menu presents The Crestworth Astro | MK0 Origin Design ... | The World's Very First Lava Lamps ... | A Restoration by Nick Carr for

Whilst the lava lamp has come a great way since its introduction in September of 1963, the first Astro lamps which were manufactured on West Quay Road have started to surface. These lamps echo a time when the lava lamp was unheard of, before its explosion in popularity in the subsequent 1960s and the 1970s. These lamps which we refer to as MK0 Origin Astro lamps have hand blown crystal glass vessels to contain the formulation, a two part interlocking base, and extremely shallow top. This page features restorations and examples of such early Astro lava lamps. These Astro lamps predate the solid later Crestworth formulation and were most likely only sold by Crestworth who knew how to transport them or Colin and Jean with their 'Smokey' van.

At the launch, of the Mathmos Flock limited edition Astro lamps at Mathmos' office/ shop space in the 1990s, Edward Craven Walker referenced these lamps by saying ...

"Well, when we first started it, the Astro lamp, as we called it then, we manufactured the glassware by hand blown crystal glass, and in that state it was in very small quantities, as it was extremely expensive ..." - Edward Craven Walker

MK0 Origin Design: The Beginning... We have created a special reference code: MK0 to differentiate and identify the very first early Astro lamps. The very first early Astro lamps feature a hand-blown crystal glass container, which is actually not a bottle but features novel methods of creating a water tight enclosure.

One such method which was used was a glass disc placed inside the lamp's copper cap and angled slots ground into the bottle's crystal glass. This allows the two dimples in the cap to align and grip the bottle and this is then glued in place.

Another idea seen in these early Astro lamps is a very clever two part metal locking system and o-ring seal as seen in a patent referencing inventor David George Smith on behalf of Crestworth.

MK0 Astro lamps feature the classic early two part base but with the inner sections of the base coated in white. Also the MK0's bottle cap is extremely thin. Origin Astros feature near instant start up time due to their all liquid formulation that remains liquid when the lamp is switched off.

MK0 were transported by Crestworth's vans and also by 'Smokey'(Colin & Jean). MK0 Astros were produced between September 1963 to Summer/ September 1965 when the solid lamp was perfected by Crestworth. Please note that Origin Astros may also be seen with solid wax, as they could have been sent back to Crestworth for refilling at a later date. Their defining feature is the open top container.

With special thanks to Nick Carr for documenting the restoration of the Crestworth Astro MK 0 with

You are browsing, a site dedicated to the history, heritage and nostalgia of the Original Mathmos Astro Lava Lamp. Created by Anthony Voz. Thank you for visiting |