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Jorge Crespo
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Cabeção, Mora, Portugal
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Oil Lamp from the Sun... a liquid form of illumination

Posted by Jorge Crespo about 13 years ago

Oil Lamps from the Sun is a useful way of lite up our homes in a decent yet sustainable and simple way.

Here in Portugal we have all the required materials to make this into a sustainable way of illumination. Though simple it makes the gereral ambience very confortable.

The idea is to use fairly simple yet sustainable way of iluminating our houses for the purpose of general ilumination and not for demanding tasks.

The use of these kind of ilumination is far to old to know where it did start in time it is though odorless and very bright.

Just as a curiosity, Lisbon was the first City to have public street illumination back in the 1780's using these Olive Oil Lamps.

The use of olive oil for this kind of Oil Lamp is very straitfoward and can be done very simply by using:


1-) a mug made of glass either transparent or not or even made of ceramics.

2-) a wick made of cotton embedded with wax as on a regular candle but far smaller, could be done with bee wax.

3-) A perfurated piece of cork in a coin shaped manner for floating purposes with a top metal layer for the purpose of protecting the cork of the intense heat from the flame and with a inner cup to hold the wick in place.

4-) Olive oil, as fuel (2 cubic centimeters may last for 7 hours) (1 liter =3500 hours)

5-) Water to prevent the mug of getting to warm to be handled.

Nothing like a picture so you can see how it is done.

I can fix this kind of thing for anybody for 10 euros + p.s.h. as a kit with (50 wicks plus a ready to use floating wick stand)

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Comments (2)

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jordan lowery
jordan lowery : where does the water come in all of this. is the mug half filled with water and half oil?
Posted about 13 years ago

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Jorge Crespo
Jorge Crespo : Yes, the mug is actually a little bit more than half filled with water, therefore the mug wont get hot.
Posted about 13 years ago

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My Badges
Consultant Aid worker
My Permaculture Qualifications
Permaculture PDC course
Type: Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course
Teacher: Lesley Anne Martin
Location: Cabaços, Odemira, Portugal; Europa
Date: Sep 2006
Other course unverified
Introdução à Construção em Taipa, Rammed Earth Introductory course
Type: Other
Teacher: Arq.Henrique Schreck
Location: Boavista dos Pinheiros, Portugal
Date: Aug 2005
Other course verified
Photovoltaics, DIY
Type: Other
Teacher: Myself
Location: Monte-Aton, Cabeção, Mora, Portugal
Date: Dec 2008
Other course verified
TeVEP, consultoria e organização
Type: Other
Teacher: Andre L Jaeger Soares
Location: Montemor-o-Novo, Portugal
Date: Jun 2007

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