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Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

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Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby hikin_jim » Mon Oct 03, 2011 8:46 pm

There's a lot of talk about alcohol stoves and how great they are in terms of being light weight. Alcohol stoves though are super vulnerable to wind. I'm interested in integrated alcohol stove systems where the windscreen and stove are designed to work together. Micky mousing something together hasn't worked well for me.

I thought I'd take a couple of alcohol stoves systems, run them side by side, and see what I might see.

So, this past Saturday, I took a Clikstand and a Caldera Cone over to a friend's for a little stove testing.
Image

If you're interested in my findings you can read about them on my blog Adventures In Stoving -- Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests.

HJ
Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving



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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby freestone » Mon Oct 03, 2011 10:05 pm

I think the test is very interesting and your comments about alcohol stove wind sensitivity are spot on. My comment is that the Trangia burner is not engineered for a Clickstand, or otherwise. Conversely, the Caldera is just that, a system. I would therefore expect the Caldera system to be more effective. I think people recognize the strengths of the Trangia burner and try to improve upon the concept, not realizing the burner itself has specific requirements to achieve maximum efficiency. I 'm not convinced Clickstand is meeting those needs, but only trying to come up with a light weight alternative to the basic Trangia two part windscreen/burner support design. Sooner or later other issues need to be addressed such as stability, ease of use in uneven terrain, and performance in increment conditions. You have however made a much needed direct comparison of two very popular UL alcohol stove systems that I have been interested in purchasing. Thank you!
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby Hobbes » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:38 am

I use the Gram weenie pro:

Image

At first, I used a cut-down windscreen from my Whisperlite that was stowed away with all my other 'traditional' BP gear up in the rafters. Then I realized I could achieve the same effect with a double layer of heavy foil, so up went the windscreen to join the rest of the old gear.

Even though I take oatmeal & couscous, I'm pretty indifferent to a hot meal anyway. I have my own GORP formula that averages around 2,500 calories/pound. Plus, I take along my own home made jerky, so between those items, I typically just munch & crash after a long day. In the am, I can quickly make some oatmeal/coffee, or just head out.

The great thing about alchy stoves is the fuel weighs only 80% of water, plus, as you mention, it requires no pressurization, which means you can take along any old water bottle container. Since it only requires 1/3-1/2 oz to boil 8oz, this setup allows me to take to 1oz per day. I typically never use all my fuel, so I'm only carrying a few ounces of excess weight at the end of a trip (if that).

But I think the key selling point is that you're not carrying a bomb. I think I finally made that impression with my brother during our last trip.
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby rlown » Tue Oct 04, 2011 4:13 pm

Hobbes wrote:But I think the key selling point is that you're not carrying a bomb. I think I finally made that impression with my brother during our last trip.



What is a bomb?
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby hikin_jim » Wed Oct 05, 2011 12:41 pm

rlown wrote:
Hobbes wrote:But I think the key selling point is that you're not carrying a bomb. I think I finally made that impression with my brother during our last trip.


What is a bomb?
I think he's referring to the fact that alcohol stoves typically won't explode. Gas and white gas stoves can far more easily.

HJ
Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby hikin_jim » Wed Oct 05, 2011 12:45 pm

freestone wrote:I think the test is very interesting and your comments about alcohol stove wind sensitivity are spot on. My comment is that the Trangia burner is not engineered for a Clickstand, or otherwise. Conversely, the Caldera is just that, a system. I would therefore expect the Caldera system to be more effective. I think people recognize the strengths of the Trangia burner and try to improve upon the concept, not realizing the burner itself has specific requirements to achieve maximum efficiency. I 'm not convinced Clickstand is meeting those needs, but only trying to come up with a light weight alternative to the basic Trangia two part windscreen/burner support design. Sooner or later other issues need to be addressed such as stability, ease of use in uneven terrain, and performance in increment conditions. You have however made a much needed direct comparison of two very popular UL alcohol stove systems that I have been interested in purchasing. Thank you!

You're very welcome. The tests I've seen between a Trangia 27 type set up (the full Trangia windscreens + the Trangia burner) indicate that the full Trangia set up is more efficient than the Clikstand. The Clikstand does of course disassemble and fit nicely into a one liter pot.

The Clikstand works fairly well, but it is a compromise. A full traditional Trangia set up will work better but be bulkier and heavier.

The Caldera Cone limits what you can do in terms of cooking, but it is REALLY light.

Some stats for those who may be interested:

Clikstand with Trangia Burner
Clikstand S-2: 94g/3.3oz
Windscreen S-2: 37g/1.3oz (note: In my testing I used a BPL Ti windscreen, 25g/0.9oz)
Trangia Burner: 67g/2.4oz
Trangia Burner Lid: 21g/0.7 oz
Trangia Burner Simmer Ring: 23g/0.8oz
Total Trangia Burner Weight: 112g/4.0oz
Grand Total: The Clikstand with Trangia burner set up is 242g/8.5 oz total, including windscreen, burner lid, and simmer ring.

Note: The above weights are taken from the Clikstand.com website. SNOWGOOSE in Scotland wrote and gave me the actual weights for his Clikstand set up. His weights are a gram or two heavier in several cases. His total weight was 247g/8.7oz.

The Caldera Cone with 10-12 stove
Caldera Cone: 34g/1.2oz
10-12 stove: 16g/0.6oz
[float=]Grand Total[/float]: The Caldera Cone with 10-12 stove is 50g/1.75 oz

Note: The above weights are actual weights. The weight of a particular cone may vary depending on what type of pot it is designed for, the type of cone, and the material from which the cone is made (Ti or Al).

The Clikstand with Trangia burner is approximately five times heavier than the Caldera Cone with 10-12 stove.

HJ
Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby hikin_jim » Wed Oct 05, 2011 12:48 pm

Hobbes wrote:I use the Gram weenie pro.
Since it only requires 1/3-1/2 oz to boil 8oz, this setup allows me to take to 1oz per day.
Wow! That's really efficient. What are you using for fuel?

HJ
Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby Hobbes » Wed Oct 05, 2011 5:29 pm

hikin_jim wrote:
rlown wrote:
Hobbes wrote:But I think the key selling point is that you're not carrying a bomb. I think I finally made that impression with my brother during our last trip.


What is a bomb?
I think he's referring to the fact that alcohol stoves typically won't explode. Gas and white gas stoves can far more easily.

HJ


Exactly. There's a reason white gas canisters are so heavy. While 200 proof alcohol can explode (witness countless movie scenes where a strong drink is thrown into a fire), you sort of have to go out of your way to achieve such a feat. With gas, not so much; I mean, that mofu just wants to go *poof* @ the slightest suggestion. Hence tanks that are really built like a "tank".

I'm actually a big fan of white gas - for car camping. A few years ago, when Coleman began the move towards propane, I took the time to find some older Coleman gear. It took some doing, but I have a near mint gas stove & lantern from the late 60s.

I'm actually a fan of propane as well, as long it's direct flame for BBQ. But for controlled cooking, especially low(er) temperatures combined with a Dutch over, a gas stove is the nearest thing to having an outdoor kitchen. (And keeping your city girl wife happy. She likes nothing better than to have the boys out of her hair [read go fishing or take the dog for another walk], while she has a cocktail and gets some down time on her own.)

Anyway, with regard to alchy stoves, it seems to be one of the few pieces of gear where no one ever goes back to gas. That's not true with the whole tarp/tent/bivy exercise in trying to find the 'perfect' shelter.

Once you deal with the convenience of pouring 5-6oz of some inexpensive denatured alcohol from Home Depot into a cheap disposable water container, throw in a 1oz stove, and away you go, there's no going back.

Well, there could be one or two exceptions: if you were hiking with 3-4 people, perhaps your wife & kids, you'd probably need a good gas stove to make sure everyone was well fed and not feeling too much like they were roughing it.

But solo? No way.
Last edited by Hobbes on Wed Oct 05, 2011 5:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby Hobbes » Wed Oct 05, 2011 5:35 pm

hikin_jim wrote:
Hobbes wrote:I use the Gram weenie pro.
Since it only requires 1/3-1/2 oz to boil 8oz, this setup allows me to take to 1oz per day.
Wow! That's really efficient. What are you using for fuel?

HJ


Home Depot:

Image

However, I've recently gotten the idea that maybe this will work as well - if you know what I mean:

Image

For anyone who is interested, I believe this is the authoritative write-up on alchy stoves. It's what I researched before I made the move:

http://zenstoves.net/Stoves.htm
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby rlown » Wed Oct 05, 2011 6:05 pm

never burn 151. there are better ways to waste it..
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby Flux » Mon Oct 24, 2011 9:07 am

I was a little bored yesterday and had a few beer cans so I built one of these:

http://www.jureystudio.com/pennystove/penny2.html

I had to recut one can but it took me less than 15 minutes as I had the right drill bit. Luckily I also had some denatured alcohol in the garage and lit it up. This was early morning so the sun was shining and I couldn't see the jets, but you could hear the subtle roar once the inner fuel started boiling. I lit it later that night and had these wonderful 3" long jets of blue flame. Super cool and very easy to do.

I love my canister stoves but dang, this thing is so simple and appears to be very reliable. Next comes a DIY stand and windscreen. i have a little 1100 ml Ti pot that would make a pretty cool setup.
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Re: Caldera Cone vs. Clikstand Alcohol Stove Tests

Postby hikin_jim » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:34 am

Flux wrote:I was a little bored yesterday and had a few beer cans so I built one of these:

http://www.jureystudio.com/pennystove/penny2.html

I had to recut one can but it took me less than 15 minutes as I had the right drill bit. Luckily I also had some denatured alcohol in the garage and lit it up. This was early morning so the sun was shining and I couldn't see the jets, but you could hear the subtle roar once the inner fuel started boiling. I lit it later that night and had these wonderful 3" long jets of blue flame. Super cool and very easy to do.

I love my canister stoves but dang, this thing is so simple and appears to be very reliable. Next comes a DIY stand and windscreen. i have a little 1100 ml Ti pot that would make a pretty cool setup.

Uh, oh, we've got another person bitten by the DIY stove bug. :wink:

Have you tried some boil tests? The really efficient stoves are able to boil 2 cups of cold water with about 1/2 fl. oz. of alcohol. 3/4 fl. oz. isn't bad. If a stove uses 1 fl. oz. or more, that's not particularly good. :thumbsdown:

Your 1100 ml Ti pot is a good size for such a stove. Really small pots are typically narrow to the degree that flames run up the sides, wasting heat.

Got any photos of your set up?

HJ
Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving
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