Lighting the Backcountry boiler

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bbb
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Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:27 am

Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby bbb » Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:06 am

I thought a thread on methods of lighting the backcountry boiler might be useful:

I have a suspicion that the fire-bowl is too small for top lighting a batch load: the wood underneath blocks the air to the top fire. Perhaps a cut-up stainless steel Ikea cutlery holder could make an alternative fire bowl: only use the neoprene sleeve on upper half of boiler (lighter anyway), and when packing let the boiler go inside the Ikea fire-bowl (i.e. opposite to usual). The heat resistant stainless steel would also allow cooking on embers more.

You can make a little chimney extension (more draft) from some springy aluminium foil (e.g. a disposable oven roasting tray) just by rolling it tightly around a tube slightly smaller than chimney, then inserting into the chimney and letting its springyness hold it in place. A short one can be packed inside the kettle, and a longer one could be carried separately as an extension.

BCB Ikea base.JPG
Diagram

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zelph
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Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby zelph » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:38 am

Great idea to use an Ikea. Lots of air entering, should work really nice. The BackCountry fire bowl is too small the way it is. It's base is too narrow, should be same dimension as largest diameter of kettle. Is the Ikea the same diameter as the BC kettle? Your aluminum extension chimney will soon melt after a few burns. :o
http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/

bbb
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:27 am

Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby bbb » Tue Mar 13, 2012 11:10 am

The Ikea base should be just wider than the kettle (if their website is to be believed: I haven't bought one yet).

extension chimney will soon melt

Was cheap, ti is expensive, so I'll see how long it lasts. :)

bbb
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:27 am

Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby bbb » Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:59 pm

I tried the Ikea base....

it was too wide (needed a steel foil "doughnut" to prevent flames placing soot on outside of boiler) but worked OK apart from too many upper holes (fire escapes).

However, I managed to top-light the standard BCB base:

I used an extra foil windshield so that could light the base with boiler removed, and once caught place boiler fully on the base.
(boiler can be held a bit above if desired: for draft?)

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zelph
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Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby zelph » Tue Mar 20, 2012 5:14 pm

You can cut the top lip of the Ikea just like the can in this photo to form a shelf to replace the foil donut you made. Cut and form it so the flames can't go up the side of the BC boiler. Then place the boiler on the newly formed shelf.
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http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/

bbb
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:27 am

Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby bbb » Fri Apr 06, 2012 2:11 pm

Thanks.
I am also trying to improve the supplied fire-base, as this is lighter than the Ikea stand.

For the supplied (lighter than that ikea one) BCB fire-base, I made a mini "wood-gaz" style inner (with raised mesh floor) from a stainless bird "peanut" feeder:

was not enough air using the standard base, but worked OK when boiler was just rested on some pegs (~1cm high) instead.
Was quite smokeless once going. Still needs started with boiler removed (because tinder blocks chimney area).
Burnt to gray ashes.
EDIT: forgot to mention was too small to boil without extra twigs added.

I suspect a raised mesh floor (and possibly more holes) in the standard BCB fire-base would improve the BCBs burning, making it more of a rocket-y stove....

I will have to try it.
Last edited by bbb on Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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zelph
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Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby zelph » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:30 pm

I purchased a backcountry boiler used 6 months ago or more. My first attempt at lighting it the regular way was ok but it smoked totaly too much until it got hot enough to really get lit. Once it got going the twigs quickly were consumed and more twigs had to be constantly fed. Well, you can't see inside the kettle to determine when to stop adding twigs and so all of a sudden it becomes smothered and more smoke comes rolling out. Ok, now it finally is burning ok and the twigs get consumed again and still the water is not boiling yet. :roll: So now what do we do......we add more twigs right? yes, more twigs. We fill it up again because we still can't see inside the kettle we over fill this time. :roll: All of sudden the water comes to a boil and starts spitting out the top hole. We naturally grab hold of the kettle and remove it from the fire bowl and we find that most of the burning twigs fall out over the sides of the bowl. Humbug!!!!!! At least we got boiled water. All that said is the reason I use a twig organizer to hold the twigs together and then top light.

Kettles take a while to get used to.
http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/

bbb
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:27 am

Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby bbb » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:16 pm

NB the previously mentioned mini "wood-gaz" style inner from a stainless bird "peanut" feeder was too small for a full boil:

so I drilled lots of holes all the way around the BCB base, then made a taller mini "wood-gaz" style inner as above (but with no raised floor): this means the BCB is carried assembled, but as inner mesh goes far (as possible) into chimney, extra sticks do not fall out when boiler is lifted. The cage means kindling is secure (can secure with twig through top mesh), but was still not big enough for a boil, so more twigs had to be dropped in ( my logic: If flames shooting out add another twig : wait a bit and check again : until boiling ).

I also added such a tall woodgaz-like cage to my Ikea stand, which thus no longer needs the foil disc.

I noticed that Zelph mentioned the difficulty of making a woodgaz to fit the BCB:
perhaps the best would be to drop the BCB base, and let the kettle rest on , e.g. tabs, on the woodgaz itself: i.e. the woodgaz becomes the base.

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zelph
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Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby zelph » Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:30 pm

I noticed that Zelph mentioned the difficulty of making a woodgaz to fit the BCB:
perhaps the best would be to drop the BCB base, and let the kettle rest on , e.g. tabs, on the woodgaz itself: i.e. the woodgaz becomes the base.


Search for a can that fits the bottom diameter of the boiler and make it tall enough to take 4" long twigs. 2"s of the twigs will be in the can and 2" will be up inside the kettle. That will get the 2 cups to a boil with one load.
http://www.woodgaz-stove.com/

english stu
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Re: Lighting the Backcountry boiler

Postby english stu » Wed May 02, 2012 10:52 am

As Zelph suggested some time ago I made a little basket like a pot stand to control the twigs. Once the fire gets going I make sure that some longer twigs get up the chimney, more heat in the chimney the quicker the boil. I will keep my eye open for an improved fire bowl but I would not want to add much weight as it is pretty good by adding the little cage.


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