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Old 15-04-2010, 08:50   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mule View Post
Alcohol will not boil water, well not on my boat.
What brand of water do you use ?





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Old 15-04-2010, 09:14   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvenG View Post
What brand of water do you use ?





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LOL !!

OK.

Given I understand and respect the hazards for both systems... and the availability in foreign ports.

Please focus on cooking quality alone.

I love grandma's fried chicken, but has anyone else been able to get their alcohol flames that hot?

Is it possible that those who can't, need to clean out their burners?
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Old 15-04-2010, 09:52   #33
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Originally Posted by NormanMartin View Post
Cooking fuel availability based on my cruises of the Caribbean only:
Alcohol is generally available and may be expensive.
Good quality alcohol is used in various industrial processes. Islands with industry have lower prices than less industrial islands.
Thanks Norman that helps in making a decision.
Will use propane in the cockpit our hibachi on deck and passive alcohol for the cabin.
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Old 15-04-2010, 10:44   #34
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Originally Posted by goldbeard View Post
Please focus on cooking quality alone.

I love grandma's fried chicken, but has anyone else been able to get their alcohol flames that hot?
I've done vegetable pans and fried fish on my origo, the misses is a more talented cook then yours truly and says it's fine
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Old 16-04-2010, 00:19   #35
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I dug up this old post, it answers most of my questions.
I found a neighbor who has the same galley maid stove/oven I have will updated burners. Does anybody know where to find new alcohol burners? I've looked on google.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssullivan View Post
I have to say alcohol is really a great way to go. We have used less than 2 gallons in the month we have been living aboard, including baking bread and making pizzas, as well as cooking all meals each day.

Extra work includes constantly pumping the fuel tank up to pressure and pre-heating. Both are very small tasks compared to everything else you have to do on a boat. The stove, once pumped and pre-heated works just like a normal gas stove.

As for advantages, I think the fact that you can always find a hardware store close by with denatured alcohol makes this much more convenient than propane, which I had on my last boat. I can remember hunting around for propane everywhere and keeping my fingers crossed that they would fill my tank (they often said they wouldn't because it didn't look just like the normal tanks on gas grills).

Another advantage is storage. I could easily store a year's worth of alcohol on board. The expense of doing so with propane would be huge. So... I don't have to go looking for alcohol as often as people go looking for propane. I can stock up.

Anyway, I think alcohol is the way to go now that I've been forced to try it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssullivan View Post
Hi Jack,

Since this popped back up to the active thread section, and I was away during your post, I wanted to add something. The alcohol we use is a system in which there is an external tank (external to the stove) which you pump up to 10-25psi. There is then a line that runs to the stove/oven.

After you take about 1 minute (literally) to pre-heat, you are ready to cook. To pre-heat you dribble some alcohol from the burner into some small spots just below the burner by simply turning on the burner without lighting it. You then light this pooled alcohol, which heats up the burner.

After the alcohol heats the burner (1 minute's time), the stove and oven behave identically to an LPG unit.

I don't see why you say that the flame has any less heat. On the contrary, this produces more heat more quickly than our gas stove did on land. The oven is the same way. You can burn dishes in no time on this unit if you're not careful, and I can boil a gallon of water in just a few minutes. (5 maybe? Never timed it) Also, the oven goes off the temp scale I have (600 deg F) in approx 5 mins at max heating.

While I agree that alcohol is more expensive than LPG, and that it poses a safety problem if not handled properly, it is a fine cooking fuel. Since July of this year, I haven't had a meal cooked on anything but. In fact, we make all of our own whole grain breads, muffins, and cook every dinner aboard using this system.

For liveboard use, it's a good fuel. Oh, and 1 gallon lasts about a month when you bake frequently.

I just couldn't stand by and let the fuel take such a bad rap, when it in fact does heat very well and is doing such a great job for us.
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Old 16-04-2010, 01:20   #36
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Fuel Facts

G'Day All,

Lots of opinions here, so lets introduce some FACTS: Following are some heating values for common fuels, reduced to BTU/US Gallon

Propane: 92,500 BTU/Gal
Butane: 130,000 BTU/Gal
Ethanol (Ethyl Alcohol): 76,000 BTU/Gal
Methanol (Methyl Alcohol): 51,000 BTU/Gal
#2 Fuel oil: 138,500 BTU/Gal

Denatured Alcohol as sold in many hardware stores is mostly Ethanol with enough Methanol added to make it undrinkable... usually a few percent, so its heating value is possibly around 72,000 BTU/Gal. The pretty blue color doesn't seem to add much!

So, what does this mean? Just that LPG (usually a mixture of Propane and Butane) has considerably more heating content per gallon than any alcohol combination. So, claims that it takes less storage space for alcohol fuel have no factual basis. If you burn enough alcohol you can certainly heat up food for cooking, and from above posts I think that the Origo stoves must do so, and with little danger of explosion. But how about cost?

Here in Australia "Metholated Spirits" (Metho to the locals) is running about $3.50/LITRE or more, depending on the source. LPG runs about
$1.50/Litre at marina fuel docks, considerably less ashore. So, with alcohol you are paying more than twice as much per litre and getting less heating value. In other locations the balance may be different.

Now as to availability -- this obviously varies greatly with location, but from our experience in the South Pacific Islands, LPG is available even in remote areas such as northern Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands. It may be neccessary to decant from an exchange bottle into your own tank, but yotties have been doing this for years out here. Buying alcohol in such places is a dream. Likely could get it in Port Vila, certainly in Noumea, unlikely in Honiara, but in any outlying village... not a chance.
Interestingly, kerosene is becoming very hard to find out there as well, and pretty damn dear when you find it. Some folks have resorted to buying JP-4 jet fuel which is often found at airports, and often cheaper than plain kero. Works a treat in stoves and lamps!

I won't get into the safety issues. Everyone has to evaluate their own worries about the hazards associated with each fuel/stove type. Anecdotal evidence follows: we have never personally met anyone who has suffered injury from an LPG stove, but have met people who were burned by flare-ups from alcohol stoves. Proves nada, but helps us justify our longterm decision to use LPG... carefully.

Cheers and good cooking to all

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II Lying Lake Macquarie, NSW Oz
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Old 16-04-2010, 05:10   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
.....
Propane: 92,500 BTU/Gal
Butane: 130,000 BTU/Gal
Ethanol (Ethyl Alcohol): 76,000 BTU/Gal
Methanol (Methyl Alcohol): 51,000 BTU/Gal
#2 Fuel oil: 138,500 BTU/Gal
.....
Nice Post Jim, just for the record, do you have the figures for kerosine handy???
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Old 16-04-2010, 08:31   #38
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as far as actual cooking--NO grandmas fried chicken with alcohol. NO abalone fried with alcohol--turns out rubbery as the alcohol(whether pressurized or not) will not allow the oil to rise to proper temp. alcohol is great for the non liveaboard kinda sailing. weekending etc. i reside aboard and i am aware of the dangers oif ALL cooking fuels..lol....i REFUSE to place alcohol in my boat---wont cook worth a tinkers damn....
i was assisting a surveyor with a survey of a boat that was blown to hell by a person who didnt respect propane--didnt turn me off to it--i use my brain, sorry folks--is all a matter of personal preference and ability to cook----if ye CAN cook ye chooses a fuel that WILL heat the things y ecook and then ye cn serve foods that ate not inferior in quality. propane is readily available everywhere cruisers cruise. not all fuels are that readily available. if ye chooose to weekend on a lake and have dire fear of exploding , then buy alcohol--it has a nice invisible blue flame and is readily extinguished with water ,,lol....if you plan on cruising the world in a sail boat--get the proper fuel for the job--that is not alcohol. oh yes--and learn the proper manner of using the fuel ye choose. helps a lot for those who have fear of cooking.

my formosa i bought was used by former owners who burned the galley badly 5 times with non pressurized alcohol stoves--lol--to each his own..i will no tuse alcohol stoves in my boats.
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Old 16-04-2010, 09:06   #39
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was used by former owners who burned the galley badly 5 times with non pressurized alcohol stoves
Sigh.


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Old 16-04-2010, 16:02   #40
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Nice Post Jim, just for the record, do you have the figures for kerosine handy???
G'Day Wotname,

The value for kero is 135,000 BTU/Gal.

The URL for the small data base that I used is:http://www.hrt.msu.edu/Energy/pdf/He...on%20Fuels.pdf

I'm not sure how to post the link properly...

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 16-04-2010, 21:00   #41
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Thanks Jim
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Old 17-04-2010, 06:28   #42
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Quote:
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G'Day Wotname,

The value for kero is 135,000 BTU/Gal.

The URL for the small data base that I used is:http://www.hrt.msu.edu/Energy/pdf/He...on%20Fuels.pdf

I'm not sure how to post the link properly...

Cheers,

Jim
Just the way you did it worked fine. Thanks.
http://www.hrt.msu.edu/Energy/pdf/He...on%20Fuels.pdf

www. hrt.msu.edu/Energy/pdf/Heating%20Value%20of%20Common%20Fuels.pdf
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Old 18-04-2010, 09:05   #43
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UNBELIEVABLE!!!

OK,

I disassembled my alcohol stove last night to give it a good cleaning. I don't know if the former owner ever did.....because I found two of the burners had metal bottle brushes broken off in them.

Do you think this has any effect on the performance of the stove?

They are really stuck, I don't know if I will be able to get them out, I can just grab the tip of them with a needle nose plier. I soaked them overnight with penetrating oil.

I'll keep you posted....Can you believe that?
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Old 18-04-2010, 11:43   #44
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Look at this picture! Who would reassemble something like this?

Everything I said about alcohol is void.

My boiling water complaint....reset.

I will reassemble the stove and run a side by side test with an in home propane stove.

I will make a video.

I will post the results.

Stand by.
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Old 19-04-2010, 09:58   #45
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Yeah that might have an effect...
looks like you got "PO'd" = stuck with a problem caused by a previous owner.
Good idea, the vid. Might be a good resource for someone looking at fuel types.

I appreciate all the info so far, particularly on availability and value.

As with everything else related to boat type and gear, a matter of trade-offs, familiarity and needs.
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