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Friday, January 2, 2009

Cola Can & Oil Emergency Lamp

In the winter time it seems like we have more power outages. Hopefully , we are all prepared with food, flashlights, water, etc , but what if this power outage is a long one? So what do you do when this happens and you need light?
You can make this simple oil lamp for long term outages. The parts needed for this can be found in most every home.
An empty aluminum cola can, an old cotton sock, and about a tablespoon of cooking oil are all you need.
First stab an empty cola can in the middle and cut around the circumference until you cut the can completely in half. Make sure to se a pair of gloves to hold the cut can, because the metal is very sharp. Use the bottom half of the cola can, and cut half inch deep slits spaced each half inch along the circumference of the can. Fold over to make a safe rim along the edge. Now take the top half of the can and work the pull tab off the top by pulling up and side to side. You can throw the top half of the can in the recycle bin, because you do not need it. Next cut a one inch by 3/8" slip of material from the old sock. Roll the material into a thick rope and feed it into the pull tab attachment hole. Pull through about half an inch so it sticks up while the pull tab rests upside down. Now pour a cap full of cooking oil into the bottom of the can. Place the upside down pull tab with the wick in the middle of the can and drape the cotton wick so it pulls the oil from the edge of the can. The length of the wick pulled through the tab hole will determine the height of the flame. A good quarter inch of wick will give a good flame with virtually no smoke. Now you can light the wick and it should last about three to four hours with each tablespoon or so of corn oil.


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