For all you campers and backpackers - Alcohol Stove

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 sat up last night and made a new toy. I haven't done any camping in years, but I spotted this little home made stove ...

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  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array BIG E's Avatar
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    For all you campers and backpackers - Alcohol Stove

    I sat up last night and made a new toy.

    I haven't done any camping in years, but I spotted this little home made stove project last year and have been wanting to build one.

    I am not going to go into the specifics on the build process or how they work. There is a ton of info to be found on the internet. Here's where I got my design and plans. I will say that the unit is made from two alum cans and costs nothing to build. It also heats like nobody's business and weighs next to nothing. I boiled two cups of water in about 4 mins.


    For those that have a need or want for such a stove and have that DIY bug like I do... this is a great little project. I turned my scoutmaster buddy onto these and his troop had a blast putting them together.

    enjoy

    Looks like the pics are broken. Try here if they aren't working.









    Last edited by BIG E; January 8th, 2008 at 09:51 AM.
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  2. #2
    Member Array Bando's Avatar
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    I am so trying that. Is it fuel efficent? do you have to refill alcohol frequently? I am a big camper and this looks great.
    The Problem: When stupid people do stupid things, smart people end up getting killed.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array Pete Zaria's Avatar
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    I've built a few of the designs on ZenStoves too. Nice job.

    They are really handy for *light* backpacking. A propane stove is much more convenient but alcohol stoves are lightweight and super small.

    Yours looks nicely built. I remember the design I built used 3 cans, and the flame was adjustable via a "simmer ring". The plans are on that site you linked. Edit: I think it was this one: http://zenstoves.net/PressureSideBurner.htm :)

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  4. #4
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    Great thread and thanks for the added pics.
    Very helpful link.

    I moved it to the Reference & How To area. Much better there than in Humor & Off topic.
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  5. #5
    Distinguished Member Array BIG E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bando View Post
    I am so trying that. Is it fuel efficent? do you have to refill alcohol frequently? I am a big camper and this looks great.

    Hey Bando,

    Yes, it is fuel efficent. It will run for 6 mins or so on an ounce of fuel. I use denatured alcohol and it really does work well.
    Don't hit at all if it is honorably possible to avoid hitting; but never hit soft!

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  6. #6
    Member Array osanmike's Avatar
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    My son and I have build many of these stoves over the years. You can get easy directions if you search for Pepsi-G in a search engine. Our boyscout troop in CA used these when we hiked in the Sierra Nevada's. They have no moving parts, weight less than 1 oz., burn for 10 - 13 min, and will burn any alcohol based fuel (Isopropl Alcohol, Methyl Alcohol, Denatured Alcohol, Windshield wiper fluid, gas line anti-freeze). Depending on which fuel you use, you can bring 2 cups of water to a boil in about 3.5 min. Another design that is easier and faster to build is the "Penny Alcohol Stove". The only downside of this one is that you have to use 12 oz. Heineken beer cans. Because of their weight, inexpensive fuel, and ease of use, these are the only stoves I use when I backpack.
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  7. #7
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    Alcohol stoves are pretty effective little stoves and that site had some great ideas.

    When I was hunting alot, we used to make a stove for warming us up inside a deer stand. It was really useful because it windproof, odorless, quiet and had a low "invisible" flame that wouldn't scare game.

    To make it, you just need a one pound metal coffee can, a new roll of toilet paper and a bottle of common rubbing alcohol.

    Remove the cardboard roll from the center of the toilet paper and squeeze it down, collapsing the center hole in the roll. Stuff it into the coffee can, trying not to tear it up. It should fit perfectly. Pour a bottle of rubbing alcohol (or any other type) over the toilet paper which will now serve as huge confined wick. Light it up. It gives out quite a lot of heat and can be snuffed out by simply putting the plastic lid back on the can. I used to leave it in the deer stand so it would be there when I needed it.
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  8. #8
    VIP Member Array David in FL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bumper View Post
    Alcohol stoves are pretty effective little stoves and that site had some great ideas.

    When I was hunting alot, we used to make a stove for warming us up inside a deer stand. It was really useful because it windproof, odorless, quiet and had a low "invisible" flame that wouldn't scare game.

    To make it, you just need a one pound metal coffee can, a new roll of toilet paper and a bottle of common rubbing alcohol.

    Remove the cardboard roll from the center of the toilet paper and squeeze it down, collapsing the center hole in the roll. Stuff it into the coffee can, trying not to tear it up. It should fit perfectly. Pour a bottle of rubbing alcohol (or any other type) over the toilet paper which will now serve as huge confined wick. Light it up. It gives out quite a lot of heat and can be snuffed out by simply putting the plastic lid back on the can. I used to leave it in the deer stand so it would be there when I needed it.
    I'm sooo gonna try that!

  9. #9
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    That's brand new info to me Bumper. Yep, I could see how that would kick out lots of heat and enough heat to warm a small decently closed/sealed space. Alcohol burns hot.
    Great additional tip.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bumper View Post
    Alcohol stoves are pretty effective little stoves and that site had some great ideas.

    When I was hunting alot, we used to make a stove for warming us up inside a deer stand. It was really useful because it windproof, odorless, quiet and had a low "invisible" flame that wouldn't scare game.

    To make it, you just need a one pound metal coffee can, a new roll of toilet paper and a bottle of common rubbing alcohol.

    Remove the cardboard roll from the center of the toilet paper and squeeze it down, collapsing the center hole in the roll. Stuff it into the coffee can, trying not to tear it up. It should fit perfectly. Pour a bottle of rubbing alcohol (or any other type) over the toilet paper which will now serve as huge confined wick. Light it up. It gives out quite a lot of heat and can be snuffed out by simply putting the plastic lid back on the can. I used to leave it in the deer stand so it would be there when I needed it.
    New one on me...but sounds like a cheap, great little heater...
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  11. #11
    VIP Member Array sgtD's Avatar
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    Cool burner Big E

    Here is the government instructions for the Heater Bumper mentioned.

    http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/ggw/newslett...r_survival.pdf
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  12. #12
    Distinguished Member Array SixBravo's Avatar
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    I posted something like this some months ago about one of these:

    Super Cat Stove

    Supercat Stoves. Same, thing really. Total cost is 39 cents assuming you have a drill, pen and tape measurer. I carry one of these when I fast-pack. Otherwise I use a MSR Whisperlite. Denatured alcohol is dirt cheap at WalMart.
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  13. #13
    Member Array crankshop1000's Avatar
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    why not just buy a butane single burner stove for about $29 and have something that actually works good? Harbor Freight has them. Boaters use them instead of the alcohol stoves.

  14. #14
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    The problem is that butane has difficulty lighting in cold weather. Denatured alcohol will ignite at almost any temperature you'll find on earth. That's why I carry bic's and matches when I head into the backcountry.
    The Gunsite Blog
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    "It is enough to note, as we have observed, that the American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon." - Justice Scalia, SCOTUS - DC v Heller - 26 JUN 2008

  15. #15
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    I rely on MSR multi fuel stoves for all my hiking.
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