PET cook pot - anyone tried this?
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Jeremy Platt
(jeremy089786) - F

Locale: Sydney
PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/19/2011 03:12:14 MDT Print View

On a hike my friend talked about the below link. Has anyone tried this successfully or is it bogus? Would be sweet if it worked!!

http://www.break.com/usercontent/2007/2/18/camping-tips-boiling-water-229379

James Marco
(jamesdmarco) - MLife

Locale: Finger Lakes
PET cook pot on 06/19/2011 05:35:44 MDT Print View

Somehow, boiling water and sealed containers sound a bit risky. Yes, it probably does work.

Mark Dijkstra
(Markacd) - F
Boiling water in plastic bottle on 06/19/2011 08:01:21 MDT Print View

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KDFuFrtatTc

Not recommended to do on a daily basis, but it works.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/19/2011 08:43:55 MDT Print View

weird chemicals may come out of the plastic into your water if you heat it

Sarah Miller
(lovesasa) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountain High
Chemicals on 06/19/2011 11:37:19 MDT Print View

I agree with the above poster. Even if it did work, I'd definitely be concerned about chemicals leaching into the water using this method. These bottles aren't designed to be stable at high temperatures.

http://www.saultstar.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=905930&archive=true

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/19/2011 16:06:49 MDT Print View

> weird chemicals may come out of the plastic into your water if you heat it

Great theory based on the mass media scares, but doesn't happen with PET. How many millions of rocket-base Coke/Pepsi/xxx bottles have been used so far? They are all PET.

You can also boil water in a paper bag. Old Boy Scout trick.

Cheers

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/19/2011 16:12:13 MDT Print View

what do you mean "rocket-base Coke/Pepsi/xxx bottles"?

wikipedia mentions that PET may not be safe when heated and offers some references

Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Re: PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/19/2011 20:14:19 MDT Print View

I've not tried it, but know that most juices that are in the the heavier PET bottles and are shelf stable (i.e., stored and sold unrefrigerated) are hot filled at ~85C to kill harmful bacteria. Will heating the water in PET allow more chemicals to come out? Yes, but PET is a pretty "clean resin," and there are not many chemicals that come out. Acetaldehyde will come out, but that is found naturally in fruit and yogurt. I realize that is a subjective statement, but the point in those videos are when the alternatives is microbial laden water...easy choice for me.
Tom

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Re: Re: PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/19/2011 21:01:08 MDT Print View

> "rocket-base Coke/Pepsi/xxx bottles"?

Any PET bottle used for carbonated liquids and hence under considerable internal pressure. The name comes from the base which has a distinctive 5 lobes. I guess someone thought they looked like the base of a very Sci-Fi rocket.

Cheers

Jeremy Platt
(jeremy089786) - F

Locale: Sydney
Feasible on 06/20/2011 01:13:55 MDT Print View

I tried this yesterday at a friends bonfire and it was partially successful (I could only find a bottle with a pop top that opened up) with the water getting to about 50C with no harm to the bottle.

I know that coke bottles are suited to very high pressures and may be more suitable for boiling water than many bottles. I am a touch worried about opening the lid if it is actually boiling and under pressure but am going to play around with this (using protective equipment) at the next bonfire and tell you how it goes!

Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: PET cook pot - anyone tried this? on 06/20/2011 05:47:11 MDT Print View

"rocket-base Coke/Pepsi/xxx bottles"?

That type of PET bottle base is also known as a "petaloid base" due to its resemblence to a flower with 5 petals.

Paul Osborn
(bcoutdoors) - F
It works, but is best saved for emergencies on 06/20/2011 07:12:48 MDT Print View

I have seen it done before. You can use it at a lower temperature to pasteurize water by maintaining a lower temperature for a longer time. Otherwise, make sure the bottle is completely full of water. Like the paper bag scout trick, whatever is not being cooled by the water will melt.

To me, both methods are best for survival skills training as opposed to regular cooking kit. You could always just bring a stainless steel (or aluminum) water bottle as that would double as a cook pot :)

E.L. Boston
(El_Jefe) - F

Locale: The Pacific Northwest
Do not heat consumables in PET vessels! on 06/20/2011 13:19:06 MDT Print View

I do not understand all this heating-consumables-in-plastic-containers stuff that gets bandied about here. Don't people realize that most plastics - especially ones not specifically designed for the purpose - leach into their contents all kinds of agents you don't want to ingest? Hell, even plastics that *are* designed to contain hot food and drink can leach nasty stuff into your chow. This is not nutty, tinfoil-hat-wearing paranoia; this is borne out by scholarly, peer-reviewed data. Within the past couple of years, Bisphenol A has become a buzzword of sorts, but there are many more unhealthy agents out there besides this one alone.

Look; if you are risking dehydration and need to pasteurize water to survive, but all you have is an old soda bottle, then go for it. But doing this by choice, under normal circumstances when other cooking vessels are available is, I'm sorry, sheer idiocy.




Mr. Caffin,
Normally I would just let this go, but since you're BPL staff, there are people out there who aren't going think critically, and instead just assume you are an authoritative source... In previous post you wrote,

"Great theory based on the mass media scares, but doesn't happen with PET."

With all due respect sir, before you dispense authoritative-sounding advice, you really should check a scholarly resource. While skepticism of the mainstream media is a healthy trait to have - the media machine has fed the public many a heaping spoonful of BS over the years - just because information is reported by the mass media doesn't automatically qualify it for dismissal. A quick breeze-through of Google Scholar will turn up a lot of material that indicates PET leaches agents that can be/are deleterious to human health. And your implication that, because PET has been in use for some time, it is safe is extraordinarily irresponsible; the list of things originally classified as GRAS, but later shown to be anything but is miles long.

I mean no disrespect sir, but you are wrong. And this advice should not be passed on to others as if it was accurate.

Edited by El_Jefe on 06/21/2011 10:25:13 MDT.

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Freezer bags on 06/20/2011 13:32:04 MDT Print View

If they are microwavable safe, then they are safe for putting near boiling water into for me:

http://www.trailcooking.com/content/are-freezer-bags-safe

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Do not heat consumables in PET vessels! on 06/20/2011 13:48:41 MDT Print View

Gosh, El, can I call you El?, quite the breathless post you have there.

Ummmmmm, Roger is a scientist. While I don't agree with everything he says, I certainly would consider him a scholarly resource, so I think you're a bit wrong on that count.

And I did a quick breeze-through of Google Scholar, and found articles on both sides of the fence, so certainly not some slam dunk against PET as you seem to believe.

But, really, overall, I don't believe anyone was advocating using your PET bottle to cook your dinner on a regular basis.

Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Re: Do not heat consumables in PET vessels! on 06/20/2011 17:55:38 MDT Print View

Let's not generalize PET along with all other plastics (and the additives that are used in them). What did you find on Google scholar that leaches from PET, other than acetaldehyde? I'm willing to be educated.

Tom

David Adair
(DavidAdair) - M

Locale: West Dakota
Re: Re: Do not heat consumables in PET vessels! on 06/20/2011 18:54:20 MDT Print View

El- I do appreciate your good intentions in trying to prevent our possible brain damage. It may be a bit too late for some of us though. Kids- if you're reading this - it isn't the PET you have to worry about, it's the Tequila.

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Do not heat consumables in PET vessels! on 06/20/2011 19:12:09 MDT Print View

El Jefe, while Roger can often shoot from the hip, he also usually has decent accuracy.

PET is pretty safe as far as contaminants. You mentioned BPA and that's the exact kind of thing Roger is referencing. Is anyone on this forum a fetus or infant? If so you should be very afraid of BPA, otherwise it has little to no effect on fully developed adults. It's only a risk during the early stages of development (so pregnant women should be concerned but they are a rather small minority on this forum).

Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Re: Re: Re: Re: Do not heat consumables in PET vessels! on 06/20/2011 19:35:09 MDT Print View

BPA is not found in PET, which was the original post. However, I tend to agree with your comment about pregnant women and BPA (polycarbonate bottles and some can liners), however even then it's a matter of how much you ingest.

Edited by TomClark on 06/20/2011 21:21:44 MDT.