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Zippo case, made from an altoids small tin Answered

    Hey I have this Altoids case, it's one of the smalls. I was thinking of what to do with it, then I looked at my zippo. I hate the case my zippo is in right now, it's old and worn and for some reason makes your hands stink if you hold it at all. So my zippo fits almost perfectly in the smalls case. But I was wondering if anyone has any good ideas of how to make it where you can light it when its in the case. I was just thinking about cutting some holes in the top with my dremel.  But I would maybe like to try to keep the original flip top aspect of the case. So some how make it flip open like a zippo maybe. Anyone think this sounds interesting. And know where I might be able to get the mechanism. Or is there a way to take it off my old case.

    Thanks in advance, maybe I could make an instructable on how I do it.

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RavingMadStudios (author)2010-04-18

Like Kiteman says, you can secure the Zippo case into the tin with epoxy. You should still be able to slip the fuel reservoir/striker/wick out of the case to refuel and replace flints as long as you don't accidentally epoxy the reservoir piece into the case.
If you really don't want to use epoxy, you could probably get away with double-sided tape, but the epoxy (I'd recommend JB Weld) would be the best choice.

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user

No, I don't want to use the old case. I want to turn the Altoids smalls case, into a case. I didn't want to be lazy and just glue it in. If you know what I mean, I actually want to try to find a small hinge like you would find on a zippo case, and put it on the tin.

    So in short, I want to turn the tin into a case without using the old case.

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user

I'd recommend jewelry repair shops for such a hinge. The real trick to not using the old case is going to be keeping the fluid in. Putty epoxy might work to fill the Altoids box and make a replacement base. If you wrap the Zippo in plastic wrap, you should be able to press it into the epoxy, and then remove it after the epoxy has cured, leaving a cavity much like the base of the original case.

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    Oh I see what you mean. Doesn't the cotton hold in the fuel though? Also do you think I could solder the 2 original pieces together? Or maybe I might keep it where it still open idk it might be cool. Either way.

    Btw I have never used solder before, I know its for electronics but I didn't know if I could use it like a mini welder.

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user

The cotton does hold most of the fuel, but without a snug-fitting base, you will get some leakage and also the fuel will evaporate really fast.
You mean solder the lid & the base together? Don't see why not,  Might be more fun to attach a hasp and use it as a pill box or tiny wallet or something.

Solder is also used in jewelry, you just have to get the right kind. I'm guessing for this kind of work, you're going to want a "hard" silver solder applied using a mini-torch and acid flux. Do doublecheck me on that, though. Soldering is not my strong suit. Unfortunately, this is not the easiest kind of solder to learn on, so you might want to do some practice pieces before tackling the Zippo.

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user

                I see what you mean. I was also thinking about putting some cotton on the inside. Because it doesn’t fit as snug as I would want, also it would help with the heat. I didn’t really understand the hasp part. Also had to look them up because I had no clue what they were. Anyway did you mean to do something like leave the side having the ability to open and close still to stick money in there or something?

 

                I might just leave it where it could open and close the original way, along with the new way. That would also help with the solder issue. Because I really don’t have the skill for soldering or the money, I was thinking if I didn’t have to use anything special my brother has a regular soldering thing. Anyway thanks, maybe you could explain what you were saying about the hasp?

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user

I was thinking about using one of those itty-bitty hasps to allow the case and the lid to latch closed, but still be openable using the hinge that's already there. Just like a little treasure box, only more Zippo-y.

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user

    So. What would the purpose be? Would I have to leave a little room by the side of the zippo or something? I still don't get it sorry.

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user

No purpose other than to find a use for the old Zippo case that would otherwise go to waste. Adding the hasp would just keep the lid closed so that stuff doesn't fall out.
Come to think of it, the old case could be a really cool housing for an LED flashlight. There may even be an Instructable for that already, Sounds familiar, anyway.

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    Oh I thought you were talking about the new case I was trying to make... Sorry. Anyway I really don't want to use the old case, for some reason the metal is all messed up and makes your hands stink bad if you touch it at all.

    Thought you meant for the new case. Hmm Could even do it for the new case like from what I thought you were trying to say.

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user

Gotcha. For the Altoids case, you shouldn't need a hasp unless the lid won't stay closed otherwise. Soldering around the edge of the existing lid and cutting it so that it opens the new "sideways" way instead should work.
If you're planning to use the existing lid-detent arm (the thing that holds the lid open or closed) from the Zippo guts, you will need to add a tab inside the new lid to engage the arm (refer to the old lid for placement) or it won't keep the lid down.

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    Yeah I see what you mean. Also the probably is the only thing I'm gonna have to put more effort into is the tab for the arm.

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peaceamidst (author)2010-04-17

I wouldn't want to glue it in cause you need to refuel every now and then.

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Kiteman (author)2010-04-17

You could saw / dremel around the Altoids tin along a line level with the point your Zipo opens, then epoxy the Zippo into the Altoids tin.


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