Pipes and Lighters Blog

The Story of Zippo Lighters

There isn’t really a necessity for someone to be a smoker to have heard of Zippo lighters. The company was founded by George G. Blaisdell in Pennsylvania during the Great Depression, and the brand has remained a significant emblem of the lighter world ever since. The inspiration for the Zippo lighter came from a far more complex version that could be found in Australia. Blaisdell took the complex design and simplified it to create a lighter that utilised the chimney shape and protected the flame from the wind. Interestingly, the name “Zippo” came from Blaisdell’s love for the word “zipper”, and simply obtained a way to include it in the product name.

The specifications of Zippo lighters are another reason why the brand has remained as popular as it is. Their durability is a key feature and a popular selling point. Manufacturers have always provided a lifetime guarantee for the lighters as their dependability and strength is unparalleled. An example of this dependability is clear from their use during the Second World War with the branded lighters being distributed to soldiers, stopping all general production and solely supplying the military troops with lighters. Despite the fact their consumer market does not completely revolve around supplying troops on the front line these days, it is fantastic to definitively know they will withstand some serious usage.

The manufacturing for military use did, in fact, influence the design of Zippo lighters, with the more simplified colour schemes being ideal for mass production. After the war finished and as time moved on there were far more intricate designs featured on the cases. Kendall Refining Company are known to have ordered the first batch of Zippo lighters featuring a company logo on the side. Now companies of varying size order Zippo lighters with their company logo featured on the side. Today we see Zippo’s not just with logos on the side, but in a wide range of shapes, sizes and colours.

Despite their robust nature it is still incredibly important to take care of your Zippo lighter, to ensure their long lifespan. Specialist tobacconists are able to supply their customers with all the accessories you could ever need to keep your Zippo lighter in full working order. Various other accessories are available such as lighter pouches, fluid, wicks and flints.


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