today ill show you how to make a permanent wick for your flat wick or central draft oil lamp.
it is a bit costly but it is the kind of wick it is set up and forget, with no fear to let it burn,and no trimming.
i know there is fiber glass wicks for those lamps but they are hard to find and tend to clog or fray easily.
the wick we will build is mostly carbon felt .
it is easier to get and it will fit any size of lamps or lantern you have.
flat or central draft style.
note: you can clean the wick by dry burning it!
Step 1: Stuff You'll Need.
you'll need mostly 2 component:
some carbon felt, carbon felt is very heat resistant and should not be able to burn as a lamp wick.
so the wick will be set up and forget kind of deal. no more fear of letting the lamp run out and burn the wick!
you ll find carbon felt under various names and brand,soldering blanket,soldering flame protection,or just carbon felt pad.you know the kind used in fancy feast alcohol stoves,by the way this tutorial has been inspired by those stoves.
the one i use is from ebay, size doesn't matter because it will be cut to the wick size you need . but the one i used was 3mm thick (1/8").
the second component is some multi-strand copper or aluminum wire,this has been inspired by zippo wicks . it will be be mostly to make the wick more rigid and solid,so it slide more easily and don't fray or get destroyed by the burner mechanism, it add too some thermal conduction in the wick if you plan to use thicker oil like vegetable oil so it wicks more easily,it is not needed if you plan to use your wick inside a central draft lamp. mostly because central draft lamp have a whole sliding assembly to move the wick up and down.
Step 2: Cutting the Carbon Felt to Wick Size
this step is easy, just take the wick of your lamp and cut with some scissors the carbon felt at around the same size.on my side i just eyeballed it.i will not put measurement just because it can be different on other oil lamps.
the only thing is,my carbon felt is 3mm thick and the original wick was around 1mm thick.
so i just split the felt thickness in half with my fingers,the felt goes apart very easily , it is not hard to split it at all.
Step 3: Adding the Copper Strands.
some multi-strand copper or aluminum wire will be added . this step is not needed if you plan to use your wick inside a central draft lamp because central draft lamp have a whole sliding assembly to move the wick up and down instead of just grabbing it.
it is really easy you just have to stitch metal strands inside the carbon felt in random pattern, no needle needed the felt is very soft.
i was kinda lazy so i just done it on the half of the wick.
it is just to make the wick more rigid and solid,so it slide more easily and don't fray or get destroyed by the burner mechanism and the burner mechanism will have something to grad ,if you do it all along the wick, it add some thermal conduction if you plan to use thicker oil like vegetable oil so it wicks more easily,
Step 4: Final Result
and here the final result .
my hurricane lantern ready to use at any times with
some citronella lamp oil.
i think it burn a bit clear ,i guess it is from the citronella oil, it has tons of ethanol and butanol inside.
in the end it works very well!