Sterno vs Cheapo - A Candle Test w/pics

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Blackthorn-USA
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Sterno vs Cheapo - A Candle Test w/pics

Post by Blackthorn-USA » Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:52 pm

Someone was discussing emergency candles the other day. I thought maybe I’d just do a quick test to see how much better they really were than regular candles. I decided to test Sterno brand 9 hour emergency candles against some cheap Mainstays (Walmart) brand votive candles. Well pictures tell a thousand words so here ya go.

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So… that was kinda unexpected. I thought perhaps that Sterno candle may have just been defective or an anomaly or something and decided to burn another. No need for 20 more pics but here’s how that turned out.

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Another instance where I’d like to buy American but won’t because I demand quality. Sad but true.
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Trekker Outdoors
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Re: Sterno vs Cheapo - A Candle Test w/pics

Post by Trekker Outdoors » Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:26 am

I never would have guessed that one! I figured the Sterno "emergency" candle would do better than that. The just goes to show you folks, just because someone puts the "emergency" or "survival" label on something doesn't mean that it is up to the task. I've actually had a similar experience with the Sterno chaffing dish fuel. The bargain stuff you buy in bulk at Sam's Club actually burns longer than a can of Sterno.

Blaik
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Re: Sterno vs Cheapo - A Candle Test w/pics

Post by Blaik » Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:32 am

Thanks for the comparison! I was thinking about buying the little sterno stove + fuel + emergency candle kit they had for purchase at walmart, but now I'm glad I didn't!

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Blackthorn-USA
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Re: Sterno vs Cheapo - A Candle Test w/pics

Post by Blackthorn-USA » Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:27 pm

Trekker,
I used those cans of Sterno years ago and remember them being leaky, drying out easy and not getting very hot. I think they might be good for keeping your cheese dip warm for a few hours but I don’t have much use for them in my plans. I haven’t used the Sam’s brand. Will they get a couple cups of water to boiling in decent time? Or at all?

In regard to the candle, I suspect it would have lasted longer if it had been contained in a votive so it would probably do better in a home environment. However I wanted to test as I’d use them in an emergency. I wouldn’t be packing votives and if I had the candle it would be set on a stump or an upside down pop can or something.



Blaik,
As I mentioned the candles would probably be better in a votive so keep that in mind if you’re just wanting something for home. As a general rule due to the differences in personal needs, anything in a “kit” is likely to be inadequate or contain things you’ll never need. Making your own kit is often cheaper and you won’t be stuck with a good knife and a bad fire steel (or whatever) coming in the same kit.
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Re: Sterno vs Cheapo - A Candle Test w/pics

Post by Gleedaniel13 » Wed Jan 01, 2014 9:53 pm

I think we should have to test it also so that we can conclude on ourselves what is the truth behind this one.

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