Friday, May 17, 2019

The Awesome IMCO lighter

Everyone is familiar with the beloved Zippo lighter but drop the name “IMCO” and you’ll get a confused face and a “whut??”

It’s a shame though. IMCO started as a company in Austria in 1907 and made the first “trench” lighters in 1918. These were the first true commercial lighters ever made.

IMCO closed as a company in Austria in 2012. They sold the rights to a company in China and the famous lighter is still available at a fraction of the price. If you want the original Made in Austria ones though you’ll have to buy on the used market, with prices already pretty high.
Classics Imco Triplex Super 6700 Stainless Steel Oil Petrol Cigarette Lighter (Type 1)
IMCO lighters have several advantages.
1)They are sturdy as hell. People think Zippos are tough. They are ok but the lid hinge is a natural weak spot and the large metal surfaces can be bent. On the other hand the IMCO is made of folder or rounded metal which gives it much greater structural integrity and takes abuse better.

2)Opens and Lights on one flick of the finger. Its simply faster as it opens and strikes the flint at the same time unlike the two separate operations needed for the Zippo.
3)More reliable ignition. In a Zippo you move the wheel directly with your finger. On the IMCO you have greater leverage and sparks are clearly larger. This causes the IMCO to go through flints a bit faster, but then again it requires less attempts to lit.
4)Easy to replace flints. Just open the compartment and drop it there. Close it and you’re done.
5)Storage compartment for a spare flint.

6)Can be used as a candle by removing the fuel tank. This can be very handy at times and extends the utility off the lighter to be used as a candle or small torch.
7)Much better fuel run. A Zippo dries up in about a week or two while an IMCO with its smaller wick lid can keep running for about a month.

8)Adjustable flame. On Super Triplex models, the wind shield allows you to adjust the flame.
If you like traditional lighters, give the IMCO a try.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

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