I acquired this lantern from fellow collector John Thompson in December 2006.
The lantern when obtained from John was in typically excellent condition, and it only really required a cosmetic refurbishment. The lantern was fitted with a BC bayonet lampholder, and in service ran a 35w SOX lamp. I have swapped this for a 3-pin BC type instead allowing me to fit a Mercury lamp. This will allow me to try and replicate the lanterns once found in Plymouth. Access into the lantern is by unscrewing the captive canopy knob, which is threaded into the central spider frame. The lampholder is suspended from this central yolk. The bowl is in excellent condition, and a polish with some automotive scratch remover will bring it up like new. Further restoration will include a complete repaint, and renovation of internal parts. I will also try and obtain a refractor ring assembly to fit to the lantern.
Restoration- December 2006: once the lantern was stripped down, the bowl was given a good clean and polish.
Next the inside of the canopy was scrubbed back to clean white paint. The interior is in great nick, but the exposed rim has oxidised in places, so I will probably give it a whole repaint.
The interior frame parts were stripped out, primed and then repainted in white as originally found.
The base casting was then rubbed down, primed and then finished in top coats of gloss white and hammered silver grey
The canopy was then given a good rub down. The lower rim especially was very rough with oxidisation, but this came off well with emery paper, and once it was primed immediately after, it smoothed down well. The top of the canopy was also primed at this stage.
Once the canopy had been repainted in hammered silver grey, the lantern was then re-assembled. A refractor ring and assembly was kindly sourced by John Thompson, and this was fitted to complete the restoration.
The only P108A to be found in the Plymouth area is in the Devon town of Brixton. This example runs an 80w Mercury lamp and has an opal bowl. P108A lanterns were found in Plymouth in the past however, and a photograph exists showing one with a clear bowl and refractor ring.
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İDavy Warren 2009