Smith Victor 765: Taming The Glass


SV Safety Glass with silicone edge

At work we have several lighting kits based on the inexpensive Smith Victor 765UM 600 watt halogen open-face light. They are reasonably well made lights for the money, but they have a critical flaw: Instead of a metal screen to keep fingers off the bulb, they have a “safety glass” disc that rattles around behind the barn doors and just generally feels like an afterthought. It fits loosely so it can expand and contract, but during transit it sometimes gets wedged in the fingers of the mount and shatters unexpectedly after the light warms up. After a few years of warning students to make sure the safety glass is indeed “safe”, we came up with a fix:

  1. Buy some high-temp silicone tubing with an 1/8″ ID & 1/4″ OD. (McMaster Carr # 51135K16)
  2. Slit along the length of the tubing. I made a tubing cutter by soldering an exacto blade to the shaft of a nail. I clamped it into a vise and used both hands to pull the tubing over the blade.
    Tubing CutterTubing Cutter in Action
  3. Wrap the tubing around the circumference of the glass disc.
    SV Safety Glass - wrapping
  4. Where the ends meet, clip a 3/4″ binder clip onto the seem.
    SV Safety Glass - with binder clip
  5. Remove the chrome handles from the binder clip.
    (You don’t need glue. The clip is very hard to remove.)
    SV Safety Glass - with clip and no handles
  6. Now put the light back together. It will be hard to wedge the disc back into its channel, but it will work.
    SV Safety Glass - installed