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Zippos - Keeping America Lighted for Decades

By Bradlley Mckoy

Zippos are not just lighters. Over the years, they have become iconic symbols of a breed of men and a lifestyle. Rolling Stone Keith Richards keeps a Zippo close to his guitar. In countless Hollywood movies, heroes and villains alike use Zippos to light cigarettes, burn ropes and documents, ignite fuses, or find their way through pitch-black caves and moss-covered caves.

Undoubtedly, Zippos are the perfect executive gifts for officemates who lead hip, active lifestyles. They do not even have to be smokers to appreciate Zippos because these lighters are handy not just for lighting cigarettes, they serve utilitarian functions as well.

Surviving Pieces of History
The good thing about Zippos is that they are not just lighters, they are a slice of the American way of life. During the Vietnam war, nearly 200,000 Zippos saw active use. They were carried everywhere by American servicemen. In fact, a story that has been made popular with each retelling narrates how a Zippo lighter a soldier had stashed inside his shirt pocket saved his life by stopping a bullet from piercing his chest.

Decline and Revival
However, The Zippo's golden years as American soldiers' lighter of choice eventually ended. The generation that had brought Zippos with them to combat or reconnoitering missions was slowly being replaced by a generation that largely knew nothing of Zippos or fighting in the rice paddies of Vietnam. Additionally, persistent government warning on the dangers of smoking have weaned countless people off Zippos.

For any other product, it would have been the end. Not Zippos. It resurfaced into American culture not so much because people started smoking again, but because it is highly useful. Smokers are not Zippos' largest customers. How could they be when the average smoker only needs to buy one or two Zippos during his lifetime? Zippos, after all, carry a lifetime guarantee, and its main office restores lighters, no matter how old or badly damaged.

Lifetime Promise of Excellence
That the Zippo main office offers lifetime guarantee is still another reason Zippos would make excellent gifts for co-workers. Not only are Zippos useful, they are highly durable, too. Moreover, if a Zippo falls apart no matter how old or for what reason, the company may either replace or repair the lighter for free. Such customer-friendly service is peerless, and it is also one of the factors that make Zippos very popular.

At present, the Zippo main office still receives its fill of old lighters sent in for restoration. These lighters are so vintage some of them have been fished out of the stomachs of fishes or have been punctured by bullets. These Zippos are highly priced by Zippo collectors who buy these vintage lighters and give them away as gifts. You could do the same, too. Who says the Zippos you give to officemates have to be brand new? If your officemates are history buffs or are amateur collectors, you could give them Zippos from the 1940s and the 1950s.

If you read any Zippo instructional material, you will discover that Zippos are refillable, metallic lighters. Unlike other lighters, they are so dependable they consistently light up even in windy weather.

It is little wonder, then, that Zippos were able to survive the test of time. They're useful, affordable, reliable, and sleek. At times, these are all that's needed in the making of a legend.

Looking for Zippos? Visit and find different type of Zippo lighters like engraved zippo lighters today.

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