How to Make a Tuna Oil Lamp

Feature | How to Make a Tuna Oil Lamp

Have you ever heard of a tuna oil lamp? A tuna oil lamp is a light source that uses the oil from a typical tuna can. Survival and emergency situations always push us to be ever more resourceful. When darkness catches you in the middle of nowhere and you don’t have a flashlight, you can turn to the food you brought along as an alternatives light source.

You’re definitely in luck when you have a can of tuna lying around in your survival kit. You can use the vegetable oil as fuel for your candle as it is flammable. Here’s a tutorial from The King of Random on how to make a tuna oil lamp.

Tuna Oil Lamp: Surviving the Night With a Can of Tuna

 

What You Will Need:

  • a can of tuna in vegetable oil
  • paper towel or cotton string
  • matches or any fire starter
  • garden scissors or hammer and nail

 

Step 1: Put a Hole in the Middle of the Tuna Can

You can use a nail and hammer, scissors or any sharp pointed tool that can do the job. Make it just right for a small piece of tissue, made into a roll, to pass through the hole.


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Step 2: Cut a Small Portion of Tissue Paper and Roll It into the Shape of a Wick

How to Make a Tuna Oil Lamp | Cut a Small Portion of Tissue Paper and Roll It into the Shape of a Wick

Cut away a small piece of tissue paper from the roll and roll it into a wick. The length of the tissue roll will depend on the size of the tuna can you have with you. You may also use a piece of string if you have one with you.

Step 3: Insert the Paper/String into the Hole

Insert the tissue roll or the string into the hole of the tuna can, making sure it reaches the bottom. This will ensure you are able to use up every ounce of vegetable oil in the tuna can.

Bacon grease is also a great source of fuel.

Step 4: Use Any Fire Starter to Light up the Wick

Now you have a candle for illumination and warmth. You may also use it to cook some food, and yes, you can eat the tuna later. The oil in tuna can last for two to three hours.

 

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Check out the full video tutorial below by the King of Random:

Resourcefulness and ingenuity (even if you have not thought of this yourself) is a great skill for one to survive whatever challenges are in their way. Of course, there are other DIY survival candles to light up the dark, but preparation is key to survival. Train hard and practice your survival skills regularly so when the SHTF, you can definitely have an edge over those who didn’t.

Did you like our tuna oil lamp tutorial? Let us know in the comments section below!

Up Next: How to Make a Candle Out of a Crayon

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Editor’s Note – This post was originally published on August 30, 2017, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

30 Responses to :
How to Make a Tuna Oil Lamp

  1. Dan says:

    how did you get the tuna out and not damage the can

    1. Anonymous says:

      When oil is done open can with can opener and take out

      1. Baruch says:

        Also in israel army the soldiers open the can and cook the tuna inside the oil. Works great.

  2. Anonymous says:

    HOW n the name of God does a person push a SOFT PIECE OF PAPER TOWEL INTO A TINY HOLE IN THE CAN AND MAKE SURE THIS ROLL OF ABSORBENT PAPER REACHES THE BOTTM OF CAN? Now, I am 81 years old, so be kind please.

    1. Anonymous says:

      yep that was my question too !!! and i’m not 81

      1. leonard says:

        a nail is ideal but a twig will also work

    2. rbruntmyer says:

      I’m thinking a person could use a phillip’s head screw driver, an ice pick, maybe thin tweezers or some other such instrument to stick into the tuna. move it around to make a way through to the bottom of the can. Since you will want to eat the tuna later, I suggest cleaning the pointed entry area of the tool with alcohol or burning first for cleanliness. who ever put this on line might not have tried it themselves since they never thought to mention it. Which leads me to wonder if the oil will really burn as needed. Will not produce heat and might be insufficient to accomplish much light.

      1. Dean Wolfe says:

        If you have oil to sterilize the blunt instrument, then you already have oil for a different kind of lighting source! Don’t you? Just saying

        1. Dale says:

          Exactly

    3. Jarhead A12 says:

      Gotta wind/ twist it tight. That will make it rigid enough to push it down in there.

    4. EUGENE KNUDTEN says:

      MAKE THE HOLE BUT DON’T USE A DR[LL IT WOULD LET METAL PIECES GET INTO THE CAN! IF YOU HAVE A EMERGENCY KIT USE ONE OF THE WOODEN MATCHES OR A WOODEN TOOTHPICK TO OPEN THE WICK HOLE INTO THE TUNA . THE BEST WICK WOULD BE FROM A CANDLE (WHICH I HAVE BEEN SAVING FOR YEARS FOR MY BUGOUT KIT) IF THE TUNA (OIL) IS THAT GOOD FOR BURNING THE CANDLE WICK WOULD LAST LONGER & PRODUCE A BRIGHTER LIGHT. THIS IDEA USING A OLD CANDLE WICK MAY NOT WORK BECAUSE THE WICK ALREADY HAS WAX IN THE WICK (WOW) SAY THAT ONE 5 TIMES IN A ROW AS FAST AS YOU CAN !!! THE BEST MATERIAL FOR THE TUNA CAN WICK WOULD BE A PIECE OF BARBEQUE CORD THAT IS USED TO SECURE CHICKEN OR THE LIKE ONTO THE GRILL ROTATING SPIT. HOPE THESE IDEAS MAY HELP SOMEONE OUT THERE….& REMEMBER A GOOD LAUGH TODAY IN THE WORLD AT HAND MAY JUST BE THE ANSWER FOR YOU ! KNUTE28

      1. Larry says:

        You van biy new candle wicks.roll up in an old film canister with some waterproof matches

    5. Gail Wood says:

      You roll the paper towel piece as tight as you can and also make the hole big enough to accept the “wick” . It would be helpful to have a thin screwdriver to push the wick as far as you are able to the bottom. Probably a good idea to do a practice one at home when there is no emergency (like any emergency prep you are new at doing)

    6. Betty says:

      With a straight pin

    7. Matt says:

      Okay, let’s break this down.
      You CAN eat the tuna because AFTER the oil in the can is exhausted you use your opener and take it out as you would normally do and eat it.
      You fit the wick in there when you first make the hole by rotating the tip of whatever you used to make the hole in a widening circle, this makes a little open spot inside the can that will allow the wick to reach the bottom.
      There’s no reason you have to choose between sitting in the dark and eating, with this method you can do both.
      And finally if you are reduced to the point of using techniques such as these worrying about someone “smelling” your candles and then coming to take away your tuna should be the least of your concerns.

    8. Flyboy says:

      I’m just a kid of 72, but right away I could see how to make the hole in the can, roll the toilet paper into a ‘wick’, and get it through the hole and down to the bottom of can, through the tuna. I’ll explain; Use some kind of implement to make the smallish hole in the center of the tuna cans top. A nail, a Swiss Army Knife (mine has a leather punch ‘blade’ that works great), this could go on a while here, but it’s a given a person will be able to make a smallish hole in the top of the can. After making the hole, use the ‘tool’ to push the tuna around, Clear an opening in the tuna meat by putting the ‘tool’ through the hole to the bottom of the can, then move it around to push the tuna meat out of the way. Tear off a piece of toilet paper, fold it a couple of times, then begin to roll it into a tight wick’, roll it hard and tight. Try the ‘wick’ in the hole, is it too loose? Tear off a smaller piece of paper, add it to the ‘wick’ and twist tight. Try the fit again. Too tight? Unroll the ‘wick’ just a bit, tear off a very small piece of paper, Twist the remainder tight again. Try the fit. OK, the first couple of times, this is going to be trial and error. But totally doable.Once the ‘wick’ is in place through the hole, then to the bottom of the can, allow it to sit a few minutes to allow the oil to migrate through the wick. Then, light’er up.

  3. Anonymous says:

    p the good work!

  4. aways carry candles so you can see to eat the damn tuna.

  5. Rafael V. Gonzalez says:

    Brut solid deodorant burns with a nice blue flame (the stuff is mostly alcohol) and can be used to heat a can of soup etc.

  6. David says:

    Crayons are a good candle as well

  7. Dean Wolfe says:

    That’s pretty cool! And if you don’t have a can open with you, rub the rim of the can on
    A flat rock very vigorously until the rim of the can has been worn away, then just push in the sides of the Can and the lid will pop right off!

    1. Gordy Jackson says:

      That was great idea for can opener. Thank you

  8. Dean Wolfe says:

    That’s pretty cool! And if you don’t have a can opener with you, rub the rim of the can on
    A flat rock very vigorously until the rim of the can has been worn away, then just push in the sides of the Can and the lid will pop right off!

  9. Marie says:

    Now i’m hungry and want a tuna sandwich! Do i have any tuna in the house? Not sure. I have sardines and some spam, but i want TUNA now! I don’t usually buy tuna cuz of the radiation from Fuku Shema as i have read it’s in there.,,,but i’m still hungry and want a tuna sandwich….oh, but i don’t have any lettuce either! So i guess it’s just rice and beans for me now.

  10. Schlockinheimer says:

    Any kind of Oil (fish, or otherwise) will burn!

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