Copper Lighting & Sculpture – FAQ
1. What materials are your fixtures made from?
All our products are made using 16 ounce and 32 ounce Revere sheet copper with brass hardware. Copper brazing is used for construction. The only component not made in the United States, is the porcelain socket. We have experienced extraordinary reliability from this socket. Fixtures on the market made from aluminum, plastic and composites last 3-4 years before corrosion becomes problematic.
2. What about electricity consumption?
Choose a system with LED lamps. LED lamps cost continue to decline and the electricity consumption is about 80% less then what is used by halogen and xenon lamps. LED lamps last 40,000 hours compared to 4,000 for halogen. Our retail customers receive an LED with every fixture.
3. What's the best material for outdoor lighting?
The number one material is copper. It resists corrosion from fresh water, salt water, soil type and temperature extremes. It has strength, and beauty. It’s environmentally friendly and valuable.
4. Will you customize your existing fixture styles?
Customization options are available for all lightning products, including height, size, patina. Call us for that discussion. We encourage you to reach out to us with your thoughts and ideas. Sometimes the best ideas are yours.
5. Do you offer interior design or landscape lighting design?
We limit our design service to fixture and sculpture design, size and placement. We are willing to work alongside your designers, architects, and builders to achieve that professional finished look.
6. Is there a warranty?
Yes. I warranty all my copper work forever against defective craftmanship or materials. I don’t warranty the socket/wiring. However, if you receive a fixture with a defective socket, (zero defects in 20 years) call me and I’ll send you a new one ready to install. Free.
7. How are the fixtures installed in the soil?
Each retail fixture comes with an appropriately sized PVC anchor that’s about 10 inches long and threads to the stem of the fixture. Because some of our Lighting is larger and heavier than ordinary products, we manufacture our own anchors to assure stability of the larger, heavier and sculptural style lighting.
8. How do I figure out how many pathway light fixtures I need?
Our 24 inch tall pathway light gives roughly a 16 foot pool of light. So 16 feet apart is a good rule of thumb. It’s okay if the pools of light don’t meet. Shadows from light to dark should be part of the lightning scheme. If you walk there, it needs light for safety and enjoyment. Pay particular attention to change of elevations. If you use taller area lights, they have larger pools of light and you won’t need as many. You can mix the fixture types of this organic styled lighting in your lighting scheme and it looks great.
9. Can I add an accent light to our existing low-voltage system?
You can easily add an LED light to an existing 12 volt system using the appropriate connector to clip onto your main run of wire. If you’re purchasing a fixture to add into an existing system, please let me know so I can include the clip on contractors you will need. No charge.
10. How long does it take after I order before it's shipped?
One to five business days for most lightning. A lot of pathway lightning is in stock. If there’s anything that is going to take more time, I’ll contact the purchaser. Items that are custom sized may take longer. Sculptural work, other than lighting, is dependent upon many factors regarding completion times.
11. Do you have existing sculptures for sale?
Some are completed and are for sale. They are sculptures made to show at events and so there are periodically different ones. Contact us at 612 490-2369 regarding what is currently available.
12. Can the lightning or sculpture be kept from getting a dark patina?
The development of a dark patina can be controlled to a large degree by spraying it with polyurethane or another fixative. UV light will eventually deteriorate the coating but it tends to last quite a long time. I often spray the sculptures to help retain the depth and show detail that is developed in the process of working the copper.
13. Can I clean my copper lighting to restore its original luster?
The internet is full of suggestions on cleaning copper to brighten it up again. Most suggest using some form of acidic substance, from catsup to vinegar and salt. It’s true that the acid effect cleans and brightens. Without completely washing the acidic substance off, it will contribute to a greening of the copper. If you want to preserve it’s original appearance, they should be sprayed with a fixative pre-installation. There are also a number of commercial products for polishing copper. Rather than making a lot of work trying to stay ahead of what copper naturally does, enjoy the beauty of the transition of color as your copper develops its organic look.
14. Do I have to choose one style of lighting fixture throughout my landscape or garden?
When you are lighting your landscape using our hand-made copper fixtures and sculptural lighting pieces, change is good. Because of the organic, flora look of our lightning you can easily transition from one style to another. Think of it like plantings in the landscape. They change and compliment as you move through your garden. Some of the styles we offer have a companion. Such as a mushroom that has double and triple mushrooms as accent lighting. The Caladium has a multi-leaf companion area light called the Mini-Monarch Caladium and Monarch Caladium. The companion lighting is even more sculptural than the pathway lightning. With our custom lighting you can mix it up without looking mixed-up. With ordinary manufactured lightning it is not easy to merge styles without looking like a garage sale buy.
15. If I want a sculpture for the garden, how do I begin the process to get what I have in mind?
Whether you know what subject matter you want or not, begin with a phone conversation to me at 612 490-2369. If you have a picture to share, that will be useful. From a printed image I can develop a pattern and make your sculpture look very much like the image. Wildlife sculpture is made to be recognizable by species. Once we have an idea for subjects we can determine the best size or scale for your space. Budget allocation is an important consideration. Often I can utilize patterns from previous projects to save you money. Mainly, it’s communication that starts the process. There’s no obligation from brainstorming your ideas. It’s a process that shouldn’t be rushed.
16. Can I install the lightning myself?
Yes. Most localities regulations don’t prohibit homeowners from doing their own installation.
17. Do I need an electrician?
With low-voltage LED lighting you don’t need an electrician. LEDs give you a wider range of operable voltage than halogen or xelogen lamps. Therefore you aren’t faced with extra wire runs or voltage drop issues.
18. Can I use line voltage? (120 volts)
No, the LED lamps that come with the fixture are for 12v. systems only. Low-voltage has the advantage of being cheaper to operate and is much safer.
19. What's your return policy?
If the product is received broken or damaged, document it with photos, contact us, and we’ll ship you a replacement. Returns because of change of plans, the purchaser is responsible for return shipping and a 35% restocking fee. Custom work such as changes of size, style, etc. are not returnable.
20. Are there shipping charges?
No. For retail sales shipping is free.
21. Do you offer pricing for contractors?
Yes. Contractors need to contact us for their prices and to make decisions on their lamp and anchor needs.