[Cdt-l] Alcohol Stove fuel

Gail and Alistair Des Moulins aandgdesinfo at gmail.com
Sun Feb 3 18:29:18 CST 2013

Thank you all who have responded to this topic.

I have continued checking labels on various products.
In a local store I saw some gelled fuel "Home Presence Gelled fuel for
fondue sets and chafing dishes". The 500ml container's label said "contains
ethanol" and it cost $7.29 and was next to a 500ml container of liquid
"Fondue fuel" the label of which said "contains methyl alcohol". The latter
bottle cost $1.49.

I decided to do a test of the gelled fuel against Methyl Hydrate, another
methyl alcohol product I use. The test was done using 1 film canister of
each fuel in my garage in a temperature of 35 degrees but the water was a
bit warmer than that. The pot and stove were allowed to cool between tests.
Results were:

(a) using 3 cups of water

                   Gelled fuel                 Liquid Fuel
pot noise      8 mins 27 seconds     6 mins 58 seconds
bubbles       10 mins 43 seconds    9 mins 10 seconds
stove out     12 mins 52 seconds    9 mins 35 seconds

In neither of these 2 tests did the water come to a full boil.
"Pot noise" is when I hear the pot making a noise like a kettle does.

(b) using 2 cups of water

pot noise      6 mins 12 seconds     5 mins 00 seconds
boil              7 mins 15 seconds     6 mins 05 seconds
stove out     13 mins 35 seconds    9 mins 22 seconds

These tests show that the liquid fuel will boil water faster than the
gelled fuel but the same volume of gelled fuel burns for longer than the
liquid fuel. On the gelled fuel container it does say that the product
"burns longer than methanol".

Based on this, irrespective of cost, I'm more inclined to use the liquid
Maybe the gelled fuel would be better if one was making a supper that
required simmering, but most of us on the trail don't do that very often.

Clearly this test is of one specific gelled fuel against one specific
liquid fuel and I am not implying that liquid fuel is better than gelled
fuel in general.


On 29 January 2013 11:16, Matt Signore <mpsignore at gmail.com> wrote:

> Yogi and I received a new gel fuel for testing that is going to be
> available to the public soon.  It was created over a 20 year period by an
> SF operative for the DOD.  We will be testing this as an alternative fuel
> for non pressurized operating alcohol stove users.  This may come in handy
> for the more remote trail towns.  This soon to be available fuel CAN be
> shipped (without a HAZMAT tag) and carried on an airplane as well.  If the
> product is up to par we will put the info out to the masses.
> On Tue, Jan 29, 2013 at 12:06 PM, Jim and_or Ginny Owen <
> spiriteagle99 at hotmail.com> wrote:
>>  Haven't tried it, but you are smart to consider alternatives.  Before we
>> tried to hike the GET, we stopped at several of the towns that are resupply
>> points and found HEET in short supply.  That was not a problem on the CDT,
>> where almost every town seemed to have some sort of auto parts store, but
>> the GET is different.  I think since so much of the area is desert, gas
>> line dryer isn't really a big seller.  If we had continued past Mammoth, we
>> would have been eating cold, since we couldn't find any fuel for the stove.
>> Ginny
>> http://www.spiriteaglehome.com/
>> ------------------------------
>> Date: Mon, 28 Jan 2013 14:37:40 -0700
>> From: aandgdesinfo at gmail.com
>> To: cdt-l at backcountry.net
>> Subject: [Cdt-l] Alcohol Stove fuel
>> I've used an alcohol stove for many years and usually used Yellow HEET as
>> fuel. Rather than buying the individual 12 oz bottles, I was wondering
>> whether the fuel was available in larger containers. I looked on the Home
>> Depot website and found a product called "Klean-Strip 1 gal. Brush Cleaner"
>> which has a sku code 809347 and costs $16.96 for the gallon size. Under the
>> specifications for the product it states that the solvent type is denatured
>> alcohol. Has anyone tried this product in their stove? If this stuff works
>> then it would be a good alternative (and more economical in some locations)
>> to buying the yellow HEET bottles. Also "brush cleaner" may be available in
>> some towns when HEET is not.
>> Alistair
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