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Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Another look at the "Fire Focus 14" ESBIT burner on 10/22/2013 14:51:47 MDT Print View

Jon, the developer of the Focus Fire 14, sent a few ESBIT fans his beta fuel tab holder for testing. These comments are from my second test runs. Time to first boil were almost identical in the two tests. But the second run of tests included MAX boil times.

The Fire Focus 14 (14 gram , or full ESBIT tab) burner is an interesting development on ESBIT burners or "holders". It is not a stove but just the burner for ESBIT.

I tested the Focus Fire 14 in my Caldera Cone Ti Sidewinder against the CC "Gram Cracker" tab holder. 3 cup pot with lid containing 2 cups of 62 F. tap water. Outdoor shade temp was 68 F.

Gram Cracker:
1. time to first boil> 8 min., 32 sec.
2. max boiling time> 12 min.

Focus Fire 14:
1. time to first boil> 8 min. 20 sec.
2. max boiling time> 16 min.

I was surprised that the Focus Fire gave a longer max boiling time and therefore I'll be taking it and not the Gram Cracker tab holder on future trips. Cooking spaghetti, for ex., requires at least 12 min. boil time.

NOTE: Fuel I used was FiteLite, not ESBIT. FireLite burns a bit hotter than ESBIT so repeating this test with ESBIT may give slightly different times.

My one change made to the Focus Fire 14 was to put aluminum tape on each corner of the base to better contain the liquified fuel. This was after the tests. I recommnded to Jon that he make this change in the base to contain all of the fuel for combustion, as in Brian's improved Gram Cracker.

I found the Focus Fire 14 "chimney" seemed to contain almost all of the liquified fuel but I had a perfectly level surface for the test. Camping situations rarely provide this and an improved base will help.

P.S. My FireLite tabs were obtained from BPL's store. I can't find it any longer from other vendors. If you know of a source I'd be grateful for the info.

Edited by Danepacker on 10/22/2013 14:57:36 MDT.

Hikin' Jim
(hikin_jim) - MLife

Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Re: Fire Focus 14 ESBIT burner on 10/23/2013 10:03:46 MDT Print View

Interesting, Eric. So, basically about the same time to get water to a boil, but the FF14 held the boil longer.

If the FF14 holds the boil longer, it must be controlling the oxygen flow to slow the burn -- yet the time to boil is the same, so it must be (as it's name would imply) indeed focusing the heat.

HJ
Adventures In Stoving

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
The Esbit Holy Grail?!?!? on 10/23/2013 10:09:49 MDT Print View

I'm expecting mine to arrive any day now. I worry less about times and more about fuel economy.

Dare I hope to boil four cups of water with one Esbit tablet?

Derrick White
(miku) - MLife

Locale: Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada
Pic? on 10/23/2013 11:32:09 MDT Print View

Where would one find a picture of it?

Thanks

Derrick

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: Pic? on 10/23/2013 11:38:24 MDT Print View

Look HERE

Derrick White
(miku) - MLife

Locale: Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada
Thanks on 10/23/2013 13:51:56 MDT Print View

Thanks

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Another look at the "Fire Focus 14" ESBIT burner on 10/23/2013 14:02:07 MDT Print View

I am really impressed, Eric. Thanks for sharing this!

Kenneth Jacobs
(f8less) - F

Locale: Midwest
And now the wait.... on 10/23/2013 15:19:53 MDT Print View

Waiting for mine to arrive. Can't wait to try it out in the Sidewinder! I <3 ESBIT

KJ

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
4 cups H2O to boil on one ESBIT tab? on 10/23/2013 15:43:14 MDT Print View

Ian,

Interesting question, will the Focus Fire 14 boil 4 cups of H2O on one ESBIT tab?

First I'd want to use the Cakdera Cone with fitted pot. This is because the CC appears, in my experience, to be the most efficient ESBIT stove available. All other stoves let too much heat escape before it even touches the pot.

My pot is only a 3 cupper B/C I wanted a small pot for solo cooking so I can't use it for a 4 cup test. A larger Tri Ti or aluminum CC will be needed. I use a 1.5 L. JetBoil pot on my Sidewinder but only with wood for winter snow melting. The JB pot sits on top of the Sidewinder with the fins outside the Sidewinder's top.

I doubt if just one tab will do it but it may work with a 1 qt. or 1 L. FITTED pot in the CC. Likely 1 1/2 tabs will work well.

BUT... the Focus Fire 14 will only hold one tab. I wish Jon would make the "chimney" just a bit larger so contain two 14 gram tabs stacked or side-by-side. A taller chimney aould also have the result of giving more "draw" (faster air flow from the bottom air vents). However this may result in shorter burn times - I dunno.

But I'm working on a taller 2 tab chimney that also holds the tablets by the sides like the CC Gram Cracker does, to restrict burn area. If it works Jon can have the design gratis. For me it's all about making ESBIT a better alternative to alcohol. ;o)
So far playing cards and tape seem to be the best template materials for experimenting with shapes for aluminum and ti sheet metal.

Dan Yeruski
(zelph) - MLife

Locale: www.bplite.com
Re: Another look at the "Fire Focus 14" ESBIT burner on 10/23/2013 15:43:58 MDT Print View

Eric, do you light the cube first and then put the burner over the top of it or can you light the cube through the burner top?

Thanks for the results of your tests.

DY
Adventures In DIY Stove Making

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: 4 cups H2O to boil on one ESBIT tab? on 10/23/2013 15:54:34 MDT Print View

Thanks Eric. I have the sidewinder paired up with the Evernew 600ml. My plans are to burn seven tablets each (40* water) with the gram cracker and Jon's creation to see how they compare.

For the way I cook, I really don't need the water to come to a boil but I've been on a mission to boil 4 cups at 40* and keep coming up short.

Jon Fong
(jonfong) - F

Locale: FLAT CAT GEAR
My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/23/2013 21:43:33 MDT Print View

Hello everyone,

The Focus Fire 14 is an experiment of mine to produce a highly efficient Esbit based stove. By my calculations, the stove has a fuel efficiency of 66%. This is not quite enough fuel efficiency to boil 4 cups of water starting at 70 F, but its close. That being said, the stove was designed for people who boil 2 cups or less per meal. My thought being that this would be the sweet spot for this design. This is a straight up stove and does not have the simmering capability of the Epicurean Stove.

I believe that this is also a pretty niche stove with limited appeal; of course I may be wrong. Anyway, the Focus Fire 14 is in the pre-ALPHA stage of development. I am looking at getting feedback from people to see how I can improve the stove.

Best regards - Jon
wwww.flatcatgear.com

Hikin' Jim
(hikin_jim) - MLife

Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Re: My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/23/2013 22:40:17 MDT Print View

Thank you, Jon. And would the FF14 be more efficient than an Epicurean if the Epicurean were in "high" (air holes down) mode? I assume the Epicurean would be more efficient if the Epicurean were in "low" mode, but that running in low would take "forever" to boil water.

HJ
Adventures in Stoving

Jon Fong
(jonfong) - F

Locale: FLAT CAT GEAR
Re: Re: My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/23/2013 23:21:11 MDT Print View

The Focus Fire 14 was optimized for efficiency

The Epicurean Stove was design for dual burn modes: Primary being the low mode (baking), Secondary the high. Low burn rates do not always mean more efficient.

Edited by jonfong on 10/23/2013 23:22:02 MDT.

John Abela
(JohnAbela) - MLife

Locale: www.hikelighter.com
Re: My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/24/2013 06:54:42 MDT Print View

Hey Jon,

First, thank you for being willing to cater to the very small customer base that this product is designed for. Those who use hexamine fuel tablet has always been small, but with the help of guys like you and others out there, we are helping to push forward some of the safety aspects of using hexamine fuel tablet when compared to alcohol for fuel.

I have a bit over 60 burns using the FF14 at this point.

Except for on the first day that I acquired it, I have used 4g esbits exclusively. I did use one 14g on the day I got it, just to test it out, but I am a 4g esbit user.

Using two different 400ml pot setups I find it takes:


6 grams to reach shrimp eyes - about 70-80 °C (155–175 °F)

8 grams to reach crab eyes - about 80 °C (175 °F)

10 grams to reach full boil - 100°C (212 °F)


I do not time how long it takes... that is for those who care more about things than I do.

I do not know how cold the water is... what kind of a hiker carries around a thermometer and sticks it in the water before they heat it up.

All of my testing has been done at elevations below 100 feet.


I have gone through about 1000 of the 4g esbits over the course of the 2013 hiking season and without using the FF14 I would say it is saving about 2 or 3 grams of esbit per heating, over not using it.

I am not really sure how consequential that is for the average hiker. For myself, at the amount of days I have done this year, and with about 1000 cubes burned through, and an average of it saving 3 grams per burn, if my math is right (which it usually is not) that would be a year-long saving of about 3000 grams / 105 ounces / 6.5 pounds - over the course of the year.


At this point in time I would have three recommendations for it:

1) The little triangle where the clip goes into should be a square, the triangle causes it to either not stay in there or to come apart when it heats up.

2) Consider making a two piece version. The design makes it a very odd shape and difficult to find a good spot when using these 400ml pot setups that some of us do. Having it in two pieces would allow us to shove it down into different spots in our cup along with the rest of the stuff.

3) Try to resolve the heat flexing issues, that you and I have previously discussed, so that the FF14 remains flat and does not result in warping and lifting up of the edges and thereby allowing extra oxygen into the unit, and/or allowing flames to be released out the corners.

Again, thank you Jon for helping out those of us who are out there using hexamine fuel tablets as our source of heating water while on the trail.

+John Abela

Dan Yeruski
(zelph) - MLife

Locale: www.bplite.com
Re: Re: My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/24/2013 08:19:58 MDT Print View

Interesting design Jon :-) Nice and light.

Hi John, I was bale to watch your video using the FF14. John Abela’s Coffee Time on youtube I could see what you were saying about warpage of the burner. I also noticed that your Ti cone was warped way out of shape and was allowing a lot of air to enter from under the bottom edge. I feel you should get better results if both warp issues were eliminated. What is causing the warpage of the cone?

That's alot of stuff you're putting in that little pot :-)

DY
Adventures In DIY Stove Making

Jon Fong
(jonfong) - F

Locale: FLAT CAT GEAR
Re: Re: My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/24/2013 08:27:05 MDT Print View

John,

Thanks for your feedback. I am compiling a wishlist of potential changes to make on the next round. I have a solution for the flexing issue and I am thinking about a better way to join the two halve. After I get a complete list, I will cook up a new version. Best regards - Jon

Hikin' Jim
(hikin_jim) - MLife

Locale: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Re:Focus Fire 14 ESBIT Stove on 10/24/2013 10:03:39 MDT Print View

Using two different 400ml pot setups I find it takes
John, how much water was in that pot? One cup? Two cups is about 475 ml which doesn't fit very well in a 400ml pot. :)

6 grams to reach shrimp eyes - about 70-80 °C (155–175 °F)

8 grams to reach crab eyes - about 80 °C (175 °F)

10 grams to reach full boil - 100°C (212 °F)
Hey! Enough with the technical talk. How about you put it in terms an average Joe like me can understand? ;)

HJ

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
4 gm tabs? REALLY? on 10/24/2013 13:09:33 MDT Print View

Wow John, you are using 4 gm. tabs and here I am trying to make a FF chimney that will take two 14 gm. tabs for longer burn time.

I guess we have really different approaches with ESBIT stoves. I boil for FB cooking and actually cook at times.

When my boiling or cooking is done I blow out the ESBIT flame and re-use the leftover fuel for the next meal, usually adding 1/2 a tablet to it to get a complete burn with no fuel remaining. Sometimes I blow out the flame on a new tab after cooking but re-light it later for heating up dishwashing water.

As for warping of the long edges of the FF 14 chimney I'd recommend titanium for a material that will resist deformation from heat. I'll probably get some from The Ti Goat soon. GOD! This ESBIT stove tinkering is as bad as alky stove tinkering! It's addictive.

Anyway, the quest for ESBIT burn efficiency continues. Personally I feel the Focus Fire 14 is bringing us even closer to "maximun" efficiency nirvana. For me a 4 minute longer burn time means a lot.

John Abela
(JohnAbela) - MLife

Locale: www.hikelighter.com
Re: Re: Re: My views on the Focus Fire 14 Stove on 10/24/2013 14:01:50 MDT Print View

@DY -- you sir, are a freaking master!! I got my package yesterday. Cutting half the weight off the system in the video you linked too AND it includes a lid that actually STAYS on!!! The master has done it again!

@Jon -- that is pretty much all that data that I have mentally kept track of that I was able to recall. If there are any other questions you have, just drop me a message.

@Jim -- water in the cup in the video... hmmm, probably 375-380 ml. I had to give myself room for the coffee :-D

As for the 'lingo' lol. It use to be listed on the 'boiling' page of wikipedia but some dweeb decided to remove it... but you can still access it in the history page.

@Eric, I have never really been one that cared about really long burn times, I just want some dang hot water lol.