Waikato student’s design a trail blazer
University of Waikato engineering student Luke Sinclair has designed an ultralight wood-fired stove that can boil a litre of water in less than 10 minutes.
The tramping enthusiast came up with the idea earlier this year when he and class mate Kendall Bristow completed a 100-day, 3000km trek from Cape Reinga to Bluff.
“People have always looked to the wilderness for an escape from the chaos of everyday life, yet we often bring with us shoulder destroying packs full of wasteful gas canisters. While initially convenient, these canisters become less convenient when they run out and leave you in the middle of a mountain range eating cold beans,” says Luke.
During a year-long research and design project, as part of his final year Bachelor of Engineering (Honours), he completed extensive research and testing. His initial idea has been developed into a highly efficient, lightweight and functional backpack stove.
“The design of the Trail Blazer integrates rocket stove efficiency with an outer cone that insulates the chamber while also acting as a sturdy base. A removable feed tube allows easy access to the chamber when starting a fire and the feed tube is angled to allow fuel to feed the fire automatically as it burns.”
The prototype is made from stainless steel, weighing just 300g. But Luke hopes to improve the design, by sourcing thinner stainless steel and eliminating welds, to reduce the weight further and decrease production costs.
University of Waikato engineering student Luke Sinclair with his ‘Trail Blazer’ prototype at the recent Carter Holt Harvey Pulp & Paper Engineering Design Show.