I think I have a counterfeit Zippo.

I own a cheat $10 Zippo just because I felt like buying one. But I have a feeling it is counterfeit. I can’t find my Zippo on any websites. Also, I looked on some websites about counterfeit Zippos. It showed the bottom stamp with the Zippo logo on it. Mine looked more like the one that was counterfeit. Also, the stamp is like, less pressed down on the left side then the rightside. You can’t read the “Bradford” on the bottom. My zippo is black and im not sure if it is plastic or metal body because I never checked, and I don’t want to right now because it will start to smell like gas in here. On the counterfeit zippo they show, it has XI on the code on the left side of the Zippo logo. Mine has XIII. I am just not sure.

Yours is fake. Bummer. :wink:

First of all, you bought it for $10, were you expecting quality?

AFAIK, Zippos are coded with roman numerals in relation to their quality, the XIII (13) on your $10 “Zippo” is clearly fraudulent. That’s on the extereme high end of the number scale. The fact that you can’t tell what material it’s made of is not encouraging. Go to a good cigar store for a hands-on lesson in good Zippo mythology.

BTW, it’s not gas, it’s naptha. Works as a highly flammable nail polish remover also.

In general, you get what you pay for. Any lighter that you get in the states that says “Zippo” on it, and is less than $50 US, is not worth bragging about. Let alone quality.

Another more learned person is sure to come by and offer you more specific advice, but the short answer is that your’s is fake/not worth much.

My apologies if that sounded harsh, but a genuine quality product usually costs about what it’s worth. I hope the lighter works well at least. :slight_smile:

Hey BB where’d ya get the lighter first. You buy it in a legitimate store or off the street.
Was it new or used? Garage sale what? City?
I’ve got several Zippos dating back as far as 30+ years. The newer ones (NOT FAKE) are avilable in some pretty lightweight and inferior quality. They run about $25 bucks in places like Wal-Mart. The tobacco store that I frequent has a large selection of lighters. The cheapest Zippos they carry run about $30.
The lighter shouldn’t have an overpowering odor unless it was overfilled and even then it should evaporate pretty quick. You filled it yourself right?
If it’s new it should have a solid cotton packing on top of the loose filler in which the fluid is retained. If you’re having a problem with the lighter’s odor. When you fill it with fluid. First make sure you get a good brand of fluid. There are a few out there that are just bad. Buy Zippo brand or Ronson. They are both Naptha based and evaporate quickly, burn clean and not extremely flammable. Meaning you won’t burn yousel ftoo bad if you fuck up. A buddy of mine had some fuel once I swear it must’ve been deisel, nasty smelling shit.
Anyway, pull the top pack out and fill it about halfway and tightly put the pack back in. A good lighter you can fill through the hols in the wad but it sounds like you may have some leakage. Check the wick. It could be loose. Keep the wick trimmed below the top of the wind guard. Keeping the ends from fraying too bad. I use a pair of nail clippers.
I’ve got one el cheapo Zippo that is marked similar to the one you describe. They’re sold by Zippo allright but not quite a cadillac if you know what I mean. I’ve got a couple or three really good old Zips that are still in good shape. Actually better than some of my newer ones.
I hate a damned disposable lighter and I’ve had sveral other brand name lighters as well. A GOOD Zippo is damned hard to beat. I had one,(and still do) anyway I used to take it fishing with me. I’d be running up the river full speed and lighting up a stogey while driving with one hand. Nothing but lighter in the wind and no windsheild on the boat. That’s a good lighter. Lit every time and only went out when you closed it and never leaked fluid in your pocket. Damn that CAN hurt. :eek: Naptha soaked watch pocket burning a hole in your crotch.

Allright B/B I just checked a few of my lighters and all of the XIII 's that I have are double rolled bottom lighter with a heavy engraved numerals on them. The X’s are on a single roll bottom and stamped. The XV’s and higher are unmistable.
IIRC the 13’s one of them I know was about 30bucks when it was givento me in 1994. The 15 was like 60bucks ten years ago. and the tens were in the 25-35 dollar range. Several, I don’t know what they’d be worth then or now. I’ve never bought myself one. I’ve bought them for other folks and likewise. they make nice gifts for folks who can appreciate a good lighter.
My point is I guess you either got a heck of a deal or you just got what you paid for. Either way it’s better/n a BIC. :slight_smile:

BTW I have some unique lighters NOT Zippos. None are worth a shit though, despite their $$ value.

The Roman numerals aren’t a measure of quality, they simply tell what year the lighter is from.


Yours is from 1997. Assuming it’s genuine, of course. And I have seen Zippos for as cheap as $10 or $15, but that was about 10 years ago; I haven’t looked at the prices lately.

Not to add fuel to the fire (pun intended) but after looking at my Nat Sherman Zippo, all I found was a J on the left of the trademark, and 02 on the right. Since I was roman numeral-less, I thought I’d check out some site to see what’s up.

Apparently the roman numerals have nothing to do with quality, but are a production code dating the lighter.

Cite 1

And cite 2

How to read the bottom of your Zippo.

Aw damn. Looks like I was beat to it.

Judging by the links posted later, my “Zippo” is authentic, produced October 2002 (which squares with me tracking it down early 2003). Whether or not the fact I paid maybe $20 for it means it’s a “real Zippo” it’s always a reliable strike, looks good (plain metal shell without any design or logo, which is why it took forever for me to find it), and is definitely an eyecatcher among a bar or club scene stocked with cheapo Bics. See a girl go for her pack, get ready for the flick, and that unmistakable sound of the cap flying open is right there. Is it “authentic”? Does it matter?

good links…never claimed to be an expert on Zippos. I’ve got several and according to the markings and when I got them and the prices I quoted it seems that everything is about right. I’ve got a few older ones with only dots or hash marks too. Now y’all have got me more interested in the collecting aspect. Before they were just good lighters. Thanks

I have a custom made Zippo. Center line on bottom is “ZIPPO” lines above and below in smaller hard to read type. Engraved with my name on flip top, and “GREEN CROSS FOR SAFETY” logo on bottom panel. One of several award selections for plant having achieved ‘XXXXX’ number of man-hours without a lost time accident.

Thanks for the link, Casey1505. According to that page, the Westinghouse Transformers lighter formerly belonging to my Dad is circa 1933. I have to guess it was a gift to him, as he was only 12 in '33 and didn’t enter the electrical industry as an engineer until '47.

If you have a Canadian Zippo, here’s the link to check:

Zippo Canada

Mine’s an XV