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#395173 - 01/17/05 10:36 AM What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Jelly Offline


Registered: 08/10/03
Posts: 2569
Loc: College Dorm...
GT Mike's post got me to thinkin'...

What all can be used as fuel in a Zippo lighter?
What's the best thing to use?

[ January 18, 2005, 02:51 AM: Message edited by: Jelly ]

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#395174 - 01/17/05 11:31 AM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Quest Offline


Registered: 12/19/04
Posts: 7354
Loc: beaver land EH?
Naphtha, aka "Coleman fuel".

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#395175 - 01/17/05 01:26 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Jelly Offline


Registered: 08/10/03
Posts: 2569
Loc: College Dorm...
Is Coleman fuel the only "unconventional" thing you can use?

What about gasoline?
Diesel?
Kerosene?
Lamp oil?
etc, etc, etc...

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#395176 - 01/17/05 01:39 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Jelly Offline


Registered: 08/10/03
Posts: 2569
Loc: College Dorm...
Naphtha is basically just low octane gasoline, correct?

So why couldn't you just use gasoline in a lighter? Would it be too resistant to ignite or burn properly?

Why is gasoline considered highly dangerous and flammable in comparison to naphtha?

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#395177 - 01/17/05 02:56 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
XS650 Offline


Registered: 12/21/03
Posts: 12385
Loc: Northern CA
"Lighter fuel" is a lot less volatile than gasoline and usually a lot less smelly too.

One brand of lighter fuel

Heavier fuels like kerosene or diesel wouldn't burn as cleanly and would be harder to light.

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#395178 - 01/17/05 03:21 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Jelly Offline


Registered: 08/10/03
Posts: 2569
Loc: College Dorm...
quote:
Originally posted by XS650:
"Lighter fuel" is a lot less volatile than gasoline and usually a lot less smelly too.

Could you elaborate on this a bit?

If lighter fuel is naphtha, and so is gasoline, wouldn't the one with the vastly lower octane rating (the lighter fuel) be less volatile?

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#395179 - 01/17/05 03:32 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Jelly Offline


Registered: 08/10/03
Posts: 2569
Loc: College Dorm...
quote:
Originally posted by XS650:
Heavier fuels like kerosene or diesel wouldn't burn as cleanly and would be harder to light.

This is something I've wondered about with kerosene heaters as well...

If you used something like Diesel Kleen +Cetane Boost in a kerosene heater running #2, would it clean it up a bit?

It would be incredibly impractical to use anything other than "lighter fuel" in a Zippo as a permanent fuel...would be neat to experiment though a little.

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#395180 - 01/17/05 06:13 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
kevm14 Offline


Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 342
Loc: North Kingstown, RI
Pyro alert!!

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#395181 - 01/18/05 08:02 AM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
MAJA Offline


Registered: 06/14/04
Posts: 542
Loc: South Central Texas
I would not want to be holding gas in my hand and throw a spark in it!! Better to leave this to the experts.

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#395182 - 01/18/05 08:08 AM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
Gary Allan Offline


Registered: 09/28/02
Posts: 39806
Loc: Pottstown, PA
I think kero and perhaps jet fuel would work in a zippo ..lamp oil. They should burn well with a "base" (wick).

Gas would be asking for trouble. The vapors would flash ...or so I would reason.

Jelly ...howbow you doing some R&D for the rest of us here? Start out with kero ...maybe try a few drippings from the nozzles from the local airport for some higher octane prop fuel? Then move on to the kero like jet fuel?


Let us know how they work [Big Grin]

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#395183 - 01/18/05 08:55 AM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
medic Offline


Registered: 02/28/03
Posts: 1735
Loc: Bradford, Commonwealth of Penn...
I doubt kerosene, jet fuel or diesel fuel would work in a Zippo. They would burn, but the problem would be getting the fuel to ignite from the small spark of the flint.

I know that hair spray will work, but it is almost impossible to get the lighter back apart once hair spray has been used. This also leads me to believe that some different types of alcohol would work.

Most charcoal starter fluids are a mixture of about 80% naphtha and 20% kerosene. This may work, but the kerosene may raise the flash point enough to keep the fliud from igniting in a Zippo.

[Off Topic!] Interesting facts:

The majority of Zippo lighter fluid is exported to other countries.

At any one time, Zippo can have up to 20,000 gallons of unpackaged naptha at there fuel plant. There is usually over 10,000 gallons of packaged lighter fluid in their warehouse waiting to be shipped.

[ January 18, 2005, 01:05 PM: Message edited by: medic ]

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#395184 - 01/17/05 09:45 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
XS650 Offline


Registered: 12/21/03
Posts: 12385
Loc: Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by medic:

[Off Topic!] Interesting facts:

The majority of Zippo lighter fluid is exported to other countries.


In WWII, one of the nick names for the gasoline powered Sherman tank was "Zippo", because it lit on the first strike every time. [Eek!]

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#395185 - 01/17/05 10:09 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
XS650 Offline


Registered: 12/21/03
Posts: 12385
Loc: Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by Jelly:


If lighter fuel is naphtha, and so is gasoline, wouldn't the one with the vastly lower octane rating (the lighter fuel) be less volatile?

You can probably answer that with Mr Google's help.

Gasoline may contain a little naptha, but it isn't naptha.

Here's a bit of info that should explain it for you.

TBP Distillation Data

Butanes and lighter 55-175 oF

Light Gasoline 175-300 oF

Light naphtha 300-400 oF

Heavy naptha 400-500 oF

Kerosene 500-650 oF

Atmosphere Gas Oil 650-800 oF

Light Vacuum Gas Oil 800-1000 oF

Hvy. Vacuum Gas Oil 1000 oF

Vacuum Residue > 1000 oF

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#395186 - 01/17/05 10:23 PM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
cit1991 Offline


Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 45
Loc: Houston, TX
Naphtha is a VERY general term referring to the rough boiling range of a mixture of hydrocarbons.

Naphthas go form 50F initial boiling point up to about 450F final boiling point.

Lighter fluid is a light naphtha, but the front end is cut off to give it a higher flashpoint, does not evaporate quickly out of the lighter, and is low odor. It's mostly paraffinic so it burns clean in a flame. It could be straight run (straight distilled from crude), or hydrocracked.

Yes gasoline contains naphths, but the naphtha used for lighters would be very low octane.

Diesel fuel, or the component gasoil would be way too high flash to light in a lighter. Throw a match in a bucket of diesel fuel, and it'll put out the match.

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#395187 - 01/18/05 02:21 AM Re: What Can Be Used In A Zippo?
JohnnyO Offline


Registered: 09/26/03
Posts: 2490
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
German Castrol, of course. [Big Grin]

quote:
Originally posted by medic:
The majority of Zippo lighter fluid is exported to other countries.

Sure, because people in other countries smoke a lot more than we do. Bud of mine is a flight attendant and goes to Europe a lot, he says it's easy to spot the Americans because they're the only ones who don't smoke. [Cool]

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