- Product: True Utility FireWire Wind-Proof Lighter (TU60)
- Manufacturer: True Utility
- Buy on Amazon
- Rating: 4/5
True Utility are a somewhat budget brand of pocket tools, flashlights and similar kit. Can they stand up to competitors like the mighty Zippo when it comes to a windproof lighter?
A pretty boring blister-pack for this lighter, which is slightly disappointing, and lowers its gift appeal. But considering we’re just going to use it to burn things, I can guess we can live with that.
Once out of the box, we have a sturdy, Zippo-style lighter in brushed metal. Looks the part and feels nice in the hand. It doesn’t feel at all cheap, and doesn’t seem like a budget brand at all. Even the logo looks relatively classy!
Performance & Features
Lighters ship without fuel, and of course this is no exception. It’s a gas lighter, so we busted out a can of Ronson butane and did the job. No problems filling, and we’re ready to go.
The lid has a ‘piston’ opening mechanism which is snappy, satisfying and gives a nice clunk. The mechanism feels very solid, and looks like it will last. At the bottom of the lighter is a dial for gas control. It feels rather ‘scratchy’ when you get to the upper and lower limits, and initially did not seem to be working properly at all. However, after a bit of experimentation we managed to control gas reasonably well, with settings from ‘burn your eyebrows’ to ‘not really going to do much good’.
The ignition seems to be of the piezo type, and includes what True Utility call a “FireWire” – what appears to be a variation on the catalytic coil. So, once lit, the wire heats up, making it very difficult for the flame to be blown out. This seems to work jolly well indeed, and we had no issues in our field tests of rather poor weather conditions. The lighter will light upside down as claimed. It also admirably passed the Roald Dahl ‘Man From The South’ test and lit ten times in a row with no trouble whatsoever.
In terms of gas usage, of course, it’s going to depend on how high you set the flame to, but we’re still running on our initial fill, despite being heavy smokers and pyromaniacs.
We had one big disappointment with the TU60 lighter, and that’s the finish. After only a few days in a pocket, our shiny new lighter was adorned with dings and scratches. Not that we’re personally too bothered – we like our lighters looking like they survived the Vietnam war, but it raises question marks about how long the thing is going to last, and it’s a shame to scrimp on this aspect of the construction – especially as we were pleasantly surprised with overall build quality.
This is a relatively cheap gas lighter that performs very well, looks and feels nice and is of a surprisingly high build quality. We reckon it’s a worthwhile purchase. Just remember that once you’ve been carrying it around in a pocketful of knives, the finish is going to come off badly.