For all you campers and backpackers - Alcohol Stove

This is a discussion on For all you campers and backpackers - Alcohol Stove within the Reference & "How To" Forum forums, part of the Related Topics category; I do long distance backpacking (like several hundred miles at a hitch) and have experimented with a number of different stoves. The alcohol / beer ...

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Thread: For all you campers and backpackers - Alcohol Stove

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    I do long distance backpacking (like several hundred miles at a hitch) and have experimented with a number of different stoves. The alcohol / beer can stoves became a rage a few years back and I gave it a try. What I found was that there is a big tradeoff of stove weight, efficiency, and fuel weight. The beer can stove is tiny and weighs almost nothing. Alcohol, however, is heavy and a very slow fuel. It is super slow at altitudes above 10,000 feet. It takes 10 minutes or more to bring my water pot to a boil with the alcohol stove, and less than four minutes with a Snowy Peak or Jetboil butane stove. If I am going out for less than three days, the alcohol stove is probably lighter (stove + fuel) If I am going out for longer than that, the total weight of the butane stove plus cannisters is lighter. I've pretty much stuck with the butane stoves since then. My favorite is the Snowy Peak. It is roughly equal to the Jetboil in performance, but lighter. I can go 5 days on a 7 ounce butane canister and the stove weighs 3.1 ounces. That is just over 10 ounces for five days. It takes at least 16 ounces of alcohol to do the same amount of cooking for the same amount of time. Since butane is easy, clean, and fast that's what I use.

    It's a good skill to know how to make one of the alcohol stoves. You can always make one with a pocket knife and a beer can, and alcohol is easy to find. Good backup plan.

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