Uco Micro Tea light candle lantern.

Bartnmax

Richard Proenneke
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Hi again all.

Ok, so recently I picked myself up a Uco Micro Tea light candle lantern.
Nice neat little unit that folds down quite compact.
It holds 1 tea light candle + 1 spare & the manufacturer's blurb states they will burn for approx' 4hrs each, continiously.
Gave it a try tonight outside in a little wind (about 10-15kph) & am quite happy with it.
Whilst the light is very rudimentary & definitely not what I'd refer to as 'blinding' it was adequate & quite reliable in the windy conditions.
Although you can buy dedicated neoprene covers to house/protect these units I have decided to use a neoprene stubby holder as it doubles up quite nicely for 'other duties'.
Price was roughly $19 Au delivered which I think wasn't too bad.
All in all - pretty happy with the little fella.
 

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bubba5603

Rüdiger Nehberg
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I have a couple of each (found a great deal on the tea light size and bought 3 for two dollars each) but between the two I prefer the larger of them such as GreatBloke's photo. The smaller size is nice, but burns out signifigantly quicker in relation to the size
 

Bartnmax

Richard Proenneke
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They quote 4hrs burn time for the tea light candles but I reckon that might be a bit optimistic.
The main thing I like about the UCO Micro is the small size & reltively light weight.
I would still like to get hold of one of the folding candle lanterns though.
 

TasMonk

Lofty Wiseman
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I've had a Uco mini for a few years now and really like it, but have been thinking of downsizing to the micro to save space and weight in my pack. Both are very functional, pretty lightweight, well constructed, and manage to give enough light to function without being unnatural or breaking that "twilight spell" of the campsite after dark. They also can be useful to provide just a little bit of warmth and air movement in a closed tent, which is especially nice on a chilly evening or if you have near-peak vents and a fair amount of condensation forming.

The "burn time" of the tealight candles used in the Uco Mini or Micro is entirely dependent on their quality and composition. I find cheapy generic paraffin ones only burn 2-3 hours but you'll find that beeswax or soywax tealights of the same size/weight will burn 30-50% longer. Beeswax is better for warm climates as it has a higher melting point. Soywax has a lower melting point so it's not good during warmer seasons but it's excellent in cooler weather and has the added benefit that the wax can also be used as a skin moisturizer (great for chapped lips, windburnt cheeks, or just dry hands).

Light output can be increased by using tealights with clear plastic containers rather than the standard opaque aluminium ones. Also, for directional use, a reflector (just a bit of aluminium foil or piece of disposable baking pan snipped to size) will improve usable light output noticeably.
 

Bartnmax

Richard Proenneke
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Great info thanks TasMonk.
I was actually thinking a bit about reflectors.
Also noticed the amount of heat coming out of the top vents.
Would be just the thing for heating a tent on those cold nights I reckon.
 

oldigger

Les Stroud
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I've had a (full size) Candle Lantern for about 30 years. Prices have change very little, so I think I may have paid through the nose a bit! I have used it quite a lot. Not exactly much use as a reading light, but enables you to see where things are on a dark night. Also good for letting people know where you are. One of my old mates rather unkindly observed that "it wasn't really a light - it was a dark." With some friends, you just don't need enemies!
 
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