Made to Order

Over the summer, Greg, my dad, & I spent many hours working on revitalizing our backyard. Out went the old garden box, in went lovely shrubs, and more sod than I want to think about.

IMG_5515This post is not about that.

Somewhere along the way, we stopped at Lowes and Home Depot which began our solar light obsession. We went from zero solar lights to sixteen solar lights. Yes, sixteen! Three color changing orbs in the front, nine little ones in the ground out back, and four on the deck rail.

Side note: They make taking Hazel out so much better because we’re not totally dependent on the flashlight to see her.

Today we’re going to talk about the deck rail lights. You see, the house came with busted up lights wired to something or other. We don’t know how they worked nor did we want to invest the money in figure out if they could. Solar lights seemed like the perfect solution.

deck lightsOne trip to Home Depot later, we had four fancy pants post lights.

deck lights-3Side note: Lowe’s had a non-existent offering of post lights whereas Home Depot offered about four different options.

We spent (and by we, I mean Greg) about an hour removing the old light fixture while I put together the new lights.

deck lights-8Fine– they came premade but I did remove the sticker over the battery.

They looked amazing and provided great light in the backyard until a friend whacked one with a chair at a BBQ causing the internal piece holding it to the base to break.

deck lights-7Ugh.

We had little urge to spend another $50 to replace the light.

Every time Greg walked past the busted light, he would launch into his 3D printer cause. If he had a 3D printer he could print the piece blah blah blah. Then I’d tune him out because he’s not getting one.

Side note: At $2000 a piece, he’s only getting one if we win the lottery or if he get a job that pays him double his current salary.

Now it’s time to eat crow (he’s still not getting one) but for $13, he had the piece printed. After drawing the part in SolidWorks, he sent it out to bid on and a local person with a MakerBot at home printed and shipped the part.

IMG_6285How did it compare to the original piece?

deck lights-11Pretty well, don’t you think and it fits too.

deck lights-12Five minutes later, our light was back in it’s home.

deck lights-18And Greg glowed over his 3D printed part.

deck lights-16




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