Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 30
  1. #1

    Default Refilling Gas Canisters

    Of course it's possible to refill backpacking type gas canisters. But what are the real risks? What are the practicalities? Is it even worth it?



    Please join me as I explore Refilling Gas Canisters

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  2. #2
    Saw Man tuswm's Avatar
    Join Date
    11-14-2008
    Location
    Philly/ OC MD
    Age
    38
    Posts
    776
    Images
    25

    Default

    what about refilling them using 100% propane from a large out door grill canister.
    "you cant grow old if you never grow up" ~TUswm

  3. #3
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-02-2007
    Location
    DFW, TX / Northern NH
    Age
    62
    Posts
    7,685
    Images
    27

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tuswm View Post
    what about refilling them using 100% propane from a large out door grill canister.
    They would likely rupture (and explode if an ignition source was present) as propane boils at -44 F. Butane boils at 31 F for comparison, isobutane at 11 F. The pressure would be too much for the canisters to handle.

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    05-03-2005
    Location
    Rockingham VT and Boston, MA
    Age
    70
    Posts
    1,221
    Images
    1

    Default

    but why would you bother?
    Everything is in Walking Distance

  5. #5
    BYGE "Biggie" TOMP's Avatar
    Join Date
    12-04-2011
    Location
    Back in NJ
    Age
    33
    Posts
    532

    Default

    With the right connectors you could theoretically refill propane into the propane coleman canisters, but would it be worth it? Maybe you could get your local propane supplier to do it since they have a little more experience with it.

  6. #6

    Default

    Is it even legal? Not that that matters much...

    On the practical side, with the system pictured above, you'd never be able to completely transfer all the gas from one canister to another because the preasures will always end up equal between the two. If the volumes of the two cansisters are the the same or roughly equal, you'll end up with two half full canisters to start and it goes down hill from there.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tuswm View Post
    what about refilling them using 100% propane from a large out door grill canister.
    4eyedbuzzard is correct. Propane has quadruple (at 70F) the vapor pressure of butane. A BP'ing type canister can't handle it.

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bamboo bob View Post
    but why would you bother?
    Why bother to fill with 100% propane? Cold weather performance. But let me stress that you can't. A BP'ing canister can't handle 100% propane. WAY too high pressure.

    But if you could, it would work a lot better. Butane stops vaporizing below 31F. Propane continues to vaporize down to -44F. HUGE difference. That's why a lot of people use white gas for cold weather. Canister gas has problems.

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  9. #9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    Is it even legal? Not that that matters much...
    The Dept. of Transportation regulates interstate commerce. Their regs forbid (as I understand it) transport of refilled canisters of this type. Therefore, it would be illegal to transport across state lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    On the practical side, with the system pictured above, you'd never be able to completely transfer all the gas from one canister to another because the preasures will always end up equal between the two. If the volumes of the two cansisters are the the same or roughly equal, you'll end up with two half full canisters to start and it goes down hill from there.
    Well, actually, that's not quite right. Think about it. The majority of the fuel is what? It's liquid. If it were two tanks of vapor, then what your saying would be absolutely true. You'd get equalization, and then transfer would stop. However, with liquid it's possible to transfer far more. I've been doing it for about two years. Normally, I can transfer all but a few grams.

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  10. #10

    Default Nothing new here...

    I have a friend that made a valve system to fill backpacking canisters with whatever the fuel is that comes in 1lb Coleman canisters. He'd have the backpacking canister on the bottom and Coleman on top but inverted and would guesstimate when the bottom one was full. That worked great until one day his wife's pack exploded while hiking in the heat of the sun. Thankfully, she wasn't injured and is not a cripple.

    My suggestion: pay the $4.

  11. #11
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-02-2007
    Location
    DFW, TX / Northern NH
    Age
    62
    Posts
    7,685
    Images
    27

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sly View Post
    I have a friend that made a valve system to fill backpacking canisters with whatever the fuel is that comes in 1lb Coleman canisters. He'd have the backpacking canister on the bottom and Coleman on top but inverted and would guesstimate when the bottom one was full. That worked great until one day his wife's pack exploded while hiking in the heat of the sun. Thankfully, she wasn't injured and is not a cripple.

    My suggestion: pay the $4.
    Wow. She's lucky. Sounds like he filled it with pure propane. You would think people clever enough to make adapters and such would know better.

  12. #12

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 4eyedbuzzard View Post
    Wow. She's lucky. Sounds like he filled it with pure propane. You would think people clever enough to make adapters and such would know better.
    He wasn't called The Professor ('95,'00) for nothing. or maybe he was!

  13. #13
    Registered User Papa D's Avatar
    Join Date
    06-23-2008
    Location
    Athens, GA
    Age
    52
    Posts
    2,850
    Images
    7

    Default

    You can punch holes in the old ones and recycle with scrap metal which is probably the "greenest" thing to do with them - if you like re-fillable, I would suggest just using a liquid fuel stove, but it is a cool idea.

  14. #14

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 4eyedbuzzard View Post
    Wow. She's lucky. Sounds like he filled it with pure propane. You would think people clever enough to make adapters and such would know better.
    Yes, she was lucky. Maybe I should mention:

    Do NOT fill backpacking type canisters with 100% propane under any circumstances.

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  15. #15
    Registered User Papa D's Avatar
    Join Date
    06-23-2008
    Location
    Athens, GA
    Age
    52
    Posts
    2,850
    Images
    7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hikin_jim View Post
    yes, she was lucky. Maybe i should mention:

    do not fill backpacking type canisters with 100% propane under any circumstances.

    hj

    you scared meeeee!

  16. #16

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Papa D View Post
    you scared meeeee!
    Good!

    Seriously though, refilling backpacking type canisters with 100% propane IS scary. The lightweight steel can't contain the pressure of propane. At 70F, propane has quadruple the pressure of butane. You need a big, heavy-duty steel container like the 16.4oz/465g Coleman containers. 100% propane + backpacking type canister = KABOOM. Not good.

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  17. #17
    BYGE "Biggie" TOMP's Avatar
    Join Date
    12-04-2011
    Location
    Back in NJ
    Age
    33
    Posts
    532

    Default

    Seriously ppl dont hurt yourself over saving a few cents.

  18. #18

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TOMP View Post
    Seriously ppl dont hurt yourself over saving a few cents.
    Refilling with 100% butane is reasonably safe if your careful -- as safe as working with white gas for example. Refilling with 100% propane is extremely dangerous if you're putting that propane into a backpacking type canister.

    HJ
    Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

  19. #19

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hikin_jim View Post
    Well, actually, that's not quite right. Think about it. The majority of the fuel is what? It's liquid. If it were two tanks of vapor, then what your saying would be absolutely true. You'd get equalization, and then transfer would stop. However, with liquid it's possible to transfer far more. I've been doing it for about two years. Normally, I can transfer all but a few grams.HJ
    The reason it's liquid is because it is under considerable pressure. Gas can be liquified in two ways - make it really cold or put it under a lot of pressure. Unless a mechanical pump is used, transfering a gas from one container to another will continue only until the pressures are equal in both. The gas will remain liquid as long as the pressures remain high enough in both containers.

    The gas container is "empty" when the pressure of the gas inside the container is the same as the atmospheric pressure. That's why throwing an empty gas canister into camp fire isn't a good idea. There is still some flamable gas inside and once it gets heated up by the fire, the canister can explode, creating a nice little fire ball.
    Last edited by Slo-go'en; 01-21-2012 at 15:42.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  20. #20

    Default

    Slo-go'en is right, once the pressure equalizes, the filling stops. However, just chill the canister being filled (ice water bath is best) and warm the filling canister (in the sun perhaps). With a little patience, you can get a canister 80% to 90% filled. Okay, a lot of patience!

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •