Petromax 500CP vs Butane lantern lumen output?

Discussion in 'Open Forum' started by Adrian, Nov 7, 2019.

  1. Adrian Romania

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    Hi everyone,
    Found the forum while googling for an answer to the question in the title (strictly from a practical standpoint). I hope I'm not perpetrating some sort of sacrilege (I fully understand both the classic nature of the pressure lamps AND it seems clear that for long term use no sane person would consider a butane lantern). However, I need something that can be used by a not-so-technically-inclined lady in a grab-and-use situation but sadly the butane lanterns we tried fall short in terms of lumen output. D batteries are expensive and relatively hard to come by where she lives, plus the cheaper ones tend to have shorter shelf life, unlike a canister of kerosene :mrgreen:.
    Now, I've used Petromax lanterns back in the 90's while doing military service and I remember them being definitely brighter but memory is a funny thing. The butane lanterns we tried (3 different models, all dirt cheap, based on C200 disposable cartridges) are much weaker then a 60W bulb therefore unusable.
    Did anyone saw anywhere on the internet a side by side video between a 500CP Petromax/clone and one of these lanterns?
    The butane lanterns would fit the bill in term of easy use and cheap fuel (C200 cartridge is about 1.20$ locally and lasts a good 5-6 hours) and kerosene is also widely available. Couldn't find any multi-mantle butane lantern. Petromax clones are easy to come by (35-40$) but of unknown quality.
    thanks in advance for your help.
     
  2. JEFF JOHNSON

    JEFF JOHNSON United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Welcome aboard!:thumbup:

    Other members may be able to advise you about those butane or propane gas lanterns.
     
  3. JonD

    JonD Subscriber

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    No 500CP pressure lamp is exactly grab and use like butane. Preheating is always needed. If it plays up you have to prick it or re-prime maybe even tear down and fettle.

    But...a butane lamp of the required lumen output will really eat the gas canisters. You are in small caravan tank territory to get a useful lifetime at 500CP out.

    I would solve this with an Aladdin wickie but then I'm being a heretic most likely.
     
  4. Adrian Romania

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    Thanks for the input. Sadly Aladdin-style lamps (wick+mantle) are all but impossible to find in this part of the world. It's clear that a Petromax-style lamp is way more difficult to use but the butane lanterns we tested were pathetic in terms of candle power.
     
  5. JonD

    JonD Subscriber

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    OK well I do know in Czech (Prague) there are centre draught wick lamps to be found. They don't equal the Aladdin mantle type but they beat Butane hands down...

    Picture of an Aladdin below.

    IMG_0125.jpg

    Here is a small centre draught one with a 6''' burner. They go much larger to 14''' and 20'''.
    Beware this one looks brighter than it is - some outside help. It doesn't light the table that much.

    IMG_0112.jpg
     
  6. Adrian Romania

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    Yes, I know them, but IMO they don't make much more light then butane lantern. (small ones, like that in the picture) I'm looking for something fuel based that would be equivalent to a 60W incandescent bulb and easy to use. If there's no such thing I'm trying to figure whether a Petromax 500CP clone would be clearly better then two butane lanterns.
     
  7. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    G'day @Adrian and welcome to CPL.
    I agree with Jon D regarding the suitability of butane to supply the light output you require.
    A Propane (LPG ) lantern might suite your requirements better.
     
  8. Adrian Romania

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    Thanks for the welcomes guys :)

    I probably need to elaborate a bit on the situation: the lamp(s) would be used in a remote rural location where power outages are not frequent but take a relatively long time to sort out by the power company. The only canisters widely available in that area are butane disposable C200 type, which are also dirt cheap (being generally used by plumbers and so on, all hardware shops carry them). Kerosene/paraffin is also widely available.
    So it's either butane lantern(s) or some sort of kerosene lamp with a tank/reservoir. The lady is an elderly relative with no particular technical inclination, she would have no problem learning to use a Petromax but I feel that if it takes a year or more before she actually needs to use it things may go south so to speak.
    A couple of nice looking Aladdin mantle lamps would probably be ideal but short of getting them from ebay I have no source.
     
  9. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Aladdin lamps are ok but the mantles for them are really expensive and they're fragile as heck. I'd stick with the Petromax plan or maybe a clone like an Anchor if you can find one cheaper. I'm sure the lady will learn to light a kerosene lantern very quickly as it's really not so hard. Also, maybe she could have a cheap butane lantern on standby ready for emergencies that will provide illumination to get the Petromax lit.

    I'd suggest a Coleman fuel lantern for instant light but they're more expensive to run and more dangerous, particularly for someone who isn't used to keeping them maintained.
     
  10. Adrian Romania

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    For 40$ I can buy a Chinese Petromax clone (a brand called EvoTools, no clue which Chinese company is the actual manufacturer) but I have no clue about build quality. (can't be impressive at this price). Still that would be a last resort.
    How a bout the butane double mantle lanterns? Is the light output decent?
     
  11. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    I can't find the EvoTools lantern but it's probably either an Anchor or a Sea Anchor. Anchor are ok, Sea Anchor not so much! If you're ok checking it over and getting it running for her then fine, if not wait for a second hand Petromax, but you'll still need to check it for her before she takes it over.

    Another lantern you might consider is a Tilley 246 Guardsman (but not a 246b!). They're robust, very easy to use, simple to fix and spares are easy to get. They run on kerosene so they're safe and they're a bit less likely to topple as they're not so tall.
     
  12. JonD

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    I don't think it's a 500CP you need. They far exceed 60W equivalent and they are noisy on full blast. Throttling back is possible but a 300CP will much easier to tame and a full tank of fuel
    will last longer. It's only a question of swapping the jet and needle.

    That is a 500 going well. It would be too much indoors - I would be scared of it there!


    IMG_0262.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
  13. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    In which case a Tilley might be a good option as they are only 300cp maximum. In the UK they can be found relatively cheap as well - not sure of the prices in Romania. Maybe you can find a Petromax 828 300cp or an Optimus 300P?
     
  14. Adrian Romania

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    The Petromax clone that can be purchased locally looks like this, maybe someone can identify it Petromax_evotools.jpg

    Fount base appears to be welded without any additional stamping and overlapping (not sure I'm using the correct English terms here).
     
  15. WimVe

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    No picture, or video can show you the diffrence. Although it semmingly looks like that.
    I once had a conversation with neil about this and made a webpage about light measuring. because that is what you are talking about.
    As for fast easy use: forget pressure lanterns.
     
  16. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    LED lanterns are becoming very good and also pretty cheap. Because they use minimal power, the battery life is excellent and they provide instant light.
     
  17. MarkC

    MarkC Subscriber

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    You need something like this. An old Tilley table lamp and a repro Taiwan shade
    20191108_170017.jpg
     
  18. Adrian Romania

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    That would perfectly fit :)
    About the LED lanterns the problem lies with the availability of D-cells in that area and with their abysmal shelf life. She had some new sets bought by me to use in a Varta LED lantern, when the incident happened she found them leaked in their blister after less then two years in storage.
     
  19. bp4willi

    bp4willi Germany Subscriber

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    @Adrian
    What you need is a Truma Lantern with hose and 5 or 11 kg propane bottle
    See
    Truma Propan/Butan 500-600cp - Pelam.de Forum

    Plenty of light. Comparable 500cp

    Those were used by telecom installation engineers here in Germany. Or other craftsmen , that needed to work in areas without electric light.
     
  20. Adrian Romania

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    Thanks, awesome suggestion. Combines the lighting power of a Petromax with the ease to use of the propane/butane lanterns :) Let's see if I can get my hands on one.
     
  21. kero-scene

    kero-scene Subscriber

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    If the Lady is not technically minded I’d be considering a 12v 7ah sealed lead acid battery kept charged with a trickle charger from the mains, and a string of LEDs off eBay.

    With this she will have enough light to read a book for hours until the mains is back on, and the battery should work for 5-7years.
     
  22. JonD

    JonD Subscriber

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    Seeing the Truma has reminded me of some UK lamps which are similar and were used by work gangs in the water companies etc.
    Search for Bullfinch. Beware some are much sought after by interior decorators so prices have rocketed.
     
  23. Adrian Romania

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    Thanks, both suggestions are good. I'm leaning towards finding something like the Truma/Bullfinch with a pleasant enough aspect and making a permanent installation near her propane stove in the kitchen.
     
  24. paparazi

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    Detachable Solar panels with LED lights....really there are dozens of very affordable options that perhaps don't give 60watts but can be dotted about the place to give very usuable/instant and safe light at around £18 for two. Built in re-chargable batteries so absolutely no running cost once purchased.
    He is one I found but I'm sure that there are many options if you start looking.
    2x 10LED Garage Shed Light Fr Garden Outdoor Security Solar Powered Rechargeable | eBay

    Martin
     
  25. paparazi

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  26. WimVe

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    Well I guess that aliexpress has more then enough.
    On to kerosene/gasoline pressure lanterns again.
     
  27. Adrian Romania

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    Martin, thanks for the advice but those don't come anywhere close tho the equivalent of a 60W bulb. They are OK to see enough to be able to grab a shovel from the garage, but reading something longer then a few words would be out of the question. And all that setup depends on ni-mh small rechargeable batts which die after a few months due to the cycle use.
    A real solar setup involves a real panel, a real inverter and a relatively expensive gel battery. Those small Chinese setups are gizmos to have fun with.
     
  28. Marc

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    If she has a propane stove, is there a reason a propane lantern wouldn't work?
     
  29. paparazi

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    I actually started my reply, first thinking of a 12 volt solar panel and an everyday 12 volt car battery..it seems to me that going this route you could truly get the power you are after, the 'longevity' with the benefits of instant light and safety. I agree that the cheap Chinese panels and lights wouldn't be particularly bright and the batteries short lived. However, buying a relatively smallish 20 - 40 watt solar panel, a cob led, cheap charge controller and you'll easily exceed your 60 watt equivalent output you're looking for. Some bell wire, pull switch. The panel fixed outside on a roof, the battery and charge controller in an out building and a length of wire run through to the switch and lamp.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2019
  30. bp4willi

    bp4willi Germany Subscriber

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    I thought forum topic is mantle lanterns etc.
    Not LED.
    That's a different forum.
     

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