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Approved Lantern Fuels
Colored Globe Applications
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LOC-NOB Globe Info
Mineral Spirits Warning
Paint Colors
Replacement Globe Index
Specific Lantern History
Wick Replacment Info


INFORMATION
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VINTAGE DIETZ
LANTERN INFO

8-Day
Acme
Air Pilot
Beacon
Blizzard
Buckeye
Comet
Crescent
Crystal
D-Lite
Hy-Lo
Junior
King Fire Dept'
Little Giant
Little Wizard
Monarch
Night Watch
Scout/Sport
Traffic Gard
Vesta
Victor
Wizard
All Other Dietz Lanterns

 


~Tubular Oil Lantern~
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


On this page you will find answers to the most frequently asked lantern questions.  Many of the e-mails we receive pertain to specific lantern models, and when they were made, etc.   We do not appraise or provide values for lanterns, nor do we know of any legitimate company that would appraise anything sight unseen.   For those truly interested, Classic Lanterns author Dennis Pearson has some comments on the topic of the Lantern Values at his site.

PLEASE NOTE: 

If you wish to use text from LanternNet.com in an auction or sales description,
please include a credit line that reads:
  

"Copyrighted Text by W.T. Kirkman Used With Permission, Courtesy of www.lanternnet.com

Do not copy and/or alter photos or graphics from LanternNet.com for use on other websites.


QUESTION 1:  How old is my Dietz lantern, and what can you tell me about it?
ANSWER LINKS:  To determine the month and year of manufacture on most Dietz lanterns made between 1915 and 1956, look at the "M" or "S" production date located under the patent dates, usually located on the upper part of the air tube to the right of the fuel cap, or on the center air tube on Hot Blast lanterns.  (Do not confuse the "M" or "S" production dates with a patent date when looking at a Dietz Lantern.) "M" denotes Dietz New York City "Main" Factory #1, while "S" denotes Dietz Syracuse Factory #2, which is followed by the month and year of production.  Stamping Patent and Production dates into Dietz lanterns was abandoned in 1956, coinciding with the establishment of the Hong Kong factory.  (i.e. "S-6-41" stands for Syracuse Factory #2, June of 1941, "M-1-25" stands for New York City Factory #1, January 1925.)  Note:  Lantern production ceased in the New York City "M" Factory #1 in 1931. 

Click on the Dietz lantern model name below for information on that model.  Visit the
R.E. Dietz Compendium for information on other Dietz lantern models.

QUESTION 2:   Where are Dietz lanterns now made
ANSWER: The lantern division of the R. E. Dietz Company moved to Hong Kong in 1956.  In 1982 the factory was moved from Hong Kong into China.  In 2005 the factory was again moved, and now operates in
Jiangsu, China.  The Dietz sales office still operates in Aberdeen, Hong Kong.    
 

QUESTION 3:   What type of fuel can I use in a tubular lantern?
ANSWER:  Standard Lamp Oil, Synthetic Kerosene, or Kerosene Substitute are recommended for use indoors.  Clear K-1 Kerosene with a flash point of 124 to 150 degrees is recommended for outside use. 

The approved fuels for indoor or outdoor use in Tubular Lanterns and Flat Wick Oil Lamps are:  
1Lamplight Farms
® Clear Medallion Brand Lamp Oil, (#60020, #60003 aka #6300, #60005 aka #6400, and #6700 Only ) Flash Point: 145 Degrees Fahrenheit 
2
W.M. Barr & Co. Klean-Heat
® Kerosene Substitute (#GKKH99991, 128oz, sold by Home Depot SKU #391-171) Flash Point: 145 Degrees Fahrenheit
3.  Crown
® Brand Clear Lamp Oil (#755946)  Flash Point: 141 Degrees Fahrenheit
4.  Genuine Aladdin
® Brand Lamp Oil (#17552, 32 oz., and #17554, 128 oz.) Flash Point: 141 Degrees Fahrenheit
5.  MVP Group International Florasense
® Brand Lamp Oil (#MVP73200, 64oz. and #MVP73201, 32 oz., Sold by Wal-Mart ) Flash Point: 142 Degrees Fahrenheit
6.  Recochem Clear Lamp Oil (#14-573, 710mL, Sold in Canada)  Flash Point: 124 Degrees Fahrenheit

The approved fuels for outdoor use in Tubular Lanterns and Flat Wick Oil Lamps are:
1.  Non-Dyed (Clear) Kerosene with a Flash Point Between 124 and 150 Degrees Fahrenheit
2.  Sunnyside
® Brand 1-K Kerosene (#700G1, #80132, #801G1, #801G3,and #801G5)  Flash Point: 125 Degrees Fahrenheit
3.  Coleman
® Brand Kerosene Fuel (#3000000270Flash Point: 130 Degrees Fahrenheit
4
.  Crown® 1-K Fuel Grade Kerosene (#KEM41,  #KEP01, #KEP25, #KEM05) Flash Point: 150 Degrees Fahrenheit
5. 
Crown® Citronella Torch and Lamp Fuel (
#CTLP01, #CTLP02, #CTLP48) (OUTDOOR USE ONLY, cut 50:50 with kerosene to extend wick life.Flash Point: 141 Degrees Fahrenheit  
6.  Tiki
® Brand Citronella Torch Fuel (OUTDOOR USE ONLY, cut 50:50 with kerosene to extend wick life.Flash Point: 145 Degrees Fahrenheit  

NOTICE:  Dyed kerosene or lamp oil will eventually clog the wick and inhibit proper operation.  It can also permanently stain the lamp or lantern.
If you purchase kerosene from a gas station, make sure that it is from a "blocked" pump so that it is clear and not dyed red.
(Un-blocked kerosene pumps by law must dispense dyed kerosene which will clog lantern wick, and cause it not to burn properly.)

FUEL SOURCES:
S
tandard clear lamp oil (Lamp Light Farms Medallion Oil,) is available nationwide at:  Target, K-Mart, Ace Hardware, True-Value Hardware, Sentry Hardware, and HWI Do-It Centers. 

"Klean-Heat" Kerosene Substitute is available at or through most hardware stores and home centers including:  Home Depot, American Eagle, Coast to Coast, Ace Hardware, True-Value, and HWI Do-It Centers. 

Genuine Aladdin Brand Lamp Oil is available from Aladdin Lamp Dealers nationwide.

NOTE:  DO NOT USE PARAFFIN OIL IN TUBULAR LANTERNS WITH 5/8" or LARGER WICK.  (Use Paraffin only in lamps with 1/2" or smaller wick.)

NOTE:  DIESEL, BIO-DIESEL AND OLIVE OIL ARE NOT SUITABLE SUBSTITUTES FOR ANY OF THE APPROVED FUELS AS THEY HAVE A FLASH POINT OVER 200 DEGREES FAHRENHEIT


PARAFFIN OIL NOTICE

NOTE:  Paraffin in the UK is kerosene. Paraffin Oil in the UNITED STATES is Liquid Candle Wax , and is mis-labeled for use in oil lamps and lanterns, when in fact it is only suited for Candle Oil Lamps that use small diameter (under 1/4”,) round wick. 99% or 100% Paraffin Oil is NOT designed or suitable for use in tubular lanterns or oil lamps that use flat wick, or Kosmos or Matador type oil lamps. Further, it burns only 1/2 as bright of any of the approved fuels listed above. Paraffin oil has a much higher viscosity and a flash point of 200 degrees or higher, as compared to the flash point of 150 degrees for kerosene. These differences inhibit the necessary capillary action of the wick, and will cause Lamps and Lanterns with 7/8" or larger wick to burn improperly and erratic. Once a wick is contaminated with paraffin oil, it must be replaced in order for the lantern to burner properly. If you must use paraffin oil, it may be mixed 1:10 to 2:10 (one to two parts paraffin,) to ten parts standard lamp oil or kerosene so that it will burn satisfactorily. Paraffin Oil is sold in the United States under the following trade names, which should be avoided except for use with lamps or lanterns with 1/4” Round of 1/2" flat or smaller wick :
Aura Oil
Crown Royal
Firelight Glass
Orvis Lamp Fuel
Northern  Lights
Northwest
Pure Lite
Recochem Ultra-Clear Lamp Oil
Soft Light
Tropical Lights
Ultra-Pure
Weems & Plath

 

WARNING!!


NEVER USE THE FOLLOWING IN ANY WICK LAMP OR LANTERN OF ANY TYPE:

1.  Gasoline
2.  Coleman Fuel
3.  W
hite Gas
4.  Paint Thinner, (aka *Mineral Spirits)
5.  W
ood Alcohol
6.  N
aptha
7.  T
urpentine
8.  Benzene
9.  O
r any other
Explosive Fuel with a flash point under 100° F.

USING ANY OF THE ABOVE FUELS IN A WICK LAMP OR LANTERN
CAN RESULT IN PROPERTY LOSS, SERIOUS INJURY, OR DEATH.

CAUTION
Diesel and
Aviation fuel should not be used in any wick lamp or lantern
as the fumes from fuel additives can be FATAL if inhaled.

 

 

SAFETY WARNING:
UPDATE NOVEMBER 24, 2010

WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU VERIFY THAT THE
FLASH POINT
OF ANY KEROSENE THAT YOU PLAN TO USE IN ANY
OIL LAMP OR LANTERN OR KEROSENE HEATER IS
BETWEEN 124 AND 150 DEGREES FAHRENHEIT.

We have started receiving reports of lanterns developing "run-away" flames where the flame flares up and runs out of control.
When this happens, the only way to extinguish the flame is to smother the lantern. 
Place an inverted bucket over the lantern, or shovel dirt on it to extinguish the flame.



THE MINIMUM RECOMMENDED FLASH POINT FOR KEROSENE FOR USE IN
OIL LAMPS AND LANTERNS IS 124 DEGREES FAHRENHEIT.

 


*Additional Notes on Mineral Spirits

I have added the following information due to the number of inquiries we have been receiving lately about the use of paint thinner as a kerosene substitute to explain the danger. 

Mineral Spirits (Paint Thinner,) should NOT be used in any wick lamp or lantern
.

 
There is a reason they are called "Kerosene" lanterns, and not "Paint Thinner" lanterns.  Tubular lanterns, and most oil lamps that employ a wick delivery system, are designed for use with 150 Degree Test (read "Flash Point,") kerosene, which is a "straight run" petroleum distillate made for such use.  Standard Lamp Oil, (such as Lamplight Farms Medallion Lamp Oil,) has a 142 Degree flash point, and is also an acceptable lamp or lantern fuel, being within 10% of the design standard.  

Paint Thinner, (Mineral Spirits,) on the other hand, has a flash point of under 110 Degrees, and is a complex petroleum distillate that at best may produce (including odorless,) fumes that are not something that you would want to breathe near, and at worst has the potential for creating a runaway flame or worse. 

Let me explain further:  In addition to conveying fuel, the wick also conducts heat from the flame into the tank.  As the fuel level drops, the oil temperature rises and expands, regardless of the oil you are using.  With Mineral Spirits, this function creates an accelerated evaporation, which in turn produces pressurized flammable vapor that must expand to somewhere.  (This process is also referred to as "Superheating.")  Usually, the pressurized vapor will gradually work its way through the burner and will be consumed at the flame.  At this point it is not a major problem, except that because the flame is no longer dependant on the wick, you no longer have control of the flame, which will begin to "runaway."   The natural reaction is to turn the wick down as far as possible to try to extinguish the runaway flame.  This only increases the vapor flow as well as the flame size.  If you turn the wick down too far, and the cogs disengage the wick, you will not be able to raise the wick to reduce the flame size.  When this happens, the best course of action is to smother the lantern with an inverted pail or bucket, or dirt.   

In a worst case scenario, if the pressurized vapor is unable to gradually be consumed at the flame, it will increase in the tank as the fuel level drops.  The reason this is "worst case" is because if the vapor bursts through the burner, an explosion will result that will most likely shatter the globe.
 

I received an e-mail from a customer that thought it was OK to use paint thinner, despite our warning:
 
. . . . . I look up and the flame is so high that it burnt the rope, fell from the tree, shattered and the ground and lantern were on fire. I put the fire out and just assumed I did something wrong. The next night I set the second one on a flat tree stump. Every thing seems fine, not much light because the wick is so low, but a little. Next thing I know this one is on fire and the glass also breaks and I'm scrambling to throw dirt on it. The third night I try again, because it gets really dark and I was counting on those for light. This lantern does the same thing. It did not break the glass, because I was nervous and kept watching it. . . .

Fil Graff, the Secretary of the International Guild of Lamp Researchers, wrote the following words on the topic:


On Dec. 22, 2000 @ 18:57, Fil Graff (fgraff@comcast.net) wrote:
. . . . For heavens sake, if you are playing with fuels, stay in the same petrochemical CLASS as the originally recommended fuel! NO MINERAL SPIRITS in a kerosene lamp! That is NO, none, not ANY! The "burns hotter" may be a problem in soldered burners, but the real problem is volatility and flash point. You do NOT want a possible font ignition from heated fumes!  If you cannot get road-taxed kerosene (it isn't red!)or Sunoco's "1-K", then try the Clearlite. It too burns hotter than kerosene, but at least is in the same volatility range, and therefore reasonably safe. I use it in Aladdins and other flat wicks, replacing the Champagne-priced odorless Ultra fuel I used for years, but have abandoned because of outrageous prices.

Tony Batts, General Manager of the Aladdin Mantle Lamp Company, recently e-mailed me:

"Woody,
You are most correct, we would never recommend the use of mineral spirits or paint thinner in Aladdin lamps, lanterns, or any flat wick lamps. Believe it or not we still occasionally get calls from folks who have heard the its okay to use mineral spirits in their lamps.
 
Thanks for helping clear up this myth!
 
With kind regards,
Tony"

We are working towards adding video segments to our website in the near future, and plan to film a demonstration of what can happen when you use paint thinner, or "other than recommended" fuels in tubular lanterns.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 4:   What is the difference between Hot Blast and Cold Blast Tubular lanterns?
ANSWER: 
Tubular Lanterns are roughly classified under the captions "Hot Blast" and "Cold Blast." Dietz (Rhymes with beets)  made the first "Hot Blast" Lanterns in 1868, and the first "Cold Blast" Lanterns in 1880.  The terms "Hot Blast" and "Cold Blast" are used solely in conjunction with tubular Lanterns and with regard to the method of supplying air to the flame.  All other lanterns made are classified as "Dead Flame," which are nothing more than an enclosure to protect  the flame, as no air circulation is provided.  Dead Flame examples include the Adlake #300 Kero or Dietz #041  Railroad Lanterns.   All tubular Hot Blast and Cold Blast lanterns made since 1912 will self extinguish if tipped over.  This safety feature is not found in any other other type of oil burning lamp or lantern!

Hot Blast Lanterns are so constructed that a supply of fresh air enters the globe at the base through the openings in the perforated globe plate. This fresh air, in ascending through the globe, becomes heated by the flame and mingles with the hot products of combustion. A portion of this mixture of hot air and spent gases passes into the bell or canopy over the globe and through the sides tubes via downdraft to the air chamber beneath the burner, there directly supplying the flame. This design produces a steady yellow flame.  Inherent in the design of the Hot Blast Lantern, the burning time is approximately 10% greater than a Cold Blast Lantern of the same wick size.  Also, due to the re-circulating of the products of combustion, the Hot Blast Design is especially well suited for use indoors.

Cold Blast Lanterns are so constructed that the supply of air taken through the side tubes does not mingle with the products of combustion and the flame is supplied with fresh air both through the globe plate and the side tubes. The spent products of combustion escape to the outer air through a central metal chimney in the Lantern head. From an air chamber surrounding the metal chimney, which is provided with injectors for taking in fresh air, fresh air is taken into the side tubes, down which it flows to the lower air chamber and thus to the burner.  The "Cold Blast" Lantern design produces a perfectly white flame and approximately twice the volume of light of a "Hot Blast" Lantern with the same size wick.  This fact has rendered the "Cold Blast" Lantern a favorite with users.  With the advent of modern fuels, Cold Blast lanterns can be used inside or out. 

QUESTION 5:   How do I change the wick in my lantern?
ANSWER:  First you must remove the globe and then the burner. Discard the old wick after removing it from the burner.  Trim the new piece of wick straight across, then apply 1/4 " of a 3" strip of masking tape to one end of the wick, and fold the tape back onto itself and wick, making a 1 1/4" long leader.  Trim the masking tape to the width of the wick, and insert it into the underside of the burner using it to guide the wick.  Once the wick is through the burner remove the tape and retrim the wick straight across if necessary.  This method can also be used for round wick using a narrow strip of masking tape as a leader.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 6:   How safe are tubular lanterns?  Can I use them indoors?
ANSWER:  Contrary to Hollywood propaganda, tubular lanterns are infinitely safer than any other non-electric artificial light source.  If a tubular lantern is tipped over, the balanced draft cuts off the air supply to the burner and extinguishes the flame within seconds.  With the advent of modern lamp oil and synthetic kerosene, both Hot Blast and Cold Blast lanterns are well suited for indoor use in ventilated areas.  Since the design of a Hot Blast lantern recirculates spent air to the burner for more complete combustion, it has a slight edge over the Cold Blast Design, and a 10% greater efficiency rating.  For light output however, cold blast lanterns remain the best choice.   
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 7:   How do I clean my rusty tubular lantern?

ANSWER:  The main objective is to remove all of the rust and paint and stabilize the metal to prevent further deterioration.  You should have some basic knowledge of working with chemicals before attempting the following procedures.   These are only basic guidelines, but they will give you a starting point to develop your own system.

WARNING: Sand blasting or glass bead blasting will not only remove the patina but is the fastest way to destroy the value of a lantern, and possibly blast holes through the metal.

(NOTE:  Take all safety precautions, use gloves, safety glasses, etc.)

Molasses Method  (PREFERRED)
This method will remove rust, crud, (and eventually paint) without removing the patina. 
1.  Remove the fuel cap, globe, and burner from the lantern. 
2.  Mix 12 oz. of Grandma's Molasses in Warm Water in a sealable 5 to 10 gallon plastic container.
3.  Submerge the lantern and burner *entirely in the Solution for **1 day.
4.  Remove the lantern, and lightly scour with a Brillo pad, (not SOS,) 
5.  Repeat steps 3 and 4 until all the rust or tarnish has been removed.
6.  Once you are finished, give the lantern one final rinse in the solution, then dry with paper towels immediately.  Use a blow dryer on low to dry the inside of the tank. 
7.  After the lantern has been cleaned,  I recommend polishing it first with Blue Magic (tm) Metal Polish to bring out the luster. You can also use #0000 steel wool to buff out the lantern. 
8.  To finish the lantern ***paint or lacquer it with your choice of finish.  If using paint, taping off the center air tube on hot blast lanterns, or the chimney on cold blast lanterns, makes for a professional, like factory, looking job.  If the filler spout is brass, you might also tape it off as well.  This also goes for brass wire guides and lift brackets as well.  The burner cone and burner should be left unfinished.  An alternative to painting tin plated lanterns is to wipe them down with a small amount of boiled linseed oil mixed 50:50 with kerosene.

Soda Ash and Battery Charger Method  (PREFERRED)
(NOTE:  THIS METHOD PRODUCES HYDROGEN.
CONDUCT ONLY IN A WELL VENTILATED AREA AND AWAY FROM SPARK OR FLAME
)

This method will remove rust, crud, and paint without removing the patina.
1.  Remove the fuel cap, globe, and burner from the lantern.   
2.  Mix 1/4 cup of Soda Ash (Sodium Carbonate, NOT Sodium Bi-Carbonate) in 5 gallons of Warm Water in a plastic container.
3.  Connect the positive (red,) lead clamp of a 12 volt battery charger to an Anode, (a piece of rebar or plain iron,) and submerge the Anode (not the clamp,) in the soda ash water solution along the side of the plastic container.
4.  Connect the negative (black,) lead of the 12 volt battery charger to the lantern. (A leader wire can be used to attach to the lantern.)
5. 
Submerge the lantern *entirely in the Solution for **1 day, making sure it does not touch the Anode and short the circuit.
6.  Turn on the battery charger and set to 5 to 10 amps charge for 24 hours

7.  Remove the lantern after 24 hours, and lightly scour with a Brillo pad, (not SOS.
8.  Repeat steps 4 through 7 until the lantern is cleaned and suitable for finishing.
9.  Once you are finished, give the lantern one final rinse in the solution, then dry with paper towels immediately.  Use a blow dryer on low to dry the inside of the tank. 
10.  After the lantern has been cleaned,  I recommend polishing it first with Blue Magic (tm) Metal Polish to bring out the luster.  You can also use #0000 steel wool to buff out the lantern.
11.  To finish the lantern ***paint or lacquer it with your choice of finish.  If using paint, taping off the center air tube on hot blast lanterns, or the chimney on cold blast lanterns, makes for a professional, like factory, looking job.  If the filler spout is brass, you might also tape it off as well.  This also goes for brass wire guides and lift brackets as well.  The burner cone and burner should be left unfinished.  An alternative to painting tin plated lanterns is to wipe them down with a small amount of boiled linseed oil.

Lye and Vinegar Method (LEAST PREFERRED)
(NOTE:  Take all safety precautions, use gloves, safety glasses, etc.)
This method will remove paint and rust without removing the patina. 
1.  Remove the fuel cap, globe, burner, (and aluminum reflector if any,) from the lantern. 
2.  Mix 1LB of Red Devil Lye, (from your grocery store) in Warm Water in a sealable 5 to 10 gallon plastic container.
3.  Submerge the lantern and burner *entirely in the Lye Solution for **1 day.
4.  Remove the lantern, and rinse with water, then quickly dry with paper towels.
5.  Coat with WD40 and use #00 steel wool to remove the majority of the remaining paint.
6.  Submerge the lantern and burner *entirely in a 50/50 solution of white vinegar and water for **1 day.
7.  Remove the lantern and parts and use #000 steel wool to clean off the rust and any remaining paint.  Use the vinegar to occasionally rinse the lantern while you are working on it. 
8.  Once you are finished, give the lantern one final rinse with vinegar, then dry with paper towels immediately.  Use a blow dryer on low to dry the inside of the tank. 
9.  After the lantern has been cleaned,  I recommend polishing it first with Blue Magic (tm) Metal Polish to bring out the lustre.
10.  To finish the lantern, ***paint or lacquer it with your choice of finish.  If using paint, taping off the center air tube on hot blast lanterns, or the chimney on cold blast lanterns, makes for a professional, like factory, looking job.  If the filler spout is brass, you might also tape it off as well.  This also goes for brass wire guides and lift brackets as well.  The burner cone and burner should be left unfinished.  An alternative to painting tin plated lanterns is to wipe them down with a small amount of boiled linseed oil mixed 50:50 with kerosene.

*   Make sure that the lantern is submerged entirely or surface pitting will occur
** Pitting will occur at some point after 1 day.  Monitor closely if you leave the lantern in longer than 1 day.
***Regular spray paint works fine, (high heat paint isn't necessary)

Never place aluminum in Lye solution, it will dissolve it.

These processes may weaken the soldered joints, making re-soldering necessary.  I recommend using Harris brand Stay-Clean liquid flux, and Radio Shack .064 60/40 Rosin Core Solder with a micro butane torch.  (Regular plumbers propane torches yield no control over where the heat is applied, and as such are only good for de-soldering lanterns, not making repairs.) 

If cleaning the lantern exposes weak spots in the tank, creating pinholes, use the tank sealing method below.  Soldering pinholes is not the best solution, as more holes are bound to develop.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 8:   How do I stop a tubular lantern from leaking oil from the air tube?
ANSWER:  In use, lantern wick conducts heat into the oil, this in turn creates expansion, and will cause oil to overflow into the air chamber under the burner if the lantern has been overfilled.  Once this happens, the oil will leak out of the joints where the air tubes go into the air chamber above the tank.   To prevent this, only fill the lantern to just under the fuel spout threads.   Use a small white plastic kitchen funnel to more easily see the fuel level when filling.  As a precaution, place the lantern in a shallow pan when re-fueling.   If overfilling occurs, empty some of the fuel.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 9:   How do I stop a tubular lantern from leaking from the tank?

(NOTE:  Take all safety precautions, use gloves, safety glasses, etc.)

ANSWER:  Remove the burner and fuel cap, and empty the oil completely.  If the inside of the tank is rusted and full of crud, drop a 1' piece of "Sash" chain into the tank and pour in one cup of white vinegar.  Swish the vinegar and chain around to knock down the heaviest rust or crud.  Drain the tank, and allow to dry in the sun, or use a blow dryer on low to completely evaporate all of the vinegar.   Remove the chain and make sure that there is nothing left in the tank like a piece of wick.  If there are visible holes in the tank, use masking tape to cover them.   Put on a pair of disposable gloves, then use a funnel to carefully pour into the tank about 2 teaspoons of  U.S. Standard "POR-15" Gas Tank Sealer to coat the entire inside.  Rotate the lantern to thoroughly coat both the bottom and sides of the inside of the tank.  If you get any sealer on the fuel spout or burner cup be sure to clean it off.  After the sealer cures in a few days, another coat of sealer can be added if the condition of the tank warrants it.  Let the lantern cure for one week, remove the masking tape and put the lantern back into service.  This method of re-sealing will usually last the life of the lantern.

NOTE:  If the lantern leaks only from the crimp at the bottom edge, exterior grade marine spar varnish can be used to seal a weeping tank.  Use 1 to 2 teaspoons and allow to dry for one week before refilling with oil.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 10:   What does "LOC-NOB" and "H" on my globe mean? 
ANSWER:   LOC-NOB refers to the pair of ears on a Dietz lantern globe used to keep the globe from falling out when tilting the globe plate for lighting or trimming the wick.  LOC-NOB globes were first offered in the 1917  Dietz catalog, (There are three patent dates associated with the LOC-NOB design, 3/10/14, 2/18/18 and 12/4/23,) and eventually became the standard for most all Dietz lantern models.  The first "LOC-NOB" style globes were made in 1915 and marked "NOBLOC" in the D-Lite/Wizard size only.  It is unknown if this was a mistake made by the globe manufacturer and was quickly corrected, or if the original name was to be "NOBLOC" and was changed to LOC-NOB for some reason. (NOBLOC could be mispronounced as ("No Bloc.") There were not many "NOBLOC" globes made, and that the only known examples are clear.  The first LOC-NOB Fitzall globes were made after 1918.  (The introduction of the LOC-NOB style globe coincides with the transition period after John E. Dietz assumed the reins of the company after his elder brother Fred passed away April 3, 1915.) 
The alpha-numeric code (such as "H8") found on most Dietz lantern globes made before 1956 designates the manufacturer and mold number.  Here are the codes:
 
"A" = Anchor (Pre-1937)
"C" = Corning
"CNX" Corning No-Nex (Fore-Runner to Pyrex)
"CR" = Crescent
"G" = Gleason
"H" = Hocking (After 1937 Anchor Hocking)
"J" = Jeanette
"L"=Libby
"McK" = McKee
"R" = Rodefer
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 11:   What are the different colored globes or bullseyes used for?
ANSWER:   Here is a chart of applications for the various globe/bullseye colors:

COLORED GLOBE APPLICATIONS

Globe
Color

Fire
Department
Marine/
Naval

Railroad/
Highway

Clear/
White

General
Illumimation
Anchor, Mast & Running Lamps Hand Signals
Red Chief Engineer,
or Danger/ Do Not Cross Hoses
Port Lamp Stop/Danger
Blue Assistant Chief Engineer, or Volunteer Company Captain on Board Do Not Move/
Men at Work
Green Foreman Starboard Lamp Proceed
Amber/
Yellow
Assistant Foreman,
or Chief Hoseman
Running/Side Lamps Proceed at
Reduced Speed, Prepare to Stop

Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved

QUESTION 12:   Do you have a replacement globe for my lantern?
ANSWER:   Visit our Replacement Globe Index page for assistance.


QUESTION 13:   What is the difference between solid color, annealed, and flashed color globes?
ANSWER: 
We offer three different types of colored globes:  Solid Color; Annealed Color, and Flashed Color.  Each color type has it's advantages and disadvantagesHere are the differences:  Solid Color Globes are made of colored glass.  The advantages of solid color glass are that the color is permanent, and cannot be removed.  The disadvantage is that dark solid colors limit the transmission distance and light output.  We offer some, but not all, of the railroad lantern size globes in solid colorFlashed Globes are made of clear glass with colored lacquer applied in a cold process.  The advantages of flashed color are good light transmission, excellent depth of color, UV stable, and are are economically priced.  The disadvantages are that over time, through use the color will "cook" and darken towards the top of the globe.  Also, it is possible to remove the color, so no harsh cleaners or solvents should be used.  We offer all globes in flashed color.  Annealed Globes are made of clear glass with baked on color.  The advantages of annealed color are that is it more durable than flashed globes, has good light transmission, and are are economically priced.  The disadvantage are that annealed color is not as UV stable as flashed color, and will appear more "washed out" than flashed globes over time.  We offer most of our full weight pressed globes in annealed color, as well as the Vesta and Pullman lantern sized globes.

QUESTION 14:   Does elevation have any effect on tubular lanterns?
ANSWER:   Yes.  The tall profile of the W.T. Kirkman Champion or the Dietz Blizzard lanterns provides additional draft that helps compensate for the lack of oxygen at higher elevations.  These lantern models will burn brighter than the "short globe" lanterns such as the D-Lite or Air Pilot, especially at elevations above 5000'.

QUESTION 15:   The air tubes on my lantern seem to be blocked, what is the best way clean them out?
ANSWER:   If your lantern burns with a sooty, orange flame, chances are the air tubes are blocked.  To clean blocked air tubes, first empty the fuel, remove the burner and globe, and soak the entire lantern in warm water, completely submerged.  After an hour or so, remove the lantern from the water and dry it.  Rinse the tank with a small amount of kerosene to remove any remaining water.  Use an air compressor and nozzle to blow air through the air tubes from the access provided by removing the burner.  Sometimes it is necessary to swab the inside of the air tubes.  This can be done by using ball chain, (like that used on light fixtures and ceiling fans,) with a small piece of cheese cloth .  Rattle the ball chain through the air tube, then tie the piece of cheese cloth, or some other similar material, to the chain and work it back and forth inside the length of the air tube.

Keeping the air tubes clean from insects has always been a problem. There are a couple of things you can do to help prevent the problem:  Gently pry the crown support tabs up and remove the crown.  Cut and install a "disc" made of 1/8" hardware cloth, (available at your local mom and pop hardware store.)  A piece of light gauge steel wire can be used to fasten the disc to each of the four support tabs, then replace the crown.  You may also need to install a "washer" of hardware cloth under the "bell" and around the (lower) chimney to prevent insect access to the air tube inlets within the bell.

QUESTION 15:    What were the original colors used on lanterns made by Dietz?
ANSWER:  Dietz only started regularly painting their hand lanterns in 1943, when World War II forced the use of terne plate to replace tin plate. (Street Lamps, and lanterns with a dedicated purpose, such as wagon lamps, fire department lanterns, carriage lamps, etc., were painted before 1943.) Terne plate is not attractive, and not as rust resistant as tin plate, so the Dietz lanterns made from 1943 to 1949 were painted machine gray, which was replaced by metallic blue as the "standard" color. We have not found any documentation regarding original paint colors used by Dietz, however, I have talked to former longtime Dietz employees about the paint colors. It seems that no care was given to maintaining the same formula from batch to batch, which explains why there are so many different shades of Dietz "blue" on lanterns made from 1949 into the 1960's. The shades of red that Dietz used also varies, but not as much. Below I have noted the closest "off the shelf" paint matches:

Rust-Oleum #7587838 Dark Machine Gray:
Most Dietz lanterns made from late 1943 into 1948

Dupli-Color #T131 Mariner Blue:
Current Dietz Metallic Blue, (Used since the 1960's)

Value-Test Americana Red:
Current Dietz Red (Used since the 1950's)

Rust-Oleum #7765 Regal Red:
Vintage Dietz Red (Pre-1950)

Rust-Oleum #7733 Dark Hunter Green:
Dietz Pioneer, Post 1914 Imperial Square Lamps, etc.

Hammerite #41125 Hammered Dark Blue:
Japan Blue Finish used up to 1914 (Apply Very Lightly)

Hammerite #42240 Smooth Gloss Black:
Dietz Union and Motor Lamps from 1888 to 1950

Hammerite #41165 Hammered Deep Green:
C.T. Ham Metallic Green used on street lamps.
used on Street Lamps

Rust-Oleum #7443830 Caterpillar Yellow:
Dietz Night Watch  

 

ANSWERS TO QUESTION 1:

8-Day: The Dietz 8-Day Lantern was introduced in 1934, and was manufactured in two different styles.   The first version utilized a 38 oz. "Square" tank that was also used for the Dietz #15, #25, and #30 wall lanterns, and the Square Tank "Hy-Lo" lantern, as well as the #2 and #3 "Imperial" Square lamps and their predecessors.   The square tank version turns up regularly with "Empire" marked tops.  The second version was made with a 32 oz. round tank.  The rest of the lantern is made of parts common with many Dietz #39 size lanterns.  A special Fresnel (pronounced "Frah-Nell") globe was produced for the 8-Day that dimensionally is the same as the Little Wizard globe.  The square tank version was designed to hold both the 8-Day or Little Wizard globe upside down which allowed the use of the Dietz Vesta Globe right side up as well.  The later round tank version was made to hold the 8-Day Fresnel or Little Wizard globes only right side up.   Production of the Dietz 8-Day was suspended during World War 2 in the 1940's, and replaced by the Dietz Night Watch in 1950, which was produced with a modified tank common with the Streamline Monarch and Little Wizard lanterns.  The Night Watch used the same size Fresnel globe right side up.  These globes can be found marked either 8-Day or Night Watch, and are interchangeable.  When Dietz purchased the W.C. Embury Company in 1953, the Embury #40 Traffic Guard lantern was more popular than the Dietz Night Watch, hence it was discontinued shortly thereafter.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Acme:   The Dietz Acme Inspector Lamp was the most popular railroad lantern marketed for inspecting wheel bearings, journals, etc.  The Acme was also the last square tube Hot Blast lantern produced by Dietz, with production ending prior to 1960.  There are several variations of the Acme, the oldest style was introduced around 1900, and has a curved "solid" handle and a 9/16" fuel fill.  After 1912 all of the subsequent variations have a 3/4" fuel fill, and a squared off "solid" handle in addition to the bail.  A feature of the Acme is a steel reinforcement band to the outside of the air tubes.  The tooling for this lantern was destroyed after production stopped when the Dietz lantern factory in Syracuse was relocated to Hong Kong in the late 1950's.  (The pre-1897 predecessor to the Acme was the #0 Tubular Inspector Lantern.) The sister lantern to the Acme is the Beacon Dash Lamp, which was produced with the same tooling, and featured a dash board attaching clip instead of the solid handle.  Both the Acme and Beacon Dash Lamp used a 5" reflector.    C.T. Ham produced the "Empire" No. 0 Hood Car Inspectors Lantern, similar to the Acme.  When Dietz purchased the defunct C.T. Ham Co. in 1915, the tooling for the "Empire" was sold to the Star Headlight and Lantern Co. of Rochester, NY, who continued production with some modifications.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Air Pilot:  The Embury Air Pilot and Little Air Pilot were introduced shortly after Dietz introduced their streamline lanterns in 1936-38.   These lanterns used globes that were common to the D-Lite and Little Wizard.   When Dietz bought the Embury Company in 1953, the tooling for the Air Pilot lanterns was sold to a stamping company in Monterey, Mexico.   Occasionally lanterns that were made in Mexico with the old tooling show up, and can be identified by an Aztec logo on the globe and tank.  What became of the tooling or stamping company in Mexico in unknown.  Dietz sold the Embury tooling prematurely, as there was still great demand for the popular Embury lanterns made under the Air Pilot name.  This prompted the revamp of the Streamline #2 D-Lite into what became the Dietz #8 Air Pilot in 1958.  In 1970 the tooling for the  #8 Air Pilot was moved from Syracuse to Hong Kong, then subsequently to China in 1988.  The #8 Air Pilot is the only lantern still produced in the "Streamline" style, and is possibly the only item still in production originally designed by famed industrial designers Ruth Gerth and Joseph Sinel.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Beacon #30 and #60: 
The Dietz #30 and #60 Beacon Lanterns were each produced in three distinct versions.  In all versions, the #30 model used a #2 burner, while the #60 used a #3 burner.  In the #30 models an optional bulls eye could be ordered that was mounted on the globe plate.  The #60 model was not sold with a bulls eye, but did feature a 5" mercury reflector mounted behind the globe.  The oldest style was introduced in about 1898, and utilized the Charles Betts double wall chimney design which had a lift lever at the side of the top to raise the telescoping chimney section.  In about 1908 the design was revised to standardize the chimney design with the Blizzard model, replacing the lift lever with a finger ring on the top.   In about 1912 the tank for the #60 model was "modernized" with an elliptical tank, a change that would last until the end of production for the #60 in 1931.   The #30 model was "modernized" around 1915 with a design change which involved utilizing the square tank common with the square tank wall lamps and later square tank version of the 8-Day lantern.  The #30 beacon was produced up to about 1947.   Before 1916 the standard finish was japan blue with a polished reflector on both beacon models, and after it was dark green with the reflector painted white. 
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Blizzard:   The Dietz Blizzard was first introduced in 1898 as the No.2 Cold Blast , and is one of only three lanterns that has remained in continuous production for over 100 years.  (The other two are the Junior and Monarch.)  There are at least five variations of the Blizzard, not counting the Blizzard Dash Lantern, and Blizzard Mill Lanterns.  Millions of Blizzards have been produced since 1898, making it one of the most common lanterns in the world.   However, surviving Blizzards made before 1912 are fairly rare, especially in good condition.  The oldest Blizzards have a globe lift to the outside of the air tube, a brass finger ring, and a 9/16" fuel cap, making them very easy to identify.  All Blizzards made since 1912 have a 3/4" fuel cap.  Blizzards made after 1917 have both vertical and horizontal beads in the air tubes.  Copper tank and Brass Tank and Crown versions of the Blizzard were produced prior to 1938 for applications where tank corrosion was a problem.   In late 1937, the Blizzard was streamlined to reflect the Art Deco era.  Today, the modern #80 Blizzard closely resembles the large tank "Standard" Blizzard of the 1930's and '40's.  Dietz also made a #1 Blizzard that used 5/8" wick before 1914.  The #1 Blizzard is very rare, as it was an unpopular model, and was discontinued in favor of the less expensive Junior lantern.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved  
Buckeye Dash:   The Dietz Buckeye evolved from the #13 Dash Lamp made in the 1890's, and is basically the same lantern as the square tube Victor with the addition of a reflector with a rear clamp to attach it to the dashboard of a horse drawn wagon.   (The Victor was also produced in a short lived "side lamp" version for attaching to the side of a wagon.)  Where the #13 Dash Lamp had a square "Top Lift," the Buckeye had a side lift in the same style as the Victor.  The Buckeye was produced from about 1895 into the 1940's in at least 5 different variations.  The #2 size version of the Buckeye was the Dietz Royal Dash.  (Note:  The globe lift is shown on the front of the air tube for illustration purposes only, and was not actually produced as shown.)      
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved    
Comet:  The Dietz Comet lantern was introduced in 1934 for the export market in a bright tin finish, but was not officially listed in the Dietz U.S. Price List until 1950.  At 8 1/2" tall, it was the smallest cold blast lantern made by Dietz.  During  World War II when tin plate was in short supply, the Comet was produced in raw terne plate, then with gray enamel over terne plate, which around 1950 gave way to the standard enamel finishes, Red and Blue over tin plate.  (The most common finish of the 1950's was red.)  By 1955 the Comet was marketed as the Official Scout Lantern.   Patent and production dates were stamped in to the upper part of the right air tube of the Comet up to 1956.  (The production date appears as the month and year after the "S" under the patent dates.)  A variation from the 1950's that is highly desirable is The Lone Ranger version, which with the original box with graphics is valued at several times the market value of the regular model.   A battery powered "toy" version was introduced in the 1950's and 1960's, and was sold in three finishes;  Fire Engine Red, Bulldozer Yellow, and Locomotive Black, with either clear or red lacquered globes.  The battery powered version was not stamped with patent or production numbers.  Production of the Comet remained in the USA until 1970 when the last Dietz lantern production in Syracuse ceased.  The tooling was then relocated to the Dietz factory in Hong Kong that was established in 1956, and the tooling was revised with the model number "50" and "Made in Hong Kong" on the bottom of the tank.  In 1976, a Bicentennial version was produced with a black with brass trim finish, with eagle and "United States 1776-1976" decals.  The Dietz factory in Hong Kong was relocated to China in 1988, and the tooling was again revised eliminating the Hong Kong marking.      
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved  
Crescent:  The Dietz Crescent was introduced in 1912 as an economy grade version of the #2 Blizzard lantern.  To reduce its cost, it was made with smooth, un-reinforced air tubes into the 1930's.  From 1912 to 1915 the Crescent featured a slotted (bayonet) cone burner, and a globe guard common with the C.T. Ham "Safeguard" modelSales of the Crescent within the U.S.A. were suspended in 1934, and was later resumed after World War 2 material shortages subsided.  All Crescent lanterns made after 1916 use the Wing-Lock Cone #262 burner.  Originally the Crescent was only offered in a bright tin finish, but from 1931 to 1933 it was made of cheaper coke-tin.  After 1950 into the 1970's, the standard colors for the Crescent was blue or red.  The Crescent was also made for World Famous Stores of Chicago in the 1960's and early 70's in red enamel, and can be identified by the "WFS" and "No. 129" stamped into the tank.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved  
Crystal:  The Dietz Crystal was introduced around 1891.  Patent #465598 was issued to Warren McArthur for the glass fount lantern design on December 22, 1891.  The "Crystal" was produced as late as 1919 when several lantern models were discontinued post World War  1.  Over the course of about 30 years, the Crystal was produced in at least 5 variations.  All of the variations used a 9/16" fuel cap.  The first generation of Crystal lanterns were produced with a lift tab on the smoke bell, while the subsequent (post-1895)generations used a side lift, like those used on the Victor and Monarch models.  Before 1898 the Crystal used a single horizontal guard wire that was soldered in place to the air tubes.  In 1898 the more common criss-cross style guard attached to the globe plate replaced the horizontal single wire guard.  Before 1913 the Crystal was made with plain, smooth air tubes, while afterwards they were made with reinforcement beads.  Up to 1913, the globe used in the Crystal was a "No. 0 Tubular," then from 1913 to 1916 the "FITALL," and finally, the "FITZALL" type with no "Loc-Nobs."  In 1915 production codes were added beneath the patent dates located on the center air tube above the globe.  Generally, the Crystal is recognized as a #0 lantern with a #1 burner, but at some point, (most likely in the 1890's,) a #2 size version was made, perhaps as a special order.  No complete #2 versions are known to exist, and any partial or complete ones found should be considered extremely rare.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
 
D-Lite:The "D-Lite" style of lantern was first produced as the "Nu-Style" lantern by C. T. Ham in 1912, the same year Dietz introduced the "D-Lite."  Both lanterns utilized the "Short-Globe" lantern patents of Warren McArthur and his son Warren McArthur Jr., and featured a top-lift telescoping chimney, making them the most expensive hand lanterns produced for general use in their day.  The most notable feature of the McArthur design is the easy to clean globe, which has the largest apertures amongst the hand lanterns.  In 1914, the same year Dietz bought the C.T. Ham Mfg. Co., Dietz introduced a less expensive "Short Globe" lantern, the "No. 2 Wizard" with a standard side lift similar to the Dietz Blizzard.  By 1919 the similar models were merged, resulting in the modern "No. 2 D-Lite." (Note that the first generation "Top-Lift" D-Lite model was not marked "No. 2")  
The first variation of the Dietz D-Lite, (Top-Lift style,) was made from 1912 to 1919, and is easy to identify as the globe hinges to expose the burner rather than lifting.  The second variation, known as the "Standard" style was made from 1919 to 1947 with two different tank sizes, (the Large Fount version was virtually the same as the current #90 version.)  The third variation is known as the "Streamline" style, which was designed by industrial designers Ruth Gerth and Joseph Sinel, and was made from late 1937 to 1957. (The first two years of production of the Streamline style were made with an unstepped tank.)  In 1957 Dietz reworked the tooling for the "Streamline" D-Lite to create the No. 8 Air Pilot, the only real difference being the globe and steel chimney.  In 1956 when the Dietz factory was relocated to Hong Kong, the No. 2 designation was dropped on all foreign made lanterns (Blizzard, Crescent, D-Lite) that used 1" scant (7/8") wick in favor of assigned numbers to differentiate each model, (#70, #80, #90, etc.) 

Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Hy-Lo:  The Hy-Lo (stands for "High Performance-Low Price") was used extensively by contractors of public works, railroad and trolley builders, sewer and dam builders.   Dietz produced the Hy-Lo from 1912 to about 1947, and was the least expensive hot blast lantern they offered after 1912.  The most notable feature of the Hy-Lo is the "simple lift," which is just a wire loop and a thumb rest instead of a lift lever.  From 1912 to 1913 the Hy-Lo lantern was made with square air tubes.  From 1913 to 1920 the Hy-Lo lantern had un-reinforced, (smooth,) round tubes.   From 1920 to the end of production in about 1947 the Hy-Lo was produced with air tubes that have a vertical reinforcement bead only.  Most Hy-Lo lanterns had a  round tank with a flat top, however, an unmarked square tank version was also produced after 1920.  More Hy-Lo's were sold with red globes than with clear globes because of the intended application as a contractor warning lantern.  The pre-1920 and square tank versions are considerably more rare that the later models, especially in good condition.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Junior:  The Dietz Junior was introduced around 1898, and is quite possibly the most often "copied" lantern of all time.  It's compact size, and light giving ability has made it a favorite for over 100 years.  The oldest version of the Junior was made with an outside globe lift, a 9/16" fuel cap, no reinforcement beads in the air tubes, and a soldered in tank bottom.  The tank construction was quickly changed to the more reliable "double crimp" style that is still in use today.  Around 1912 the globe lift was moved to the inside of the air tube.  Since 1916, the Junior has been made with both vertical and horizontal beads in the air tubes.  Many Juniors were made for the export trade from 1910 into the 1950's with Hindi Script on the tank which translates into English as "Real Dietz - Made in America."
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved  
King Fire Dep't:   The Dietz King Fire Dep't lantern was made in two distinct versions, the more familiar style with a hinged cage was introduced in 1906, and is related to patent 864414  issued on Aug 27, 1907.  The older style was first introduced around 1900, and utilized the older "Drop-Down" cage design which is attributed to Fred Dietz' patent 395489 from January 1, 1889, which was used on the predecessor fire department lanterns in the 1890's.  The King was offered in Solid Brass, Nickel Plated over Solid Brass, and Copper Fount with Tin Frame versions.  A common variation was the Copper Fount version painted Red, either entirely, or just the frame.  All versions of the King were made with double wall constructed founts, using an inner tank wall made of dipped tin.  This type of construction insured that the fount would not leak in the event the brass or copper should crack or be damaged, something common for the softer materials.  For this reason, when holding a magnet to the fount of a King, it will attract to the inner wall made of tin.  This can be confusing when trying to determine what the fount is made of when examining a lantern that has been painted.  While it's use declined in the 1930's, the King was offered in the Dietz price lists into the 1940's, although it is believed production ceased around 1939.   Over the course of 40 years, thousands of King Fire Dep't  Lanterns were produced for fire departments all over the world, so they cannot truly be classified as a "Rare" item.  What is rare is to find the King in pristine, undamaged condition.  Even so, the King and most all fire department lanterns in any condition tend to command a high price now as they are highly desirable by both lantern collectors and retired or active firemen alike. 
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved  
Little Giant:   The Dietz Little Giant is a large tank version of the Little Wizard, and was introduced in 1927 and produced until about 1957.  It was offered with both 3/8" and 5/8" wicks.  In 1934, the fount capacity was made 3/16" shorter than the original size, reducing the fount capacity to 32 oz..  This adjustment was done so that it could be sold for the same price as the "8-Day" dead-flame lantern in an attempt to keep sales focused on the tubular model. It was standard procedure for large orders to be stamped with ownership markings to deter theft.  One of the larger users being A.T. & T., their lanterns were marked "Bell System."  The Little Giant was used primarily in the same way that battery powered barricade beacons are used today, chiefly to mark road hazards.  With a 3/8" wick, the burn time for the Dietz Little Giant is 70 hours, making it a perfect choice for continued use over a week-end without attendance.  A variation of the Little Giant is the #100 which was made in both standard and streamlined versions.  After the Dietz factory was moved to Hong Kong in 1956, the Little Giant became the No. 1 Little Wizard.  A rare variation is the yellow #110 version made for Consolidated Edison System in the 1960's in the Dietz factory in Hong Kong.  They were made with a special 3/8" burner not used on any other Dietz lantern model. 
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Little Wizard:   The Dietz Little Wizard was introduced in 1913, and is the 3/4 version of the Wizard/D-Lite models.  There are several variations of the Little Wizard, including large fount versions, Art Deco streamline versions, as well as solid brass versions.   The first, and rarest, version of the Little Wizard has air tubes that are reinforced with horizontal beads only.  After 1916, the air tubes had both horizontal and vertical beads.  (From 1931 to 1933 an economy grade version with un-reinforced air tubes was made under the name "Gem.")  The first Streamline lanterns were introduced in 1936 with an "un-beaded" tank, and differ from those made after 1938 which have a "bead" or step in the sidewall of the tank.  In the 1950's a special  large tank version was introduced that had the same size tank as the streamline Blizzard and D-Lite lanterns.   The Little Wizard was used on street barricades prior to the development of battery powered strobe flashers.   Custom imprinted lanterns were ordered for government agencies, cities and municipalities so that ownership was never in question.  The Dietz factories in Hong Kong and China still produce the 1920's version of the Little Wizard lantern on some of  the original American tooling. 
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Monarch:  The Dietz Monarch was first introduced in 1900, and has been produced in at least seven distinct variations continuously over the past 108 years.  The first and oldest style Monarch had a flat top tank, un-reinforced air tubes, and a 9/16" fuel cap.  A very rare variation of the flat fount version  is the Monarch Dash Lamp, which is similar to the Buckeye Dash Lamp. The Monarch was made with a side lift until about 1909 when Fred Dietz applied for a patent for a "Blizzard" style globe lift, similar to that used on the C. T. Ham Clipper.  Patent #1035549 was issued for the unique globe lift on August 13th, 1912, but was only used on the Monarch through 1915, coinciding with Fred Dietz' passing.  Since then it has been made with a side lift as it had originally.  It is presumed that in 1910 the flat tank was changed to a domed tank, coinciding with the addition of horizontal reinforcement beads to the air tubes, Charles Erb patent #962135.  Then, in 1912 the fuel cap size was changed from 9/16" to 3/4".  When the "Blizzard Style" globe lift was abandoned in 1915, a vertical reinforcement bead was added to the air tubes.  The 1915 version was produced into the 1940's.  Making use of the popular Art Deco designs, in 1936 Dietz modernized the "Monarch" and "Little Wizard"  with a "Streamline" design with accentuating curvesThe "Streamline" version of the Monarch is the most often seen lantern in the Hollywood Westerns of the 1940's and '50's.  The Streamlined Monarch and Little Wizard lanterns were first introduced with a "plain" fount, then were revised with a reinforced "stepped" fount in 1938.  In 1956 when Dietz relocated the lantern factory to Hong Kong, the tooling for the streamline Monarch was kept behind, so the mothballed tooling for the 1915 version of the Monarch was set up in the new factory, and is currently in use in the new Dietz factory in China.   The streamline Monarch was made into the 1960's, and is arguably the most common lantern to be found today.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Night Watch: The Dietz Night Watch lantern was introduced in 1950, and was produced until about 1956. It replaced the Dietz "8-Day" lantern designed in the 1930's, which used the same "Little Wizard" sized Fresnel globe.  The Dietz Night Watch was produced with a modified tank common with the 1936 Streamline Monarch and Little Wizard lanterns.  Both styles were used as highway barricade lanterns on roadway construction sites.  After Dietz bought the Embury Co. in 1953, production of the Embury #40 Traffic Gard continued under the Dietz name, and the less popular Night Watch was discontinued shortly thereafter.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Scout/Sport:  Tooling for the Dietz Eureka Driving Lantern was used to produce the Dietz Scout, which was first introduced in late 1920, (not earlier as the 1904 and 1914 patents might suggest.)  The Scout has at least two variations, both are somewhat rare.  The oldest and rarest has a brass model name tag soldered to the oil tank.  The more common version has "Dietz Scout" and patent information stamped into the crown, (top.)  The Scout was replaced by the "Sport" in 1923, and produced until about 1944. The Sport was almost identical to the Scout, but had changes in the manufacturing process that eliminated some soldering, thus reducing the cost of manufacture.  The predecessor to both the Scout and Sport lanterns was the Dietz "Boy," (introduced in 1879,) which was a similar lantern that used the same size globe excepting that it had retainer grooves to keep the crown in place.  The "Boy" was discontinued in 1908, and left a void only partially filled by the larger "U.S. Tin" model dead-flame lantern that was produced from 1913 to 1918-1919, prompting the development of the "Scout" after World War 1.   Dietz marketed the successor lanterns as the "Boy Scout" and "Boy Sport" even though the lanterns were not stamped with the word "Boy."   Scout lanterns are only listed as being made of unpainted bright tin, while the Sport model was listed as available in solid brass as well.  Brass models of either model are very rare.  Solid color globes for the Scout and Sport lanterns were only made in limited numbers, and are now very rare.  The globe on the Scout and Sport lanterns is removed by squeezing the vertical globe guard wires which allows the top to tilt back so that the globe can be lifted out.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved  
Traffic Gard:  The W.C. Embury Co. first introduced the dead-flame #40 Traffic Gard lantern in 1940 and marketed it specifically for use by highway contractors, utility companies, and municipalities to warn night time drivers of road hazards.  This lantern model utilized a proprietary Fresnel (pronounced "Frah-Nell") globe not used on any other lantern model.  The R.E. Dietz Co. bought Embury in 1953, and resumed production of the #40 Traffic Gard lantern under the Dietz name at least into the 1960's.  The early versions of the Traffic Gard used 1/4" round felt wick, whereas the later versions used 3/8" flat wick.   After 1956, Dietz introduced the #855 Plain globe for the Traffic Gard.  More information on the Traffic Gard can be found at the Kerosene Highway Traffic Lantern website. 
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Vesta:  There are at least four variations of the Vesta.  The oldest style was made from 1896 to 1906, and used a 5 3/8" tall #39 globe and had a removable bell bottom fount.  The 1906-1908 variation featured the proprietary 4 1/4" tall Vesta Globe, which quickly evolved into the more familiar wire cage version that stood 11" tall.  This version was produced until 1927.  After 1927 the final version was the short Vesta and was 10" tall.  The Dietz Vesta was last produced as late as 1957, coinciding with the relocation of the New York factory to Hong Kong.  For the most part the Dietz Vesta was regarded as a railroad lantern, however, in the solid brass version it was also sold as a deck lantern for marine use, some being marked "Navy Standard Deck Lantern."   Solid brass Vesta lanterns were also produced as retirement gifts for railroad men.   It should also be mentioned that the Vesta was the only Cold Blast signal hand lantern made for railroad hand signaling use.  The New York Central Railroad was one of the largest users of  the Dietz Vesta.  Vesta's marked NYCS are the most common of all Vesta lanterns found today.
Copyright © 1997 - 2011   W.T. Kirkman  All Rights Reserved
Victor:  The Dietz "Side Lift" that was introduced around 1890, was also produced as the "Victor starting in about 1895.   After the fire of 1897, the name "Side Lift" (which refers to the globe lift lever located on the air tube,) was dropped and the name "Victor" was used exclusively.  All variations of the Victor will take a "Fitzall" globe, however, the earlier models (Pre-1913,) were sold with either the "Fitall" or No. 0 Hot Blast globe.  The oldest version of the Victor has a flat top oil tank with an offset 9/16" brass fuel cap, and a single wire globe guard that is soldered to the air tubes and runs around the circumference of the widest part of the globe.  From 1898 on the fuel cap was centered, not offset.  Around 1907 a domed tank version was introduced to help shed rain water, and to eliminate labor steps in manufacturing.   In 1912, the Victor was updated again with the introduction of the modern 3/4" cap. Sales of the Victor in the U.S.A. were suspended in 1934  In the course of 40+ years of production, there are at least 7 distinct variations of the Victor.  All Victors have a #1 burner and use 5/8" wick. (Note:  The globe lift is shown on the front of the air tube for illustration purposes only, and was not actually produced as shown.)
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Wizard: In 1912, both R.E. Dietz and C.T. Ham introduced a new "Short Globe" lantern that was designed by Warren McArthur Jr., son of W. McArthur Sr., exclusive United States sales manager for both Dietz and Ham, and the man with the distinction of having sold more tubular lanterns than anyone else, even to date.  Both of the new lanterns were unique in that the top telescoped and the globe then tilted back to access the burner.  The Ham Style was known as the "Nu-Style," and the Dietz style was known as the "D-Lite." Both used the same sized 4 3/4" tall "Short Globe."  Shortly thereafter in 1914, Dietz introduced a traditional styled lantern called the "Wizard," as well as a 3/4 version called the "Little Wizard."  In 1914, Dietz also purchased their chief competitor, the C.T. Ham Company, and production of Ham lanterns ceased subsequently.  The top lift "D-lite" was the most expensive lantern, made by Dietz, and really offered no more benefits than it's less expensive counterpart the "Wizard," so in 1919 the Dietz top lift "D-Lite" was discontinued, and the Dietz "Wizard" was re-named "D-Lite."  The reason for renaming the "Wizard" with the name "D-Lite" is obvious only to collectors and dealers, as even today people often drop the "Little" in "Little Wizard," causing problems when placing an order for replacement parts, etc.  Two short lived versions of the Wizard were also made, the Wizard Inspector Lantern and Wizard Fire Dept' Lanterns.  Another rare variation is the Wizard Wagon Lamp/Lantern.
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