Kruger’s Zippo Remote

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Inspired by the detonator in the Captain America: The First Avenger movie, [Jon] modified a normal Zippo lighter to activate a relay on a receiver module. His instructables shows how to create such a device by adjusting the insert in such a way that if someone flipped it open, all they would see would be a flint wheel, flint, wick, and all that stuff; nothing would be abnormal. In order to do this, the components would have to be perfectly concealed.

To acquire a remote signal, [Jon] used the whole metal case as an antenna instead of replacing the wick with one. An antenna pin on an RF module was attached to the insert to get the necessary effect. The flint wheel was then turned into a button and a notification LED was installed. Once the code was uploaded and a receiver module was fashioned together, the end product produced a flash of sparks on the other end.

This hack was made for educational use, and is only meant for demonstration purposes.

Comments

  1. Hirudinea says:

    So what your saying is if I see someone suspicious with a zippo I should just shoot him? Gotcha!

    • Tony says:

      Well, yes.

      They could be a terrorist, or even worse a smoker. Suspicion alone is good cause for a shooting.

      Possibly a hipster being ironic, but you’d already have opened fire after being enraged by the sight of their fixie.

      (Gah, fixies. The only thing more useless is the rider.)

  2. Don says:

    As long as he did not Ki** any pet dinosaurs, there is no problem.

  3. strider_mt2k says:

    Interesting hack!
    Thanks for posting it!

  4. RandyKC says:

    I love most of the hacks I see here, but I don’t have any warm fuzzy feelings about this one. The tech is normal, the camo is what this has going for it. But what gives me the cold pricklies is detailing it out. Do we need this on HAD? No, IMO

    • Voice of Reason says:

      I for one shudder to think what would happen if such a hack were to fall in the wrong hands. If I saw my neighbor assembling such a thing I would immediately notify the FBI, just to be on the safe side.

      • huh interesting says:

        sarcasm, right? I should get my detector replaced.

      • Z00111111 says:

        Your paranoia is unfounded. Terrorists don’t need to go to this much trouble to make a remote detonator. In civilised countries, it’s obtaining enough explosives or weapons to launch a terror attack that raise the red flags and get people caught.

        This lighter hack would make a totally hipster keyless entry/ignition mod. Even keyfobs must be too mainstream/not ironic enough.

        • Greenaum says:

          It is fairly ironic that the Americans worry about this bloke constructing a radio transmitter. With easily-obtained explosives, that could be used to make a bomb!

        • Whatnot says:

          I once heard from a Canadian that in Canada you have to be 18 to buy a lighter.. my jaw fell open.

          Anyway, you are safe from ‘underage’ lighters from Canadian evildoers at least :)

      • wmatl says:

        Your are obviously kidding or totally oblivious to what is available at your local electronics store. I am going with sarcasm that’s the most logical explanation. use a ;) next time it’ll give us a clue.

    • barry99705 says:

      Your tinfoil hat is on too tight.

    • WhatCenturyIsThis? says:

      Knowledge isn’t what stops people from doing bad things it’s morals. Should we also censor articles on wireless communication because it can be used for “bad” things. Why don’t you go burn some books instead of asking for unnecessary censorship here.

    • Pablo says:

      *or* bombers could use what they have been using for years: cellphones and casio watches. This is a lot of work to do something secret, but fiddling with a lighter is more suspicious than fiddling with a cellphone.

  5. koolaid says:

    Common guys, it’s not like we live in some medieval time where there are actual people wishing to do harm, heads on spikes in town center, beheadings, etc. What could possibly go wrong.

  6. Rioexxo says:

    ug
    NSA will be knocking….

  7. Ty Tower says:

    Try adding about 1/4 inch to the cut antenna. Maybe stick a paperclip in beside the wire ans insulation the cut it at 1/4 inch longer. You will be surprised by the distance gained in reception range.

    No facility to just make an easy comment on your site.

  8. Tom the Brat says:

    Hmm. Found a zippo in a cool black case while on my walk a few months ago. Thought “I could make something cool out of this.” Well, maybe not that. Too bad he didn’t show us the works he fit inside the lighter.

    • Greenaum says:

      Transmiters vary, but a short-range simple one, using just carrier-wave, can be made with 1 transistor and 3 or 4 passive components. Reciever not much more complex.

      Of course it depends on how much reliability you need, against both false negatives and false positives. Especially the latter if you’re attaching it to bits of flaming sparking cord.

      Apart from that there’s the 433MHz modules, low-rate short-range simple digital transmitters / receivers for about $5. Lots of stuff to do with radio. You can even try gutting cheap RC cars, there’s loads of them about.

      An electronics kit, a really really rubbish over-priced corner-cutting one (“Tree of Knowledge I think, made on a kibbutz in Israel. Is it a sin to rip off kids?) which I had as a kid, used for it’s radio transmitter a simple hand-wound coil connected to a small capacitor. To transmit just connect it to a battery for a brief moment. Wouldn’t do continuous transmission, just pulses, and probably really inaccurate noisy ones. But it performed it’s cheap and half-arsed purpose.

      • Whatnot says:

        Talking of false positives, why don’t they ever use the randomness of radio interference as random number generator I wonder. Seems like a quick and easy way, and within a computer for instance even inside metal boxes there should be plenty of noise in the right frequencies.

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