Red-bullet: cooking stove from cans, fueled by gas additive

A couple of beverage containers and a little bit of fuel additive bring together this aluminum can stove project. When lit it shoots flames out each of those holes around the top to heat the vessel resting upon it. [Peter Geiger] calls it the Red-Bullet because one of the stove pieces started as a Red Bull can and the other piece was a Coors (aka silver bullet).

This is basically an alcohol stove. We remember seeing a very well designed version of the penny stove several years back. This is different as it uses a side burner so the stove itself functions as the kettle stand. [Peter] started by cutting the Red Bull can just a bit taller than the final height. He then inserted the top portion of one of those aluminum beer cans that are shaped like glass bottles. The neck was lopped off and inverted. It is joined with the other can base using JB weld and by rolling the aluminum in on itself. After that has dried the holes are added and it’s filled with HEET from a yellow bottle. This gasoline additive is meant to sequester water and keep your gas line from freezing. The yellow bottle is mainly alcohol, the red is methanol so make sure you use the right one!

Stove built from beer can. Hobos rejoice.


[Charles] sent in a tip about an alcohol based stove built from beer cans and a penny. The burner is efficient, lightweight, and tiny all while still packing a pretty big punch. It can boil water for sterilization, cook some rice for your meal, or make a spot of tea. The penny is used as the regulating valve. The cup in the burner has a hole in the center where the penny is placed using gravity to create a seal. Denatured alcohol is then poured into the cup and outer ring and lit on fire. As the burning alcohol warms up the cup, it starts to leak under the penny and into the fuel cup where it then begins to boil. This boiling alcohol expands as gas and exits the small holes around the outside of the burner, creating flames similar to the ones you use on your gas stove at home.

The genius here is that everything needed to make this is cheap and available anywhere. The basic build tools include a knife, drill bit, hole punch, two beer cans, a penny, and denatured alcohol. In a bind, you could complete the build using a pocket knife and without the drill bit or hole punch. It is also a nice alternative to hauling around a disposable propane canister when camping or backpacking. We’ve covered an aluminum can stove quite a while ago but that old link is dead and we think this is just as fun the second time around.