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 Hikin' Jim (hikin_jim) - M Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning" on 04/13/2012 16:59:34 MDT I'd like to dispel a myth that's out there: The myth of "fractioning." Fractioning suggests that in cold weather, only that portion of your canister that is propane will burn. If you've got a 100g canister of 70% butane and 30% propane, 70g of your fuel would never burn and would just sit there essentially useless in your canister. This is not the case.Well, if fractioning is "off," then what is the case? The short answer is that for the typical canister stove, more gas will burn than just the propane -- but you may still get some unburned butane left over. Want to know how it all works? I invite you to peruse my latest blog post:  Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning".HJAdventures in Stoving Edited by hikin_jim on 04/13/2012 17:00:08 MDT.
 Dan Cherry (risingsun) - F Locale: Northern Arizona Thanks on 04/13/2012 17:52:55 MDT I appreciate the clear explanation. Thanks, HJ
 Hikin' Jim (hikin_jim) - M Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA Re: Thanks on 04/13/2012 18:43:06 MDT Hi, Dan,You're welcome. Glad that it was clear. It's a bit complicated, but hopefully worth knowing.HJAdventures in Stoving
 M B (livingontheroad) - M fractionation on 04/14/2012 15:21:40 MDT Fractionation is a chemistry/engineering/industry term that is used to describe the separation of components from a mixture. Commonly based on their relative vapor pressures, but other techniques such as chromatographic or such also are encompassed. It does not mean separation of a pure component, just separation and enrichment of a phase with respect to at least one component.As such, fractionation is occuring. This is mostly used in industry to describe distillation systems with multiple stages to purify products from mixtures. I have never heard the myth that all of one species could vaporize, but it wouldnt surprise me to hear that be spewed around by the same folks that think the cannister pressure has something to do with how full it is. Most persons cannot be expected to have had the courses necessary to understand what is occurring.Seems that a common term, is actually being mis-applied to that myth, but I would say that fractionation is occuring. Edited by livingontheroad on 04/14/2012 16:11:00 MDT.
 Roger Caffin (rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe Re: Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning" on 04/14/2012 23:35:18 MDT There's also an extended technical article on canisters in cold weather athttp://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/effect_of_cold_on_gas_canisters.htmlFull explanations, graphs etc.Cheers
 Stuart R (Scunnered) - F - M Locale: Scotland Re: Re: Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning" on 04/15/2012 07:43:13 MDT Indeed there is Roger. I wonder if that was HJ's source? Edited by Scunnered on 04/15/2012 08:00:30 MDT.
 Hikin' Jim (hikin_jim) - M Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA Re: Re: Re: Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning" on 04/15/2012 19:28:15 MDT I wonder if that was HJ's source?Most certainly -- at least in part. I've read all of Roger's articles on bushwalking.org.au, his articles here, and the article he co-wrote with you. I've read other articles in magazines such as Off Belay. I'd have to say that the Gas in Cold weather article here on BPL is one of the best if not the best. I also have my university studies which give me some background albeit a bit old now. My post was in response to a question posed to me on WhitneyZone.com. I responded from memory. I'm sure I drew on all of the things I've mentioned, above; there may be some other influences. Perhaps an old Backpacker Magazine article or two. There was a day when Backpacker was a very thorough and in depth magazine.HJAdventures In Stoving
 Hikin' Jim (hikin_jim) - M Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA Re: fractionation on 04/15/2012 19:34:04 MDT Fractionation is a chemistry/engineering/industry termYes it is. My choice of the word "fractioning" to describe the myth may not have been the best. I was just trying to convey the idea of a simple fraction. In the case of a 100g canister with a 70/30 butane propane mix, the simple fraction would be 3/10ths (30g of propane out of a total of 100g). The myth is than only that fraction (3/10ths) that is propane will burn off. The reality is that far more will burn. Hopefully the posting was clear even if the use of the word "fractioning" was unclear.HJAdventures In Stoving Edited by hikin_jim on 04/15/2012 19:36:29 MDT.
 Stuart R (Scunnered) - F - M Locale: Scotland Re: Re: Re: Re: Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning" on 04/16/2012 04:23:15 MDT Fair enough. I guess I should be happy that you have taken the time to provide another source of factual information, given the amount of misinformation out there that gets mindlessly recycled. Keep going.
 Hikin' Jim (hikin_jim) - M Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Gas in Cold Weather: The Myth of "Fractioning" on 04/16/2012 09:17:12 MDT Well, and I owe you and Roger quite a debt of thanks for the mathematical portion of the article alone. Perhaps I could have eventually pieced together the overall mechanics of gas in cold weather from other sources, but I never could have done the math. I have committed to memory that the boiling point at sea level of a 70/30 butane/propane or a 80/20 isobutane/propane mix is about 0F/-18C. Those are very important numbers for inverted remote canister stove users in cold weather.HJAdventures in Stoving