Monday, January 20, 2014

Battle of the Slim Cigar Lighters

Prometheus Retro Slim Black Label Stanley
Prometheus Retro vs. Black Label Stanley
  In the world of torch lighters slim does not usually come to mind. There are very few that are what CLR would consider truly slim. There is definitely a need and market for them. Occasionally, at the local B&M someone will ask if anyone knows of any "good ones". An answer like the Axia or something of similar thickness is tossed out as an option, not truly "slim" in CLR's opinion. 
  Today CLR brings to the table a battle of two truly slim or "ultra slim" torch lighters for review. Enter the Prometheus Retro vs. the Black Label Stanley. They are quite similar in size, though, very different in cost and flame/ignition. The Retro pictured here is in the Wave pattern and comes in at only .25 inches thick! The Stanley comes in a hair over .25 inches. Only noticeable when both are laying flat side by side. Both lighters stand respectably at 3 inches tall.
Prometheus Retro Wave
Prometheus Retro Wave Review
  The Prometheus Retro in the Art Deco finishes list at $75 for the Wave, Vertical, Shaper Cut, or Black Lacquer. The Wave design is stunning in the flesh. The high polish and wave pattern is very well done. What enables this lighter to be ultra slim is the use of a flint ignition system. The commonly used and trusted Piezo system can not fit into a body this thin. The flint gives the lighter the retro throwback vibe, while still giving cigar lovers the hot blue flame desired. Flipping the lid up reveals the flint wheel and single jet. Using the side thumb action pusher rotates the wheel against the flint. This creates a large bright spark, immediately transitioning into a blue torch. When the day comes to replace the flint there is a screw located on the bottom. Once removed, simply insert the new flint bar and screw back in.
Black Label Stanley
Black Label Stanley Review
  The Black Label Stanley made by Lotus is much more affordable at a list price of $29.99. Stanley is somewhat of a plain Jane, but she is slim no doubt. In similar fashion the lid flips and a side action pusher ignites the torch. Here is where the main difference between the two lighters is revealed. The Stanley does not use flint, it produces a windproof coil flame. You can see the difference in the flames very clearly in the pictures. Stanley's flame is more of a cone shape, this is due to the coil used. Pretty cool looking and not seen often in other lighters.



Black Label Stanley Flame
Prometheus Retro Flame
Prometheus Retro Flame

  

  


  
  




  Due to the thin designs of both lighters it comes as no surprise that both are lacking a cigar punch, fuel wheel adjustment (need screwdriver, etc.), and single step to ignition. Also lacking is a fuel gauge window. It would of been difficult to integrate this into the Retro and would of taken away from its aesthetic beauty. On the other hand CLR feels it would of been more achievable and appropriate for the Stanley. Both lighters handle smaller ring gauges without issue, CLR found larger gauges took a bit more work. This is to be expected from a single torch. The fuel tanks are not large, but no complaints. They simply do not burn through a lot fuel like multi-torch lighter would.
  Price aside the Prometheus Retro would be CLR's clear choice. The Retro is all class and well built. Retro is surprisingly fun to spark up every time. Retro is now one of CLR's favorite lighters reviewed, but did not score like one in ratings below. Retro does love fingerprints and is not shy on collecting little scratches quickly. On the other hand, the Black Label Stanley would make for a great utility lighter. Throw it in your pocket and not think twice, price point certainly helps here.

BEST PRICE CLR found counting shipping - Black Label Stanley

CLR Overall Ratings (10 being best, all added, divided by 5)

Prometheus Retro:                                   Black Label Stanley:
9 - Aesthetics                                       5 - Aesthetics
8.75 - Finish/Construction                       7.25 - Finish/Construction
6.75 - Flame                                        8 - Flame            
7.5 - Function & Adjustment                    7.5 - Function & Adjustment
7 - Value vs List Price                            8 - Value vs. List Price
CLR Final Score: 7.8                                   CLR Final Score: 7.15

2 comments:

How does the retro preform in the wind?

Pretty much like all other single torch Piezo system, decent. Still think this is a very cool lighter!

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