Some time ago I got a Dietz Warm-it-up Lantern for my Oh-Shyte supplies, figuring it would be a source of light and possibly for warming up a tin of soup or stew now and again. I have a few old made in America lanterns and they are high quality and well made. Now I know that they are made in China and I didn’t know quite what to expect.
Removing it from the box it is a large lantern of a dark green color with brass making for a striking look. A safety feature on the new lamps is a feature the puts the fire out if the lamp is knocked over instead of leaking and setting your house our campsite aflame. I tested this only once as fuel leaks out but as promised the fire went out within ten seconds. I like this feature and it is best if it isn’t ever tested in the real but it worked for me. The lamp came with a wire top that replaces the top cover and acts like the cook top. Fitting in this is the included aluminum cup and lidded pot.
Leaving work it was rather cold with far worse headed on for the night, I decided to have chicken and sausage gumbo by Campbell’s warmed to see if this lantern would actually heat it, besides I am not a huge fan of aluminum cookware. So that night when I got home I put my portable table together and set the lamp out and put flame to wick and watched the dark being driven back by the burning fuel evaporating from the wick. The wire top had to be bent a bit with pliers to make it lock into the slots correctly, that was easily accomplished, and it is a design error that should be corrected to make the product easier to assemble. After things were rebent to fit it locks solidly into three slots in the top of the lantern where the cap twists in. It is my suggestion to put the cook ring on when the lantern is not hot or it will take gloves. The lantern will get hot enough to leave nasty blisters.
The eighteen oz. can of soup was heated on an evening that was 15 degrees and it took less than an hour to bring it up to uncomfortablely warm to eat. It was steaming and simmering a small amount. To tell the truth I didn’t think it would heat that much soup in that tempeture, I got rather a surprise as it got it nicely warm. My next test was a cup of tea in the house; I used the aluminum pot filled with water and a bit of good English black chai tea. In less than 15 minutes it had the bottom of the pot covered in fine bubbles and the water had turned a dark colour and smelled of chai. Pouring it into the stainless mule mug my sister got me I set another cup brewing, while I enjoyed the first brew up. All in all even with the ill fitting piece I rather like this Dietz lantern, a rework of the cooking ring and an upgrade to a stainless cup and pot would make this a much better value to the prepper.
Having a source of light that can provide a meal and a heat source all in one is a good thing. Even with the few flaws I would suggest that you consider this lantern and lamp oil for a spot in your preparations. Be ready and stay alive.
Price on Amazon: 38.00
Light output: 9 candlepower
Burn time: 23 hours on 17 ounces of fuel
Wick: 5/8 inch
Heat output: aprox. 1100 BTU
Height: 15.5 in.
Width: 6.5 in.
Weight: 2.6 lbs.