Gear Review: Alocs Alcohol Stove

Alcohol stoves are very popular with backpackers and campers who look for lightweight cook systems that burn inexpensive fuel. There are no moving parts, no electronics, no valves, and no pipes. Simplicity. They are also inexpensive and can be made from common household materials if so desired.

Alcohol stoves are mostly used for boiling water for preparing freeze dried and dehydrated foods. Fuel selection varies with denatured alcohol being very popular. The biggest drawback of the alcohol stove is it is very susceptible to wind.

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I have been using the Alocs alcohol camp stove for the past several weeks and have found that it works very well.

On with the review…….

Construction/Build: The Alocs is made primarily of aluminum and copper. Cosmetic appearance is very nice with no noticeable machining marks, scratches, etc. The coating of the pot stand looks very nice and smooth.

Everything fit together as intended with the fuel cavity cap screwing on tightly. The screw cap has an internal o-ring so the stove can be stored away fully fueled.

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Fuel Options: Although many types of fuel can be used with an alcohol stove I have settled on the yellow bottle HEET. This is 99% Methanol. It is easy to store, pack, and dispense into the Alocs stove. Other fuels include rubbing alcohol, Isopropanol(pure),  grain alcohol, and denatured alcohol. Many of these can create hazardous fumes to a well ventilated area is the best location for usage.

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Performance:  Performance tests of any alcohol stove will vary depending on wind conditions and fuel. As I only use HEET that will be the one constant in any tests I have done thus far and moving forward.

Performance is generally measured in how long it takes to boil water. In my testing of the Alocs alcohol stove 1 cup of water would start to boil in around 8 minutes. Two cups took about 12 minutes.

I poured a good amount of HEET into the fuel cavity with no measurement. I am guessing 2 – 2.5 ounces total. I let it burn until all fuel was consumed. It took nearly 30 minutes. I was surprised that it listed that long and consider it an excellent burn time. A 12 ounce bottle of HEET should last close to 6 hours. Not bad for around $1.50.

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Extinguishing the flame is simple. There is an adjustable flame regulator which is placed on top of the Alocs. It has a sliding cover which can be opened and closed to adjust flame intensity. I have never used it for that purpose rather I leave it closed and just place it on top of the unit when finished and the flame goes out.

The Alocs alcohol stove also comes with a small drawstring fabric carrying bag. Nice to keep everything organized.

The Alocs was my introduction to alcohol stoves. I can understand why so many hikers and backpackers use them. Simple, lightweight, reliable and effective.

The Alocs Alcohol Stove is available from Amazon. Price is generally under $15 with free shipping.

It’s worth it.

Rourke

 

 


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3 Comments

  1. While wood alcohol burns yellow (the test to see if it’s consumable BTW.. the top of fermentation is always wood alcohol – Methyl alcohol, one CH group.. where Ethanol is two..) You can burn the head and tail of fermentation but not consume it.. Ethanol has an advantage … I burns nearly clear .. if you need cheap heat, little or no sight line and no smoke .. it is a great call. I use the tin containers and Purell hand sanitizer or similar, layer over cotton balls. I seal them with tape and pack. If you need to start a fire with steel… take a plop and sparks on top of it .. even when it’s wet out. I have a friend that does the last part with cotton balls and Vaseline to catch sparks. neither are very prone to wind.. just a BTW… Carry them as part of my Bag.

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