Which Are Better? Matches or Butane Lighters?

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I know that matches are very useful in starting fires; however, they must be kept dry. Butane lighters can withstand bad weather conditions which would cause matches to falter. A box of 250 striking matches costs about 50 cents. At Dollar General stores one can purchase three butane lighters (made in Thailand) for $1.00. Butane lighters can provide THOUSANDS of lights. When rains dampen storage materials, butane lighters seem to be more moisture proof. With the current pricing system preY2K, doesn't it make sense to purchase these cheap butane lighters instead of the wooden types?

Although I live in northwestern Ohio, I have not seen any local store which carries the Ohio Blue Tip matches, those which can be struck upon any surface. Will any reader please supply a link to the manufacturer so that I and others may purchase them?



-- dinosaur (dinosaur@williams-net.com), February 05, 1999



-- x (x@x.com), February 05, 1999.

Buy both! You can find them at hardware stores, drug stores, sporting goods stores, WalMart, K-Mart, etc. Diamond Matches makes strike on contact matches. You can also purchase waterproof matches. If your concerned about moisture getting to the matches, seal them in zip-loc bags, or in well sealed canning jars. If you have that much moisture around, consider purchasing a dehumidifier.

-- JM02 (JM02@007.com), February 05, 1999.

How many fires do you expect to start anyway? We got a half dozen 12" butanes, a few dozen disposables, a case of 10" matches, and a case of strike-anywheres. Total cost: Maybe $40.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), February 05, 1999.

--x: Last I heard, Diamond matches was highly pissed at Gary North for advertising their matches! It caused a big frenzy because people were calling and asking for the matches and Diamond Matches wasn't prepared for such an overwhelming response! If I'm not mistaken, I even think Diamond Matches asked Gary North to quit advertising their matches!

-- zippo (zippo@fire.com), February 05, 1999.

The lighters should be a great barter item, too. I have bought 10 of them along with two small cans of butane to refill them. Total cost $16.

-- Bill (y2khippo@yahoo.com), February 05, 1999.

dinosaur, Don't be like the people in stores with their kids and cart blocking the isle looking at coupons to see which item will save them the most money. Consider your hourly wage and then buy both,also don't forget the "Fire Starter Logs" most stores have them even Walgreens and Wal-Mart these are great to start fires with damp logs. Furie...

-- Furie (furieart@dnet.net), February 05, 1999.

A company which gets upset because of a big uptick in demand sounds like the kind of company that needs a Y2K reality lesson.

-- Vic (Roadrunner@compliant.com), February 06, 1999.

Get matches - plenty of them, and forget about the lighters. The butane will leak out over time, flints may break, mechanism may fail. Storing matches is easy - just place them in a zip-loc bag, then in another zip-loc bag. Tape the seam shut and you can leave them outside, or underground for that matter.

Always choose the non-mechanical over the mechanical when considering survival goods. You people, sheesh...

-- Why2K? (who@knows.com), February 06, 1999.

Thanx for the responses.

I've mailed a check to the Diamond Match Company, and if they ship me a case, then I'll reorder. If butane lighters of inferior quality leak, then I plan to use the butane lighters first and save the low tech matches for last. This week I went to my local Wal*Mart and found all of the paperbook matches gone; a Wal*Martian told me there wouldn't be a new shipment until next week. I don't think this is evidence of Y2K panic, only a need for those starting wood fires in their fireplaces. After all, it IS Winter...

I'm planning on needing THOUSANDS of lights for a wood burning stove. People may fret and worry about the Y2K glitch, but I'm preparing for something far worse: the next Great Depression, when God shall send punishment upon this haughty, spoiled, sinful nation . I'm not joking. I think our economy will take a nose-dive so vast that many people will die from dire extremes.

I'd also like to state that Ed Yourdon's bulletin board is fantastic! Ask an honest question and get honest answers! Wunderbar!


-- dinosaur (dinosaur@williams-net.com), February 06, 1999.

If you belong to Sams Club you can buy a pack of 50 lighters for $10. That works out to 20 cents each, tough to beat. Enough fire power to start at least 50,000 fires, which is three fires a day for 45 years.

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), February 06, 1999.

I prefer flamethrowers. More reliable, AND you can use them on intruders!

-- Leo (lchampion@ozemail.com.au), February 06, 1999.


We have 10 bic lighters. We have 100s of books of matches. We have two flints bought in a camping store.

-- Sub-Mit (lurking@ofcourse.com), February 07, 1999.


We've been heating exclusively with a wood burning stove all winter. It did go out once when I had to leave town for a weekend. So I've had to light it twice so far this year. Used the same lighter both times!

Nonetheless, we sure have lots of matches and lighters just in case.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), February 07, 1999.

Myriads of Matches!

The new shipment of Diamond match books arrived at Wal*Mart, so I bought 16 boxes of 50 books: sixteen thousand matches. OK, maybe that's overkill, but I'm also buying for family and the neighborhood.

The local K-Mart has ABSOLUTELY NO MATCHES to sell, only butane lighters. Does this indicate they don't have a clue?

-- dinosaur (dinosaur@williams-net.com), February 07, 1999.

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