Lighting: Aladdin Oil Lamps : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread


What are you going to do if the lights go out on New Year's Eve? Or any other time? Grab the flash light and light up some candles? That's fine for the usual black out that lasts a couple of hours , but what if the power doesn't come back on for 3 days? 3 weeks? Longer? You'll want to have more light than a couple of long life candles. Consider getting an Aladdin Oil Lamp, a kerosene oil lamp that offers several advantages over pressurized lanterns, other oil lamps, and candles.

Long life candles can last up to 100 hours or more. They are easy to store in a drawer, they are cheaper than lamps or lanterns, and they usually don't give off fumes (which may bother those with sensitive allergic reactions). However, a candle doesn't put out much light (one foot of candle power) and can be more of a fire hazard as they are easily ignored. The light of an Alladin is equal to 31 candles or one 60 watt bulb. It is also less likely to be ignored when it's bedtime.

There are more than a couple oil lamps on the market and many of them are much easier to get than an Aladdin (due to Aladdin's popularity and the recent sale of the lamp production department of the company). The railroad style oil lamps, Dietz oil lamps, and other "good" oil lamps produce from 1.5 to 3 feet of candle power. Why is the Aladdin brighter (often more than six times brighter) than these oil lamps? Aladdin uses a circular wick whose blue flame superheats a mantle.

Pressurized kerosene lanterns such as the Coleman or Petromax can get quite bright and heat up a room. They can produce up to 140 feet of candle power or more. But they require considerable ventilation due to the kerosene smell and fumes. Some are difficult to pressurize, but they are all fuel guzzlers. On gallon of high grade lamp oil will keep your Aladdin burning for 40 hours of light suitable to read a book by. With a shade, they're more attractive and Aladdins can be electrified.

I have a Petromax pressurized multi-fuel lantern and it is not only handsome, it is bright. It's a fine heater and an great outdoor light. But I also have several Alladins (new and old) for indoor light, decoration, and enjoyment. Collecting Aladdin oil lamps has become a hobby for me. Since the early 1900's, Aladdin has produced quite a few models that are not only attractive, but that are a part of American hstory. Some antique Aladdin lamps fetch up to thousands of dollars.

Sincerely, Stan Faryna

-- Stan Faryna (, May 09, 1999



I agree with you. Aladdin's can be beautiful and functional pieces of equipment. I have a couple. But I have chosen a different route. During extended outages when services are limited, I just don't want anymore fire than necessary in my house. I have chosen a different approach. I have fluor. lanterns and the facilities to recharge batteries. When I grew up [during WWII] we solved the problem by sleeping when it was dark and limiting light use to the rare times we needed to see something after dark. Even though I live in a very rural area, I haven't been able to test this approach. The utilities are so reliable. It's been more than a decade since the power has been off more than a few hours. Good Luck!

-- Z1X4Y7 (, May 09, 1999.

Stan, Aladdin is an exceptional lamp. One thing to keep in mind is that they were also used to heat small rooms in the past. During hot summer months the heat produced would probably be unaceptable in many areas.


-- Ray (, May 09, 1999.


Aladdin oil lamps are hard to get these days. This is due mostly to the recent sale of the lamp division of Alladin Industries. Production is down right now and Y2K concerns have caused a rush to buy Aladdins (new and old). Many traditional Aladdin distributors (retailers) don't have Aladdins on the shelf, but they can order them for you if you're willing to wait one month or more. Prices have also increased on the new Aladdins and may increase again. Some are selling them for a lot.

The traditional Aladdin distributors may offer you the best prices. This includes Lehman's Genral Store (Kidron, Ohio), Southern Lamp and Supply (Sylva, North Carolina), Coleman Camping Center (Lancaster, Pennsylvania), and Nidalla Lamps (Ontario, Canada) among others. These stores all have web sites too. These stores will also have the spare parts that you'll want to get such as extra mantles and chimneys, but the popularity of these stores may very well mean long delivery times.

The B2301 Brass Table Lamp (without shade)is the most popular Y2K oil lamp of the Aladdins. With the chimney, it is 23.5 inches high and weighs about 4 pounds when empty. Lehman's is now selling this lamp for $US 129.00 and that seems to be about the best price you can get for this lamp. I have seen them selling on Ebay for about $US 200.00. In February, Lehman's was selling the B2310 for $US 95.00. I don't know if the increase is driven by the manufacturer's costs or demand.

If you look hard enough, you may be able to buy an Aladdin model B2301 brass oil lamp (without a shade) on Ebay or an oil lamp auction web site and have it in your hands in less than a week. Most likely, you will have to pay quite a bit for the luxury of knowing you got yours. If you can afford this, that's fine. But don't go rushing to Ebay and buy an older Aladdin lamp. The antiques may not be suited for your rough and ready emergency needs. I will discuss this in another post.

There are also other models of Aladdins as well as the brass lamp that comes prepackaged with various shades. These may be on the shelf, but the ones with shades are a bit pricier: add $US 50.00 to $US 80.00 for the brass lamps with a shade. The most affordable Aladdin lamp is the Genie II. It is a glass lamp; it is 20 inches high and is selling for $US 69.95. The workhorse Aladdin is the 20 inch high aluminum oil lamp and it is retailing for $US 94.95. You'll also have to wait for these.

-- Stan Faryna (, May 09, 1999.

Stan, Local Wal Mart and Target has a lot of them on the shelf in fact, so many they will be happy to sell you some.

-- Rickjohn (, May 09, 1999.

Rickjohn...? Seems like a little sarcasm in your post... Guess you think we aint too smart payin all that money fer them lites that you can get at WallyWorld fer free. Trouble is, there is cheep and there is gud. Aladdin is gud... "Aladdin Oil Lamp, a kerosene oil lamp that offers several advantages over ..., other oil lamps," "The light of an Alladin is equal to 31 candles or one 60 watt bulb." "other "good" oil lamps produce from 1.5 to 3 feet of candle power. Why is the Aladdin brighter (often more than six times brighter) than these oil lamps? Aladdin uses a circular wick whose blue flame superheats a mantle." HELLO? Maybee WE aint the ones who are missin it!!!!!!!!!

-- Y2Dave (OutToLunch@This.tyme), May 09, 1999.

What to do during a hot summer

Z1X4Y7 may have the answer to Ray's good point about the heat of an Aladdin during a hot summer. I was wondering if there are 60 watt equivalent DC electric lights that actually run on something like 20 to 30 watts. People who know RV accessories may know the quick answer. Just a few weeks ago, I was talking to a guy who spent time in Africa, bringing technological solutions to tribes and such. He thought that DC rated RV accessories would be the best for use with a little solar.

No Alladins at Walmart or Target

Y2KDave, thanks for pointing out RickJohn's sarcasm to me. I thought I hadn't seen any Aladdins in Walmart or Target, but understood Rickjohn to be saying that Aladdins would be found there. Anyway, I went back to the stores and didn't see anything but what might put out maybe 1.5 feet of candle power. I am assuming this based on the fact that the oil lamps at Walmart and Target used a small flat wick and no mantle. The Coleman lanterns at Walmart, however, wouldn't match a Petromax.

Sincerely, Stan Faryna

-- Stan Faryna (, May 11, 1999.

Correction: Aladdins, not Alladins. (grin)

-- Stan Faryna (, May 11, 1999.


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-- Stan Faryna (, May 11, 1999.

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