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Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Best butane lighter? on 07/16/2006 23:13:29 MDT Print View

I was doing a serach on butane lighters and found items from 99 cents to $110. I've been using a Cricket piezo electric, which I like because it is long and thin, making it easy to hold and long enough to store duct tape on too. What is your favorite lighter?

Edited by dwambaugh on 07/16/2006 23:15:20 MDT.

Summit CO
(Summit) - F

Locale: 9300ft
isobutane lighter? on 07/17/2006 00:42:39 MDT Print View

how come nobody makes as isobutane lighter? everything is n-butane...

Brian James
(bjamesd) - F

Locale: South Coast of BC
Fuel Tool on 07/17/2006 14:05:40 MDT Print View

To fill my lighters with isobutane, I use the Brunton Fuel Tool. Attached to a Bruntane or Coleman (my fav: 30% propane) canister, you can fill any butane-carrying device including lighters.

I carry refillable cheesy Ronson brand lighters that are piezo instead of flint-sparked. Not sure if they're good, bad, or ugly but they have never not fired and the lack of a flint wheel makes it that much easier to light a stove or fire with frozen fingers.

Brian

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Fuel Tool on 07/17/2006 14:59:29 MDT Print View

I Saw that Brunton tool while surfing. It struck me as another way to use partially filled fuel cans. The one I saw was $14, which I thought was a little steep.

Al Clemens
(al) - F
mini bic on 07/18/2006 20:47:03 MDT Print View

I use mini bic lighters. One in the pocket and a backup in the cook kit inside a tiny ziplock. Small, light and reliable. They're about 50 cents each when bought in a 4 pack. If it's cold out their small mass warms up qickly in your hand.

Christopher Plesko
(Pivvay) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
mini bic source? on 07/18/2006 21:09:36 MDT Print View

Where do you guys buy your mini-bics? I looked at Home Depot and the grocery stores but no luck in finding them. Just the 3 pack of full size.

Michael Freyman
(mfreyman) - MLife
Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 07:09:03 MDT Print View

just keep hunting for them ... they are around

at the local grocery store where I shop, they have 12 checkout lines but only 2 of them have the mini bic lighters

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 08:20:26 MDT Print View

The discount drug stores like Walgreens, Rite Aid, Longs (pick one for your region) usually have them.

Here's a question: which lighter type is more reliable/weather proof-- piezoelectric or flint?

Christopher Plesko
(Pivvay) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 08:22:02 MDT Print View

Haha yea I already looked up and down all the checkout lines. I'll try walgreen's next. They're going to look at me funny when I stock up for a couple first aid/emergency kits.

Chris

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 08:29:39 MDT Print View

The local Wal-Mart here carries those tiny BIC lighters.

Tom Gibson
(TerribleTom) - F
Re: Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 13:54:04 MDT Print View

I think that the piezoelectric is more reliable than flint, especially if the lighter gets wet. Sometimes all it takes is one strike on a wet flint to kill a lighter for good, even after it dries out. Other times it's nearly impossible to dry one out even if the flint is still good.

In direct contradiction of my opinion of reliability, I prefer a Bic lighter. The mini version is OK, but I prefer the full size. The difference in bulk/weight is minor and the small version is not good for a sustained burn - it gets hot too fast.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 14:08:23 MDT Print View

I like cricket lighters better than bics. I got a mini bic wet and it froze up on me at trips end. A cricket that got wet was working at two strikes after drying it off.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
Re: Re: Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 15:47:19 MDT Print View

I use a Ronson... piezo-electric... and with a flame adjuster so it can throw a huge flame. I've had so many problems where I live (east coast... often wet and breezy) getting Esbit tabs going with a mini-bic... gave up on it. A few extra grams is worth if it means the different between eating in 10 mins. or fussing with my Esbit tab for half an hour trying to get it lit... burning my fingers on the mini-bic...etc. :) The last time I went with a mini-bic... I had to use some tinder to get my Esbit going.

Edited by davidlewis on 07/19/2006 15:48:53 MDT.

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 18:57:12 MDT Print View

Lighting Esbit: a dollop of waterless hand cleaner usually does the trick. Then you can use almost anything to light it off. Flint and steel, even.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: mini bic source? on 07/19/2006 19:30:48 MDT Print View

Thanks for the tip Vick. You mean that sanitizer stuff? Does it have alcohol in it or something? Anyway... good tip. Maybe that will let me go back to my mini-bic so I can save 3 grams! Woo Hoo!!! :) Seriously though... great tip. I'll have to try it. I don't usually carry that stuff... usually just use broner's... but I'll try that.

Edited by davidlewis on 07/19/2006 19:31:21 MDT.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: lighting Esbits on 07/19/2006 20:29:16 MDT Print View

Yeah, that hand sanitzer is loaded with alcohol. NEVER use the stuff (for hand cleaning) near a flame. I've used it to start a fire just to see if it would work. It does, and I could see where it would get an Esbit tab going nicely.

I have better luck lighting Esbit tabs by getting the flame under-- I tip the tablet up on the edge of the pan in the beercan stove or the wing stove and light the bottom edge. I have just picked up a tab to light it, but you want to be able to set it down quickly and accurately.

Edited by dwambaugh on 07/19/2006 20:29:58 MDT.

Summit CO
(Summit) - F

Locale: 9300ft
Piezo at altitude on 07/20/2006 12:33:08 MDT Print View

I've been warned that Piezo elements are highly unreliable at high altitude (10K+) IF the conditions are very humid.

This does make some sense. I've never tested it b/c I don't have anything with piezo elements.

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Piezo at altitude on 07/20/2006 15:29:24 MDT Print View

never had a problem with Piezo at altitude - as long as the butane can vaporize. That's the real problem. Keep the lighter in your shorts or something.

Andrew Hedges
(alhedges) - F
delicate element on 07/21/2006 17:47:31 MDT Print View

I had a refillable butane "torch-style" lighter that ignited electrically by means of a fine wire that crossed the place where the butane exits. The lighter appeared to be high quality and was aimed at outdoorspeople (was windproof, etc.), but when I was using it to melt the end of some parachute cord I had cut, a piece of the nylon touched the wire element and the lighter never worked again.

Since that time, I've just carried a few disposable lighters.

Mike Storesund
(mikes) - F
Re: Best butane lighter? on 07/25/2006 22:36:23 MDT Print View

Okay, I have read some opinions on lighters. I have used the Mini-Bic and while it is probably one of, if not the lightest lighter available, it does not offer an adjustable flame. They can be bought online 50 for $20. I can buy a 5-pack of Scripto® disposable lighters for $2.00 at Wally World and they do offer an adjustable flame as well as a clear wall so you can see how much fuel you have left. Both of these use the flint and steel wheel spark system that have failed me when wet. I also have an old tried and true Zippo® that I have had for over 25 years, with that, the entire system can be dried; add new flint and wick if necessary and it work again. Unfortunately its fuel runs dry rather quickly.

With that, I am leaning more toward a piezo-electric lighter, but have no experience with them. I have read it is definitely more reliable than a flint lighter. I see Brunton makes their Helios™ Stormproof lighter and claims at least 30,000 piezo ignitions and can get it on sale for about $45. They also make their FuelTool™ for $14. I think the FuelTool™ is a good idea and will let you use the last bits of your fuel canister to refill the Helios™. However, one can buy 150 Scripto® disposable lighter for about the same cost.

Can anyone advise if the Helios™ is worth the extra money (is it really that good) or is it more of a gadget for those that feel the need to have more ‘toys’ (I tend to fall into that category).