Fuel - what is going on

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mememememeitsme
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Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:07 pm

Fuel - what is going on

Postby mememememeitsme » Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:16 pm

I bought a cobalt via ebay, and I am so very impressed and happy with the whole package. It works seriously well, and is durable. I will love it for always.

Anyhow, my problem is that I'm in the UK, so over here the best sort of fuel I can readily find is methylated spirits, 'meths' which is purple coloured over here. I can only really find it at DIY stores, who sell it as a general cleaner for paintwork, but the bottle also says some stuff about using it as a fuel.

It burns, but it seems to burn with an orange flame, and it will go through an ounce of the fuel in about 5 minutes, often meaning i have to refill the stove. I can put more fuel in to start with, but of course it would be better for me to find a more efficient fuel so that I'm not carrying more weight around than I need to, and also to save me having to find places to buy fuel if I'm in the middle of a tour on my bike.

Can anyone give me any advice? We don't really have denatured alcohol here, everything I can find just says denatured and meths are the same thing. I can more than likely source high purity IPA, but it evaporates really fast and I don't know if that's any good?

mememememeitsme
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Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:07 pm

Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby mememememeitsme » Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:21 pm

PS - this is the stuff I've been using, it says 'mineralised', if that is relevant

[url]http://www.diy.com/diy/jsp/bq/nav.jsp?action=detail&fh_secondid=9253610&fh_view_size=10&fh_eds=%3f&fh_location=%2f%2fcatalog01%2fen_GB%2fcategories%3C{9372013}&fh_search=spirits&fh_refview=search&ts=1240161689952&isSearch=false[/url]

Vibe
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby Vibe » Sun Apr 19, 2009 1:25 pm

mememememeitsme wrote:Can anyone give me any advice? We don't really have denatured alcohol here, everything I can find just says denatured and meths are the same thing. I can more than likely source high purity IPA, but it evaporates really fast and I don't know if that's any good?

IPA will have even more yellow flame and is sooty from a Cobalt type stove. It will work though. Over here we tend to use the yellow bottle HEET brand auto fuel line deicer as it is pure Methanol. The red bottle is IPA. Ethanol would probably be best, but since that is drinking alcohol, it's taxed as such - which is why it gets "denatured" or polluted with stuff to make it non drinkable when it is to be used for other purposes.
Looks like the purple stuff should work too. It just has a mineral spirit "pollutant" added.
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DarenN
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby DarenN » Sun Apr 19, 2009 2:34 pm

"Meths" is what has always been reccomended by Trangia, for Trangia burners. i've been led to believe that is is an ethanol based fuel.
here in Canada, we cannot get ethanol based fuel due to government restrictions. therefore, i use a methanol based fuel that is called Methyl Hydrate. it burns very clean and has a clear blue flame on most burners. i have a Cobalt and have had reasonably good results useing methyl hydrate.

Daren.........
"I'd rather be happy than right." Slartibartfast

mememememeitsme
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby mememememeitsme » Sun Apr 19, 2009 3:47 pm

Thank you both for your replies. I've done some more reading around the whole subject and yes it seems what alcoholic fuel is available is largely dictated by governmental policy.. The fascist bastards.

Our methylated spirits I believe is ethanol as you say, with 10% methanol, and some other horrible plant like pollutant rubbish (the mineralisation aspect I think).

I searched for methyl hydrate but didn't immediately find it for sale in the uk (via the internet at least). I'll check out a few more hardware and DIY places to see what else is on offer. The meths does work ok, obviously just not as efficient a fuel as what's available in the US, this legendary heet of which you speak! Clearly it would be far too appetising for our homeless winos and it is in fact banned here.

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irrationalsolutions
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby irrationalsolutions » Sun Apr 19, 2009 6:24 pm

what about checking places that have boating stuff. dont sail boats use that same stuff for there stoves?
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realityguy
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby realityguy » Sun Apr 19, 2009 6:34 pm

.."yellow bottle HEET brand auto fuel line deicer"...Check your auto supply stores,might have something similar I would assume...
The views and opinions expressed by this person are his own and not the general consensus of others on this website.Realityguy

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zelph
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby zelph » Sun Apr 19, 2009 10:01 pm

Hello itsme :D I like your name :D

No need to prime your Cobalt. I hope you're not doing that.

Light the stove in the center and wait till the flames are coming out the jets for about 10 seconds and put on a pot of two cups cold water. It should boil in about 7 min.

Try using the stove without the windscreen around the pot. Do your testing in an outdoor, calm, sheltered area.

What diameter pot are you using and what material is it made of?

I wish I had a gallon of your meths so I could test it.
http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/

mememememeitsme
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby mememememeitsme » Mon Apr 20, 2009 7:28 am

No I don't prime the stove, just pour in my measure of fuel and light it in the middle, then I leave it burning til the jets around the edge have all lit and put my pan on it.

This is the pan set I use http://www.coleman-eur.com/p-23454-exponent-non-stick-cook-kit.aspx

Even if I put a full ounce measure of my local meths it won't burn for the full 7 minutes I don't think, it would probably need 1.5 ounce or more to last that time.

I've only really used it while camping, I can do more testing at home and come up with some more accurate results.

I'll also check out the local big car accessories stores to try and find some alcohol based fuel line de-icer, though over here I've never ever heard of anyone needing to freeze protect fuel as it just doesn't ever get that cold - car radiators yes, but never the fuel line.

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zelph
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Re: Fuel - what is going on

Postby zelph » Mon Apr 20, 2009 12:28 pm

Ok, I had to make sure of how you were proceeding. The pot looks good and you can expect a little longer time to get to a boil.

I'll try and find some info on other fuels you might be able to use.

Found this info at a U.S. site. You might try looking in the same places in the UK:


does anyone know were to buy methanol by the gallon in the stockton or sacramento california area? thats all i need to get started making my own bio. thanks


Try any 18 wheeler supply or repair shops for air brake line anti-freeze. If you get the one without the rust inhibitor all the better.
Regards,
Joe.D

I'm not local so I can't help you there. When I want methanol I just go to the local dirt racing track in the summer time around here. There are several vendor who sell it by the gallon there... Or I'm sure they could get it for me by the barrel too. My point is you should find a racing supply company, performance shop, etc... Get in the yellow pages, find a shop or two and make a few calls. If they can't provide it for you they'll probably have a line on someone who can. Hope this helps.
http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/


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