Free Flints for Your Zippo!





Introduction: Free Flints for Your Zippo!

About: I like to make things

ever hang out at a bar? know anyone that smokes? have friends who like to light fires for fun and recreation? ever light candles?

you probably know someone who uses a lighter for one reason or another. and most likely that lighter is a disposable butane lighter. there is a flint in every one of these lighters (not piezo electric) that is made to outlast the butane contained therein. why buy flints when you can reuse that spent lighter's flint in your zippo?

here's how to harvest the freebies!!!!

Step 1: No Man Left Behind

people routinely leave 'dead' lighters at bars and in trash cans all over the world. if you can find one or get a friend to give you one, you have all you need to complete this instructable. i assume you have a zippo or you wouldn't be checking out this particular project.

Step 2: Void the Warranty

take that lighter apart! you may void the warranty, but it's not functional and you didn't pay for it anyway. how much better can it get?

just get funky on it and pull off the flint wheel. a set of pliers will suffice. the rest is cake. just make sure when the spring pops out you keep your hands around it to catch the flint that will otherwise fly across the room.

once you have the flint out, put it in your zippo.

easy, huh?

free rhymes with me. . .




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DONT USE THE FLINTS FROM NORMAL CIGARETTE LIGHTERS!!! It will only work temporarily. They are harder than the flints made for Zippos, and will wear down the sparker wheel rather rapidly until it wont spark when spun, no matter how hard you try. I have had this happen to several Zippos. Sure, if you send it in to the factory, zippo will fix it for free, but its less work to just go to a gas (petrol) station or someplace and buy a pack of flints for like 75 cents and avoid damaging your zippo in the first place.

1 reply

I have also heard don't use flints from disposable lighters in a Zippo. I have one Zippo that I've had 30 years and still haven't had to send it for repairs. But I don't flick them open or rub the wheel on my pants leg to show off. A pack of Zippo flints is about $1.50 at my local smoke shop. I don't use Ronson flints or fluid always seemed to have better results with Zippo brand.


Excellent ! Am still going to look for how to make one though...........


Excellent ! Am still going to look for how to make one though...........

I discovered this today... I was expecting different sizing but it fit perfectly, now all the zippos in my collection work :D

might as well give it a try... whats the worst that can happen? :)

thanks for the idea -- cheers

me too... they are amazing

Please actually read this instructable. I quote from step one: "people routinely leave 'dead' lighters at bars and in trash cans all over the world. if you can find one or get a friend to give you one, you have all you need to complete this instructable."

You are obtaining something you didn't pay for. Sounds pretty free to me. Take care.


Haha, this was exactly what I did when my zippo stopped working. Just a week ago. Found this instruct today tho.

"Pressbyrån"-lighters here in sweden (like $1 each, you can buy them at every station or major bus nexus over here) is perfect for the reckord. Works like a charm

I do not reccomend this unless you want to clean your lighter after awhile i collect lighters and when people put soft flints in there lighter it clogs up the wheel and stuffs dust in the flint chamber and has to be cleaned. zippo flints are only a dollar for 3 anyways!

1 reply

Well, I've never had an issue, but maybe I'm the only one. I'm not a collector, but I've been using zippos for twenty years or so with no problems from any random flint I may be able to procure. If you are a collector, I'm sure you want everything to be as clean as possible and I can respect that. However, I have not had any problems with lighting, sticking, corrosion, etc. with any lighter I've put non-zippo flints into. I would welcome a study or web page or whatever that talks about this. I had no idea some flints were "softer" than any other and have not seen anything anecdotal to suggest otherwise. Please let me know.

2 pts to ponder-cut the flint to length or it WILL bind when closing the screw,-and don't try the "baby" BICs,they bind in the flint tube.To trim to length,I use Leatherman wire cutter and cup tool and flint in hand to prevent moon shots....sumtimes ya get a loooong flint and can use both cuts.

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Not all flints out of these lighters are the same length. Some are too long and do bind the flint wheel, but not all. I've had some come right out and be fine. Also, the flints I've gotten from the mini bics (what I used in the instructable) are the same size (diameter) as the larger bics. I've talked to others in different parts of the world that have had different experiences, but this has been mine. But I have had to snap them in half before as well and I totally agree with your technique to keep pieces from flying everywhere. Not to mention the liftoff if you're not careful when removing them from the disposable lighter.

the only flints you should use are zippo flints and swan exta long ones cos others are too soft

3 replies

Not true. I've been using others for years with no problems.

really? ive heard allot of people saying they are too soft

Never had any issues. I usually get the ones from bic lighters because they make them way longer than they need to support the life of the butane. The only problem I've had is that sometimes they are too long. Too much pressure against the strike wheel and it doesn't want to turn smoothly. What kind of problems do you have with them being too soft? Do they gum up the works, so to speak?