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Carrying your lantern

Once you have your lantern made, you need to carry it or hang it or float it or strap it to your bike or your head. Here are a few ideas for doing just that.

You can use a relatively short stick just to keep the hot lantern away from your hand, although a longer one is better balanced and actually less tiring to carry. You can also stand the butt end of a longer pole on the ground to rest your arms.

You could also use a wire bail handle to carry your glass or metal lantern.

Knock-down poles

Bamboo poles are lightweight, strong, inexpensive, and attractive. The only problem can be their length if you need to carry them in a vehicle or on public transit.

One solution is the knock-down pole.

Here's how to make one:

Take a bamboo pole of the length you need, or two shorter ones if the problem is getting them home in the first place, or if you just want a longer pole! You can make more than one joint of this kind to make a very long pole, but it will become unwieldy and put a lot of strain on the joints if it is too long. If you make it longer, make it thicker too, at least at the base. Choose pieces where the iinternal diameter of each side of the joint is about the same.

If you have a single long pole, cut it in half about halfway between two of the knots in the bamboo. You'll need a few inches of hollow bamboo on each side of the cut to make this work. Once you have two pieces of bamboo, here's how to join them together:

What you'll need:

What to do:

Wire Bail Handle

Wire handles are easy to make for glass jar lanterns or tin can lanterns. The main thing to remember is to make them long enough, particularly if you are carrying the lantern in your hand. An open candle flame will heat a wire handle up enough to burn your hand, which is no fun. Use a piece of vinyl tubing to insulate the wire, or use a stick with a Pole Loop to carry the lantern instead. Use a short stick (18 inches or so) if you don't want the extra height, but keep in mind that glass jars are a bit heavier than paper lanterns or tins and it is actually more tiring to carry a weight on the end of a short stick than to use a longer one. If you hold the middle, the remainder of the stick serves as a counterbalance.

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