Lamp Repair Tools

From a Post to a Page:

Beyond the usual pliers, screwdrivers, electrical tape, voltage meter, and spare lamp parts. There are a few special tools in my tool chest: various sized hemostat clamps and wire stripper. The locking clamps are handy and inexpensive. When you need to get in a tight space or have hold of a cord without the extra hand. These clamps can hold on to that part while you need to make an adjustment. Since lamp parts are a little more delicate than other mechanical parts, I find myself using these clamps more often than the rough pliers. These are pretty common in hardware stores and may be sold as set. The wire strippers are a nice addition to a tool box. This set strips and pulls away the excess cord for easier removal.

special lamp tools

A few other specialty tools for lamp repair are probably only found in specialty tool shops or lighting shops. In this photo from left to right I have a pick for getting glue, paint or gunk off a lamp. A socket cap wrench that locks into a socket cap for tightening. Pinning pliers for prism wire and specialty jobs. Chain pliers for spreading chain or closing chain; these are better than channel locks or regular pliers since they won't scuff up a chain. Across the top is a dial caliper for measuring inside and outside diameters. This helps when I am looking for something in the spare parts section. I can measure the lamp and only carry the caliper to the spare parts or search online for parts and know the size I am looking for.

specialty lamp tools


  1. Is there a tool which actually aids in pull-twisting the two halves of a brass/aluminum lightbulb casing apart? To get into the inside of the casing to replace and screw into place the wire? Trying to pry and twist the two halves of the casing often cracks it. There must be a specialty tool.

  2. Hello, I enjoy reading your blog and learning a lot about lamp repairs and parts. I'm looking for a socket cap wrench like the one you have shown in the photo. I do not see it in the Antique Lamp Supply website. I searched online and found one with a L-shaped handle but prefer ones like yours. Any ideas where I might be able to find them? Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. Looking forward to reading more!

  3. Excellent question: The cap wrench is a difficult tool to find. At this time we do not have any for sale. Sorry. Thank you for being part of the discussion.

  4. Hi and thanks for your informative blog! I'm looking t rewire a 6 way Stiffel floor lamp with the center pole switch. I've been unable to find any information, regarding what I'm to find when I go to disassemble it. I'm assuming there's somewhere I need to attach leads, somewhere down near the base, but don't want to tear the thing apart and not be able to get it back together again.

    I have assembled all I think I'll need for the rewire, other than what might be needed for the pole switch connection.

    Thanks, in advance, for your consideration!!

  5. I think I need to purchase tools at an online hardware store to start this DIY. Thanks for the inspiration.

  6. We here at Santa Barbara Lampshades had a special tool designed to tighten the nut on the bottom of the lamp. The wire not needs to be removed. This nut driver is available on request, email for more information.