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Hog On Ice
2005-01-07, 22:26
Based on comments from SGT Rock I stopped by my local Krogers to check for a sports drink in an aluminum bottle to see if it could be useful as something to boil water in, serve as an ordinary water bottle and serve as a hot water bottle. I was able to find one such sports drink - brand name "Elements" div of Snapple - comes in four flavors. Bottle is approximately the same diameter as a standard 12 ounce can but taller and can hold 18 ounces - ie more than what I need for cooking - per spec the can is 66 mm diameter by 206 mm height. There is a nice ridge near the top that makes it reasonably safe to handle - not going to slip out of your bandanna covered hand. The bottle is reclosable but this is accomplished through a plastic thread piece that is attached to the neck of the bottle - I am a little concerned about this especially since I was looking for a bottle I could put in a fire and not just one that I heat over a stove - I'll see how it holds up but I suspect it may fail easily especially if I warm the bottle in a campfire.

see pic:

http://images.packworld.com/issues/04.03/images/Departments/Elements.jpg

The diameter of the bottle is such that I can use the sidewall of a 24 ounce beer can as the windscreen with only cutting the top and bottom off the beer can and punching some holes - ie nothing needed to close the windscreen around the stove - just drop it over the bottle, pot support, and stove.

I am a bit concerned about the small diameter of the bottle - I'm worried that it will be difficult to get reasonable stove efficiency when heating water in the bottle but that experiment is yet to be done.

well anyways I'll keep ya'll informed as to the test results but at the moment the concept still looks quite promising.

SGT Rock
2005-01-07, 22:47
Those are the bottles I was talking about. The fire stuff is what I have.

Hog On Ice
2005-01-09, 11:05
Initial results - I was able to boil water in the bottle using my usual tea candle burner but it did require some extra alcohol over what the beer can takes - maybe 20% more. This was not unexpected but other factors may have contributed - in particular I was using a rather tall windscreen. So anyways more experiments will be reported later.

There did not appear to be any degeneration of the plastic lining of the bottle with the boiling water - one area I was concerned about and an area that I will be keeping my eye on.

One idea that I am casually kicking around is to add a metal flange to the bottom of the bottle so as to increase the bottom surface area and perhaps that would increase the efficiency of the heat transfer. The top surface of the flange and possibly the sides of the bottle could also be insulated - again as a possible efficiency improvement. Well anyways its something I am thinking of - any opinions or other ideas are welcome so feel free to contribute your thoughts.

Lanthar
2005-01-09, 22:50
HOI, that remind me, I've been thinking about something. I'm going to try it with a heiniken beer can... wrapping foilized bubble insulation around the top half of the can, windscreen for bottom hlaf... should improve heat retention and allow you to grab the can once the water has boiled (ala home style jetboil), have you tried anything like this? I figure if there is a small amount of space for the heated air to escape around the bottom edge of the insulation, it shouldn't melt the insulation... have you tried anything similar?

Hog On Ice
2005-01-10, 08:46
I thought about something similar - kevlar or nomex fabric over fiberglass as a sleeve on the can but I have never gotten around to trying it. In particular I was thinking of the kevlar envelope material over fiberglass pipe wrap insulation.

Lanthar
2005-01-10, 12:54
I think that may be too complicated, HOI. Remember Jetboil gets away with neoprene over the entire can. A long as you only wrap high enough to keep it out of the direct flames (if the flames actually climb the sides of your can), it's not going to melt anything that can be used for a coxy, so kevlar is a bit of overkill...

Hog On Ice
2005-01-11, 21:44
I think that may be too complicated, HOI. Remember Jetboil gets away with neoprene over the entire can. A long as you only wrap high enough to keep it out of the direct flames (if the flames actually climb the sides of your can), it's not going to melt anything that can be used for a coxy, so kevlar is a bit of overkill...

Well its my opinion that Jetboil gets away with neoprene due to the efficiency of the heat transfer to the container - several people have commented on how relatively cool the exhaust gas is after exiting the heat exchanger sort of thing the Jetboil has between the flame and the container. I wish I had something similar for use with my alcohol burners - seems to be very efficient for getting the heat into the water.

Further test results - upon adjusting the windscreen the aluminum bottle with tea light burner was boiling water with time to spare. I lowered the height of the windscreen to what I use with the beer can and made it a bit larger diameter than usual - approx .5 inch gap around the bottle. Additionally I measured the water using the beer can instead of just guessing how much water to use - I have used the beer can so often that I know exactly how far to fill it for my meals.

More testing to come but so far I think I can probably get this system to work reasonably well - maybe as good as the beer can that I have been using.

Lanthar
2005-01-11, 23:13
so are you using the 24oz beer can as the windscreen and cutting it down?

Hog On Ice
2005-01-12, 06:03
at the moment I am using a windscreen that I had previously used with the beer can pot - it was one that I had messed up slightly where it slots together - by cutting off the messed up part I was able to salvage it for the AL bottle use. This windscreen is made from the sidewalls of a couple of coke cans crimped together to make one windscreen.

Hog On Ice
2005-01-12, 20:15
Well tonights experiment did not go very well - I adjusted the low windscreen for approx .25 inch gap and it took longer to boil - several variables here but I suspect I need to add some more holes to get greater air flow - that will be the next test. The wind was also somewhat stronger tonight but not what I would call windy - relatively normal I guess I would say but I think it was stronger tonight than it was last night. The key item that makes me think that it was air flow was the color of the flames was rather orange instead of the blue that they were before I put the bottle on - I think this usually means insufficient air flow since it is pure blue before I put the bottle on the pot stand and dropped the windscreen in place. I am thinking of a windscreen with fairly large holes on one side and minimal or none on the other side - ie block the wind if possible - not sure it would have been possible tonight since the wind seemed to be changing direction a lot.

Major Slacker
2005-01-20, 20:58
More testing to come but so far I think I can probably get this system to work reasonably well - maybe as good as the beer can that I have been using.

A big THANKS for shining the (ultra)light on the beer can. It was there in front of me all the time, but I couldn't see the Fosters for the trees -- or stoves. The MSR Ti Kettle is out. The Fosters can is in. Stove, pot, lid, windscreen, cup, spoon, matches and bag now tip the scales at 2.7 oz. -- outstanding!