AS A COLLECTOR OF ZIPPOS I WOULD LIKE TO INFORM YOU OF THE DIFERENT CATEGORIES IN WHICH ZIPPO LIGHTERS CAN BE MADE. IN WORDS AND PHOTOS.
FROM....REGULAR PRODUCTION MODEL....TO....PROTOTYPE........ENJOY
A Regular Production Model
A regular production model that is a general release lighter and though no numbers are made available they can be made in any amount from 1000 to 100,000 or more.
A Numbered Limited Production Run
A limited production run that only a certain number of lighters are made and then no more, the only difference being from a regular production model is that the number of the lighters is made available,and at times engraved on the Zippo. The one pictured is 122 of 500. Also look out for Zippos numbered 1 of 50, 1 of 100, etc. As this at most times,will NOT mean its #1 of 50, or #1 of 100. But one of the fifty or one of the one hundred made.
A Source Order Zippo
A source order,is a number of Zippos that can be made for a company or individual person, the number of these lighters can be made available or not depending on who wants them made. The design can be anything approved by Zippo. The smallest number of lighters you can order is 50 so there will be at least that many of them made. Some of these Custom made Zippos are numbered thus; #25 of 50.etc
A Salesmans Sample Zippo Lighter.
A salesmans sample lighter is one or a few which are made for sales or promotional purposes. In which Zippo salesmen show to retailers. These at times get confused with prototype lighters, they are not. Note,the words informing of the type of the lighters finish.
A Test Sample Zippo
A test sample Zippo is a Zippo with an individual design that Zippo made in limited numbers for a series that may or may-not of been picked up for regular production.Also known as test models,and at times called pilot models. Often with different designs,and finishes.
A Prototype Zippo
A prototype is a sample lighter which very few is made before its put into production. It shows the early version of the design,made to help visualize the final design. Prototypes have major changes in the illustration, including the colours, background, and finish.
So how do you get to see or have some of these rare wonderful Zippos.?
You can see/buy/trade them at Zippo swap/meets, collectors fairs, and on collectors websites ,also at the Zippo Visiting Centre. Some are given to Zippo employees,and made for other employees at Zippo. Also Rare Test Run's and Prototypes,as well as Limited Etd lighters are sold/given to collector clubs, by Zippo.