Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

Mishaps and Surprises with Alcohol Stoves

Notices
Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

Mishaps and Surprises with Alcohol Stoves

Old 04-30-13, 04:29 PM
  #1  
eternalvoyage
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,256
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Mishaps and Surprises with Alcohol Stoves

How many things can go wrong?

What does it look like?

How does it happen?

This can be a resource for those who have an interest in these aspects of using alcohol stoves.

(Please keep posts on topic.)

Last edited by Niles H.; 05-01-13 at 12:55 PM.
Niles H. is offline  
Old 04-30-13, 05:52 PM
  #2  
eternalvoyage
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,256
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Something begins to melt for no apparent reason. This is a surprise. One has never seen such a thing before.

Sometimes it is a plastic bottle that begins to melt.

Sometimes the plastic bottle contains alcohol.

The momentary fascination with seeing something begin to melt for no apparent reason, shortly transitions into the realisation that the meltdown is due to invisibly burning residual alcohol on the outer surface of the bottle, which has managed to become ignited somehow, even though the bottle is not particularly close to any flames. The thought occurs, Maybe it has something to do with the lower surface tension, surprisingly thin films, and rapid, unfamiliar spreading behaviors of the alcohol, coupled with the invisible flames?

Whatever. We need to put this out before the bottle melts any further and the alcohol spills out and spreads even more invisible flames all over everything.

Followed by varying outcomes, including further surprises and challenges.

[Have watched this happen, and have read additional accounts of similar events and responses, including the momentary fascination with watching something melt before one's eyes for no apparent reason, in unknown invisible flames, whether it be a plastic container, a tent floor or tent wall, some paint, a stuffsack, or various other items, outdoors or indoors,]
Niles H. is offline  
Old 04-30-13, 06:27 PM
  #3  
 
BigAura's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Chapin, SC
Posts: 3,423

Bikes: all steel stable: surly world troller, paris sport fixed, fuji ss

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 623 Post(s)
Liked 55 Times in 33 Posts
I think "everyone" who has used an alcohol stove has been fooled at least one time by the invisible flame. I have been surprised but fortunately never really burned. It's a definite danger.

Last edited by BigAura; 04-30-13 at 06:31 PM.
BigAura is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 02:43 AM
  #4  
Certified Bike Brat
 
Burton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 4,251
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Obviously you have much more experience in this area than I do in this since in all my years camping I've never had an issue with any stove or any fuel type. But I do have a tendency to read and follow instructions and do the required maintenance.

So how about some detailed personal accounts from Mr Niles???? Photos would be nice too. To date I've never seen anything except references to things you've read about and stuff you've imagined.
Burton is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 02:45 AM
  #5  
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 52,152

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 141 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3203 Post(s)
Liked 596 Times in 329 Posts
Originally Posted by Burton
So how about some detailed personal accounts from Mr Niles???? Photos would be nice too. To date I've never seen anything except references to things you've read about and stuff you've imagined.
+1

We've been asking for that for years ...

Last edited by Machka; 05-01-13 at 03:10 AM.
Machka is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 06:50 AM
  #6  
weirdo
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 1,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
You can drink 151, but not supposed to drink the HEET.
Or the stuff that works just as well for half the price, or denatured.
rodar y rodar is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 07:09 AM
  #7  
Gone.
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 509
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
corvuscorvax is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 07:11 AM
  #8  
 
BigAura's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Chapin, SC
Posts: 3,423

Bikes: all steel stable: surly world troller, paris sport fixed, fuji ss

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 623 Post(s)
Liked 55 Times in 33 Posts
Originally Posted by Burton
So how about some detailed personal accounts from Mr Niles???? Photos would be nice too. To date I've never seen anything except references to things you've read about and stuff you've imagined.
Is this true? Niles has been posting longer than me, nearly three times the number of posts, and never toured?
BigAura is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 07:16 AM
  #9  
Senior Member
 
bikemig's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Middle Earth (aka IA)
Posts: 20,430

Bikes: A bunch of old bikes and a few new ones

Mentioned: 178 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5885 Post(s)
Liked 3,467 Times in 2,078 Posts
Originally Posted by Burton
Obviously you have much more experience in this area than I do in this since in all my years camping I've never had an issue with any stove or any fuel type. But I do have a tendency to read and follow instructions and do the required maintenance.
Reading instructions is like seriously bad form; nope I just can't do it.
bikemig is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 07:53 AM
  #10  
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 52,152

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 141 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3203 Post(s)
Liked 596 Times in 329 Posts
Originally Posted by BigAura
Is this true? Niles has been posting longer than me, nearly three times the number of posts, and never toured?
It's possible! We just don't know because he won't post anything about any tours he might have done ... no photos, no blogs, no paragraphs in the Short Tours threads about a weekend tour he has taken recently, no descriptions of his own touring bicycle or touring equipment, not even comments like, "I toured France for a month in 2007".

What we do know, however, that he is well experienced with Google, and has posted heaps of threads and comments about other people and their tours, and reviews of equipment, etc. etc. etc.

Last edited by Machka; 05-01-13 at 08:05 AM.
Machka is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 09:30 AM
  #11  
Senior Member
 
shipwreck's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 1,480
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 141 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 9 Times in 7 Posts
One thing I like to remember is that for some, the Internet might be the only outlet for interests some one has. Even if the guy does not tour at all, and some of his comments verge on insulting for someone else( see my permathrin thread(can't link due to using my phone right now)), people can be fragile.
I don't post short tours(though now I might, have never even thought about it)or many pics of my trips, but
thats because I never felt the real need.
At Any rate, even when a poster is 'different' in thier approach, you never know what kind of psychological state they may be in. The Internet is a dangerous place for people to play at assuming things about another person they only meet through a keyboard. I for one do not want to mock, ridicule, or even show my anger at anyone.
I do know that for myself, this is most the only outlet I have for my interests, so kind of want to tread lightly.
shipwreck is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 10:50 AM
  #12  
 
BigAura's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Chapin, SC
Posts: 3,423

Bikes: all steel stable: surly world troller, paris sport fixed, fuji ss

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 623 Post(s)
Liked 55 Times in 33 Posts
Originally Posted by shipwreck
tread lightly
I agree with your sentiment. Personally, I wasn't trying to mock or ridicule, but expressing my surprise. I do agree that Niles has contributed to some interesting discussions and exhibits a lively personality.

That said, the touring forum is read by many novices for the specific purpose of gleaning first hand information from practitioners. When a newbie sees someone with thousands of posts, posting a seemingly authoritative statement, they might construe that as firsthand knowledge. A newbie might rely on this information to their own detriment. I'm careful about information that I post and avoid statements for which I have no direct knowledge OR I'LL include a disclaimer.
BigAura is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 03:07 PM
  #13  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: cherry hill, nj
Posts: 6,144
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
This could be a helpful thread.
chefisaac is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 03:42 PM
  #14  
eternalvoyage
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,256
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by chefisaac
This could be a helpful thread.
I agree. It could help sharpen awareness on a variety of points and from a variety of angles, and contribute to clearer understandings and safety.

Maybe going forward it can be more on the topic and more in accord with those intents?
Niles H. is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 04:20 PM
  #15  
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 52,152

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 141 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3203 Post(s)
Liked 596 Times in 329 Posts
Originally Posted by shipwreck
I for one do not want to mock, ridicule, or even show my anger at anyone.
I do know that for myself, this is most the only outlet I have for my interests, so kind of want to tread lightly.
Originally Posted by BigAura
I agree with your sentiment. Personally, I wasn't trying to mock or ridicule, but expressing my surprise. I do agree that Niles has contributed to some interesting discussions and exhibits a lively personality.

That said, the touring forum is read by many novices for the specific purpose of gleaning first hand information from practitioners. When a newbie sees someone with thousands of posts, posting a seemingly authoritative statement, they might construe that as firsthand knowledge. A newbie might rely on this information to their own detriment. I'm careful about information that I post and avoid statements for which I have no direct knowledge OR I'LL include a disclaimer.
I too, am not mocking. I'm genuinely curious what Niles' Cycling CV is. I haven't read everything he has ever posted, so it is entirely possible I missed the posts where he told us about his touring bicycle, or his latest tour, or his first tour, or whatever. But it seems that every time we inquire, he just gets upset and doesn't want to tell us.

In keeping with this particular thread ... Niles, tell us about the last time you toured with an alcohol stove, or maybe the first time you toured with one. Where did you go? (altitude and environmental conditions can sometimes affect stoves)
Machka is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 04:20 PM
  #16  
Cycle Dallas
 
MMACH 5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Land of Gar, TX
Posts: 3,777

Bikes: Dulcinea--2017 Kona Rove & a few others

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 197 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 10 Times in 5 Posts
Still trying to figure out the point of this thread. If it really is about surprises with alcohol stoves, then it was summed up in post #3.

The invisibility of alcohol flames is a bit unique. Otherwise it's all pretty basic flame and fuel safety.

But post #2 makes me think the OP is not really in search of any information. Rather a weak attempt at a smear campaign against a certain type of fuel. Is this another Mac vs. PC debate?
MMACH 5 is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 05:14 PM
  #17  
eternalvoyage
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,256
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The topic of the thread is pretty clearly defined and described, even by the title itself; and there are many possible points and experiences to add. Please don't get too lost in speculations about this or that. It will unfold and become clearer with time. Please try to stay on topic.

'M'/C was a direct participant in various threads in which I talked about different aspects of my tours, and exhibited the same sorts of harassing and malicious behaviors and falsehoods on those threads, but much more extreme, and was warned about it. Others got involved and helped to shed some light on her behaviors and attacks, and finally she backed off. I don't trust her at all anymore, and I'm not at all interested in interacting with someone who has so clearly shown these sorts of behaviors, and so repeatedly. I've asked her to just stop and simply leave me alone; and I am saying it again here.

The topic of the thread is clear, let us try to move forward with it.

The second post described some of my own and others' experiences in relation to one aspect of using alcohol stoves. There are many more.

Experiences with other stove types are on their respective threads.

They can all be useful, at least to some of those who come to them with an open mind and a desire to learn.
Niles H. is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 05:18 PM
  #18  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: cherry hill, nj
Posts: 6,144
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I do have a question..... And I know this will vary on many levels but in determining how much fuel you use per day, is there a rough range or approximation to go by?

I've read about flare ups with these stoves. Wa causes this?
chefisaac is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 05:53 PM
  #19  
eternalvoyage
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,256
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by chefisaac
I do have a question..... And I know this will vary on many levels but in determining how much fuel you use per day, is there a rough range or approximation to go by?

I've read about flare ups with these stoves. What causes this?
Good questions.

With the supercat, it is approx. 0.8 ounces of alcohol to boil two cups of water.

As you mention, there are variables like water and air temps, wind, size and type of pot, cooking styles, windscreen design, etc.

Flare ups are a relevant issue. There are others here who can probably say more on that. When hot alcohol is spilled, it can burn very fast and very hot. Flare ups without spills are something I would like to learn more about also.
Niles H. is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 08:10 PM
  #20  
Certified Bike Brat
 
Burton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 4,251
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Originally Posted by bikemig
Reading instructions is like seriously bad form; nope I just can't do it.
Reading instructions is one of those things that can have secondary benifits. For example - its usually a good cure for insomnia!
Burton is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 08:16 PM
  #21  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Bay Area, Calif.
Posts: 7,239
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 659 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Originally Posted by MMACH 5
Still trying to figure out the point of this thread. If it really is about surprises with alcohol stoves, then it was summed up in post #3.

The invisibility of alcohol flames is a bit unique. Otherwise it's all pretty basic flame and fuel safety.
Agreed. Seems like it would be a good idea to get in the habit of adding a bit of salt to the fuel container when it's first opened so the sodium content will make the flames yellow and visible.
prathmann is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 08:25 PM
  #22  
Certified Bike Brat
 
Burton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 4,251
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Now I'm going to quote you:
The topic of the thread is clear, let us try to move forward with it.

They can all be useful, at least to some of those who come to them with an open mind and a desire to learn.
The only kind of thats at all usefull is SPECIFIC information. That would mean specifing a brand and model of stove or the exact details of anything that was home made. Otherwise any construction differences would make one person's experience completely meaningless to someone else with different equipment using the same fuel.

And specifics regarding the circumstances are also critical in separating equipment malfunction from human error (stupidity).

So if you're really interested in putting together something useful - suggest you lead by example and start with some useful information yourself.

Maybe that might encourage a bit more participation - not to mention a bit more credibility.

Last edited by no1mad; 05-01-13 at 09:34 PM. Reason: clean up
Burton is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 08:45 PM
  #23  
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 52,152

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 141 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3203 Post(s)
Liked 596 Times in 329 Posts
Originally Posted by Burton
The only kind of thats at all usefull is SPECIFIC information. That would mean specifing a brand and model of stove or the exact details of anything that was home made. Otherwise any construction differences would make one person's experience completely meaningless to someone else with different equipment using the same fuel.

And specifics regarding the circumstances are also critical in separating equipment malfunction from human error (stupidity).

So if you're really interested in putting together something useful - suggest you lead by example and start with some useful information yourself.

Maybe that might encourage a bit more participation - not to mention a bit more credibility.
+1

And location of useage. As I mentioned, altitude and environment can make a difference, as can the actual fuel used.


Niles, did you use the stove at sea level or in the mountains? If you've done both, did you notice a difference?

Did you use the stove on a level picnic table? Or on an uneven surface? If you've done both, did you notice a difference?



(PS. Niles, Do you really want me to refer back to some of your previous threads where you've talked about touring "experiences". I suspect you'd rather not have those brought up.)
Machka is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 09:45 PM
  #24  
Thunder Whisperer
 
no1mad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NE OK
Posts: 8,843

Bikes: '06 Kona Smoke

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 275 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 2 Posts
I just had to do some clean up, folks. Any action that may or may not be taking place behind the scenes is not up for discussion and the parties that are involved may be contacted privately.

Kindly keep it on topic or the thread will be closed and/or removed.
__________________
Community guidelines
no1mad is offline  
Old 05-01-13, 10:27 PM
  #25  
Homey
 
Siu Blue Wind's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 13,497
Mentioned: 56 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2425 Post(s)
Liked 1,398 Times in 894 Posts
Alrighty. Thread closed per OP request. Thanks for playing.
__________________
Originally Posted by making
Please dont outsmart the censor. That is a very expensive censor and every time one of you guys outsmart it it makes someone at the home office feel bad. We dont wanna do that. So dont cleverly disguise bad words.
Siu Blue Wind is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
sdime
Commuting
124
07-30-18 12:32 PM
Csdhlhcky
Road Cycling
25
07-30-15 03:01 PM
Giacomo 1
Classic & Vintage
26
12-02-12 09:42 PM
krazygl00
Road Cycling
52
04-13-12 12:55 PM
rodar y rodar
Touring
16
09-07-11 09:40 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.