How to make your own meth burner from a tin can
Rogelio, a fellow Woodlorean from Spain, e-mailed us previously with some pictures of his hand-made crooked knife handle, which we posted on our blog. Recently, he got in touch with us again, this time with an excellent article on how to make a DIY meth-burning stove from just a tin can. We’ve posted the full guide below, complete with step-by-step pictures, for you all to see. Thanks Rogelio!
I have just returned from a friend’s house with whom I have been making my own meth alcohol burner to fit in my pocket stove from tin cans, and after seeing how well it actually works, I thought it would be nice to share with you some pictures on its making.
To start with, you need the bottom ends from two tin cans and a rectangular strip that will fit into them (this must be cut slightly higher than the other pieces, you’ll see why later). If you use cans made from stainless metals it’ll last longer.
You now cut halfway through the width of the strip on both ends (and attach them together) so that it will stay in a circular shape, and then cut off the remaining bits. Now insert it in the slit of one of the cans.
In order to make one can fit into the other, you must bend inside one of them around all of its circumference (I twisted it through using pliers). Ideally, it should be the strip placed in between them that stops the cans after pushing them together.
Cut out the centre bit of one of them until its neat and tidy, and then punch small holes around its outside as shown (I used a fine nail and a hammer for this).
Having done two burners, I found that the one to the right works best, and I suspect it is because the bottom can fits outside the top one, allowing some vapours to escape from the other side of the holes and therefore encouraging the flames to go through them.
I also made a lid for my crusader cup out of tin to reduce boiling time:
The metal bars at the top are not only to hold the lid from, but also add weight and solidness. I glued them to begin with but ended up stitching them with fine wire at the middle and ends.
I was stunned to see that the set took half a litre of water to rolling boil in under six minutes, however at this time temperatures in Spain are very high indeed, so I suppose it will take longer in winter. I find in those circumstances, it will help to place a small candle under the stove to heat the alcohol.
I also noticed that trangia burners have fibres inside them to help alcohol rise to holes, but I struggled to find any adequate material. However it works all right without them.
I would sincerely appreciate any suggestions as to how I could improve the burner or any comments/questions that you would like to make about it. I would also encourage anyone who hasn’t got a burner to give it a try: it is a cheap, easy method and, most importantly, works well!
Rogelio Luque Lora