Titanium alcohol multi-fuel stoves are ultralight to carry, simple to set up, and reliable to use! You’ll be amazed by the performance of such a small stove.
In this article, we will focus on how to use a titanium alcohol stove properly and effectively even in terrible conditions.
Let’s get started with the below list:
- What is a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
- What type of fuel to use in a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
- What to look for in a good Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
- How to light a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
- How to extinguish a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
- How to use a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove in winter?
- How to store the fuel safely?
What is a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
There are many design variations of this classic stove depending on the materials used to produce it. Overall, they are small, compact, and robust.
An alcohol multi-fuel stove means this kind of stove can burn multiple fuels. You can choose to use alcohol, solid fuel tablets, or petrol. Titanium is without a doubt the most practical because of its natural material properties.
Since titanium has been used to produce alcohol stoves, they have become the lightest, simplest, and most compact stoves on the market. With a range of fuel options, you never are stuck knowing where you can get another gas canister.
What type of fuel to use in a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
Titanium multi-fuel stoves can be used with multiple fuel sources. You can choose to use alcohol, solid fuel tablets, or petrol. The versatility of fuel sources makes it a functional and robust stove. For those traveling where access to fuel alternatives like gas canisters is limited having one of these in your gear bag is essential.
“Denatured alcohol is used as a solvent and as fuel for alcohol burners and camping stoves.” Source Wikipedia
You can easily find denatured alcohol in hardware stores, supermarkets, and pharmacies. It is also known as methylated spirits.
When choosing denatured alcohol, make sure that it has a high percentage of ethanol content (at least 95%), and that the rest is made up of methanol and other ingredients to make it undrinkable.
Additionally, do not use rubbing alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, or methyl alcohol because they will not burn hot enough and will produce soot.
Fuel tablets are a great fuel source for your titanium multi-fuel stove. They fit perfectly in the center of the stove and are easy to light. Nevertheless, like gas canisters they can be hard to find on your adventures as not everywhere stocks them. A backup supply is a good choice for your gear bag as a precaution if you can't find the nearest petrol station or the alcohol runs out.
Using petrol with your titanium stove is also a very common choice. Petrol is easy to get at the nearest gas station and also it burns very well for cooking. Many bikepackers use petrol for their stove fuel. It is a practical and ready source of fuel.
What to look for in a good Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
Durability is the primary factor that you should consider when purchasing an alcohol stove as it needs to withstand high temperatures.
Therefore, choose a stove that is made of titanium as its melting point is 3,034°F. The stove won’t alter shape after use and as a bonus, it cools quickly.
Weight is another concern for many backpackers since they have to carry all their gear. A good titanium alcohol stove should be ultralight so that you can easily take it with you anywhere. You don’t want to sacrifice durability for weight so titanium is a great choice.
A windshield is imperative to protect the stove and the flame from being blown out by the wind. In the summer this isn't too much of an issue but in windy conditions it's essential. The wind will not only extinguish the flame in most cases but otherwise reduce the heat output to your cooking pot. Thus wasting more fuel.
A sheet windshield is highly recommended, compact to carry, and practical to use. You can roll your windshield up when not in use. To set up form a circle with the windshield and secure using the W-lock design and rivet.
A cross stand is a great pair with a windshield. You can raise your cooking equipment on a stable platform as well as shelter from the elements. Cook without your flame going out even in the windiest of conditions.
Using a cross stand enables a distributed flame rather than having one heated area. This means quicker cooking times and even heat distribution.
If you want to know more check out SilverAnt’s Ultralight Titanium Multi-Fuel Stove, Cross Stand & Windshield combo.
How to light a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
With the main requirements listed for your multi-fuel stove, let's explain the best practices for lighting.
Fill up your stove with fuel, for example, denatured alcohol. You can use a small cup, bottle cap, or anything similar to measure the fuel. Generally, 1 fluid ounce (30 ml) will boil about 12 fluid ounces (350 ml) of water.
Ignite your stove. A lighter is commonly used over matches because it won’t be affected by wet conditions and its performance is stable. Dipping a sprig of dry grass or a twig into the alcohol stove, and lighting the sprig or twig is highly recommended. Be careful not to knock the stove over when doing this too close.
Tips: During daylight, the flame is not easy to see. But, never try to put your face on the stove to check if it’s burning or not. You can hold a sprig of glass over the stove to check if it’s lit. On top of that, Igniting the stove in a shade indeed helps.
Wait for the stove to fully flare up. This process may take a few seconds. Holes on the stove rim assure enough oxygen comes through making the flame bigger.
Don’t put the cooking pot directly on the stove until you can see the flames coming out of the alcohol stove on the top or side of it. Otherwise, the lack of oxygen can extinguish the fire.
When you use petrol, the process is quite similar. But, you need to be more careful when you light it. You can ignite it with a magnesium fire rod or stick.
If you go with solid fuel tablets, they’re easier to light. Just ignite a corner and it will quickly burn wholly. A 14g tablet burns for approximately 12 minutes.
Tips: Place the stove on a flat, level surface away from anything flammable, and make sure the area is well-ventilated.
How to extinguish your Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove?
The essential element of any flame is oxygen. You can snuff any fire out by cutting the oxygen. When you want to extinguish a titanium alcohol multi-fuel stove, the process is quite the same. Life will be easier if you take a snuffer. However, another option is to make one from a soda can or another non-flammable material.
Blowing alcohol stoves out is extremely dangerous. If you blow too soft, the fire can’t be extinguished. If too hard, the lit fuel may splash over yourself or others.
Once you’ve snuffed out the fire, wait until the stove is completely cool. If there’s fuel remaining in the stove, you can pour it back into your fuel bottle.
How to use a Titanium Alcohol Multi-fuel Stove in winter?
Perhaps you have heard that alcohol stoves struggle in cold weather. Alcohol stoves do work in cold weather as well. However, if you want the same performance as in other seasons, it takes some understanding of how alcohol stoves work.
When you use alcohol or petrol as fuel in winter, they evaporate less quickly than in summer resulting in a hard igniting process. You can prepare a primer can for faster, safer lighting in advance or take winter petrol instead.
Another concern is about heat loss because heat transfers more easily in winter. It takes you more time and fuel to cook the same meal. The best solution is to use a windshield to reflect heat toward the stove to decrease the loss.
If you are a big fan of solid fuel tablets, you won’t have the hard-to-light problem. But you need a windshield to protect the flame from extinguishing.
How to store the fuel safely?
Alcohol or petrol is flammable, and in a liquid state, it has a relatively high vapor pressure. In this case, it means it's easier to diffuse in the air. Therefore, you have to be careful when storing it. Never keep it in the open where a heat source could ignite it. Sealing the container tightly after every use is vital.
Another thing to consider is the container. Never store your fuel in a metal container because pure ethanol affects the integrity of the container. A small zip-top plastic bag, as well as a screw-top water bottle or pop-top container that is well-sealed, are the best ones to go with.
However, you can also go with a titanium hip flask or titanium water bottle to store the fuel as titanium is non-reactive with alcohol. It won’t corrode or rust and no leaking issues will ever happen. Compared with plastic, titanium is stronger and way more durable. But, don't forget to label it before it serves as a fuel container.
If you choose solid fuel tablets as your fuel, it’ll be easier. The key to storing them properly is to keep them DRY. Sturdy, tightly closing ziplock bags serve this purpose well.
There are plenty of reasons to choose a titanium alcohol multi-fuel stove as your backpacking stove. They’re indeed light and easy to carry. But what makes them outstanding is their durability, reliability, and versatility.
Thanks for your reading this article. This guide will help you with the use of a titanium alcohol multi-fuel stove and its best practices.
If you have any further questions, feel free to leave a comment below.