What's the old saying..."Imitation is the greatest form of flattery"? This project is just that, and my hat's off the the guys at Trail Designs for inspiring this project. It is basically a copy cat version of their Caldera Ti-Tri Inferno stove, which is a titanium downdraft gasifier stove that burns wood very well, but is equally good with Esbit or an alcohol burner.
See my original review of their stove at;
The goal was to come up with MYOG version of their stove, but making it as light as possible. Here are the details of my project and back yard test;
1.15 MYOG Caldera Ti-Tri
0.30 MYOG floor
0.70 MYOG Inferno insert (cone .50, grate/base .20)
1.20 Heineken pot & lid
0.30 Snow Peak net stuff sac
1.60 GSI Plastic Mug
Here's how I pack it
Everything fits nicely into the Heineken pot, and the coffee mug protects the end of the cone that sticks out past the pot
Unpacking it, there are two cones to assemble
Lighting the stove is pretty easy due to the raised grate, and the cone acting as a wind screen
My version smoked a bit more than the Trail Designs version, but still very little
The outside cone fits over the smaller upside down cone that is the fire box. The Heineken pot slides inside the outer cone, and rests on its bottom ridge. I used a stainless piece of wire to hold the top of the cone firmly closed so the pot can not slide down any further.
If you look closely, you can see the gasifier in action
2 cups of cold water achieved full boil in under 8 minutes, about 2 1/2 minutes longer than the Trail Designs version. This is most likely due to the narrow/tall shape of the Heineken pot.
Fire out, and fuel burning down
The fuel burns all the way down to ash
Here it is in Esbit/Alcohol mode. The drawback to this setup is that the when you pick up the boiling pot, the cone stays attached. I don't find that to be a big deal, as the titanium cone cools quickly.
Conclusion: My version is obviously much more crude than the excellent workmanship of the Trail Designs version. When you compare the two on weight, the total packed weight of my version is 5.20 oz vs. 12.20 of the TD version (which include the 3.05oz caddy). That's a huge savings of 7oz!
If you are cooking for several people, the larger TD version would be much quicker and easier, as that pot holds up to 4 cups. the larger version also lends itself better to one pot meals. For a solo trip, or boil in bag meals with a partner, my smaller version works nicely.
I really enjoyed working this project, and have no plans on infringing on the business at TD. If you're interested in one of these and are not up for making your own, I'm sure the guys at Trail Designs would be happy to make you a much more professional looking version. Just shoot them an email - they are great to work with!