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Discussions > Coffee > Machines > Alcohol to burn...  
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kmfpod
Senior Member


Joined: 31 May 2010
Posts: 2
Location: Cochrane
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Jul 4, 2010, 8:37am
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

Hey Coffegeek Craig, I've been hunting for weeks to find the right fuel for my Yama Vacpot alcohol burner! I see you've posted some help, especially for us Canadian residents. That 4 ltr can of methyl hydrate is exactly what I'm after. Is this in the pain department of Home Depot then?

Thanks in anticipation.

Keith.
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,264
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Sun Jul 4, 2010, 8:52am
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

Hi Keith,

Welcome to the Coffeegeek forums! {;-)

I dunno about the "pain" dept lol!, but 'paint' dept yes & I've never looked to see if it was there at Home Depot or not., but I imagine it is. I buy mine from Canadian Tire & it's there. That post above with the pic is quite a while ago, & that white plastic 4 liter jug has been downsized to an American gallon now, 128 fl oz or 3.78 liters.

Cheers!

 
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__________
Senior Member


Joined: 12 Sep 2006
Posts: 924
Location: .
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Machine now fixed ;o)
Grinder: None
Vac Pot: None
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Sun Jul 4, 2010, 3:31pm
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

If you're committed to using the heater which came with the vac pot, I'd strongly suggest you look for "denatured alcohol" which, as has been said in earlier posts, is basically Ethyl alcohol (the kind that won't poison you unless you have too much) adulterated with a small percentage of Methyl Alcohol (which is extremely nasty stuff) to make it undrinkable and thereby get round alcohol duties etc..

In many countries it is dyed a sort of mauve colour - can't remember the chemical they use.  Exact formula varies from country to country and is normally laid down by law, but all have a basic "make it undrinkable" objective.  Here It's called Methylated spirit - "Meths" for short. In this country you will get it at a hardware store, Chemists (Pharmacy) or somewhere like B & Q, Homebase etc..  .

Methyl alcohol (if that is what is termed methyl hydrate) I really wouldn't want to mess with. I think it also has the disadvantage that it burns burns at a much lower temperature.

Having said ALL of that, I don't use the very stylish burner that came with my Cona very often.  It's simpler and far less messy to use a gel cannister -  here you get them mainly from restaurant supply stores and wholesalers (I get mine from Makro) but also online and possibly in some camping stores - they're often used for chafing dishes etc..  Very cheap,  they fit exactly into the space provided in the stand for the Cona burner, and have a nice wide flame that works perfectly.  Most are pure gelled ethyl alcohol.

(I'd use a butane stove in preference to either, but haven't found one that will fit under the table-top type Conas.)
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CraigA
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CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,264
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Sun Jul 4, 2010, 3:37pm
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

__________ Said:

In many countries it is dyed a sort of mauve colour - can't remember the chemical they use.  Exact formula varies from country to country and is normally laid down by law, but all have a basic "make it undrinkable" objective.  Here It's called Methylated spirit - "Meths" for short. In this country you will get it at a hardware store, Chemists (Pharmacy) or somewhere like B & Q, Homebase etc..  .

Posted July 4, 2010 link

Right.

Methyl alcohol (if that is what is termed methyl hydrate) I really wouldn't want to mess with.

Why? It says right on the jug, "For Marine unpressurized alcohol stoves", fondue fuel, etc.

I think it also has the disadvantage that it burns burns at a much lower temperature.

No, as this burns very hot, almost invisible! Well there's a yellowish light form the desk lamps shade iluminating the flame from the right & the white room light above . In the kitchen with normal daylight in there, the flame's hard to see.
I've been using it for years, like nine.. There's absolutely no residue left on the glassware also, unlike the denatured stuff in the states I've heard & read about here.

CraigA: Pict430.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,264
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Sun Jul 4, 2010, 4:26pm
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

Another angle.

CraigA: Pict431.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
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__________
Senior Member


Joined: 12 Sep 2006
Posts: 924
Location: .
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Machine now fixed ;o)
Grinder: None
Vac Pot: None
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Mon Jul 5, 2010, 1:29am
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

CraigA Said:

Why? It says right on the jug, "For Marine unpressurized alcohol stoves", fondue fuel, etc.

Posted July 4, 2010 link

My personal choice I guess - but we all take our own view of risk when dealing with materials that may be hazardous. Under EU hazard classifications, ethanol is defined as "harmful" and methanol as "toxic" - I'm not sure of where the dividing line between the 2 definitions is drawn but the permitted exposure in the workplace is much lower for methanol by about a factor of 5. Perhaps Canadian regulators take a different view.

CraigA Said:

No, as this burns very hot, almost invisible! Well there's a yellowish light form the desk lamps shade iluminating the flame from the right & the white room light above . In the kitchen with normal daylight in there, the flame's hard to see.
I've been using it for years, like nine.. There's absolutely no residue left on the glassware also, unlike the denatured stuff in the states I've heard & read about here.

Posted July 4, 2010 link

Don't think I said it wasn't hot.  Did say I thought ethanol burns much hotter unless you can tell me otherwise ? It may not be that relevant in real life, after all, if anyone were to decide to heat a vacuum coffee maker from cold with any alcohol flame it's going to take quite a while.
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kmfpod
Senior Member


Joined: 31 May 2010
Posts: 2
Location: Cochrane
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sat Jul 10, 2010, 8:05am
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

Hey Guys,

I landed me some Methyl Hydrate stuff from the 'paint' department at Home Depot and it works beautifully...thank you so much.

As an ex-pat Brit, it warmed the cockles of my heart to hear B&Q, Makro and Meths again :o) I can almost smell the meths from the days of science at school!!

I'm just starting out on this coffee expert hobby thing, and can see there are some outstanding subject experts within these forums to glean some knowledge from. Next step is to find some beans that are tastier than the Kirkland Espresso ones from Costco at $5.00 per pound.

On the subject of the alcohol fuel, the methyl Hydrate is totally spotless on the glasswear, even though my supplied burner has a wick - unlike that beautiful looking burner Craig A has!

Thanks again chaps.

Keith.
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,264
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Sat Jul 10, 2010, 8:24am
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

kmfpod Said:

On the subject of the alcohol fuel, the methyl Hydrate is totally spotless on the glasswear, even though my supplied burner has a wick - unlike that beautiful looking burner Craig A has!

Thanks again chaps.

Posted July 10, 2010 link

Thanks Keith!

I should of mentioned that about the wick burners. It's great that this is so pure at 99.9% as listed on the jug, that it leaves not even a trace of carbon & zero deposits.

Checl out this wickless burner for only $7.95 pictured below. Thay also have a great cheap fully adjustable vac pot stand too!

CraigA: Wickless Alcohol Burner.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
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http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169
http://plus.google.com/u/0/100690035958728038289/posts/p/pub

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,264
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Sat Jul 10, 2010, 8:34am
Subject: Re: Alcohol to burn for vac pot heater
 

They also have a great cheap fully adjustable vac pot stand too for only $12.95!

CraigA: MicroLabStand.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
http://twitter.com/CoffeegeekCraig
http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169
http://plus.google.com/u/0/100690035958728038289/posts/p/pub

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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