Oddly enough, all Zippo lighters are made in one place - in a factory in Bradford, Pennsylvania, by 620 employees of the Zippo Manufacturing Company. In the same place where the first Zippo was released 80 years ago.
Zippo Manufacturing Company was and remains a private, moreover, a family business. Its sole owner today is George Duke, grandson of Zippo founder George Blaisdell. Offers from various corporations for the full or partial buyout of the business come to him about once a week, but are never considered.
All Zippo products come with a lifetime warranty. Whatever happens to the lighter, you can send it (at your own expense) to Bradford and get it back (free), either repaired or new. The only part of the lighter that is not covered by the warranty is the external finish and drawings on the case, which on many models can wear out and wear off over time, as well as patch inserts and emblems, but they can also be replaced free of charge if there are similar ones in the service center. ...
Despite the global decline in the number of smokers, sales of lighters are not falling even in the United States. Many people buy lighters just to have their own Zippo.
The Zippo factory produces 60, 000 lighters a day. By 2007, about 450 million Zippo lighters had been produced.
The first lighter was produced by George Blaisdell in 1932. He borrowed the idea of a windproof gasoline lighter from an Austrian firm, adding only a hinged lid instead of a removable one so that the lighter could be opened with one hand. At first George wanted to call his invention "Zipper" - simply because he liked the sound of the word, but this name was already patented, and he settled on "Zippo"
All US warships have their own Zippo series of lighters, developed by the factory individually for each ship.
All Zippo lighters have a distinctive stamp on the bottom with the Zippo logo from the very first day of production, early models have a patent number on the stamp.
A typical Zippo lighter model contains 22 parts and requires 108 sequential steps to assemble.
When opening and closing the lid, a characteristic ringing click (English Zippo Click) is heard, which is patented by Zippo in itself and is a trademark of Zippo lighters.
The rhythmic clicking that goes through the entire famous song It’s Probably Me is nothing more than the sound of a Zippo lighter (close the lid, open the lid, strike a spark, close, open). Legend has it that Eric Clapton, who was commissioned with Sting to write a song for the movie Lethal Weapon 3, could not think of a melody and sadly snapped his beloved Zippo. However, in the hands of the great musician, even the lighter turned into an instrument: the clicks were directed at a musical thought and were used in the recording itself.
During World War II, the company had to make two significant changes - in production and sales policy. Since copper and zinc (components of brass) were in demand in the defense industry, lighters began to be made of steel, and so that they did not rust, they were painted with black paint. Black Zippos, unlike shiny ones, were also more useful at the front in terms of camouflage. And because of the huge demand from the military, lighters were no longer sold to civilians. Tough and reliable, the Zippo has become as symbolic of the American army as the jeep or Lucky Strike cigarettes. Each soldier had his own Zippo.
All serial Zippo lighters are made of brass, which means they are naturally yellow. The steel color is obtained during the galvanizing process.
Zippo lighters were made of gold and platinum, covered with crystals and diamonds. The most unusual of these was sold to an anonymous buyer in 2006 for $ 6.81 million. A pistol with six 6mm rounds was hidden in the miniature body of the lighter.
There are at least five documented cases (in war and peacetime) when a Zippo lighter in a pocket took the hit of a bullet and saved the owner's life. The first of these lucky ones is Private Klinger, who in 1944 in Germany after a battle found in his pants pocket not only his favorite lighter, but also a bullet flattened against it. And unlike the bullet, the lighter continued to work!
On the first models of classic American jeans, a small rectangular side pocket was made especially for Zippo. Subsequently, this pocket became just a design element.
There are 15 official Zippo collectors' clubs in the world: five in the USA, two in the UK, one each in Austria, Canada, Denmark, Italy, Japan, Holland, Switzerland and South Africa. And the price of collectible Zippo models reaches tens of thousands of dollars.
Since 2005, they began to produce gas-powered Zippo Blu lighters.
In all Bruce Willis films where his character uses a lighter, this lighter is Zippo. Without exception.