How a Zippo Armor lighter should have been made

144 posts / 0 new
Last post
Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

AHAHAHAHAH Florida Man! Are we being elitist on which kind of cancer makes you look better in the coffin? Big Smile

Because throat cancer (Cigar) and tongue cancer (Pipe) are so much better than lung cancer (cigarettes)!
Is that your basis for your “Smoker tier”? Big Smile

I swear this bullshit about the “Hurr Durr Naphta Smell” should go back to the 50s where it belongs…
I use my Zorro, my vintage Dunhill, my Armor Zippo with a jetflame insert, and any bic/clipper lighter that is within reach and there is absolutely 0 difference when smoking cigarettes and cigars.
As far as cigars are concerned Zippo style lighters are just bad from a flame consistency point of view, provided you are not smoking some sort of cigarette sized cigarillos, in which case again 0 difference, we are talking about burning tobacco are we not?
Don’t even get me started on Toscano cigars whose taste is so strong (and good) you could light them using a burning tire and not notice any difference!

In all fairness I did notice a slight aftertaste on the 1st drag those few times I recharged my Zippo by dipping into the petrol tank of my buddy’s motorcycle Big Smile
Unless you plan on smoking you whole cigar/cigarette with a lit lighter in front of it there should be no issue even for you Thumbs Up

Btw apparently you haven’t noticed that no one here has even mentioned the specific usage of said lighter, aside for the ones correctly pointing out that if you wanna light anything in sub zero temperatures, which are quite common in most places, tropics aside, butane is a non starter.

The whole discussion was regarding the build quality of the lighter’s body and the insert wasn’t even part of the conversation, a keen observer would have also noticed that in the first post of this thread is present both a standard insert and a butane one, but I suppose reading an illustrated book is considerable multitasking for some people Silly

4/10 would not bang
Try again Florida Man, fail again, fail better Big Smile Thumbs Up

p.s. Thanks for livening up the conversation tho Wink

Lightbringer
Lightbringer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 32 min ago
Joined: 08/30/2016 - 14:12
Posts: 17719
Location: nyc

Samuel Beckett…

09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

Let us not derail the conversation any further Big Smile

I have a question for you, how do the batteries in those arc lighters hold up?
Also are they replaceable?

I personally like maintenance friendly lighter myself which is also why I was fairly disappointed with the butane inserts for Zippos, how is your experience with more modern stuff?
I am intrigued but dubious at the same time Big Smile

Lightbringer
Lightbringer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 32 min ago
Joined: 08/30/2016 - 14:12
Posts: 17719
Location: nyc

usb rechargeable. Probably a LiPo packet, so dunno how “replaceable” it might be without finding one in just the right size and worth it to buy/ship a replacement, vs just ordering a whole new lighter for 10bux.

09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

CRX
CRX's picture
Offline
Last seen: 10 months 14 hours ago
Joined: 04/02/2013 - 15:27
Posts: 4243
Location: Scotland

Usually LiPo cells, they hold up quite well in my experience, the plasma x lighter in OP still works perfectly after a few years, though I potted that with silicone. 600mAh cell in that one.
I’ve also had a few zippo type arc inserts, seem good too. 200-300mAh in those.
The gas versions are not so good/ small gas tanks.
It is usually just a single screw to open them up but the battery wires are soldered, easy enough if you can solder small simple stuff.
I’ve used ‘Honest’ brand jet lighters for years, the same two that I use only for soldering/ reflowing, one double jet, one single but they have never failed though with most piezo spark ignitions they need to be kept clean. They have some interesting designs in metal, some with visible fuel tanks etc last time I looked.
Petrol smell, over here it depends on what brand you use, some really stink like clipper, swan, but some have next to no obnoxious smell such as perma fluid.

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

That is a big hurdle for me to overcome, I might be completely off base here but don’t arc lighters work by basically creating a short?
They seem very similar to the rebuildable atomizers for vaping which I know are quite harsh on the batteries themselves and people usually put resilient 18650s in those and from major brands only to avoid issues.

My worry is that being arc lighters quite cheap items, the quality of the batteries inside will be questionable and, without even considering the risk of venting (which I imagine has been taken into consideration by manifactures) the overall life expectancy will be of a year or 2 at best.

If that is the case I’ll steer clear of those and stick with my Zorro or my Zippo which are fully serviceable and if not “immortal” at least “undying” Big Smile

CRX
CRX's picture
Offline
Last seen: 10 months 14 hours ago
Joined: 04/02/2013 - 15:27
Posts: 4243
Location: Scotland

Yes exactly, the thing to love about the zippo type lighters is that they are fully serviceable and even slightly moddable.
The only things that were really wrong with Zippo lighters were the cheap hinges and fuel evaporation problem, hence this thread…
My titanium war armor lighter has a thin titanium tube in the flint tube to better fit the flints, keep it more central & even wearing as there is always slop in the standard tube internal diameter and I just replaced the flint wheel with a replaceable version that comes with a little chicago screw instead of the rivet so that can come out easy for cleaning etc.
Some people like taking their stuff apart for maintenance every so often, some don’t bother.
The titanium fuel tank has been brilliant too, making evaporation even less of a problem along with the lid seal plus that gives me the option to just give the lighter a shake to roughly gauge fuel level.
Who says I’m not picky. Big Smile
I did slightly puncture an arc zippo LiPo cell with a screw once, nothing major happened, just a little hiss and it was gone. It wasn’t fully screwed through or that might have been slightly different.
I think the arc lighters work along the lines of a stun gun rather than creating direct shorts, there are little transformer? type units (forget the name) that boost the voltage, two in the x type units. They heat up so a good quality arc lighter will have an on timer of about 12 seconds or so before it cuts off. This will help protect the cell too but like most things, they will slowly degrade over time. Plus a control PCB/ charging circuit/USB port that won’t last forever either.

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

Yeah I’ve used anything from alcohol to actual petrol in my Zippo, I’ve noticed a real smell only with the petrol but I think the big ass black smoke trail coming from the flame was already a warning sign Big Smile

I usually use Zippo fluid as I can find it in every tobacco shop and as far as I am concerned, short of huffing the built up fumes that get trapped in the lid, I never actually experienced this aftertaste, could it be because I do not light the cigarette in my mouth?
I normally smoke rolling tobacco with the very thin rolling papers.

Btw later I’ll post the darn picture of the my Zorro in his final form, it is ageing beautifully, I also ordered a new insert from Ali because the brass on brass is too much for me, the new one is in stainless and matches my edc and tastes perfectly Smile

Thank you again for making the first post, I would have never known about these lighters otherwise, really, REALLY appreciated Smile Thumbs Up

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...
CRX wrote:
My titanium war armor lighter has a thin titanium tube in the flint tube to better fit the flints, keep it more central & even wearing as there is always slop in the standard tube internal diameter and I just replaced the flint wheel with a replaceable version that comes with a little chicago screw instead of the rivet so that can come out easy for cleaning etc. Some people like taking their stuff apart for maintenance every so often, some don’t bother. The titanium fuel tank has been brilliant too, making evaporation even less of a problem along with the lid seal plus that gives me the option to just give the lighter a shake to roughly gauge fuel level.

Youuuuu…..Stop poking me in the brain! Big Smile

When and if you have some spare time can you do a full rundown of the mods you did on your Carson?
I got the gist of what you are talking about but I want to properly understand so I can replicate Big Smile

I’d love to know what is your experience with fuel evaporation with the tank compared to the cotton, I was considering buying those plugs to replace the “lift to fill” felt thingy that Gebe mentioned, but getting a tank is intriguing, I might not go for a titanium one but one of those Japanese made zippo tanks, the only issue would be compatibility with the Zorro, it might be too “slim” like the Zippo inserts, that would be annoying Crying

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...
Gebe wrote:
I’m not very techie savvy and you are and I still haven’t figured out how to post pictures

No worries I’ll come to the rescue!

Load your pictures on this website, you can even select how long they will last (I chose forever for posterity sake Big Smile )
https://imgbb.com/
No registration required, just drag your pics on the page.

Once it is loaded select the HTML code, not the one for miniatures.
Click on the small sunset icon you see here above the box where you write a post.
Paste the HTML code.
Wham! Bam! Ya done! Smile

Alternatively you can just link an Ali Express / Ebay / Obscure website link to something similar, less hassle and it can help others too, not just me Smile

Lightbringer
Lightbringer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 32 min ago
Joined: 08/30/2016 - 14:12
Posts: 17719
Location: nyc
Swosh wrote:
That is a big hurdle for me to overcome, I might be completely off base here but don’t arc lighters work by basically creating a short?

Think of ‘em as tasers for unruly bugs.

Yeah, it’s a “short” in air, but that’s done by a HV arc that’s created by an autotransformer with a huge turns ratio. No more dangerous than a car’s ignition coil or an old teevee’s flyback transformer.

09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...
Lightbringer wrote:
Think of ‘em as tasers for unruly bugs.

Ahahahahah that is a genius description! Big Smile Big Smile Big Smile
Now I wanna tase one of the giant stag beetles that populate my coutryside with one of those Facepalm Big Smile

kat
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 41 min ago
Joined: 04/21/2018 - 11:29
Posts: 476
Location: Europe

yes it’s brass. Tank is part of the body, threaded and sealed with o-rings. very well made.
Actually most brass oil lighters over $20 are very good, and especially the ones sold by that seller.
I’ve bought so far around 30, some very heavy 300g+ Big Smile

The ones under $20 usually just look like brass, but they are not made of brass. It’s just some zinc alloy that is plated.

Tomorrow I will pick this one up from the post office
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32877871939.html

The one with jet flame are made out of plastic inside. I have never seen a jet lighter all metal. It must be some technical limitation.
If you really want a jet lighter go for the ones with 4 burners. Those seem to be the most reliable and can sustain a flame even at lower temperatures. Avoid the zippo butane insert – the worst and most expensive jet lighter I ever bought

kat
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 41 min ago
Joined: 04/21/2018 - 11:29
Posts: 476
Location: Europe

I just like how they look for some weird reason.
Normally I would not spend more than 20$ on a lighter unless I knew it was really good, but now with these coupons I can test-drive many almost for free.
Currently the only lighter I use is a bullet shaped lighter like this:

Because it’s reasonably small and can be held in a keychain. And because it is threaded and has a o-ring, the gasoline does not evaporate so fast like on most oil lighters

neo71665
neo71665's picture
Offline
Last seen: 13 hours 2 min ago
Joined: 02/21/2016 - 10:53
Posts: 327
Location: Arkansas

The zippo arc lighter is lipo and as far as I can tell not really meant to be serviceable. I haven’t cracked mine open but I bet its a small custom cell you can’t easily find.

I’ve only had mine for about a month now (had a chinese arc lighter awhile back) and I’m not overly impressed with the zippo one. It’s fine for ciggs but just about unusable for cigars and just about impossible to easily light a pipe.

If you are gonna light a fire you better have some paper on hand. It will not light up dry leaves, instead just burns a small section and smolders out.

Over all it’s cool but if I would have paid for it I would have been disappointed.

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

I’ve had a Thunderbird insert for my Zippo for a couple years then inevitably it failed,
I thought about replacing it with a Zippo one when they first came out and everyone
was hyped online and reviews started coming out…
I watched the first review which OBVIOUSLY was shilly and super positive and boy was
I disappointed :

-No lifetime warranty
-Made in China and not in USA
-Plastic components disguised as “steel construction”

What a load of BS and the dumbest thing is that being basically a Thunderbird insert incased
in cheap metal, it contains even slightly less fuel than a thunderbird.
Worse idea they could have come up with, they could have done their homework on it and priced
a well made insert at 50$ and people would have bought it, but the smell of cash was too much
for them to resist.

neo71665
neo71665's picture
Offline
Last seen: 13 hours 2 min ago
Joined: 02/21/2016 - 10:53
Posts: 327
Location: Arkansas

Yeah I was offered this for a review. Was hoping for the single flame butane insert but beggars can’t be choosers. I don’t think they really liked my review but I was honest with it.

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

Good job,

personally I think reviewers should pay for their own stuff to review, except for obvious cases like items that are not on the reviewer’s marketplace, for instance if a Japanese company wants to get into the US market it makes sense to send the product for free, mostly because the hassle of getting it + the shipping cost would not be representative of the product itself, another case is test reviews for items that are not already in production, I am an annoying nitpicker so personally to add to the review I would go outside and drop the price of the item in a donation box somewhere or litterally set it on fire on camera!

But that is just me being me Big Smile

In any case my personal belief is that if you do not pay for the item yourself your sense of value is definetly warped compared to someone who does.

kat
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 41 min ago
Joined: 04/21/2018 - 11:29
Posts: 476
Location: Europe

Titanium zippo case. Only fits normal inserts (not jet gas, or armor). Used it for almost 2 weeks now, and fuel holds well. When you open it after a few minutes of no-use, the internal top part of the case briefly lights up. I think this is because the fuel cannot escape and it is deposited on the titanium case. There are no o-rings, and no wobble. The insert is not a zippo original insert. It’s a “Zorro” brass insert from china, 5$.

This is another Zorro brass insert – 10$. It appears to be better made. It’s fully enclosed in metal and bottom filling hole has o-ring to prevent fuel from escaping.
The top part has a cap which probably prevents fuel from escaping from the top.
But I don’t like the cap because you cannot close the case until you close the cap first, so I don’t use this insert.

This is one of the best lighters I’ve seen. Construction is very simple, but feels like a very good and reliable lighter. The middle part of the tube is oxidized copper and looks really cool!

Some titanium lighters:

The one with the roller is very nice

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

Holy Lighter Collection Batman!

Damn fine examples, I saw the first one you posted while I was looking for either a Zorro or a Carson War Armor, very nice but I refrained from buying it because of the hinge protruding and not being flush with the side, that aside how is the quality?
To me they looked like the were built very solidly and pretty much bombproof.

Could you find out the model of that Zorro insert? It looks interesting and I want to look a little more into it, if only to check how it looks in stainless instead of brass.

The third lighter is really cool, at first I thought it was some kind of Vaping mod refurbished into a lighter Big Smile
Dat thing seems to hold a bucketload of fuel btw Big Smile

How is the quality on the last two? the finish seems decent, have you noticed any particular issues like milling chips left behind?
Also how hefty are they? I like brass and I worry titanium/steel could feel a little light for my tastes Big Smile

kat
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 41 min ago
Joined: 04/21/2018 - 11:29
Posts: 476
Location: Europe

No chips or sharp corners, they are well made.

First insert from the case is “zorro1”
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005001413262121.html

Second one you can find here along with more variants:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4001024671812.html

I have the stainless version too but does not fit the case, I guess tolerances are hit & miss on these inserts Smile
Unfortunately I don’t have an original zippo insert to compare at the moment.

And I have the Zorro war armor too, but I don’t like it because it’s way too big and heavy. And the case body has some play even tho it has a groove that should prevent that. Not as much play as the zippos, but it is a bit noticeable. The titanium case has no play and it doesn’t have any groove that fixes the top part in place. Maybe it will loosen in time, I don’t know..

The one with copper tube is here:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4001164611861.html

Swosh
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: 10/07/2020 - 09:45
Posts: 19
Location: Somewhere in Italy...

First of all thanks for all the infos and links Big Smile

I have a question on your Zorro wa armor, how heavy is yours?
I went for the 912hk version which I think is the correct model number, and mine weighs a little under 150g and I find it absolutely perfect for my jeans’ 5th pocket.
Could it be that you are referring to the 912S model which is the one with a thicker side that weighs something like 250g?
I personally don’t find mine THAT heavy.

How do you feel about that external hinge on your titanium one does it not bother you a little? I saw a few cool and well made lighters with that style but my passion for clean lines stirred me toward that sweet flush hinge of the Zorro 912, that side bulge is somewhat of a design crime to me lol.

I am about to receive (crossing fingers) a new Zorro insert because I don’t really fancy the brass on brass look I have going on right now and I’d rather have a steel insert, hopefully being both case and insert by Zorro there should not be any “fitting” issue.

The tube one has me really intrigued tho… the short version could be a nice fit for my 5th pocket but I fell in love with the fidgetyness of the Zippo and I much prefer a lighter that is easier to work with one hand, granted you can do it with the cylindrical one aswell but a little too cumbersome.
Also I am SURE I would lose the cap XD

kat
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 41 min ago
Joined: 04/21/2018 - 11:29
Posts: 476
Location: Europe

it’s 192g without the insert.
External hinge doesn’t bother me. There are versions with flush hinge too.

Pages