I also made a big stove early on, not knowing where to start. Made with a soup can for a burner, but I thought it was too big. Put off a hell of a flame though.
I think ideally just guessing of course, since it burns from the top down, it seems like a taller innner can the better, IE at least 2X as tall as it it in diameter. Cans like that are hard to find though.
I still have my Tig welder so maybe I will fire it up one day and make the real deal, a drilled stainless steel version. A titanium can would be nice too.
About the 2nd or 3rd design was one of these sardine cans in a soup can, pretty much built the same way, except you have to cut a hole in the top of the can.
It actually fired off better. The steel outer can holds heat better but it was heavier.
I thought about adding a 2nd set of holes a little lower.
This current heiny stove would not work with just 4 holes in the base. Not enough O. Went to 8 and that helped.
Life span of the aluminum can is in question, but I will fire it off daily until it fails. Seems like its holding up okay though.
Of course you could always carry a 6 pack of Heinelken and some sardines on the trail.
The large stove I built was out of a large tall can, goya black beans and a tall olive can. Also goya or maybe Iberia I think. It has a recessed bottom too.
That inner can is not as big as a soup can in diam. Maybe 2-2.5" in diam. Bigger in diam and much taller than the sardine can.
It is a real burner though, just too big for me.