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Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

Posted November 25, 2007 5:01 PM
Pathfinder Tags: challenge questions
User-tagged by 1 user

The question as it appears in the 11/27 edition of Specs & Techs from GlobalSpec:

Roger and Thomas were camping. When it was time to make dinner, they lit a fire to heat water to mix with the freeze-dried camping food. Roger was in charge of bringing the cooking gear but having never been camping before, mistakenly brought paper plates and cups and plastic utensils. Thomas, a former boy scout, was upset that they weren't prepared, but managed to use what was on hand to boil the water and make dinner. How did he do it?

(Update: Dec 4, 8:25 AM EST) And the Answer is...

Thomas poured the water into a paper cup and placed it on the fire until it started to boil. You can boil water in a paper cup over an open fire, the water in the cup keeps the paper well below its flammability point so it won't catch on fire.

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Guru
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#57
In reply to #52
Find in discussion

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 2:10 PM

"Perhaps Freud could have a field day with me "

Sometimes a paper cup is just a paper cup!

ROFL

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Anonymous Poster
#58

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 2:17 PM

Roger had served in the military and brought along his MREs that have a chemical pouch that heats up when water is added. No fire needed to heat those meals.

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Anonymous Poster
#107
In reply to #58

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

12/05/2007 8:28 AM

That's not true for the older MRE's and about one in every box has a bad heater.

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Anonymous Poster
#60

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 2:42 PM
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Anonymous Poster
#61

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 3:11 PM

While you CAN heat stones to boil the water, this can be messy and relatively unsanitary. (Not knowing where those stones have been)

But if you have a paper cup full of water, you can put it over the fire to boil the water (not touching a hot coal) and as long as you keep water in the cup it will char but not burn through. The water keeps a layer of the paper well below the 454F necessary to ignite.

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#62
In reply to #61

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 3:16 PM

Boiling water kills most bacteria and germs from said stones.

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Anonymous Poster
#105
In reply to #61

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

12/04/2007 11:32 PM

You mention 454 degrees as the point that the paper will ignite. Now this is a question that could merit exploring; what material was the paper cup made of, and could we increase the ignition temp by selecting a cup made of a readily available paper with a higher ignition point. I would think something like a good cotton hemp blend would be proffered.

Added bonus you could smoke it for dessert. Hot diggidy.

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Anonymous Poster
#65

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 4:58 PM

the cooking gear that thomas has, being a former scout he always came prepaired !

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Anonymous Poster
#68

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 7:06 PM

I think that the container for the freeze dried food could be used to boil the water .

John Dixon

Roger and Thomas were camping. When it was time to make dinner, they lit a fire to heat water to mix with the freeze-dried camping food. Roger was in charge of bringing the cooking gear but having never been camping before, mistakenly brought paper plates and cups and plastic utensils. Thomas, a former boy scout, was upset that they weren't prepared, but managed to use what was on hand to boil the water and make dinner. How did he do it?

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Anonymous Poster
#75

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/28/2007 9:16 PM

As being a Boy Scout in the pass this was a regular Jamboree test to start a fire and boil water in a paper cup. It took a few tries to prefect the method, once the fire is going use some good dry hard wood to give you lots of heat with out a high flame. Fine a flat stone that will be about the size of the bottom of the cup. Place the stone in the middle of the hot coals to give a level place for the cup. Fill the cup close to the top with water place it on the stone. Add the hard wood to the hot coals if required. Here is the main trick do not let the flames get above the waterline of the cup, as long as the flame stays below that line the water will heat up to a boil and not let the cup to burn. Simple!

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Anonymous Poster
#81

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/29/2007 5:27 AM

ROGER AND THOMAS HAS ALREADY LIT THE FIRE THEY CAN USE THE FROZEN FOOD TINS TO HEAT WATER AND PAPER PLATES AND DRY JUNGLE WOOD TO MAKE A IMPROVIZED STOVE USING A SMALL PIT

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Anonymous Poster
#82
In reply to #81

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/29/2007 7:26 AM

No need to shout

Reply Off Topic (Score 5)
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#83
In reply to #81

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

11/29/2007 8:56 AM

"ROGER AND THOMAS HAS ALREADY LIT THE FIRE THEY CAN USE THE FROZEN FOOD TINS TO HEAT WATER AND PAPER PLATES AND DRY JUNGLE WOOD TO MAKE A IMPROVIZED STOVE USING A SMALL PIT"

QUIT YELLING!!!!! There, that's better. Now, the question did not ask about how they made the fire, only how did they boil the water without any "cooking gear", and with only paper plates and cups and plastic utensils.

If you read (yes, actually read) the question, it says that they had freeze-dried food, not FROZEN FOOD. Neither of these come in "tins" (USA:"cans") but usually in plastic pouches or molded plastic containers, possibly with a very thin layer of foil. Neither of these would hold its shape when warmed by the fire to the boiling point of water (212°F/100°C). On the other hand, as pointed out by several others already, paper cups could be used, as they would hold their shape and not catch on fire, as the water would keep the paper temperature far below the ignition point of the paper (over about 400°F/204°C).

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Anonymous Poster
#100

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

12/02/2007 2:19 PM

The paper cup wont burn as long as the water level is above the flames.Any boyscout who has been camping with a good scout leader should know this.The water will keep the paper of the cup below the temperature that it takes to burn the paper.Any part of the cup that is above the water line and below the top of the flames will catch fire and burn down to the water level.

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Anonymous Poster
#108

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

12/05/2007 8:55 AM

For better results, try placing a flat rock on the hot coals. Place the cup of water on the rock, away from flames that can tough the unwetted areas of the cup.

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#109

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

12/05/2007 9:12 AM

It certainly is possible to boil water in a paper cup. Been there done that. Most paper cups are coated in wax (paraffin) so you will have a thin film of wax floating on the surface of the water after it boils, but that's okay it's not harmful nor does it add any flavor, go or bad. Also as the water boils off, the edges of the paper cup will burn and char. Again no harm done. You probably will not want to use the cup more than once as the seams are really stressed out after the fist boil.

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Mike Bishop
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Anonymous Poster
#117

Re: Camping Quandry: Newsletter Challenge (11/27/07)

12/17/2007 3:41 PM

I have tried this and it does work! However, I also tried it on a styrofoam cup and it worked!

Alan

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