Hi, Jack ,I tried several different designs for alcohol because I like the safty features but at my altitude they did not work well and not at all in the winter cold. I live near Greer, AZ at near 8500 feet and camp and ski at even higher. I did think those stoves were a good idea, but found hobo stoves worked better for my purpose. I found many on Zen Stoves Designs :quote=Jack L]Now that my post count is a little higher, I wanted to post the pictures of the alcohol stove I made a few weeks ago. If I remember correctly, it boiled a pint in about 8:45 at approx 3,000 feet.
Many reach for distant shores only to run to the safest harbor.
Loc: Central Oregon
Originally Posted By twinmike
Hi, Jack ,I tried several different designs for alcohol because I like the safety features but at my altitude they did not work well and not at all in the winter cold. I live near Greer, AZ at near 8500 feet and camp and ski at even higher. I did think those stoves were a good idea, but found hobo stoves worked better for my purpose. I found many on Zen Stoves Designs
The hobo stoves are the wood burners, right? they had a lot of good ideas on that site. i've used similar stoves in the past, filling a ventilated coffee can with coals from my fire and cooking on it.
so far ive yet to use any alcohol stove on a camping trip, just going thru the motions until spring.
He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man. -Samuel Johnson
Loc: Eastern MA, USA
Location may make a big impact on how a stove functions. Other conditions may, as well. Alcohol stoves typically have a lot of surface area to dissipate heat with a relatively small amount of alcohol inside to heat, vaporize, and burn. I live on a coastal plain, so I am at a really low altitude. Just to see what would happen, I left my fuel bottle in a snow bank overnight. At 17 F, I had no trouble with my alcohol stove. What I have found to make a huge difference in performance is what surface the stove sits on in use. I have made it a practice to put a small pad made from corrugated cardboard wrapped in aluminum foil under my stoves. It keeps the stove from burning a wood table top and rocks or cold ground from functioning as a huge heat sink, sucking energy from the stove. A priming pan and an insulator under the stove may help it work at a higher altitude, as may using one of the pressurized stoves. We don't have the altitude in our east coast mountains compared to yours on the west coast. YMMV, of course.
You may want to check the distance between the top of your burner and the bottom of your pot. My guess is (based on your photos) that if you increase that distal space you may find a significant decrease in your boil time (= less fuel consumption). A pint equals two cups, right? I have a similar alky stove which routinely yeilds boil times between 5.5 and 6 minutes for two cups.
You may also want to pull your windscreen as close to your pot as possible, leaving about an eighth of an inch all around. This works well, provided you have the optimal distal space set first.
I also use a penny stove. Still playing with number and size of holes, i like 8 @ 1/16". Have just finished making a penny woodstove to use as a winscreen/potholder or woodburner. Found a tomato juice can to be the right size for a heiny pot. I have found in cold weather a tea light candle burning under the stove keeps it rocking. Plans for the wood stove are on the same site as the penny stove. On my phone now so cant post a link.