube florescent fixtures pointed UP, to bounce off the white ceiling. Sounds hokey now, but with 1950s modern furniture and decor, it worked. You couldn't see the bulbs, but it provided nice indirect light.
aem sends...
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Phisherman wrote:

In addition to what John just wrote, did you stop to think how you were going to avoid crushing the lamp cord when you screwed those sockets to the wall?
And what were you planning to use for a switch to turn them on and off?
I'm no code mavin, but I'm not sure the kind of permanant setup you're describing could be legally connected to a power source by just plugging a cord into a wall outlet either.
You might want to look into Wiremold products to SAFELY get the job done. The stuff pictured on this page will show you the possibilities and it includes bases for the kinds of sockets you mentioned.
HTH,
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I agree, Wiremold or similar would be a better way than barn/carnival style surface mount exposed wiring. But what he is talking about does exist. See http://www.doityourself.com/invt/u244715 for an example. Notice the notches in the side for the 2 strands of wire. This is definitely 1930s tech, IMHO.
aem sends...
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

My house was filled with those ceramic sockets. The previous owner must have loved them, strange since the place was built in the 1959 - well after I'm sure they were allowed by code. The one in the garage was particularly interesting - he used it for the the overhead light, where he screwed a socket splitter into it and then populated the socket splitter with 2 100 Watt bulbs. I'm amazed the house wasn't burned down by the time I bought it.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Left out the Wiremold link (again). <G>
http://tinyurl.com/24zlm3
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.