Zippo/Case International Swapmeet, 2004
"Where collectors connect"
July 16 - 18, 2004 Bradford, Pa, USA  
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Click on thumbnails for larger image
 10 piece puzzle set
Front : " "Because it works" 
- words that started a reinvention of a simple Austrian lighter,
that became the Zippo puzzle.
In the early 1930's,from a small room on top of a garage in Bradford,Pa.,
the first Zippo was well crafted.
Mr George G. Blaisdell,it's inventor,believed that one should
".... Build your product with integrity .... stand behind it 100% and success will follow",
& success most surely did follow.
Just over 70 years later,on September 3,2003,the 400 millionth Zippo
found it's place in the Zippo museum - a little changed in specifics,
but identical in spirit & lifetime guarantee.
What made this so loved & collected worldwide?
Let the puzzle begin ...." 
Back : "Was it because of the constant reliability of it's flame & mechanism
.... the subtle changes that took place over the years 
.... the high esteem they held on the battlefields 
.... it's use in advertising and the historical document they've become?
Is it how they seem to acquire a special place in people's hearts
as a keeper of memories
or because they are such a perfect canvas for miniature artworks?
.... Or is it because of the distinctive sound of the Zippo click
.... the special sense of family amongst it's employees & collectors?
.... it's hard to say,because the puzzle continues to ignite a global passion 
.... and one thing is for sure - if it's a Zippo,it works."
Photos courtesy of Steve Mahon
A glass Zippo marble that
Martine crafted
into an enormous, & heavy,
silver ring.
Martine relaxing after having successfully reached  Zippo HQ with the hired "car" used to drive down to Zippo from
Niagara Falls, NY, USA
- an enormous piece of steel
& more than enough to cart
two bedazzled foreigners
the 120km to Zippo heartland.
Floored by the terazzo Zippo on the floor of Head Office in Barbour St.
First ever public art department tour & in the first group to go through alongside noted Zippoheads - Gary Whyman, Dana Baumgartner & the Ryans.
Oversize Zippos at the top of the stairs to the Art Department bearing famous Zippo family initials - GGB (Mr Blaisdell) & his 2 daughters.
Old pantograph engraving machine - one of Zippo's employees demonstrates how artwork was reduced by a factor of 9 from the cardboard art onto a brass engraving plate.
The brass plate was then moved to where the cardboard was & the design was reduced by a factor of 9 directly onto the Zippo
Close up of brass plate
Modern computer assisted design - here an employee is working with a design that was originally used on a Japan release Zippo
Zippo (R)

"in all things be passionate"