View Full Version : SS vs aluminum pots and cooking time

02-01-2013, 12:55
I just did a little experiment to see how long it would take to heat up water to boiling using my trusty Svea stove. First I put 2 cups of cold tap water in my newish stainless steel pot, fired the Svea and set the timer. It took 6 minutes 30 seconds to get to a rolling boil. This was in a semi-outdoors area - my back porch - where the air temp was 17F.
Next I did the same thing using the aluminum pot from my 40 year old Sigg-Tourist set. The water came to a rolling boil in 4 minutes 30 seconds. Two minutes quicker than the SS pot! Has anyone else noticed this phenomenon?

Feral Bill
02-01-2013, 13:12
I need to know more to comment. Was your Svea , besides being the best stove ever, completely warmed up before each trial? Were the pot shapes roughly the same? Were there any other unaccounted variables? How many trials did you do?

02-01-2013, 13:29
I warmed the Svea up to get it fired , but didn't start timing until the start flame was out and the stove was burning clean. Once the stove was burning clean I set the pot and began timng. The pot shapes and sizes were almost identical. I only did the one trial for each, but it definitly appeared that the aluminum pot went from "fish-eyes" to "full" boil musch quicker than the SS. The SS pot seemed to stay at the "fish-eyes" stage for a much longer time.

02-01-2013, 13:37
Not surprising, as aluminum has much better thermal conductivity than stainless steel.

sir limpsalot
02-02-2013, 12:43
Yeah, it's true I tested my ss msr pot against same size primus aluminum (black) pot. same quantity of same temp tap water on my warmed up home propane stove....aluminum much faster!

02-02-2013, 13:39
This is why SS kitchen cookware has aluminum bonded to the bottom. Stainless tends to have hot spots thus uneven heating, equalling poor heat transfer.