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Thread: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

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    Default Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    I am looking for a new lantern for camping. It will sit on the table or sometimes be hung up in tree. I want to light a area of about 50 + feet. What is recomended these days?
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    Flashaholic* Scottiver's Avatar
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    You can't go wrong with the good old trusty Coleman two mantle electric start propane lantern.
    http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colem...ategoryid=1010

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Yep. Stick with a gas or liquid-powered lantern for your stated purpose. I have some River Rock AA lanterns that I'd use for tent camping but would rely on my trusty Coleman, twin-mantle, gas-powered lantern for illuminating a much larger area.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Surely we can do better than that here on CPF!

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    If by "better" you mean dimmer, battery powered, not meeting the 50 + foot requirement, and using LEDs, than yes, I suppose "better" solutions will be offered...

    Otherwise, I challenge the forum to offer a better solution than a gas lantern. The colemans are a good value, but there are smaller options too from other manufacturers.

    Of course the OP doesn't mention a weight, cost or size limit, so I suppose a Honda EU1000i generator driving a pair of 400 W Metal Halide lamps, might be better
    Last edited by brickbat; 12-27-2007 at 05:00 PM.
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Is the Petromax worth the money? Is a Coleman just as good? Any other brands or models?
    Who makes the brightest lantern?
    Dana

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Coleman, for a variety of -balanced- reasons.

    *ease of use, decades of product lines and parts
    *ease of maintenance
    *fuel and supplies (mantles, globes, etc) can be found literally worldwide
    *dual-fuel white gas models are great to have to double for a home emergency preparedness kit. Seriously, long term power outtage, you're still gonna find small amounts of gasoline easily. and yeah, it runs for a while on a snapple-bottle's worth of gas.
    *Their propane models just plain work. screw a tank on, and light it. you break the mantles, tie a fresh pair (found in any sporting goods store, #21's) and they work. For added sanity, keep a fresh package taped to the bottom of your tank base.

    I have a dual-mantle Dual-fuel Powerhouse Coleman and love it. Bought about 3 years ago, just changed the mantles out this fall....Have gone through about 2 gallons of White gas on it, lasting dozens of evenings in the back-yard hang-outs and barbeques.

    For about 10 years as a kid, I had a 1-mantle propane. That thing was pretty bright, and I'd get through 2 nights of camping on a single tank, using it about 4-5 hours a night.
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by craigberesh View Post
    I am looking for a new lantern for camping. It will sit on the table or sometimes be hung up in tree. I want to light a area of about 50 + feet. What is recomended these days?
    Also Craig,

    If you're gonna use it often, meaning more than just 3-4 times a year, consider the white gas ones.... They're a tad finicky, but the fuel is really cheap, and you can use regular gasoline in an emergency as long as it's a dual-fuel model.

    Even though coleman is pimping their newer models with the single-tube mantle (pinnacle and northstar - yes, they are brighter as per forum guru Blacklight), the dual-tube ones that take #21 size mantles can be found and bought everywhere. Chances are, if you're camping and need a mantle, if there's -anyone- else camping around you they probably have a few spare #21 with them. Not to diss the new model mantles, but I've only seen them on the shelves of one local sporting goods joint, in the 6 that are around here locally. They're also $5 each, as compared to 2 for $2ish for the #21 size mantles.

    If you're only gonna use it a couple of times a year, the propane ones are about as maintenance free as possible. All you have to do is worry about mantles. Seriously...they just -work-.

    Important...old boyscouts trick for the propane ones....when you get spare cylinders, and aren't gonna use them immediately...take the cap off and rub a bit of oil into the threads of the cylinder with a rag or paper towel. Sometimes the steel threads are a bit exposed or not painted...the oil will keep the threads from rusting if kept in longterm storage, and help a tad when screwing on and seating the cylinder.
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Thanks Valhalla
    Looking at the Coleman site, the Powerhouse looks good and as you said, uses a standard mantle. I donít need the electronic ignition as I am an oldtimer. I can even use the models that need a pre-heat.
    I may, in the tradition of CPF, buy em both then I can report on the Petromax.

    Iím not to sure about what you said about greasing the threads of the cylinder. I seem to remember never to use oils on pressured cylinders.
    Dana

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    yeah, me too, but I've had more of a problem with threads rusting and then leaking a bit because of it. I don't grease it up, just wipe it with literally just a drop of 10w30.

    I usually buy 6-10 cylinders at a time, anytime they're on super-sale, less than $2 each. I usually catch one of those about every 2 years. only go through a couple a year, usually during power outtages.
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    Flashaholic* Alan B's Avatar
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    The threads of propane bottles are not part of the seal, merely a mechanical attachment. Propane is low pressure, and already a flammable gas, so I don't think lubing the threads is going to be a problem (high pressure gases and lube can be a problem).

    If you want to use LEDs, they work great in headlamps. Much more efficient than lighting up the whole area.

    LED lanterns just have not approached the output of hot-mantle devices yet...
    Last edited by Alan B; 02-16-2009 at 09:03 PM.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Yeah Sunspot,

    The Powerhouse one has been good to me so far; it is supposedly 25% brighter or something along those lines as a standard coleman whitegas dual-mantler, but it does use more gas. But whatever, I can always turn it down if I need to, and then it lasts just as long. Seriously, if you're only gonna buy one lantern to have around, it's fit the bill for me.

    Also, was over at one of my buddy's house a month or so ago...I had given him a Coleman propane dual mantler for his birthday last summer for use in his backyard during bbq's and beer pong. It's about as bright as the white gas powerhouse, but I forgot how loud the tank-hiss was on those dual-mantle propane ones on high. Not that it was a big deal, but if I had to ever use it close by for long periods of time, it'd get annoying. Once that dually white gas is warmed up, it's pretty quiet. Surges a bit and pops the first few minutes, but you probably know that. Just the generator getting warmed up.

    Oh yeah, one thing over the LED lanterns; you can't beat the amount of mosquitoes killed at the bottom of them at the end of the night.
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by sunspot View Post
    Thanks Valhalla
    Looking at the Coleman site, the Powerhouse looks good and as you said, uses a standard mantle. I donít need the electronic ignition as I am an oldtimer. I can even use the models that need a pre-heat.
    I may, in the tradition of CPF, buy em both then I can report on the Petromax.

    Iím not to sure about what you said about greasing the threads of the cylinder. I seem to remember never to use oils on pressured cylinders.
    GET THE ELECTRIC START!!!!!!

    I am an old time camper too. NOTHING beats just turning it on. Like a light switch.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Yeah, can't go wrong with a fueled lantern. Propane is about 15% brighter, on a comparable lantern than white gas. A dual manatal white gas lantern is in the neighborhood of 800 lumens, I think the power house when tested was closer to 1000, but because of the nature of the light, its hard to get exact, repeatable results. a standard two mantle propane lantern sstarts out at a little over 1000 lumens, and gos up from there ,w ith the Pinnacle being about 1600 lumens. I like white gas because it is so economical to run. if you get a dual fuel model you can run unleaded gas in it if you need to as well.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by ValhallaPrime View Post
    Yeah Sunspot,

    The Powerhouse one has been good to me so far; it is supposedly 25% brighter or something along those lines as a standard coleman whitegas dual-mantler, but it does use more gas. But whatever, I can always turn it down if I need to, and then it lasts just as long. Seriously, if you're only gonna buy one lantern to have around, it's fit the bill for me.

    Also, was over at one of my buddy's house a month or so ago...I had given him a Coleman propane dual mantler for his birthday last summer for use in his backyard during bbq's and beer pong. It's about as bright as the white gas powerhouse, but I forgot how loud the tank-hiss was on those dual-mantle propane ones on high. Not that it was a big deal, but if I had to ever use it close by for long periods of time, it'd get annoying. Once that dually white gas is warmed up, it's pretty quiet. Surges a bit and pops the first few minutes, but you probably know that. Just the generator getting warmed up.

    Oh yeah, one thing over the LED lanterns; you can't beat the amount of mosquitoes killed at the bottom of them at the end of the night.
    Is this the Powerhouse model you're refering to?

    http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colem...ategoryid=1015

    I've been contemplating a nice latern and have only dealt with propane in the past. I do know that if the dual fuel models are really quiet that seals the deal for me. I do like the availabilty of propane, but for as much as I'd use it the extra cost for a dual fuel is worth it to me. Sounds odd eh? But I've always been annoyed by that whooshing sound.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    I would agree with the folks here advocating the Coleman liquid fuel lanterns. I have a 32 year old dual fuel that still works (with proper maintenance of course). I also have the Coleman Northstar liquid fuel which I find a little more user friendly. All good!

    By the way, the noise from a Coleman liquid fuel lantern kinda sounds like a hiss/gurgle. You get used to it and it is a comforting sound. They also keep your campsite lit for most of the light.

    Good luck on your search!
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by kantonburg View Post
    Is this the Powerhouse model you're refering to?

    http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colem...ategoryid=1015

    I've been contemplating a nice latern and have only dealt with propane in the past. I do know that if the dual fuel models are really quiet that seals the deal for me. I do like the availabilty of propane, but for as much as I'd use it the extra cost for a dual fuel is worth it to me. Sounds odd eh? But I've always been annoyed by that whooshing sound.
    Yeah, that's the one I have. It's been great

    It is quite a bit quieter than the propane ones, especially on about 3/4 brightness....just have to remember to pump it a couple of times every few hours. As for availability of propane, white gas (naptha) is almost as common, and easier to truck around. I have a couple of 22oz MSR fuel bottles that I keep filled. Each one is about 3/4's of a tank on the above-linked one, and realistically is about 6 hours on high, or a whole night till dawn's worth, throttled down a bit. One additional extra bonus vs. propane is that you're not throwing away (or recycling) a big ole steel cylinder each time.

    When I was a kid in scouts, I was scared of the white gas ones, because of the extra steps in fueling it and lighting it. Now, it seems easy, and for the cheap convenience, it's fine. We use ours once a week in the summer for backyard beer-drinkin' and grilling lighting, and a one-gallon can (~$6) lasts all summer, in the 3-5 hours spurts each week. At the end of the night, we crank it up to high, and can see all the bottlecaps and bottles and such for clean-up. Idled on about 3/4's it's still a lot of light, and eats mosquitoes like crazy.

    Yes, more of a quiet gurgle. Gets a bit louder as it's running out of juice....last 20 mins or so. The dual fuel option is only a couple of bucks more, and might come in handy in an emergency. I've heard that it can start gumming up after a dozen or so tanks on regular unleaded though. Although, a dozen or so tanks is a lot of nights of light in an emergency.
    Last edited by ValhallaPrime; 01-04-2008 at 02:09 AM.
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Well the dual fuel sounds awesome. To be honest I don't even know if my local Wally World sells the dual fuel. I know they carry the propane models.

    I know this may be a stupid question, but what is the main difference between the Powerhouse model and the regular model besides the 25% brightness difference?
    Last edited by kantonburg; 01-04-2008 at 12:47 PM.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Check out the globe on this http://cgi.ebay.com/COLEMAN-290-THE-...QQcmdZViewItem eBay item. I've never seen this and it looks like a great idea.
    Dana

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by sunspot View Post
    Check out the globe on this http://cgi.ebay.com/COLEMAN-290-THE-...QQcmdZViewItem eBay item. I've never seen this and it looks like a great idea.
    Wow I almost want to own that one because it's over 20 years old.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    oh wow! I haven't seen one of those frosted globes in about 15 years. I used to get that for my old 1-mantle propane years and years ago. Man, the goons I used to camp with would find a way to break my globe like every 2-3 camping weekends. The frosted one was good for picnic table-level placement, it wasn't as harsh on the eyes, which were usually right level with the mantles when sitting. It used to be only like $1 more for the frosted. Haven't seen them for sale in ages though.
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    Thread Killer Illum's Avatar
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    not sure if its the best, but sure is the lightest
    these go about $30 in places like Wallyworld
    Century "Mighty Lite" single mantle lantern, Coleman name theirs the "perfectflow"


    its comparable to a 100W bulb, is much easier to stow than the dual mantle burners [when its cold, separately from the tank of course]
    only disadvantage I can think of up to this point: if you don't have matches, good luck

    whats best depends on what your conditions are, if your preferring to a hiking camp this might be the best choice, but if your talking about a drive in camp gee, the possibilities are endless
    Last edited by Illum; 01-05-2008 at 09:56 PM.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by kantonburg View Post
    Well the dual fuel sounds awesome. To be honest I don't even know if my local Wally World sells the dual fuel. I know they carry the propane models.

    I know this may be a stupid question, but what is the main difference between the Powerhouse model and the regular model besides the 25% brightness difference?
    The tank also holds more fuel.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Yeah, as Blacklight said...I believe the regular dualfuel is 1.3 pints, where the DF Powerhouse is deflinitely 2 pints (1 Qt).

    Illum_the_nation, I had one of those, like 20 years ago....one problem was that when hanging, unless it was really damn cold out, the chain would get pretty hot. I guess it was because of the fact that the chains connections were right above the mantle, as opposed to more off to the sides. Also, that double-sided tied mantle was more prone to breaking about when jostled, such as hiking with it. I had to replace that bastard almost every weekend before giving up and hiking with the larger regular-globed lantern in my pack.

    It still was nice because it was light and didn't take up much space; I just found it less reliable than the standard-globed 1-mantle. That and I burned the crap outta my hand about 10 times grabbing the chain without thinking.

    The Coleman "PerfectFlow" line is the gas regulated ones, btw....just like a 123 cell, they drop out real quick right near the end. It's definitely noticeable, vs the old less-regulated stuff.

    Seriously, I wish I could go back in time and find out who stole my regular old coleman 1-mantle propane lantern in college. That thing was the best. 8-10 hrs on a tank on full-burn, I had a flint aftermarket ignitor-sparker mounted on it, and a 6lb refillable propane tank with a 12" tree for week-long trips. Used it all through junior high, high school, and most of college. Probably 30-40 1lb tanks through it, and maybe 10-15 refills of the 6lb'er (which cost the same to refill as a disposeable 1lb'er!!! $2.50ish!!!).
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Anyone have experience with Coleman Powermax? They have a model or two that use this type of fuel. Is it as bright as a propane or duel fuel lantern? If so, it appears to be a great fuel choice for the occasional user that might want to use the lantern in cold temps.
    The Phaser: A nice EDC with great throw; heat and runtime can be issues.

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  26. #26

    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaserburn View Post
    Anyone have experience with Coleman Powermax? They have a model or two that use this type of fuel. Is it as bright as a propane or duel fuel lantern? If so, it appears to be a great fuel choice for the occasional user that might want to use the lantern in cold temps.

    The only real current Powermax lantern is the Luminos. It is a lighter weight back packing lantern, so it's light output in no way compares to that of a full sized propane or gas lantern. Additionally, if you are going to be in cold weather gas is the white gas (Nafta) is going to be the best type of lantern, it opperates better at colder temperatures than propane or butane. if I remember right the luminos was in the neighborhood of 120 lumens, when in development, battery lighst are my area though not fueled, so that may have changed slightly. Very cheap to run the luminos though.

  27. #27

    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by Illum_the_nation View Post
    not sure if its the best, but sure is the lightest
    these go about $30 in places like Wallyworld
    Century "Mighty Lite" single mantle lantern, Coleman name theirs the "perfectflow"


    its comparable to a 100W bulb, is much easier to stow than the dual mantle burners [when its cold, separately from the tank of course]
    only disadvantage I can think of up to this point: if you don't have matches, good luck

    whats best depends on what your conditions are, if your preferring to a hiking camp this might be the best choice, but if your talking about a drive in camp gee, the possibilities are endless

    Coleman has a matchless lighted version as well as a match light version. fueled lighting is not my category, but I know earlier in the year wal-Mart carried it, not sure if they still do or not.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Just there today, in, well, actually 2 different ones in Delaware - buying up all their water-saving showerheads for a work-project.... They both had the one like the Century in the photo. I think it was $17.xx or so.

    FYI I had one like this about 20 years ago....don't know if magic has happened since now and then, but unless you're really tight on space, that little micro-propane one wasn't really worth it. Chain gets hot as heck when hanging, and it really isn't as bright as a standard #21 size mantled regular propane lantern.

    Not light related, but I bought the Sportster Dual fuel 1-burner stove today at WallyWorld...freakin thing was $30.xx. I've never seen it for less than $50, and I wasn't even thinking about buying any camping gear (was there for work, and then stopped in sporting goods to buy WWB bullets). Saw that on a rack for $30 and change, and thought what the heck.

    Those big discount retailers, man....sometimes....they can tempt a man towards anything.
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  29. #29
    Flashaholic* Phaserburn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Just ordered a Pinnacle lantern from the Coleman site. Anyone have experience with it? It looks like a great lantern. The runtime is quoted as 5 hours; is that on high or low?
    The Phaser: A nice EDC with great throw; heat and runtime can be issues.

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    Default Re: Best Camping Lantern Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by sunspot View Post
    Thanks Valhalla
    Looking at the Coleman site, the Powerhouse looks good and as you said, uses a standard mantle. I donít need the electronic ignition as I am an oldtimer. I can even use the models that need a pre-heat.
    I may, in the tradition of CPF, buy em both then I can report on the Petromax.

    Iím not to sure about what you said about greasing the threads of the cylinder. I seem to remember never to use oils on pressured cylinders.
    AFAIK the instruction never to use oil or grease only applies to cylinders containing oxygen.
    Oxygen under pressure, in contact with oil or grease is liable to explode.

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