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  1. #1
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    a stove from a TA trip

    Hey guys what do you think of using this stove for a Ta trip.
    I it uses HEET or Denatured Alcohol

  2. #2
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    People swear by their lightweight and inexpensive alcohol stoves and claim that HEET is easy to find when touring. But bear in mind that a gasoline stove will boil water 4 times faster and consumes half as much fuel as an alcohol stove.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Cyclebum's Avatar
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    Which stove?

    My very limited experience with alcohol stoves(Trangia)was basically positive as long as all you want to do is heat water for coffee and instant whatevers. It is a fuel hog. I estimate that one btl of Heet will last about 1/3 as long as a propane fuel cannister for my Pocket Rocket, making Heet more expensive. The combo of stove plus Heet is about 1/2 the weight of the Rocket and cannister.

    I'm considering adding the Trangia to my kitchen as a second stove and use it to heat the water for my coffee while cooking my usual toast and oatmeal with the Pocket Rocket.

    As fuel cannisters can be hard to find on long tours, the alc stove is a decent backup.
    The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me

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    In general I agree with Cyclebum. And Cyclesafe is correct - it does cook slow conpared to gas. What I like most is that it is almost noiseless - no jet engine sound. But don't try to cook a multi course meal. It will cook rice, and canned dinners, etc. And fuel is easy to find - in fact, a trangia will run on drug store alchohol, though it will be smokier and slower.

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    so basically my version of the alcohol stove is alright?

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    Yes, an alcohol stove is alright. But don't plan to eat anytime soon after you start cooking.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Cyclebum's Avatar
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    Did you intend for there to be a link to a specific stove? If so, it's not there. At least on my version of this site.
    The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me

  8. #8
    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
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    The only stove I would not take on a long tour is my canister stove. While it's a great stove that boils/cooks and is easy to use..... The fuel is a bastard to find in the mid west. Learned that the hard way last summer. Wished to god I had brought my white gas stove. This was on the Northern Tier.

    You will be good to go. As mentioned.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclebum View Post
    Did you intend for there to be a link to a specific stove? If so, it's not there. At least on my version of this site.
    sorry i forgot to post the link here it is, ones again its a diy
    http://www.instructables.com/id/Pock...ed-quotPenny-/

  10. #10
    imi
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclesafe View Post
    Yes, an alcohol stove is alright. But don't plan to eat anytime soon after you start cooking.
    Disagree... I love my trangia and cook full meals all the time (e.g soja meat fried with onions, rice, two veggies and garlic sauce) ;p *sorry I'm a bit hungry at the moment *
    With a good windbreak I find it definitely fast enough
    Last edited by imi; 07-27-09 at 12:19 AM.

  11. #11
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    you can do lots of searches thru Youtube and find all sorts of "penny stoves", "cat stoves", etc...

    i always laff when i meet someone who is very familiar with these types of stoves, and are proficient at their use.

    the paradigm shift is....

    with a stove you buy, obviously there is this object that you now use, when or if it should break, you have to buy a new one. in the mean time, its junk, or you have to try to fix it, etc...

    the thing with these "cat stoves", etc...
    is that
    now the skill
    the knowledge
    is in your head

    its a skill
    its a learned art

    suddenly now all you need is a few teaspoonsfull of HEET, etc

    literally you can pick up a couple of cans from the side of the road, and make a stove

    I'm guilty. I have at least 3 different stoves.

    my favorite has been a SnowPeak mini giga... isofuel stove

    now my favorite are these "cat stoves"

    what i don't like, is making trash
    what i like is using trash to cook my food...
    that is...
    there is something gratifying by cutting up a can to use as a stove...

    somehow i think that is cool
    and what always blows my mind, is how well they typically work.

    just like any other skill
    its all in the way you make your stove, and how well you shelter it.

    peace...d

  12. #12
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kclv1988 View Post
    sorry i forgot to post the link here it is, ones again its a diy
    http://www.instructables.com/id/Pock...ed-quotPenny-/
    That stove works fine. It is at its best when cooking for one person or maybe two.

  13. #13
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyakdiver View Post
    The only stove I would not take on a long tour is my canister stove. While it's a great stove that boils/cooks and is easy to use..... The fuel is a bastard to find in the mid west. Learned that the hard way last summer. Wished to god I had brought my white gas stove. This was on the Northern Tier.

    You will be good to go. As mentioned.
    There is a reasonable solution to that if you want to take the canister stove. It is possible and legal to ship isobutane fuel via ground mail (domestic mail only). The package must have the following label attached on the address side of the package:
    "Surface Mail Only
    Consumer commodity
    ORM-D"

    Using general delivery you can either mail yourself cartridges at post offices along the way or have someone at home do it for you. Remember that the post office only holds packages for 30 days, but will forward them at no charge (you can arrange this from any post office, not just the one where the package is). We forwarded stuff multiple times when we weren't ready for it or when we passed through the town when the post office was closed.

    I wish we had know about this before our Trans America. The cartridge stove was perfect when cooking for three in every way except fuel availability. Cooking for one I might rather take a pop can stove, but would still consider the Pocket Rocket.

    There is a limit of three cartridges per package, but that should be no problem. Even when we were cooking for three a cartridge lasted a pretty good while.

  14. #14
    Didn't make it Bat22's Avatar
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    I used this Brunton Crux and a couple of evernew titanium pots last week for a multi day camp ride.
    Had to light with a match.
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    Ride like a teen machine

  15. #15
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bat22 View Post
    I used this Brunton Crux and a couple of evernew titanium pots last week for a multi day camp ride.
    Had to light with a match.
    If riding coast to coast you will have trouble finding fuel for this one. We didn't see fuel from Pueblo until we saw a couple canisters in a help yourself pantry at a church we stayed at near the Kentucky-Virginia border. There was a store that reportedly had it in Carbondale IL, but they were closed when we passed through. We stopped at dozens of sporting goods stores, general stores, minimarts, and Walmarts without finding isobutane fuel in that very long stretch.

    I really recommend using general delivery and surface mail if you want to use isobutane cartridges on a long tour that crosses the middle of the US. See my post earlier in the thread for labeling requirements.

  16. #16
    Senior Member gregw's Avatar
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    Any of the alcohol stoves will work fine, fuel is readily available in small quantities all along the route at gas stations (HEET yellow container). The key here is small quantities, white gas (Coleman fuel) is also very available, but mostly in 1 Gallon containers.

    For cooking things that need simmer time, use a pot cozie or use freezer bag cooking technique. The cook times are no problem, mosts stoves boil water in under 5 min. (2 cups)

  17. #17
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    We took out MSR Pocket Rocket stove (cannister) on our Oregon to Boston trip and had no trouble finding fuel. However, we were not on an ACA route, and went through pretty good sized towns fairly regularly. We would just stock up if we knew there was some question about options(Idaho, Wyoming Nebraska).

    My wife really likes sweet corn and even when we stopped at a motel, she often used the stove to cook corn.

    If I was really concerned about fuel availability and reliability , I'd take an MSR Whisperlite International or its equivalent. It will burn about anything and is not all that heavy. We use one for mountaineering and heavy duty backpacking. In good weather, and for short ski trips we use the MSR Pocket Rocket (3 oz.) and the same tent we use on bike trips (SD Lightning, 4.25 lbs.) Pack acts as a windbreak.
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  18. #18
    Crazyguyonabike
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    I have been turning on to the Trangia stoves lately, mostly for their simplicity and silent running, and an added benefit is that they don't use fossil fuels. I also really like the S2 ClickStand, combined with their S2 windscreen:

    http://www.clikstand.com/

    Neil

  19. #19
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    P.S. We were not fussy aout type or brand of fuel-If the stove screwed into the cannister, we used it.

  20. #20
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
    P.S. We were not fussy aout type or brand of fuel-If the stove screwed into the cannister, we used it.
    FWIW: We weren't either. We used whatever brand was available MSR, Brunton, Coleman, Sno Peak, whatever. It was very scarce on the TA for half of Colorado, all of Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and even much of Virginia. I definitely would not count on finding it when you need in on the TA and I have heard the same about the NT and ST.

  21. #21
    Crazyguyonabike
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    Quote Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
    FWIW: We weren't either. We used whatever brand was available MSR, Brunton, Coleman, Sno Peak, whatever. It was very scarce on the TA for half of Colorado, all of Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and even much of Virginia. I definitely would not count on finding it when you need in on the TA and I have heard the same about the NT and ST.
    Pete, I'm curious as to whether you have a handle on how available alcohol fuel would have been on your trips? Or were you simply not looking for that?

  22. #22
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NeilGunton View Post
    Pete, I'm curious as to whether you have a handle on how available alcohol fuel would have been on your trips? Or were you simply not looking for that?
    I think it was very available, but my impression may be slanted a bit since I wasn't always looking for it. I am pretty sure Yellow Heet was readily available and some other alternative was surely available at any hardware store, if in less convenient sizes like a quart. I know that I saw the Yellow Heet pretty frequently for at least part of the trip, but may not have noticed if there was a section where it wasn't there.

    I took notice on my more recent tour across KS, OK, and NM and it definitely readily available there.

    BTW, the clickstand looks interesting, but the picture on their page looks like there is a yellow flame. That made me wonder if it sooted up the pots much. Did you find any tendency to soot up.

  23. #23
    Crazyguyonabike
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    Quote Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
    I think it was very available, but my impression may be slanted a bit since I wasn't always looking for it. I am pretty sure Yellow Heet was readily available and some other alternative was surely available at any hardware store, if in less convenient sizes like a quart. I know that I saw the Yellow Heet pretty frequently for at least part of the trip, but may not have noticed if there was a section where it wasn't there.

    I took notice on my more recent tour across KS, OK, and NM and it definitely readily available there.

    BTW, the clickstand looks interesting, but the picture on their page looks like there is a yellow flame. That made me wonder if it sooted up the pots much. Did you find any tendency to soot up.
    Thanks, that gives me some confidence - I've not actually gone on tour with the Trangia, I've been curious about how available appropriate alcohol is in the "small town America" we all know and love (you know, the places with just one small grocery store and a bar).

    I don't know why the pic on the ClikStand site has a big yellow flame, it does look a little odd now you mention it. The Trangia certainly doesn't behave like that usually, in fact the flame is pretty much invisible during daylight hours. Maybe they made the flame more visible for the publicity photo, so that it's obvious the stove is actually on? I dunno. In any case, there's no reason I can see why the ClikStand would affect the flame quality - really it's just a stand for the Trangia, and it acts as a wind guard at the same time as channeling air to the stove in a way that doesn't also blow all the heat away. The ClikStand folds up very small, it's made of stainless steel (but it's still very light) and together with the S2 windscreen (which fits into the grooves on the stand) they just seem to do two things very well: Support the pot, and protect from the breeze so that more heat is directed to the bottom of the pot. I like simple ideas that are well executed, and this certainly seems to be in the same spirit as the Trangia itself.

    Neil

  24. #24
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    if you stick to the yellow HEET there is no soot.
    the red HEET soots

    perhaps the big yellow flame in the pic is only due to what can be photographed and show the product at the same time.

    being that a small blue flame is difficult to photograph

  25. #25
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NeilGunton View Post
    I don't know why the pic on the ClikStand site has a big yellow flame, it does look a little odd now you mention it. The Trangia certainly doesn't behave like that usually, in fact the flame is pretty much invisible during daylight hours. Maybe they made the flame more visible for the publicity photo, so that it's obvious the stove is actually on? I dunno.
    Thanks. It seemed weird to see the big yellow flame. I have used a Trangia and never saw such a flame. It is probably just as you said just there to make the flame visible for the photo.

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