lighters - a basic discussion

Items to keep you alive in the event you must evacuate: discussions of basic Survival Kits commonly called "Bug Out Bags" or "Go Bags"

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by 111t » Sat Oct 09, 2010 10:33 pm

The ronsons are also zippos...

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by ForgeCorvus » Sun Oct 10, 2010 1:35 pm

AdamRadam wrote: If you take the flint (or is it magnesium?) off of a cutting torch striker and ground it down, its too thick, and put in zippo, it seems to throw 'hotter' white spark.
Its ferrocium, the same stuff as firesteels are made from (and your lighter 'flints' )
Also used charcoal lighter fluid, and paint thinner as fluid. Both seemed to burn faster than honest to god zippo fluid.

Next ill try diesel. but my striker flint just shit the bed... were going to town in next few days so i should have 'normal' flints soon.
The fuels you mentioned burn faster because they're more volatile then lighter fuel, any burnable liquid could be used (the Zippo was designed to run on anything that could be found )
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by AdamRadam » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:16 am

So been using the zippo with diesel, and store bought flints today. Marine grade, low sulpher, undyed diesel. Usually took about 3 or 4 strikes to get it to light at 'normal' temp, ie in my pocket when i was inside.

After i was outside for awhile, and had it in my pocket it wouldnt light at all. It bears explenation that outside, is bearing straits alaska, and the bic wont work unless you stick it in your armpit first to 'pre warm' it. :P

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by pj_01 » Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:48 pm

I dont know why you would want to spend a lot on a lighter. bics are the ultimate survival lighter. you get them wet and let them dry and they will work just fine. the only advantage the electronic expensive lighters have going for them is that they light in the wind. the fuel in them is only good for 3-5 minutes of burn time per fill. a bic lighter (Small) i test burned it went for a good 20 minutes before it started to run out of presure.

i dont know what anybody could possibly have against a bic lighter but it is time to get over it. $0.25 for a small bic or 4 for a buck. or $5 for a small canister of fuel that you have to put back into the original lighter before you can use it. ...........guy looks around panicing...........oh crap where I put that thing........... great i left it in my other bag.................Well at least this bag as a bic in every pocket......!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by hanklet0 » Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:56 pm

Hands down, BIC. I was going through some of my dads hunting gear which was stored in ammo cans in the garage. I found a pack of bics and asked my dad how old they were. He said 15-20 years. I openedthe pack and guess what??? They all worked. Thats what I call a survival lighter.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by Ughton » Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:37 am

I apologize for bumping this old thread, but I would like to share my experience in this matter, since when I was looking for good advice on this topic for myself.
I'm an avid smoker, and have traveled well with a number of regular old Bic's (granted I pop the child safety strip off). I've also had a number of Zippo's and other "wind-proof" lighters.

Zippo's and other types of "windproof" and "weatherproof" all seem to have this nasty habit of burning through fuel. While I have only twice ran a Bic lighter out of fuel in 7 years, I started smoking back then. First time was a little Bic lighter that pooped out after a long time of use both for lighting cigarettes, smoking cannabis, and random other fire related tasks. The second time was in Afghanistan, I managed to run a already long-lived lighter, given to me by the doc, the day I get back to the US and try to light a cigarette it's out of fuel (what luck huh?).

Bic's are tough, they don't leak, they don't smell, they work for a LONG LONG time, they work virtually where any other lighter can work (you may have to cup your hands or put something under your shirt to get it lit but oh-noes that's all too hard. They work anywhere, I've heard that altitude fucks with lighters but I didn't have any problems going from NC (Sea Level) to Herat (~9000ft) granted I didn't go mountain climbing much out there.

Bic's also have the advantage that they're cheap, brightly colored usually (high-visability), I believe they float as well, if you drop a Zippo into a lake, well your up doo-doo creek then huh? they're also pretty light (plastic+lighter parts+lighter than air gas) so you can easily pack a bunch of them (spread them out so they can't get lost from one drop, duh), and if one of them fails, breaks, or gets lost, you simply pull out another one. Also if a Bic lighter gets wet or dirty, just give the burning part a quick blow and it'll work fine; if your worried about your Bic freezing, just put it in your pocket, it'll be fine to atleast -20.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by majorhavoc » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:34 am

Well kudos for acknowledging you've necro'ed this thread. A lot of new posters breathlessly post to an ancient thread as if we're all waiting with baited breath for a continuation of the discussion. And in any case, seeing how this is ostensibly a zombie forum, we're used to long dead things coming back to life unexpectedly. :wink:

I agree with you that Bic lighters are pretty damn reliable. Throughout human history a portable means to reliably make fire has been a persistent technological goal. There's a very strong argument that the humble Bic lighter is the epitome of that millenia-long quest.

Two other points:
1) I wouldn't say that Zippos "burn" through fuel so much as they're not adequately sealed. And because of that, the lighter fluid evaporates in fairly short order. On both my car and motorcycle key chains I have a "peanut" lighter. It's principal advantage (besides being tiny) is that it has an o-ring seal that goes a long way in preventing the tiny fuel reserve from evaporating. Those peanut lighters are definitely not windproof however.

2) You have some good thoughts. Please consider sticking around. And even wandering over to the Introductions sub-forum and telling us a bit about yourself, how you found ZS, etc. Welcome!

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by w3rdtoyamama » Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:21 pm

Bics are really a simple, inexpensive choice for lighters. Just bought a 5 pack with designs at Walmart for around $5. So, for $1 each for a designed lighter isnt bad. Im not sure if plain colored ones are cheaper or not. But, the quality of them are worth more than you pay. IMO.
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by NT2C » Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:38 pm

w3rdtoyamama wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:21 pm
Bics are really a simple, inexpensive choice for lighters. Just bought a 5 pack with designs at Walmart for around $5. So, for $1 each for a designed lighter isnt bad. Im not sure if plain colored ones are cheaper or not. But, the quality of them are worth more than you pay. IMO.
If you want actual Bics, that's pretty cheap. The clear rectangle ones you see in stores are much cheaper but work just as well. You can get fifty of those for around $13 online.
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by moab » Fri Sep 07, 2018 5:17 pm

I tend to go with at least three types of fire making. Bic lighters, ferro rod/vaseline cotton balls, emergency matches storm proof. I also carry Zippos from time to time. And although I have not experimented with other types of fluid. They do make a tank for Zippos that is sealed. And does not evaporate.

https://www.amazon.com/Super-Container- ... B000AQZ4IW

I think that device coupled with (I believe) the fact that Zippos can run other fuels. Might make it a great addition to your preps.
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by w3rdtoyamama » Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:39 pm

NT2C wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:38 pm
w3rdtoyamama wrote:
Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:21 pm
Bics are really a simple, inexpensive choice for lighters. Just bought a 5 pack with designs at Walmart for around $5. So, for $1 each for a designed lighter isnt bad. Im not sure if plain colored ones are cheaper or not. But, the quality of them are worth more than you pay. IMO.
If you want actual Bics, that's pretty cheap. The clear rectangle ones you see in stores are much cheaper but work just as well. You can get fifty of those for around $13 online.
Oh ya the no names one are really cheap...but spotty. In bulk for that price, its not bad.
Czechnology wrote:Lots of people enjoy saying "Move" when people complain about their local/state laws, but that's a churlish, ignorant thing to say.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Sat Mar 16, 2019 5:31 pm

I've been on a little bit of a lighter kick lately - rediscovering an old passion of mine.

Thought I'd share some collected info and suggestions.

First up, IMCO, Zippo, and XL Peanut lighter info:

IMCO Tank:
Empty = 4.1g
Full = 7.8g
--> Fuel capacity 3.7g

Zippo Tank:
Empty = 28g
Full = 31.5g
-->Fuel Capacity 3.5g

County Comm XL Peanut Lighter
Empty= 43.5g
Full = 45.5h
--> Fuel Capacity 2g

Naphtha
1oz = 0.0254kg
1oz = 25.4g
12oz = 354.88ml

Zippo = 3.5g / 0.1378 oz / 4ml
= 88.72 filling per 12oz

IMCO = 3.7g / 0.1457 oz / 4.3ml
= 82.53 fillings per 12oz

Next, I weighed the lighters after 1 week of use/ evaporation:

Zippo = 29.6 grams / -1.9g fuel evaporation- But does not ignite

IMCO = 5.9 grams / -1.9g fuel evaporation - lights perfectly.

--> A zippo being fueled and unused loses fuel as quickly as a IMCO that is being used multiple times a day.

-->Zippos left without being used stop lighting even when there is still fuel left

​-------------->IMCO Master Race

Revised fuel life for 12oz can at 1x fill per week =

IMCO = -1.9g / 0.0748 oz / 2.21 ml

-->12oz provides ~ 160 weeks of use / 3 years

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by moab » Sat Mar 16, 2019 9:17 pm

spyderco monkey wrote:
Sat Mar 16, 2019 5:31 pm
I've been on a little bit of a lighter kick lately - rediscovering an old passion of mine.

Thought I'd share some collected info and suggestions.

First up, IMCO, Zippo, and XL Peanut lighter info:

IMCO Tank:
Empty = 4.1g
Full = 7.8g
--> Fuel capacity 3.7g

Zippo Tank:
Empty = 28g
Full = 31.5g
-->Fuel Capacity 3.5g

County Comm XL Peanut Lighter
Empty= 43.5g
Full = 45.5h
--> Fuel Capacity 2g

Naphtha
1oz = 0.0254kg
1oz = 25.4g
12oz = 354.88ml

Zippo = 3.5g / 0.1378 oz / 4ml
= 88.72 filling per 12oz

IMCO = 3.7g / 0.1457 oz / 4.3ml
= 82.53 fillings per 12oz

Next, I weighed the lighters after 1 week of use/ evaporation:

Zippo = 29.6 grams / -1.9g fuel evaporation- But does not ignite

IMCO = 5.9 grams / -1.9g fuel evaporation - lights perfectly.

--> A zippo being fueled and unused loses fuel as quickly as a IMCO that is being used multiple times a day.

-->Zippos left without being used stop lighting even when there is still fuel left

​-------------->IMCO Master Race

Revised fuel life for 12oz can at 1x fill per week =

IMCO = -1.9g / 0.0748 oz / 2.21 ml

-->12oz provides ~ 160 weeks of use / 3 years
Can you tell us more about the IMCO?
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:07 am

moab wrote:
Sat Mar 16, 2019 9:17 pm
spyderco monkey wrote:
Sat Mar 16, 2019 5:31 pm
I've been on a little bit of a lighter kick lately - rediscovering an old passion of mine.

Thought I'd share some collected info and suggestions.

First up, IMCO, Zippo, and XL Peanut lighter info:

IMCO Tank:
Empty = 4.1g
Full = 7.8g
--> Fuel capacity 3.7g

Zippo Tank:
Empty = 28g
Full = 31.5g
-->Fuel Capacity 3.5g

County Comm XL Peanut Lighter
Empty= 43.5g
Full = 45.5h
--> Fuel Capacity 2g

Naphtha
1oz = 0.0254kg
1oz = 25.4g
12oz = 354.88ml

Zippo = 3.5g / 0.1378 oz / 4ml
= 88.72 filling per 12oz

IMCO = 3.7g / 0.1457 oz / 4.3ml
= 82.53 fillings per 12oz

Next, I weighed the lighters after 1 week of use/ evaporation:

Zippo = 29.6 grams / -1.9g fuel evaporation- But does not ignite

IMCO = 5.9 grams / -1.9g fuel evaporation - lights perfectly.

--> A zippo being fueled and unused loses fuel as quickly as a IMCO that is being used multiple times a day.

-->Zippos left without being used stop lighting even when there is still fuel left

​-------------->IMCO Master Race

Revised fuel life for 12oz can at 1x fill per week =

IMCO = -1.9g / 0.0748 oz / 2.21 ml

-->12oz provides ~ 160 weeks of use / 3 years
Can you tell us more about the IMCO?
Its the IMCO 6700:
https://www.amazon.com/Classics-Triplex ... 019EUWONW/

IMCO's have been around since 1937 - other then the Zippo, its the most proven liquid fuel lighter in the world. It offers better functionality and superior fuel life then the Zippo. Zippo however is a more durable lighter (less parts), doesn't get as hot, and has slightly higher wind resistance. It's really a tie between the two designs.

Image

The original IMCO's were made in Austria, but the factory closed in 2012. The Windmill lighter company purchased all of the tooling, and moved production to China. This actually resulted in an increase in quality, as the Chinese 'IMClones" are made of rust proof 303 stainless steel, whereas the originals were made of nickel plated iron that was very susceptible to rust.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:14 am

Another lighter I recommend is the Aomai AM127.

Design wise, its based on the classic Windmill outdoor survival lighter, but slightly larger.

While Windmill lighters are known for their "invisible" windproof jet flame, the Aomai uses a catalyser screen that is lightly coated in a chemical like strontium to color the flame a slight red- purple. This typically lasts for the first 100-500 ignitions, then starts to fade as the chemical burns off.

Overall, the AM127 is a superb lighter for the money. It offers most of the functionality and reliability of the Windmill, but at less then 1/10th the cost. Its wind resistant to 40mph+, much moreso then a regular jet lighter. and with good butane I've had one last for years, and it still lights first time every time.

Best of all, its only $3 from China, vs $30-$40 for a Windmill, so you can afford to buy multiples.

Image

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Waterpr ... 3c00CzFH4d
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by moab » Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:05 am

spyderco monkey wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:14 am
Another lighter I recommend is the Aomai AM127.

Design wise, its based on the classic Windmill outdoor survival lighter, but slightly larger.

While Windmill lighters are known for their "invisible" windproof jet flame, the Aomai uses a catalyser screen that is lightly coated in a chemical like strontium to color the flame a slight red- purple. This typically lasts for the first 100-500 ignitions, then starts to fade as the chemical burns off.

Overall, the AM127 is a superb lighter for the money. It offers most of the functionality and reliability of the Windmill, but at less then 1/10th the cost. Its wind resistant to 40mph+, much moreso then a regular jet lighter. and with good butane I've had one last for years, and it still lights first time every time.

Best of all, its only $3 from China, vs $30-$40 for a Windmill, so you can afford to buy multiples.

Image

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Waterpr ... 3c00CzFH4d
Thank you. Just put one in my cart on ebay.

How about the Zippo tank?

https://www.amazon.com/Super-Container- ... B000AQZ4IW
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Sun Mar 17, 2019 4:00 pm

moab wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:05 am
spyderco monkey wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:14 am
Another lighter I recommend is the Aomai AM127.

Design wise, its based on the classic Windmill outdoor survival lighter, but slightly larger.

While Windmill lighters are known for their "invisible" windproof jet flame, the Aomai uses a catalyser screen that is lightly coated in a chemical like strontium to color the flame a slight red- purple. This typically lasts for the first 100-500 ignitions, then starts to fade as the chemical burns off.

Overall, the AM127 is a superb lighter for the money. It offers most of the functionality and reliability of the Windmill, but at less then 1/10th the cost. Its wind resistant to 40mph+, much moreso then a regular jet lighter. and with good butane I've had one last for years, and it still lights first time every time.

Best of all, its only $3 from China, vs $30-$40 for a Windmill, so you can afford to buy multiples.

Image

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Waterpr ... 3c00CzFH4d
Thank you. Just put one in my cart on ebay.

How about the Zippo tank?

https://www.amazon.com/Super-Container- ... B000AQZ4IW
Cool, hope you like the Aomai. Be sure to use nice Butane (never Ronson), as thats the key to reliability. Newport and Vector both work really well. It may ship with gas from China - empty that shit out as soon as you get it.

In terms of the Zippo tank, I have no experience with it.

What I can recommend are these two aftermarket cases for Zippo's.

The WarArmor Titanium case. Made out of CNC Titanium, with a O-ring seal. I filled mine over 8 months ago, and it still has not lost any of its fuel.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Titaniu ... 76432a1a7c

Image

A cheaper, but less effective version, is the PyroVault. This extends the fuel life of the Zippo from 7-10 days to 22-40 days (seems to vary a bit in my testing.)
https://www.amazon.com/Thyrm-PyroVault- ... 8CR1Z?th=1

Image

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Mon Mar 18, 2019 3:07 pm

Image

Some interesting backstory on what makes Bic's so high quality:

-Made in USA / France
-50 points of quality control during assembly
-Body made of Ultrasonic welded Delrin
-Oversized Flint ~3x the length of a standard Zippo Flint

Mini Bic =
1400 ignitions
2.1-2.3g gas

Maxi Bic=
3,000 ignitions
4.4-4.9g gas

Ignition = 1.3 second flame x 25mm fame height

By comparison, a standard refillable lighter, such as the Windill or Ronson Jetlite, holds 0.7g gas and is rated for ~250 ignitions before needing to be refilled. Even the big Blazer / Prince PB207 holds 3.3g gas, over 1g less then the full size Bic.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by MPMalloy » Mon Mar 18, 2019 4:32 pm

I have about 50 full sized bic lighters in my preps. They are in a ziploc bag, stored in a tub.

Q: does the butane have a shelf life?

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Mon Mar 18, 2019 5:28 pm

MPMalloy wrote:
Mon Mar 18, 2019 4:32 pm
I have about 50 full sized bic lighters in my preps. They are in a ziploc bag, stored in a tub.

Q: does the butane have a shelf life?
My neighbor found an old PB207 knock off in her garage, that she had purchased in the early 90's from the LA chinatown.

It still had ~1/4 tank of gas left over from that time period, and it lit up fine.

There's also many tales of people with old Bic's that still work.
https://www.survivalistboards.com/showt ... hp?t=62540

So this is suggestive that the Butane does not expire.

But that does not mean that lighters themselves do not expire:
https://grandpappy.org/obutane.htm

You have 3 potential points of failure:
-Flint corrosion / oxidation. This happens to a lot of old lighters, especially ones that have been lit.
-Gas leaking. A tiny, $0.02 o-ring is the only thing holding the gas in.
-Lighter clogging.
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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by MPMalloy » Mon Mar 18, 2019 5:38 pm

spyderco monkey wrote:
Mon Mar 18, 2019 5:28 pm
MPMalloy wrote:
Mon Mar 18, 2019 4:32 pm
I have about 50 full sized bic lighters in my preps. They are in a ziploc bag, stored in a tub.

Q: does the butane have a shelf life?
My neighbor found an old PB207 knock off in her garage, that she had purchased in the early 90's from the LA chinatown.

It still had ~1/4 tank of gas left over from that time period, and it lit up fine.

There's also many tales of people with old Bic's that still work.
https://www.survivalistboards.com/showt ... hp?t=62540

So this is suggestive that the Butane does not expire.

But that does not mean that lighters themselves do not expire:
https://grandpappy.org/obutane.htm

You have 3 potential points of failure:
-Flint corrosion / oxidation. This happens to a lot of old lighters, especially ones that have been lit.
-Gas leaking. A tiny, $0.02 o-ring is the only thing holding the gas in.
-Lighter clogging.
Thank you. ETA: I just read Grandpappy's article. I'll pull them and rest a few.

I'll report back.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by spyderco monkey » Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:49 pm

https://i.redd.it/2xrmfs4vsqo21.jpg

I snagged the County Comm XL Peanut lighter, and decided to begin testing how it stacks up to the IMCO and Zippo for fuel evaporation.

https://countycomm.com/collections/fire ... lighter-xl

Empty = 42.5g
Full = 45.5g
--> 2g Fuel Capacity / 154 fueling per 12oz Zippo Can

2 weeks of using ~1-2 times a day = 45.0g / -0.5g
--> 616 fuelings every 2 weeks from a 12oz Zippo can --> 1 can will last for 23 years of use

By comparison, both the IMCO and Zippo lost 1.9g fuel over 1 week, resulting in a 12 oz can lasting 3 years.

Overall what this says is that the XL Peanut is a much better Survival / SHTF lighter then the Zippo or IMCO in terms of fuel efficiency.

The XL Peanut lighter insert is also much higher in quality construction then the regular Peanut. The striker wheel is larger and better secured with a rivet, and the brass body is much more securely attached then the cheap regular inserts.

Image

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by MPMalloy » Wed Mar 27, 2019 9:45 pm

I checked the bics in my BOB & my GHB. They all fired with strong flame. All of those lighters had been stored for a year.

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Re: lighters - a basic discussion

Post by beno » Fri Mar 29, 2019 1:54 am

I have a number of 20yr old BIC lighters and they still work fine. I stored them in an old metal container in a fairly damp cellar and they did not appear to rust or seize. 20 years was a pretty good deal for 20c.

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