DIY Alcohol Stove

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born2hunt
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DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Thu Jan 01, 2009 6:21 pm

This subject started being discussed on the "Food for packing in deep" thread so I figured I'd start a new thread since there is so much info out there about these stoves. I did a Google search and found that there are several different designs of these stoves.

I like the design of WW's stove. There is a commercially available kit (White Box Stove) that is like WW's. This link, shows a variation with a wick on the outside. I found another stove (Cobalt Stove) with a wick inside and a smaller "lighting wick" in the center.

I'm going to make an aluminum beer bottle stove with the inner wicks and a wind screen, similar to WW's design, and see what happens. It would sure help with backpack trips to have one of these stoves and will cut down on bulk and weight when packing with my horses.

Since a build-along was requested, I'll do it here over the next couple days, so stay tuned..............................
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by TradRag » Thu Jan 01, 2009 11:35 pm

Awesome! Cannot wait! Thank you Ken.
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by Okie » Thu Jan 01, 2009 11:52 pm

WHAT! A light weight stove??? And not pack in my generator and microwave????/ :lol: Just kiddin. I'm very interested in it.
Can't wait for the build along. Thanks Ken.
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Sat Jan 03, 2009 12:05 am

OK, so I went the liquor store and bought a 4 pack of the bottles(about $6). I spent the evening emptying the contents so I could begin construction. However, in the name of safety, I decided to settle on rinsing these bottles and starting the next phase in the morning.

Stay tuned.................................................

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Sat Jan 03, 2009 8:04 pm

Alright. Before we start, here are a few things you will need.
1. Aluminum beer bottle
2. Something to measure with
3. Something to cut with (I used a tubing cutter but a hacksaw or a bandsaw with a metal blade would work)
4. Something to drill with (I used a Dremel tool)
5. Denatured alcohol
6. 4"+ diameter tin can
7. Pop-rivets or JB-Weld or a way to crimp the rim

Optional
1. Woven fiberglass (like for repairs)
2. Steel wool (to remove the beer finish from the outside)
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Sat Jan 03, 2009 8:21 pm

I decided to crimp-roll the top to join the two pieces together so I cut the bottom 2 5/8" long and the neck 2 3/8" long after the top rim is cut off about 3/4" down. I had no exact measurements so I freelanced with good results. True up your edges with a file or a sander, if needed.

I decided to remove the finish to the raw aluminum. I first tried sandpaper, then a wire brush on the dremel. Finally, I tried some 00 steel wool which worked to my satisfaction. This step is optional, but only adds a few minutes to construction time.
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Sat Jan 03, 2009 8:43 pm

Next, I test-fit the two halves. I was able to press the top into the bottom fairly easy. Just be careful not to cut yourself on the raw edges of the aluminum. I pulled them back apart and placed the woven fiberglass inside the bottom (as an inner wick) and reinserted the top after cutting a couple notches in the small end.

Since I wanted to crimp the outside over the inner piece, I had to look around for something to do this with. I found my answer on my Leatherman tool. The small screwdriver has a hook on it that would work great. Most of these stoves are joined by three pop-rivets near the rim or with JB-Weld at the rim, but I opted for the cleaner look of the roll-crimp.
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Crimping with the Leatherman. You can see that I added a small lighting wick to the center, but it wasn't needed.
Crimping with the Leatherman. You can see that I added a small lighting wick to the center, but it wasn't needed.
Leatherman small screwdriver. Notice the hook near the base.
Leatherman small screwdriver. Notice the hook near the base.
Inserting the inner wick.
Inserting the inner wick.
Notice the notch at the neck opening.
Notice the notch at the neck opening.

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Sat Jan 03, 2009 9:05 pm

I kept going around the rim, crimping down the bumps until I had a fairly smooth and tight roll.

Now it's time to layout and drill the holes. I drilled 1/16" holes, spaced about 11/16" apart and about 7/16" below the rim. To do this, I took some white 1/2" tape and stuck it to the outside of the stove. Next, I used a ribbon tape measure and marked the hole location on the tape, then drilled the holes under each mark before removing the tape. I'm going to add another hole between each existing hole since the test firing seemed to have the flames just a bit too far apart.

I then poured some alcohol (about an ounce) into the stove and lit it. I found that the stove gets fairly hot so I slipped a thin piece of cardboard between it and the countertop. In a very short time the flame started coming out the holes and I put a pot with some water on top. This little stove brought the water nearly to a boil in a very short time before running out of fuel. The recommended amount of fuel is about 2 oz to boil 2 cups of water.
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It's flaming, you just can't see it.
It's flaming, you just can't see it.
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Sat Jan 03, 2009 9:09 pm

So now I'll drill the added holes and call the stove finished, but I'm not done.
The windscreen is next so stay tuned..............................................................

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by born2hunt » Mon Mar 02, 2009 8:15 pm

Sorry I let this hang for awhile. The last couple of months have been busy for me but I'll finish this up in the next couple of days.

Ken

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by TradRag » Thu Mar 05, 2009 9:35 am

no worries Ken. Not crunch time until August. :)
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by hoytmania » Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:49 pm

This is some awesome information. Thanks for sharing.

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by Mike Vines » Wed Oct 31, 2012 3:51 pm

Awesome idea. Thank you for sharing this.

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by Winter Hawk » Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:14 pm

Wind screen? This is a great project, should be lighter than my wood burning Pocket Stove from Backwoodsman Magazine!

-Kees-

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by Darekjones » Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:52 am

Alcohol stoves are the perfect choice for the backpacker looking for a small, lightweight, easy-to-use, simple construction and inexpensive stove. You can even make one for yourself.

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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by Greywolf » Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:23 pm

Denatured Alcohol burns hotter hence cooks quicker with less fuel and burns clean.
And if it spills it evaporates completely. it's what I use to clean all my laminations on my bows.
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Re: DIY Alcohol Stove

Post by bluetooth » Sat Apr 12, 2014 11:47 am

Alcohol stoves are great. I do believe that Triangia makes the best. Only one I know of that has a sealed lid which goes on the cooled burner and lets you carry fuel in it and not waist any.It holds about 2.5 oz of fuel and with the simmer ring can make you a hardy breakfast. In fact the Triangia 28 is a good , light weight system.IMO a good all around stove,pot and fry pan set. :)

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