Some people can start a fire with nothing but a flint, a knife, and whatever they can find in the wild. Others prefer starting a fire to be the least of their problems when camping. That latter group is the type to bring lighters, matches, or the Zippo Emergency Fire Kit along.
Designed to make starting fires at camp an easy affair, the kit is, basically, a lighter-sized tube with everything you need to quickly get a campfire going. That way, your entire fire-making kit is housed inside a tiny rig no bigger than a disposable lighter, ensuring you’re ready to get a fire going with a tool you can keep in literally any pocket.
The Zippo Emergency Fire Kit consists of a tube with a flint wheel on top and a small supply of tinder stashed right inside the tube’s chamber. Screw off the flint wheel on top to get access to the tinder, five of which can fit inside the integrated storage, while an O-ring on the cap creates a waterproof seal to ensure the tinder stays dry the entire time it’s inside. It uses paraffin wax-coated cotton tinder, by the way, which is designed to easily ignite with just a spark from the flint wheel, all while maintaining a flame for up to five minutes straight, so you can take your time getting a proper fire started.
To use the kit, simply put one of the tinder on a stick (it’s shaped like tiny tissue paper), bring it close to the flint wheel, and spin that thing until the tinder lights up. According to the outfit, the integrated flint should provide up to 1,700 sparks, so you should get a good load of mileage from this. Once it’s no longer sparking, you can simply swap in one of Zippo’s replacement flints, which should be a whole lot cheaper than replacing the entire kit.
The Zippo Emergency Fire Kit is fully water-resistant, which means the flint wheel will reliably create sparks even in the middle of rainy weather, although you may want to move somewhere covered because the tinder might not catch fire if you stay under the rain. Aside from keeping water out of the storage chamber, the tube is also designed to float in water, so you won’t have to fish the darn thing out if you accidentally drop the darn thing in a river or lake.
Construction is ABS plastic for the tube, with an integrated textured grip that makes it easy to secure in hand even when wet. A removable cap protects the flint wheel when it’s not in use, while providing a lanyard hole that you can use to secure it on a lanyard, a clip, or a strap on your backpack. Each kit, by the way, only comes with five pieces of paraffin tinder, although we imagine Zippo sells those separately, too. And just in case they don’t, they really should.
The Zippo Emergency Fire Kit is available now.