The CORE Polar Alcohol Stove is a complete micro alcohol stove system that fits in your pocket!
Its not just an alcohol burner, its a complete and efficient self contained micro stove system with an integrated pot stand. Its tiny and light, but its really tough, dependable, easy to pack, and it gets the job done quickly and efficiently, automatically! Partially made from Titanium, its practically unbreakable. It lights up and gets hot quickly even in the coldest polar vortex temperatures thanks to its carbon felt wick capillary design which will practically never wear out. It works great in summer or winter, it's really simple to use and it takes just seconds to set up. It's also tune-able and spill proof, and with 1 oz of fuel, it'll bring 2 cups of water from 'Zero-to-Boil' in around ~5 minutes and automatically keep simmering efficiently for ~15+ minutes with its 'Auto-Simmer' feature! It's a great micro stove that you can really depend on!
How It Works
The Core Polar Alcohol Stove incorporates many unique features into its design. The stove is very simple and for that reason its very dependable. It doesn't have any tiny parts to lose or break, seals to wear out, tiny orifices to block or parts that can be easily crushed. For example its not remote fed because that's a feature that most commonly breaks, leaks or wears out; but it can hold enough fuel in one filling to run for an hour if necessary. If you step on it or manage to smash it somehow, its easy to bend back into shape and it'll still work. Its an efficient and tune-able stove that doesn't sacrifice performance for durability or dependability.
The Core Polar Alcohol Stove's carbon felt wick and titanium heat sink capillary design is a very dependable design for operating in sub zero temperatures. In cold temperatures, alcohol doesn't evaporate quickly, so it won't burn efficiently until it heats up. To combat this, many non-wick type stoves require pre-heating by pouring extra fuel all over the sides of the stove and lighting the whole stove on fire first to heat up the alcohol in the stove enough for it to start burning well enough to cook on. That's really a fire hazard and a waste of fuel that you could be cooking with! The Core Polar stove's pre-heating proces is almost instantaneous; you just add fuel, light the wick, place your pot on it and start cooking... even in the coldest temperatures!
The Core Polar stove is dependable. It's titanium pot stand is large enough to provide a sturdy base, but still small enough to allow flames from the wick to contact a large area of the bottom of the cooking pot. The stove body itself is wide enough to provide plenty of stability for your average ultralight pot.
The stove was designed to work in two phases automatically, which makes it unique. When fuel is added to the stove, the main wick itself will absorb nearly ~1 oz of fuel and hold it, making the stove practically spill proof. Any fuel that's left will slowly be absorbed into the wick as the fuel in the wick is consumed.
Phase 1 'Zero-to-Boil'
The stoves main operational phase is the 'Zero-to-Boil' phase where it generates the maximum amount of heat to get your pot to a boil, fast. The stove's titanium pot stand acts as a heat sink, and because the wick is sandwiched between the outside of the stove body and the pot stand, when the wick is lit, the pot stand instantly begins to transfer heat from the flame, all the way down to the bottom of the wick. This basically creates a grilled alcohol sandwich (man that sounds good). As the pot stand heats up the wick, it heats the alcohol in the wick, causing it vaporize and quickly rise to the top of the wick to be burned. This means that pre-heating is almost instantaneous and there's almost no fuel wasted before the stove reaches a useful cooking temperature. It gets lots of heat into your pot, fast! The 'Zero-to-Boil' phase lasts about ~8 to 9 minutes which is usually about ~3 minutes more than it takes to get 2 cups of water to a boil and really get things cooking.
The High Power Wick
When you're freezing your butt off and need something hot fast... the last thing you want is a stove with only two speeds... slow and slower.
The Core Polar stoves main outer wick is positioned about level with the edge of the stove body while also touching the bottom of the stove so it can soak up fuel. This gives a good sized flame pattern and an efficient burn for your average backpacking type cook pot; and it also increases the life of the wick. However, there are times when you need more heat for bigger jobs, so the Core Polar Kit and the Core Polar Ultimate Kit come with a 'High Power Wick'. The high wick is taller, standing above the edge of the stove body. This wick provides lots of fuel/oxygen contact and generates a huge, hot flame. It'll use more fuel over time, but it'll definitely get things hot fast!
Phase 2 'Auto-Simmer'
The stoves secondary phase is the 'Auto-Simmer' phase. This is a tune-able phase which can be enabled or disabled by either adding or removing an 'Auto-Simmer' wick to the core of the stove.
When the Auto-Simmer wick is added to the core of the stove before its lit, as fuel is added to the stove, the Auto-Simmer wick will absorb some of the fuel and hold onto as much of it as it can. Then, the rest of the fuel is absorbed by the main wick as needed. The Auto-Simmer wick will continue to hold onto as much of that fuel as it can, even while the main wick is burning, until the main wick runs out. Once the main wick runs out, the Auto-Simmer wick is hot and ready and it automatically kicks in. The fuel in its wick vaporizes and rises to the top of the stove where it ignites. The ports in the top of the stove bring the vaporized fuel right up next to the bottom of the stove where it ignites, and the tiny, efficient flames come into direct contact with the pot surface for a good long hot simmer.
The Auto-Simmer mode can last up to the ~15+ minute mark with only 1 oz of fuel added to the stove; or even longer depending on how many Auto-Simmer wicks are placed in the center of the stove and how much fuel is initially added.
Extinguishing The Stove
When you're done cooking, but there's still fuel left in the stove, the stove is small enough that you can just blow it out!
Size and Packability
The Core Polar Alcohol Stove packs down into a small, smooth, strong self contained package which makes it perfect for backpacking or EDC carry. It's efficient design outperforms many stove and pot stand systems that are 3 times its size and weight.
While its true that there are many kinds of ultralight soda can stoves out there that work well; its pretty hard to find one that's as tough, dependable, compact and as easy to slip into your pocket or backpack without getting mangled than the Core Polar Alcohol Stove.
Carbon Felt Snowshoe
The Carbon Felt snowshoe makes a great platform on the snow for the stove and helps stabilize it and keeps it from sliding around. In the warmer months, it's great to use as a pot grabber for grabbing those sizzling hot metal wire handles on your pot. It's completely fireproof so it's doubles as great safety device when used under the stove to soak up any potential alcohol spills.
The Core Polar Titanium Snowshoe comes with the 'Core Polar Ultimate Kit' and it supports the stove when cooking directly on the snow and makes an extra stable base for fair weather use too. The images below depict a mockup of the snowshoe which will be made from titanium. The design may be modified to be able to be disassembled into two smaller parts. In testing, a 4in x 4in prototype foot was able to easily support the weight of a titanium or aluminum pot and 4+ cups of water while remaining very stable on the snow.
- Stove Weight: 43 grams / 1.5 oz
- Dimensions: 2.25" x 2.25" x 1"
- Burn time on 1 oz of fuel: ~13 min conservatively
- Time to boil 2 cups @ 60 degrees (in protected wind conditions): ~5:30
- Stove Body Material: Tin
- Pot Stand Material: Titanium
- Snowshoe Material: Carbon Felt or Titanium
- Fuel: Denatured Alcohol or Heet
Core Polar Alcohol Stove Prototype by Spiguyver Backpacking