One of eighty-six early incandescent lamps. Bambo

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One of eighty-six early incandescent lamps. Bamboo filament, thick ends, arch shaped. Copper plated joint to copper (?) clip attached to platinium wires passing into hollow stem where they join to copper wires. No filament support. Teardrop shape clear glass bulb. Top pip. Plaster base, with flange, Edison screw contact, with metal button. Plaster painted brown. Edison - Tie on labels says made early in 1882. Rating not given: 16 c.p.? Label says "Presented by A.H. Allen Esq," 10th December 1914.

Filaments made from paper were not entirely satisfactory. Filaments made from bamboo proved to be much better and were used in all Edison lamps for a number of years.

Edison tried many different materials for his filaments. The first sample of bamboo reputedly came from a palm-leaf fan found in the laboratory. Edison sent explorers all over the world to look for the best type of bamboo, but a supply of a suitable type was easily arranged from Japan. It was probably in the spring of 1880 that Edison first tried bamboo, though in June 1880 he was still trying new materials.


Object Number:
carbon filament lamp
Institution of Electronical Engineering

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