Major purchase - Post - #1495

For as long as I've been painting buttons I have been using this  magnifying lamp...  I have spent more hours than I can count peering through this lens.  But the time has come that I need a much stronger magnification.

To begin with I knew what I didn't like about the magnifying lamp that I was using..  Besides the incandescent bulb, the spring arm was controlled with little knobs which were constantly loosening no matter how hard I tightened them and I sorta solved that with a pieces of wood and clamps..  Then there was the lens and lamp... It only was adjustable up and down - not side to side... AND weight of the lens and lamp always caused it to gradually sag downward.  So I was constantly adjusting it...  So I not only wanted a stronger lens, I wanted a better quality piece of equipment.  I knew that this is a major, one-time purchase and I wanted to be as informed as possible

I learned quite quickly that magnifying lamps are available from about $38  to about $400.  First you are confronted with an alphabet soup of initials... KFM, LFM, IFM, LED, and ESD plus what seemed to be endless choices for mounts, length of reach, lights, position of lights and  circles of increased magnification.  etc...and then there's the shape of the lens and the quality of the lens itself.  I was desperately wishing there were somewhere I could just try one...  I had already ordered one that was mid-range price and sent it back as it had a problem with distortion and the lights were on each side of the lens which was terrible.

Then much to my delight and  surprise at this very moment Shirlee Fassell  published on post on this subject.  She was having the same problems but her husband bought a lamp at All-Spec and she loved it... And that is how I came to order this..

And I can tell you right off the KFM refers to the quality of the construction.  This lamp is heavy duty construction and suitable for use in a lab and when I position it, it stays there.  The head is completely adjustable... side  to side, up and down and tipped every which way.  This is especially nice when I am working on MOP buttons which have weird reflective areas.  I had a 3 diopter (strength of lens) and moved up to a 5 diopter and chose a LED lamp which is dimmable.   The lens itself is optical quality and fabulous..  This model  (click to find site) was about $340 plus shipping and  I could not be happier. This is definitely a case of getting what you pay for.   The next post will be a special edition of buttons done under the new lens.


crafty cat corner said...

Such an apt post for me. I am having trouble with my eyes, they are fine, I've just had them tested but threading beading needles is driving me nuts and I need help with fine embroidery .
Sadly I am in the uk, I wonder if I could obtain this over here.
What make is it etc, would you be willing to let me know.

Marilyn said...

unfortunately our eyes just don't see as well as we age. Your lamp is great and if it helps you to continue to paint your wonderful buttons its even greater :). And you deserve it!

margaret said...

this looks spot on for you, I too have one like you had before and have the same problems, in fact have not used it for ages and only the other day thought it should be found a new home!I manage with a magnifer around my neck when I need one and a separate light but manage with nothing most of the time

Shirlee Fassell said...

So glad you love your light as much as I love mine! Looking forward to seeing more of you wonderful buttons!

Mosaic Magpie said...

The lamp is costly, but the cost of being able to see...priceless.

Maureen said...

I have the earlier version of this lamp after Shirlee recommended it. I love mine so can only imagine how good the newer one is. Well worth the price!!

traderslostart said...

Oh Gerry. How wonderful that you found this wonderful lighted magnifier. It takes me longer to thread the needle than to do the embroidery.
Unfortunately out of my price range. Must start saving my pennies. :-)
I love your buttons, crazy quilting and birds. They are beautiful.
Happy this will make it easier for you, to paint the MOP buttons..
God Bless you.

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