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Ben Crowell
(bcrowell) - F

Locale: Southern California
disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 16:16:11 MDT Print View

I was snow-camping last week on Mt. Shasta, and I got a chance to test three different fire-starters side by side at dawn at 10,000 ft. I had an expensive, heavy metal lighter that was advertised as being especially good at high altitude (Colibri Summit), a cheap plastic Bic lighter, and some strike-anywhere matches. All three failed initially. After I warmed both lighters for a few minutes inside the waistband of my underwear, the Bic lit and the Colibri didn't. So at this point I'm sold on cheap plastic lighters. The only thing is, they aren't refillable, and on the ones I've seen, you can't see the level of remaining butane. The only way I've found to judge the amount of fuel left is the height of the flame, which tapers off gradually as the butane runs out. (I tried doing it by weight, but there is apparently less than a gram of butane in one of these.) Has anyone ever seen a disposable lighter made of clear plastic that let you see how much fuel was left?

Edited by bcrowell on 07/06/2010 16:18:01 MDT.

Tipi Walter
(TipiWalter) - F
BICs on 07/06/2010 16:22:38 MDT Print View

I always just shine my headlamp directly behind it to see fuel level.

Ben Crowell
(bcrowell) - F

Locale: Southern California
Re: BICs on 07/06/2010 16:44:44 MDT Print View

"I always just shine my headlamp directly behind it to see fuel level."
Ah, great trick, Walter -- never would have occurred to me! It seems to work on my Bic, but not on my smaller Scriptos, which seem to have more opaque plastic.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 17:22:00 MDT Print View

Yes, some models of lighters are made of completely transparent plastic, while others are opaque. Brands? I have no idea, but wander down to the supermarket or newsagent and look.

So the Bics are not refillable - so what? I have been using the same one for over 6 years of walking now, and it still isn't empty.

Colibri - $90 for what is simply a Bic lighter tarted up for the effluent wanna-bes and their fashion market. You have been had. (Sorry, but ...)

Cheers

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 17:27:11 MDT Print View

"Has anyone ever seen a disposable lighter made of clear plastic that let you see how much fuel was left?"

Yes, I have one. Unfortunately, the seal has gone bad, so it is not usable.

This came as a major component of a hand-size butane torch with piezo trigger. With the exception of the fueling port on the bottom, it looks just like a normal yellow transparent lighter. The label says Master RC-30 Butane Fuel Cell. Refill Butane Here -->

--B.G.--

Ben Crowell
(bcrowell) - F

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 18:51:07 MDT Print View

"Colibri - $90 for what is simply a Bic lighter tarted up for the effluent wanna-bes and their fashion market. You have been had. (Sorry, but ...)"
Yeah, I know, I know.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
disposable lighters with visible butane level?" on 07/06/2010 19:09:18 MDT Print View

Bic and back light trick I think is the way to go. (it works for me..)
I do have a couple of the clear types, in the kitchen, one branded Rhino, the other has no brand at all)
A refillable and clear type ( good if you need to melt s
Iroda mini torchomething ) is this one:



http://bourneelectronics.com/IRODA-Gas-Mini-keyring-Gas-Blow-Torch-P762442.aspx
(no I don't have one)
Franco

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 19:20:02 MDT Print View

"Has anyone ever seen a disposable lighter made of clear plastic that let you see how much fuel was left?"

Google is your friend. Just type in "clear plastic lighter".



Prolly find these in 99-cent type stores??

Edited by ben2world on 07/06/2010 19:25:13 MDT.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 19:31:22 MDT Print View

Roger wrote:
"...the effluent wanna-bes"

That's a pretty harsh thing to call Benjamin.

Maybe affluent, but never effluent.

--B.G.--

Ben Crowell
(bcrowell) - F

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 19:39:41 MDT Print View

Roger wrote:
"...the effluent wanna-bes"

BG wrote: "That's a pretty harsh thing to call Benjamin.

Maybe affluent, but never effluent."

No, I don't even rise to the level of effluent. I'm an "effluent wanna-be." Someday I hope to pass out through the cosmic cloaca of the universe and actually make it to effluent status.

-Ben

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 19:44:35 MDT Print View

Effluent... maybe Roger was still thinking about that long-winded TP v. no TP thread -- and got the Ben's mixed up! Heh heh...

But at least Ben Crowell now knows that "semi transparent" lighters do exist.

Edited by ben2world on 07/06/2010 19:45:35 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 20:34:18 MDT Print View

"Someday I hope to pass out through the cosmic cloaca of the universe and actually make it to effluent status."

Now that is as elegant a way to describe a black hole as I've ever run across. ;}

Joseph Reeves
(Umnak)

Locale: Southeast Alaska
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 22:55:24 MDT Print View

I bought an 8 pack of clear plastic lighters at Wal Mart. The governor can be removed simply creating a flame at least five inches in length. Just remove the cap and pull the metal band. Started this.....

Morning tea and a nice fire

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/06/2010 23:27:52 MDT Print View

Was it a typo, or was it light-hearted tongue in cheek? Who Knows? At least it got a laugh from several people.

But $90 instead of 99c ...

Cheers

Ben Crowell
(bcrowell) - F

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: disposable lighters with visible butane level? on 07/07/2010 08:13:52 MDT Print View

"But $90 instead of 99c ..."
OK, rub it in some more. I can take it! (sob)

I actually got it for $50, and am now in the process of reselling it on ebay. Chalk one up to experience.

Daniel Fosse
(magillagorilla) - F

Locale: Southwest Ohio
lighters on 07/07/2010 11:15:24 MDT Print View

Here's my 2c

I spent 20 years as a smoker. 1 large Bic would last me 6-7 months after lighting 20-30 cigarettes a day. I have had one Bic fail on me, ever, and it had been run over by a car. Mind you it still worked for about a week, then the striker failed.

I have gone swimming for hours with a Bic in my pocket, blew it out and it worked fine.

If you get a white or light colored one you can hold it up to a bright light to see the butane level. However, you will be very hard pressed to run a mini Bic out on a 1 week outting, that is, if all you are doind it lighting fires.

Stay clear from the, um, clear cheepo lighters. I have experienced a very high fail rate with them. The striker mechanism fails easily. Also, on multiple cheap clear lighters the flint has flung out along with the spring upon striking. Don't waste you time with them.

Also stay away from the pizeo style strikers. These are the disposables like the Cricket brand with the push button ignition. They fail easily when wet, dirty, or sandy.

Refillable lighters are expensive and, in my experience, don't provide as many "lights" as a good'ol Bic.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: lighters on 07/07/2010 11:22:16 MDT Print View

That's weird, my mini bic froze up and was dead after it got wet. Went with non-piezo Cricket lighters since.

Edited by jshann on 07/07/2010 11:22:49 MDT.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Re: lighters on 07/07/2010 12:08:47 MDT Print View

John:

I did an experiment with my BIC disposable a few months ago:

1. Dropped one into a full glass of water -- waited about 10 seconds -- fished it out, dried it -- and it worked just fine.

2. Did the same again but left the lighter in the water for about 10 minutes -- dried it -- but the lighter failed. However, after about 30 minutes or so, the BIC came back to life again -- worked just as normal -- presumably because the insides have dried sufficiently as well.

Half an hour delay is probably not a big deal for summer outdoors, but may become a life/death issue in cold / wet climes -- so still a good idea to protect the BIC from water and bring along a spare.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: lighters on 07/07/2010 12:14:00 MDT Print View

If I am going out in cold and wet weather, I carry at least one butane lighter inside an aluminum capsule. That is the cylinder that unscrews in the middle. That way, the lighter is kept dry. Inside the capsule, there is at least one Esbit tab and some foil. In a pinch, I could boil water in one half of the capsule, but it is pretty small. I'd like to find a larger one with a capacity of about 6 fluid ounces. Some are too short for the lighter, and some have a small diameter.

--B.G.--

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Re: lighters on 07/07/2010 13:12:16 MDT Print View

Hi Ben. In my situation, I never knew it was damp, so it stayed that way and rusted the inner metal portions. It might could have been prevented had I tried to get it dried out.