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IntrepidQ3
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Sep 2013
Posts: 58
Location: Tampa, FL
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Vario
Vac Pot: Royal Balance Syphon
Roaster: Hottop+TC4C
Posted Tue May 27, 2014, 5:04pm
Subject: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

I just recently purchased a Balance Siphon and this might be a dumb questions but... What is the best fuel?

I have read to use denatured alcohol or methyl hydrate... Are these the preferred fuel types?
Will the smell of these options overwhelm the smell of the brewing coffee?
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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,256
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Tue May 27, 2014, 6:25pm
Subject: Re: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

We use Klean Strip denatured alcohol purchased from paint and hardware stores.  Home Depot sells it.  It's ubiquitous, inexpensive and odor free.  

Enjoy your siphon.

Rich
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MrBromeo
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Joined: 23 Sep 2003
Posts: 32
Location: Seattle
Posted Tue May 27, 2014, 6:32pm
Subject: Re: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,256
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Wed May 28, 2014, 10:03am
Subject: Re: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

George,

I'm trying to figure out a way of saying this without coming across as a total a$$hole.  But almost none of what you wrote applies to the wicked, spirit lamps used in balance beam siphon coffee makers.  For instance:
  • "Green" denatured alcohol is sooty, smelly and worse for the application than ordinary SLX (mix of ethanol and methanol) or straight methanol (methyl hydrate);
  • "Soot Free," the stuff recommended by Origo which you use is pretty much identical to Klean Strip SLX (denatured alcohol), and not Klean Strip Green;
  • Wicked spirit lamps of the type used cannot be refueled without removing the wick.  No warning to extinguish before adding fresh alcohol is necessary;
  • The flame, coming off a wick, is visible in ordinary, indoor viewing conditions;
  • Etc.

Sorry to be a jerk, but I didn't want the OP to get confused, and run out and buy a can of Green.
Rich
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IntrepidQ3
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Sep 2013
Posts: 58
Location: Tampa, FL
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Vario
Vac Pot: Royal Balance Syphon
Roaster: Hottop+TC4C
Posted Wed May 28, 2014, 3:03pm
Subject: Re: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

Thanks for the input. Since I do not have a camping store near me I will grab a can of Klean Strip. I receive my siphon this next Monday. I'm really excited, there's nothing like taking on a new coffee adventure!

I like that I can say that here and not get an eye roll haha. It's nice to be around geeks... Even if it's just virtual.
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IntrepidQ3
Senior Member


Joined: 30 Sep 2013
Posts: 58
Location: Tampa, FL
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Vario
Vac Pot: Royal Balance Syphon
Roaster: Hottop+TC4C
Posted Fri Jun 6, 2014, 3:20pm
Subject: Re: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

The Klean Strip denatured alcohol work wonderfully. No soot marks... Well I cant tell if it was 100% but nothing like rubbing alcohol, that was a huge sooty mess. Rubbing alcohol also did not get hot enough to finish up once the water container started to lift away from the flame.

I experimented with rubbing alcohol because I read it somewhere else that it could be an optional fuel source. But the denatured alcohol is the way to go.
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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,256
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Fri Jun 6, 2014, 5:01pm
Subject: Re: Balance Syphon Fuel Options
 

So glad it worked for you.

Rich
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