Zippo manufactures its 500 millionth lighter

Image: The design of the 500 millionth lighter Zippo produced on Tuesday.
the lighter, plated with brushed chrome, was stamped with the time that it was finished on Tuesday: 10:51 a.m.Zippo/PR Newswire via AP
/ Source: The Associated Press

Zippo Manufacturing Co. in northwestern Pennsylvania has produced its 500 millionth lighter.

The brass case of the lighter, plated with brushed chrome, was stamped with the time that it was finished on Tuesday: 10:51 a.m.

The family-owned company's 620 workers lined up in Bradford, about 130 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, and handed the case and the lighter's innards down a human conveyor line to company President Greg Booth.

Booth put the pieces together. George Duke, the grandson of the company's founder, then lit the device to kick off a company picnic celebrating the milestone.

Tuesday is the birthday of the late George Blaisdell who founded the company in 1932. He died in 1978.

Company officials manipulated the production schedule to ensure the milestone lighter would be made on his birthday.