A Sub/4:00 Coke/V8 Can Ceramic Fiber Burner/Stove

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A Sub/4:00 Coke/V8 Can Ceramic Fiber Burner/Stove

Postby Karl Klavon » Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:05 pm

Wick: This is a Fancy Feast style Ceramic Fiber burner/stove utilizing only a single 1/8" thick wick, cut to 1 1/2" wide by 6 7/8 inches long, with a diagonal cut side seam running from the bottom to the top of the fuel cup.

The Fuel Cup: Is made out of the bottom section of a 7.5 Oz. Coke can, cut to 1 7/16" tall, having an outside diameter of 2 and 3/16 inches.

The Inner Cylinder: Is made out of the bottom section of a 5.5 Oz. V8 can, cut to 1 11/16" tall, with a hole drilled into the center of the concave inverted bottom of the V8 can and enlarged to a 7/8" diameter fuel fill hole. Three, 3 X 6 mm, S/S Flat Head Screws are threaded into the top of the raised outer ring, to form a no vents required, no cold pot flame out, simmer pot stand in a stove function. The V8 can has an outside diameter of 2 1/16 ", which makes the 1/8" thick wick a very tight fit.

The Simmer Mode Test was Done First: This was the stove's first burn. It lit like a champ and boiled 2-cups of H2o in a surprising 5 minuets flat, with a fuel cup rim to pot bottom distance of 7/16". The wick flame out time was 10:10. I had paper punched 3 fuel vent to wick notches in the bottom of the inner cylinder but I don't think they are needed on this burner/stove. Because of the domed configuration of the fuel cup, the inner cylinder can not be made to go all the way to the bottom of the fuel cup. And the Ceramic Fiber wick forms a roll that sticks up in between the dome of the fuel cup bottom and the wall of the inner cylinder, which seems to feed the wick just fine.

In The Pot Stand Mode: There was a 1" fuel cup rim to the bottom of the pot distance, which reached a hard rolling boil in 3:45, with a wick flame out time of 7 minuets, and a center fuel fill hole flame out time of 7:30, all on an ounce of Heat for both sets of tests.

Conclusions: The wick ended up having a slight high spot where the joining seam was, which I trimmed off with a razor knife to the same height as the rest of the wick after the burn tests were completed. The 880 (and the 970 Ceramic Fiber which I used on this stove) both have Organic binding compounds within them that will burn off after a few burns, which strongly bond the Ceramic Fiber to the aluminum metal, much more so than the Carbon Felt bonds to the steel and aluminum cans used in the Fancy Feast stoves. And hopefully, the bonding processes will prevent the shrinkage that the Carbon Felt wicks show. Here is a link to a video demonstrating the Carbon Felt shrinkage problem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ctlPrWfJNo

I used the FiberFrax 970 Ceramic Fiber instead of using the 880 that Hiram Cook used in his stove because the shipping was less and it was considerably cheaper - $2.00 for a 3.5" wide X 12" long, X 1/8" thick piece, with each additional order requiring 0.20 cents more in shipping and handling. Shipping was 7.50 instead of being 9.00 dollars. The 880 is rated at 2,600 degrees long term rating and the 970 is rated for 2,300 degrees but with a higher fiber count, to wick better I believe. The hottest part of an alcohol flame is around 1,100 degrees F, so either material should be more than adequate for our purposes here.

Using the 7.5 Oz. Coke and 5.5 Oz. V8 cans eliminates the need to fill the 1/4" gap found between the Fancy Feast and Tomato Paste sized cans found on the Fancy Feast Stove, be it Carbon Felt or Ceramic Fiber. And I got a faster boil time than I got before using the Carbon Felt in my version of the Fancy Feast burner/stove. And if the inner cylinder was made to an even shorter height, the boil and simmer times in stove mode could be made to run considerably longer with out affecting the relatively fast boil time when this unit is used in the pot stand mode. As it is, this burner/stove is all of 1 13/16 inches high X 2 3/16 inches wide, very light in weight and can hold 2 ounces of alcohol, and more durable than it appears that it would be. Not bad at all.
Karl Klavon
Posts: 664
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 10:01 am

Re: A Sub/4:00 Coke/V8 Can Ceramic Fiber Burner/Stove

Postby Karl Klavon » Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:55 pm

Well, I just recently did a couple of BP trips where I got to use the above mentioned stove at well above 10,000 feet, and under cold, windy conditions and in the snow, for a 6 days long deer hunting / T-fishing trip. The stove's performance was about as simple and flawless as it can get and a real pleasure to use compared the the burners I have used in the past.

Lighting UP: Lighting the burner was simply a matter of having H2o in the pot ready to go, a one 1 Oz. film can of alcohol in the stove, with the burner in the Bicycle Spoke Pot Stand, and pointing the lighter flame at the band of wick. Then putting the windscreen on the lit unit and placing the pot of water on the pot stand to heat. This burner/stove unit is silent! You do not hear anything until the water starts to boil, which was very nice and noticeable. A jet of steam going out of the pour spout lets you know when the H2o is at full rolling boil.

Fuel Usage: One ounce of fuel was adequate to boil enough H2o in a 0.9L Primus Litech Kettle to have an 8 Oz cup of hot chocolate in A Rubber Made Juice Box, and two 8 Oz. Nalgene Poly Wide Mouth Jars (all in foam beverage caddies for cooking and insulation) for the main one-course meal, with the pot set back on the stove to have enough warm water left over to clean up some after eating the food, followed by a cold H2o rinse afterward of course. You could even add more water to the pot and have it heat some before the fuel was all used up. This burner proved to be so efficient that I have just ordered a 0.3 L Trangia Fuel Bottle as I do not need all the fuel capacity and weight that the 0.5 L model Trangia Fuel Bottle has for a 6-day trip.

Simmer Screw Problems: The Simmer Screws on the stove put holes in the plastic Zip-Lock Bag in side of the pot the burner/stove is carried in in packing (you do not want any possibility of the denatured alcohol contaminating the H2o you will be consuming as it is poisonous), and I just use the stove only for boiling water anyway. So I pulled the screws and it did not effect the functioning of the burner in any way. If you are building a burner from scratch and do not need the simmer function, it makes building of this burner a lot easier, simpler, and cheaper to accomplish. You would have to pull the Windscreen and pot stand to simmer anyway, and then replace the Windscreen to simmer the already hot water and that would be too inconvenient for many of us to deal with.

Pot Holder or No Pot Holder: On the first over night trip I did with the stove, the flame was so well behaved that I did not need a pot holder to grip the tea pot handle. So on this trip I left the pot holder at home because the Silicone gripper is kind of bulky and heavy. It turned out to be a bad idea as you can not see the flame if it is light and the winds, even with a 360 degree heavy aluminum foil wind screen and the air intake holes located on a part of one side so they can be placed on the leeward side, caused the flame to heat the handle I assumed would be cool enough to handle, which it was not. So the pot holder is now part of the cook kit again.

Electronic Butane Lighter Functioning @ Altitude Problems: I had two Butane lighters along just to be safe, one with Electronic Ignition and the other one the good old Bic. The Electronic model was not reliable at altitude and its flame was much harder to see in fairly well lit conditions, whereas the Bic was easy to see and always lit the burner for me just fine. Sometimes the electronic ignition worked and sometimes it didn't.
Karl Klavon
Posts: 664
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 10:01 am

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