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What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters?
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robert van putten
(Bawana) - F

Locale: Planet Bob
old canisters on 03/31/2014 18:16:41 MDT Print View

Jeff,
Yeah, all you'll do is let the gas out by shooting them. Only in Hollywood to things blow up when you shoot them. Which is why you need to set a lit road flare on the ground near the tanks yer gonna shoot. Then they go BOOM!

Ahem.

Valerie, now you know why I have never used a canister stove. The expense, waste and disposal of old canisters is a drag.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: old canisters on 03/31/2014 19:00:01 MDT Print View

I was, of course, joking about throwing in fire. I just use it up. Do occasional car camping.

If you do car camping and have mostly empty canisters, use them instead of your two burner. Or just put burner on and release the fuel.

Expense of canister is small compared to other expenses like driving to trailhead, gear,...

They're a bit wasteful, but if they recycle the metal it's not as bad.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: old canisters on 03/31/2014 21:09:50 MDT Print View

>"now you know why I have never used a canister stove. The expense, waste and disposal of old canisters is a drag."

I felt that way for a decade until I took the plunge. It wasn't the recycling issues of steel that swayed my (white gas comes in steel cans, too. And steel is pretty cheap (low energy costs) to refine). It was the relatively high cost per gallon / cost per BTU that galled me.

Instant on, instant off, no fuel wasted for priming, no eye-brow-singing flare ups, and that I can let my 9-year-old use it, instead of waiting a few more years to teach her white-gas use all swayed me once I tried a canister stove. Now I have a fleet of them to rival my SVEA, Optimus, and numerous MSRs.

Glenn S
(Glenn64) - M

Locale: Snowhere, MN
Re: old canisters on 04/01/2014 00:35:29 MDT Print View

" "That blowed up real good" is just not in my lexicon."
Ok, well you're not allowed to use that phrase unless you first precede your actions with the introductory statement of:
"Here, hold my beer"

Now as far as canisters go, I've never used them, but seems to me... A scale should be used, not only to weigh the empties as mentioned, but to do a few burn tests and get a general idea of how many grams of fuel it takes per burn. I know they list how many boil estimates for the cans, but mileage variances and all that...

So anyway, seems the only way to know if they're worth toting along or not. Might have a bunch of partials lying around that would serve fine for a weekender and not even be aware of it due to the unknown factor.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Kids, don't do this at home! on 04/01/2014 00:43:33 MDT Print View

If you want to get an exciting introduction to this sport, take an ordinary BIC lighter and throw it in a campfire. Then instantly jump behind a tree. Ka-blow!

You know, you could probably put an eye out doing this.

--B.G.--

Matthew Black
(mtblack) - F
Re: Kids, don't do this at home! on 04/01/2014 00:51:58 MDT Print View

Hmmm. The only shrapnel I've taken was from an m80 in a tin can dressed up like a rocket with construction paper.

Might be time to gather some more tiny scars.

Roleigh Martin
(marti124) - MLife

Locale: Moderator-JohnMuirTrail Yahoo Group
Re: What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters? on 04/01/2014 08:21:24 MDT Print View

Thanks Marko -- That truly (what you found) is the solution.

http://www.amazon.com/Jetboil-Crunchit-Canister-Recycling-Orange/dp/B004N5KK7G/

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters? on 04/01/2014 08:38:55 MDT Print View

Are canisters that much more wasteful than denatured alcohol cans? Granted, you can buy denatured alcohol by the quart, but you also burn it by the ounceā€¦
And the cost per boil with Esbit is pretty ridiculous.

I wouldn't buy a tool to recycle canisters. If there's not enough left to cook with, just bleed it off with your stove and puncture it with a screwdriver. It accomplishes the same thing as the Jetboil tool with things you already own.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters? on 04/01/2014 10:25:52 MDT Print View

do you really need to puncture it?

If you run it until it stops burning, maybe let if go a bit longer, there will be so little butane in it it won't be a risk

Glenn S
(Glenn64) - M

Locale: Snowhere, MN
Re: Re: Re: Re: What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters? on 04/01/2014 10:40:10 MDT Print View

I thought puncturing was more of a space saving thing, to make it crushable. But again, I haven't used them, so just wondering.

Valerie E
(Wildtowner) - M

Locale: Grand Canyon State
Fire Regulations on 04/01/2014 10:47:24 MDT Print View

>"now you know why I have never used a canister stove. The expense, waste and disposal of old canisters is a drag."

Some of us don't have much choice. I backpack mostly in Arizona, California, and occasionally in New Mexico. for much of the year, those areas have a full fire ban in effect (for very good reason, I might add). So if I want to cook legally (and I do) I'm limited to canister stoves 90% of the time. I guess that's the price I have to pay for stunning scenery like Grand Canyon, the High Sierras, etc. -- seems well worth it to me... :^)

If I were still backpacking in NH and NY -- well, that would be another story!

I think Glenn S makes a good point, though -- I should do a few burn tests and weight calculations and then I'll be confident about how far each "mostly empty" canister can stretch.

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
re:...do you really need to puncture it? on 04/01/2014 10:51:31 MDT Print View

My recycling center boys get kinda grumpy if they aren't punctured first. I think I read where you don't want to use a galvanized nail to poke the holes, as they might cause a spark. Not good if there's a wee bit of fuel remaining.

I use a Crunch-it, mainly because the Jetboil rep gave one to me for free, it's fun to play with, and it gives me something to do while I'm sipping my morning coffee on the patio. I just save up 5-6 empties and do them all at once. They sit out overnight to evaporate the last vestiges of fuel, then they are tossed into the recycling bin.

Edited by Zia-Grill-Guy on 04/01/2014 10:55:57 MDT.

robert van putten
(Bawana) - F

Locale: Planet Bob
Grand Canyon? on 04/01/2014 10:53:21 MDT Print View

I've use my Trangia in the Grand Canyon.Are there restrictions in place on alcohol stoves there?

trangia

In fact a ranger talked to me for a while in Indian Gardens and remarked upon my Trangia stove. He said something along the lines of "I see your doing the whole lightweight thing and have a Trangia" -( As if the full Trangia 25 kit is lightweight? )

He expressed a good deal of interest in my TarpTent Rainshadow 2.

But he never batted an eye about the alcohol stove.

Valerie E
(Wildtowner) - M

Locale: Grand Canyon State
Re: Grand Canyon? on 04/01/2014 11:03:14 MDT Print View

Robert,
Fire restrictions in Grand Canyon are implemented "as needed" on a seasonal basis. Unlike the Sierras, they don't specifically ban alcohol stoves (it's a "wood/charcoal" ban), but most other places in AZ have total open fire bans (legally, you are even required to smoke and extinguish cigarettes inside a building or vehicle) for several months a year.

And as we know from the Sierras, each ranger seems to have their own interpretation of regulations...

David Adair
(DavidAdair) - M

Locale: West Dakota
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters? on 04/01/2014 12:42:34 MDT Print View

"That blowed up real good" is just not in my lexicon"

Thanks, I'm still laughing.

Also for those so inclined, Brunton made the "Fuel tool" for refilling some of their lanterns and stuff from a canister. It has a pipe fitting. Two of these and a piece of tube could be used for refilling canisters. Use a vice grip or small c-clamp for a valve if need be. Reread David Thomas's post and make sure you know the maximum allowable full weight for that canister type.

Here they are on 'bay for $7.65 each with free shipping:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/161252137985

Edited by DavidAdair on 04/01/2014 12:45:00 MDT.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: What Do You Do with Almost-Empty Fuel Canisters? on 04/01/2014 16:15:20 MDT Print View

>"Also for those so inclined, Brunton made the "Fuel tool" for refilling some of their lanterns and stuff from a canister. It has a pipe fitting."

I've got one of those (I've got one or two of most things) and it isn't a pipe thread, alas. I wish it was. It is a smooth tube that projects out and is loosely fit to the adapter. It works to quickly refill lighters, etc, but attempting to use it to connect two canisters results in lots of leakage.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Just shoot them on 04/01/2014 19:07:10 MDT Print View

"Heh, we stared doing this when we were in the service and since we worked swing shift we naturally were blowing the things up after work at about 1 or 2 in the morning in an empty lot on the side of some highway down in Arkansas.

Hey it was Arkansas, didn't seem unreasonable at the time. But a extraordinarily fat cop did show up and proceeded to try and bully us around. Even called me "Boy" despite the fact I was still wearing my sergeants uniform at the time.

But we were MUCH better armed than he was and even though he called it in but nobody could find any laws to nail us with so he had to leave us alone. They did try to pin "jack lighting" on us, but that was pretty absurd, even for that fat jackass of a southern cop.

So we went back to happily blowing shit up."

Sorry bud, but it doesn't sound like the cops are the jackasses here. The guys "blowing shit up" "at about 1 or 2 in the morning" and intimidating the law enforcement officer they have outnumbered and outgunned are.

Edited by mpl_35 on 04/02/2014 11:18:43 MDT.

robert van putten
(Bawana) - F

Locale: Planet Bob
are not? on 04/02/2014 11:16:35 MDT Print View

Did you mean to say the cops "are not" instead of "are"?

Anyway, believe me, the guy didn't look intimidated and I call him a jackass because he was so very disrespectful. Ever have cop repeatedly call you "Boy" and "I know I seen you aroun hea boy" you know, the whole stereotypical southern cop routine. Like he got his cop training by watching the Dukes of Hazard.

I'll give law enforcement the respect I get from them. They are just my servants after all.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
right on 04/02/2014 11:19:20 MDT Print View

correct. edited.

I don't see how you are in the right blowing stuff up in the middle of the night.

robert van putten
(Bawana) - F

Locale: Planet Bob
Why not? on 04/02/2014 11:33:19 MDT Print View

Why not?
No law against blowing stuff up at any time. Exploding targets are quite fun and sold in many forms.

There are laws about disturbing the peace, laws about reckless endangerment, about trespassing, about "jacklighting", and on and on. We didn't break any of those, so there was nothing the cop could do. He did try his very best to bully us around, but that didn't work.

As far as disposing of empty canisters I think I'd prefer to puncture them for safety reasons, and I think the safest way to do that is from fifty to 100 yards with a .22 rifle. Call me a coward but the idea of hitting them with a hammer, forcing a nail or screw driver through 'em or even some sort of fancy can opener just gives me the willies.

But then I have seen them explode, so I know what kind of destructive force your playing with when ya take that screw driver to one.

Edited by Bawana on 04/02/2014 11:34:20 MDT.