Forming Process

Polish, Washing, Inspection

Ishikawa Giken Co., Ltd.

Sabae city in Fukui prefecture is famous by eyeglasses industry. "Kawada, Echizen Lacquer Ware" ZIPPO production begins by "Ishikawa Giken" which is processing company in sabae city that is famous by eyeglasses industry. It was founded as a company specialized in plating of spectacle frame, there are the equipment of every plating, YAG/YVO4 LASER MARKING, full color printers and more. It works with ZIPPO processing as certified factory of zippo processor. "Ishikawa Giken" is leading company which has one of the foremost technological strength in Japan.

The ZIPPO lighter which is made in ZIPPO head office factory in Bradford, Pennsylvania will be polished and washed to change into "Kawada, Echizen Lacquer Ware" ZIPPO.

The ZIPPO which molded by press has enough quality. But the craftsman polishes by manual labor that is called buff processing at "Ishikawa Giken". Because if the surface has even a little irregularity, it affect for painting. The ZIPPO which was polished and washed with a medicine passes for a craftsman of Kawada.

Buff processing by crafsman

After Washing. The brightness of brass.

The Under Coating

TUJI Lacquerware Shop / Mr.Tuji Toshikazu

The Japanese lacquer isn't originally able to paint to metal because metal has low affinity with the lacquer. But there is a craftsman with the technique that can paint lacquer to metal at normal temperature in the Kawada. He is "Toshikazu Tuji" at Tuji Lacquerware shop that join a cooperative of Echizen lacquerware.

He said "I failed ever so many times. It was a difficult challenge, but I was able to find the method that can realize. ". The detailed method is trade secrets, and he is proud of the craftsman. The craftsman is able to face up squarely to the technical difficulties.

The ZIPPO which is agter the under coating displayed orderly and drying at his workshop. The word of "drying" is not right to the lacquer, because of that harden by chemical reactions. Therefore, temperature and humidity management become very important to the lacquer to harden. Also to harden lacquer need three to seven day by in a season. It is took very long time to make Japanese lacquer ZIPPO.

It has enough gloss after the under coating.

"Shikkoku:Jet black" ZIPPO. It is dried in the
room where temperature and the humidity were managed.

The Last Coat

Work stand and spatula for the last coat.

ZIPPO which finished undercoating is handed to a final coating craftsman. The room was tasteless, completely sealed up and put only the tools as a brush or the spatula. Because it is not allowed for dust to be whirled up. The last coating is normally after polishing and the intermediate coating after undercoating. That is because it is difficult to give luster peculiar to lacquer.

However in being amazed, the luster is made by only coating in Kawada, Echizen. It may be said that is evidence with a wonderful technique not to pass through polishing which is able to make the modifications.

Coating and harden are repeated same as an undercoating process. Lacquered ZIPPO with thickness which was swelled like surface tension is completed. "Kawada, Echizen Lacquer Ware" attracts with overwhelming presence. The rich brightness and the durability are not able to make by chemical paint and plating.

Japanese lacquer and the tools which have been used for many years.

All processes are done by hand.


It is decorative process of the finish. There are three types of decorative process, "Makie", "Chingin" and "Roiro". The painter has a different atmosphere with the coating craftsman. The combination of lacquer and ZIPPO have infinite possibility. Production Committee is pushing forward the plan of various variations. And one of plan is collaboration with the lacquer artist. Please expect it in the future.

Lacquer Master paints some decorations by delicate brushwork.

"Kawada, Echizen" Japanese lacquer zippo is made in this town.