Wednesday, March 16, 2011


(C'mon, admit it -- when you saw the title of this post, you thought I was gonna talk about nuclear radiation. Am I right?)

I absolutely love my
Zippo lighter. Its brass case, over time, has developed a wonderful patina. (No, I don't polish it.) Like old leather, it's smooth and warm in my hand. As long as I keep it fed with fluid and flints, it fires every time.

If there's a down-side to a Zippo, it's the tendency for the fluid to evaporate. That's not a big problem, practically speaking, when I'm carrying it every day, but it's downright annoying (to say the least) when I pull it out to start a backyard fire, only to get all flick and no flame.

Yesterday I employed a trick that helps prevent the vapor from escaping. I cut a 3/4-inch
Ranger Band from a mountain-bike inner tube and slipped it over my Zippo, right where the case splits. It's by no means a hermetic seal, but it'll definitely extend the life of a fillup.

Even with this fix, it's always smart to top-off a Zippo before heading into the woods. Carrying a little extra fluid isn't a bad idea, either.

Now, about the
tin in the background of the photo -- it's one of several that Mrs. KintlaLake and I picked up at an after-Valentine's candy blowout (75% off). The rectangular box is hinged, measuring a useful 5-1/2 inches long by 2-1/2 inches wide by 3/4 inch deep.

I suspect that it'll be "re-purposed" soon to hold a kit of some sort.