Loc: Kitsap Peninsula, WA
I ran across a video of a fellow filling an isopropane/propane gas canister with a butane cartridge. He claims he can save a lot of money. However I wonder about the performance in cold weather, not to mention the safety of the process (says "do not refill" on the cartridge). Has anyone done that? One of the adapters he used was the Kovea Dual Gas Adapter. I believe it is made so that you can run your canister stove on a (cheap) butane cartridge. I know it would not work as well in cold weather, but the idea is interesting. HAs anyone done that?
When dealing with things that can explode, I tend to err on the side of believing the instructions that come with it. I've heard of people refilling the canisters, too, but am not eager to give it a try myself. I also tend to put a bit of distance between us when they light their stoves. Sounds like another "Hey, everybody, watch this!" moment about to happen.
I think hiking Jim did a blog post on refilling (maybe the guy in the video). I will say if you know what you are doing it is not terribly unsafe. The tanks are not made to refill so they won't last as long as those big refillable propane tanks. The worst that can happen is you end up with a damaged valve the butane leaks out and evaporates. Leaks are always a potential issue so you should be sure to store your tanks in a safe manner anyway (well ventilated, away from other flammables and flame sources).
Yes, pure butane will not have very good low temperature performance, so a refilled cannister will only be good for warmer weather trips. Add that to the equipment and large butane canisters you need I have never thought too seriously about doing this.
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