Thanks for the interest John! It’s actually kind of absurd how obsessed with making a workable version of this kettle I’ve become. I have made some real progress, but it’s been slow given the amount of time I have to commit to the project. Here’s more than you ever wanted to know:
I gave up on trying to make it out of available components, and decided I would have to start from scratch - bare aluminum sheet. So I downloaded Google’s Sketchup (awesome program for novice 3-d design), and designed a vessel and fire base that would weigh about 5 oz together, pack to 3 3/4" by 6 1/2", and boil and carry approximately 20 oz of water. Then I made a working mock-up of my design with aluminum sheet, some blind rivets, and JB-weld. The mock-up came in at about 5.8 oz (added weight was from rivets and epoxy), and could boil 20 oz of water in just under 6 minutes from lighting a match (awesome!). I did a number of tests (my notes are around here somewhere), and I think it took just about 2 oz of sticks for a good boil. They burned down to absolutely nothing, save a few white wisps of ash. I was really impressed with its weight and performance, and that my calculations and design had been pretty good.
So I sent copies of my design files and technical specs to a number of metal spinning and hydroforming shops for quotes to build a legit prototype. I knew this would be a big expense, but again, I was obsessed, and I figured I could probably sell enough of these to at least recoup some of the overhead for temporary mandrels (forms). Unfortunately, I found that the places that worked with the cheaper tooling (only $800 for the set I needed :) ) weren’t able to get the final material thickness I wanted, and the kettle would end up being 2-3x as heavy as designed. I did find some higher-end places that could get the thickness right, but only worked in permanent tooling that would run me about $6-7K. This was obviously more than I could spend, even if I could recoup some of it by selling a few.
I then decided to see if I could just make it myself, so I got some books on metal spinning and bought a low-end wood turning lathe, and some other shop tools. I got the necessary materials to convert the lathe to metal-spinning and to make my own spinning tools, and did so relatively easily despite my complete lack of experience. Then I got some maple and made the mandrels for the 3 pieces need to make the kettle and the aluminum sheet to form around them. I originally thought the mandrels had come out pretty good, but either because of the flimsy, cheap lathe, or the fact that I made them out of solid, unseasoned maple (instead of several laminated sections as was suggested), they ended up a bit warped. Despite their imperfection, I tried to spin the fire base because it was the smallest piece. Unfortunately, in addition to being flimsy, the available speeds on the lathe were too high and its power was too low to properly spin the metal without stalling the motor or stretching the metal to the point that it would tear.
I now have a better lathe with more power and the proper speeds. Unfortunately, my “workshop” is on the balcony of our 1 BR apartment, so all efforts have ceased for the winter. Once things warm up again, I’ll make some new mandrels and give this another shot.
Here's a close-up of the mock-up:
Here are a few of my spinning attempts, getting progressively better until the end where I tried to use even thinner sheet. As you can see, each has torn at the shoulder as a result of being overworked at high rpms:
Oh - and to answer your actual question about a Trangia - I haven't tried it with one of those, but it should work with burners that are small enough to fit in the base and have a flame pattern wide enough so the heat has good contact with the walls before heading up and out of the chimney.