Introduction: Zippo Trick: the Twilight Zone

Picture of Zippo Trick: the Twilight Zone
Want a dirt simple Zippo trick that will amaze people again and again? Then try out this one called Twilight Zone. All you need is a Zippo lighter and a few minutes to practice.

I've seen this done before on different sites so I didn't create it. I'm just showing it so that more people can know about it and get free drinks at bars from their friends.

Step 1: Prep Your Lighter

Picture of Prep Your Lighter

Getting your lighter ready for this trick is easy. Stick your pinky finger or a pen inside the lighter and curve the wick towards the hinge. Just make sure that the lighter hasn't been used recently or you'll burn yourself, OK?

Curving the wick creates a small pocket where a smaller blue flame can still burn even while the main flame has been put out.

Easy, right? Now let's do it.

Step 2: Pinch the Flame

Picture of Pinch the Flame

First of all, make sure that you're indoors and there's no draft. This trick can live and die by air circulation.

So light up your Zippo and pinch off the flame. This is done by putting your thumb and index finger together and closing off the flame by moving them across the top of the chimney.

If you do it right, you'll see a small blue flame caught under the curved wick. If it's not working, tilt the lighter a little bit to the outside and try again. This gives a better angle for the wick and makes it easier for the flame to get caught.

If you're still having problems, try adjusting the wick again. Just make sure to let the lighter cool off before you touch it.

Assuming you have the trick going properly, talk about how you're holding the flame in your hand, how cool Prometheus was, or whatever else to keep the suspense going.

Step 3: Bring the Flame Back

Picture of Bring the Flame Back

Getting the flame to reappear is as simple as giving the lighter a tiny shake. This will jostle the flame enough to let it spread and burst out the top of the lighter.

To distract anyone watching, make some movement with your other hand. Open it up so it looks like you put the flame that you were holding this whole time back into it. Or you can snap your fingers. Or say "redrum" really frickin' loudly. Make something up.

Step 4: Look, No Hands!

Picture of Look, No Hands!

For a variation, place the lighter on a table and carefully pinch of the flame. Leave it alone and to light it back up push your hand right up to it. The air movement will light it up again.



Badetise (author)2013-03-28

awesome, the looks on people's faces are priceless, thanks so much

normanthybeast (author)2012-02-10

Class trick. Can't wait to try it out!! Thanks for the Instructable!

atan18 (author)2011-12-05

can this be done by other brand lighters? from where i come from zippo is expensive.

fungus amungus (author)atan182011-12-05

It will only work with a wick lighter. Haven't tried any others besides Zippo.

sassimo03 (author)2011-10-10

Im just blown away on how simple this little trick is. Awesome.

gnartkoshvili (author)2011-08-01


oscarwindahl (author)2011-02-13

it works with starlighter too :D

joekickass345 (author)2008-05-08

i ask my mom can i have her and she said yeh im 13 lol

sharlston (author)joekickass3452009-07-27

im 10 and ive got 2 zippos

lol i am 15 and i have about six plus a few windproof ones!

all zippos are windproof...

i meant a few jet lighters.

awesomekitteh (author)sharlston2010-12-15

if you are ten you are to young to be on instructables so you had to lie abot your age so you lied about your age

sharlston (author)awesomekitteh2010-12-16

I said im ten to refer to my friend whos ten who bought one becuase it sounds cheesy when you say,ohh my friend got one and hes only 10 blah

awesomekitteh (author)sharlston2010-12-16

ok then nvm...

HardCoreHacker (author)sharlston2009-08-10

im just wonderin, do u need a id to get them? If not how much $$$ do i need?

sharlston (author)HardCoreHacker2009-08-11

well i bought them with my dad and i got mine for $2 so i dont know about the id

Archive555 (author)joekickass3452008-06-08

I'm 14 and bought one off eBay :p

Rokko8652 (author)Archive5552008-06-09

im 11 and have one and a lighter collection with like 15 lghters....

Nicrostar (author)Rokko86522008-08-26

are they fueled?

Rokko8652 (author)Nicrostar2009-02-14

.....Uhh, Yea, duh, all almost empty from messing around...

"yea, of course they're fuelled, they're all almost empty" haha

cornflaker (author)Archive5552009-02-05

A mum or a zippo? lol

Vulcanator (author)cornflaker2009-03-23

i bought one off of my friend at school

sharlston (author)joekickass3452009-11-29


HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!! INCEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

cornflaker (author)joekickass3452009-02-05

Disturbing... lol

This sounds a tad bit wrong........

espboy (author)TheDeadChemist2008-12-18

LMFAO!!!!!! xD


thebboy (author)TheDeadChemist2008-08-01

lol, agreed. but i think we both know what he means. or atleast i hope we do.

lupusXIII (author)2010-07-07

can it be one of those cheep lighters (you know the colourful ones with the see through cases) or does it have to be zippo

DannytheGreat (author)lupusXIII2010-12-27

only zippos have wicks

Satan Reaper (author)2010-11-20

Argh ive been trying so hard but it wont work :(

SHUBLIMINALI (author)2010-09-17

this can get me a lot of women in pubs!
very goood!

gl0rious (author)2010-09-02

i just took out my old zippo after 2 years and the fuel had leaked all over the inside + when i lit it there was a ginormous fireball 2ft across!!!

dpr (author)2009-07-31

does this burn u?

weaponscollector94 (author)dpr2009-11-27

nope, done properly you should feel a slight bit of heat cause your fingers are in contact with the flame for a brief second

dpr (author)weaponscollector942009-11-27

but what if not done correctly?

weaponscollector94 (author)dpr2009-11-27

then you might get a small burn

scoobbrandon (author)dpr2009-11-27

 if you touch the metal after its on for a wile you will burn your self

weaponscollector94 (author)2009-11-27

i love this trick, great for parties!

jmart115 (author)2008-07-08

just a question but does this work with the little zippos cuz mines about 3/4 as wide as a standard one

you mean Zippo slims? cause i can do it with mine!

sharlston (author)jmart1152009-07-27

ye it shoould

l96470fps (author)2009-10-24

if i try to pinch the flame doesnt die, good ible

deth2all (author)2008-04-25

because of this instructable i went out and bought myself a brand new zippo

Khaos11 (author)deth2all2008-05-02

how old do you have to be to buy a zippo and where can i get one cheers, Khaos11

deth2all (author)Khaos112008-05-02

18, but you can always find a stranger that looks cool, i bought mine at wall-mart for $17

cornflaker (author)deth2all2009-02-05

Not in Australia I'm nearly 18 now but even when I was 16 I could just walk into the store ask for a lighter and they didn't even ask how old I was lol I think we actually do have an age limit of like 16 here though but still seeing as I was only just old enough you would think they would ask.

About This Instructable




Bio: I like to make things for the internets. I also sell a pretty cool calendar at You'll like it.
More by fungus amungus:3D Printed US Population MapLight Painting With an IPhoneSuper Bright RGB LED Bike Wheels
Add instructable to: