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Old 02-24-2008, 01:15 PM   #1
Renaissance Man
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Zippo Test Results.....

I was firmly in the anti-Zippo camp for years but recently decided to put my bias to the test. I selected a $9 plain Zippo as my primary source of ignition and a ~$5/quart can of naphtha as the fuel. Test period has been approximately the past two months.

Lighting process:

1. Let the fumes disperse (1 - 2 seconds max) when you open the cover.
2. Toast the foot without directly touching the flame.
3. Gently blow out once.
4. If additional ignition is required, gently draw in but do not allow the foot to directly touch the flame.

The result: I do not detect any adverse taste using a Zippo in this manner. Additionally, even when I let the yellow portion of the flame touch the foot (a bad practice, IMO, no matter which type of ignition you prefer), there were no adverse effects.

I wonder if those who claim they can taste the fluid are really detecting the smell?

And, if you were wondering, my palate is quite capable of detecting the difference - I have been double-blind tasting wines for over thirty years (until I quit drinking two years ago) and cigars for almost twenty.....

Bottom line: I am comfortable that my bias against Zippos was unfounded and that Zippos represent a viable, reliable and extremely cost-effective source of ignition for cigars.

YMMV.....
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Old 02-24-2008, 03:59 PM   #2
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Love 'em. If only there was a way to keep the fluid from evaporating they would be poifect...
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Old 02-24-2008, 04:25 PM   #3
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Re: Zippo Test Results.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Renaissance Man
I was firmly in the anti-Zippo camp for years but recently decided to put my bias to the test. I selected a $9 plain Zippo as my primary source of ignition and a ~$5/quart can of naphtha as the fuel. Test period has been approximately the past two months.

Lighting process:

1. Let the fumes disperse (1 - 2 seconds max) when you open the cover.
2. Toast the foot without directly touching the flame.
3. Gently blow out once.
4. If additional ignition is required, gently draw in but do not allow the foot to directly touch the flame.

The result: I do not detect any adverse taste using a Zippo in this manner. Additionally, even when I let the yellow portion of the flame touch the foot (a bad practice, IMO, no matter which type of ignition you prefer), there were no adverse effects.

I wonder if those who claim they can taste the fluid are really detecting the smell?

And, if you were wondering, my palate is quite capable of detecting the difference - I have been double-blind tasting wines for over thirty years (until I quit drinking two years ago) and cigars for almost twenty.....

Bottom line: I am comfortable that my bias against Zippos was unfounded and that Zippos represent a viable, reliable and extremely cost-effective source of ignition for cigars.

YMMV.....
They've also reformulated their fuel as of late. Nowhere near the smell of their old naptha-based fuel.
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Old 02-24-2008, 09:46 PM   #4
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That is one of the reasons why I used Naphtha as my fuel source - it provided a 'worst case' scenario.
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Old 02-24-2008, 11:14 PM   #5
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but, i was under the impression that using a zippo to light a fine hand rolled cigar would bring about the events discussed in Revelations. Have i been misled? seriously, people worry to much for my taste. As they say, smoke what you like, the same applies to how you choose to light that smoke. I promise you that if i've got a good cigar and nothing but a zippo to light it, the flint will fly and i will enjoy it.
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Old 02-25-2008, 03:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renaissance Man
That is one of the reasons why I used Naphtha as my fuel source - it provided a 'worst case' scenario.
I bought a gallon can of naptha at Lowe's five years ago for 8 bucks. The last time I filled my lighter bottle from it it was still half full.
Best tip I ever received, that.

And Walt, I use my lighter multiple times a day and I only fill it once a week. But I make SURE I fill it once a week. And I don't remember the last time it quit on me due to lack of fuel. I always fill it at night before I go to bed, really fill it until it drips all over, put it back together, stand it upright on a fluid-safe surface and let it sit overnight. Next day, its ready for your pocket, no burns and your lighter is truly FULL.

A Zippo is one of the things in life that you can count on, when so little in life can be counted on anymore. I have a boxful of hoity-toity torch lighters, none of them worth the cost of a single flint for my trusty zippo.
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Old 02-25-2008, 09:23 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stogie5150
.....And Walt, I use my lighter multiple times a day and I only fill it once a week. But I make SURE I fill it once a week. And I don't remember the last time it quit on me due to lack of fuel. I always fill it at night before I go to bed, really fill it until it drips all over, put it back together, stand it upright on a fluid-safe surface and let it sit overnight. Next day, its ready for your pocket, no burns and your lighter is truly FULL. .....
I find that a glass eye-dropper of Naphtha every night works 'just right'.....
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Old 02-25-2008, 09:35 AM   #8
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In short, my Zippo is the only damn lighter that ALWAYS works!

Also, my Dad gave me his old Zippo from 1952, all I needed to do was replace the flint, and that damn thing ignited on the first strike!

Lastly, I used to choke up my lack of taste on my lack of taste (so I feel better).

Thanks,

John
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Old 02-25-2008, 12:10 PM   #9
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Well, I never tried to test it scientifically or systematically, but your experience is the same as mine. I think the "Zippo ruins the flavor of your cigar" scenario is about as realistic as using my Palm handheld will cause the airplane I'm sitting in to crash.

In spite of that, I recently switched to the Vector soft flame insert in one of my Zippos. Why? Nothing to do with aromas or flavors. The lighter fluid just evaporates too damned fast. Plus, if I overfill a Zippo with lighter fluid and put it in my jeans pocket, the extra fluid leaks out and burns my skin.
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Old 02-25-2008, 12:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
And Walt, I use my lighter multiple times a day and I only fill it once a week. But I make SURE I fill it once a week.
I tend to run hot, which I'm sure contributes to the evaporation.
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