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How to boil water without a pot?

Discussion in 'Wilderness & Survival Skills' started by vitekboi, Mar 21, 2009.

  1. vitekboi


    Jun 14, 2008
    I went camping with a few buddies and none of us had a pot to boil water in. Is it safe to boil water in an aluminum soda can or a tin can (soup can)? Are there any other ways to boil water?

    The water in the plastic bottle started boiling but i'm pretty sure that wasn't safe to drink haha
  2. Walkabout


    Jul 28, 2003
    You can boil water in a hat (eg Filson tin cloth packer) by placing hot rocks in. Sounds disgusting, but would work in an emergency if you needed to purify the water.
  3. cjag


    Nov 15, 2006
    Sounds like something Joezilla would look into, with a youtube clip hopefully......:D
  4. abo4ster


    Aug 24, 2003
    Tin can yes. I have not tried it, but aluminum foil is an option. So is a glass beer bottle.

    Soda/beer can I would say why not, but have to question if they are lined with something which I believe they are. Maybe someone knows for sure and can expand upon.
  5. scotsmanspride


    Jan 6, 2009
    Aluminum is safe to boil water in.Alot of people in the lightweight category make their pots out of a heine beer can. They use the side cutting can opener and still have a lid. you can use a regular can opener on a soda can...leaves a clean edge and you still have the rolled lip for support. however tin can(steel) are not really the safest bet unless in a survival situation. They have a plastic lining in them that melts.It contains BPA and also if a pregnant female is drinking from this there have been studies showing damage to male embryo's from it. Also it is totally possible to boil it in plastic just the same thing...I would only do it in a survival situation. You just have to regulate the distance it is held from the fire. Glass is super easy and no big deal. I think there is a n episode of survivorman where he boiled water in a 1 gallon jug.
  6. desmobob


    May 5, 2003
    A paper cup will work pretty well, believe it or not. The part above the waterline will burn away in the fire, but the water will keep the surrounding part from burning through.

    Stay sharp,
  7. Bushman5


    Oct 31, 2007
    to use a tincan you need to burn out the lining. The best way to do this is to simply fill the can with hot coals and place the whole thing into the fire, covering it with coals. Burn it for 20 minutes, douse in water. Next, warm it up over the fire and coat it with veg oil and let the oil season the tin can (like cast iron). now punch some holes for a bail hook and your good to go.
  8. The REAL Commander

    The REAL Commander

    Jun 30, 2008
    That is quite true, and not many people know that. :thumbup: You can actually fold a large piece of paper to make your own cup.
  9. siguy


    Aug 26, 2006
    I have used a glass Snapple bottle before, just tied a piece of wire around the neck so that we could pull it out of the fire once the water was done.

    As was mentioned, I've also used small, hot rocks to boil water in a plastic container before. Just heat the rocks up until they are glowing red in the coals of the fire, then use a couple of sticks to set them into water.
  10. warrigal


    May 15, 2005
    Make an Alfoil bowl and rest on the hot ground beside/in a fire. You can't pick it up so you have to bail the hot water out with another container.
    You can do the hot rocks in Here in Oz in a paper bark container don't see why the same thing wouldn't work with Birch bark ( No birch around here though)
    Dig a hole line with newspaper ( or paper bark) and fill with hot rocks. You can use a plastic tarp but you need to line it with some twigs or grass so you don't melt the plastic and loose your water.
    I have also boiled water ( more of a party trick) in a Brown paper bag fill about 1/3 then roll the top tightly around a stick and suspend over the fire same as a paper cup if the flames don't get to the dry paper at the top you should be right.
    You could always cut a panel out of you mates car and cold forge a bowl over a stump Don't use your car that would be silly.
    How about just carry a small billy with you. I have got my normal army water bottle with a cups canteen. I have also got a one liter Nalgene bottle with a stainless cup that fits into insulated carrier.
  11. Fox Creek

    Fox Creek

    Oct 26, 1999
    Umm...shoot a Buffalo...skin said buffalo..dig a pit in the ground, line said pit with the green buff hide, flesh side in...fill with water, rollin in ye red hot stones and Boil yee leeks and prattes and flesh ..CAPTn. Custard Sizemore.
  12. Thomas Linton

    Thomas Linton

    Jun 16, 2003
    Add hot rocks to water in a hole in rock or hole cut in a sound stump/piece of wood.

    Bark can be made into a container into which you place hot rocks.

    A hole in soil can be lined with plastic and hot rocks placed on cold rocks or wood (to protect plastic from melting). If the soil is heavy clay, you can line the hole with cloth, also protecting it with cold rocks/wood, and add hot rocks.

    Water placed in a clear container in strong sunlight for a day is effectively disinfected without boiling. Google "SODIS." (Les seems to have missed that lesson.)
  13. Scott Free

    Scott Free Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 15, 1999
    Wow, that SODIS thing is certainly new to me. Very interesting!
  14. shangchi108


    Aug 28, 2007
    Friend of mine told me about using a half-gallon milk carton and tinfoil. Cover the bottom with tinfoil, then boil the water. Pour out the first batch of water, since that will have melted wax in it that they use to seal the carton. Then you should be good to go.

    He told me about several 'hobo' tricks for survival that are actually pretty nifty.
  15. Loosearrow


    Apr 14, 2008
    A deer hide and some hot rocks
  16. DWK2


    Nov 3, 2003
    The SODIS approach isn't as fast as a Steri Pen or Aquastar UV water treatment device but it's the same principle and a lot cheaper!

  17. Phil Dwyer

    Phil Dwyer KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Feb 28, 2006
    Hi Friends,

    I can see these methods in a pinch, but (if you don't mind my asking) what are three guys who consciously chose to go camping doing with out means to boil water? What were you doing for food and its preparation? Maybe this was an exercise in "lets walk into the woods with just the clothes on our backs?" But you had aluminum cans and plastic bottles? I'm confused. The photo looks like you're at a campground of some sort. If so, heck maybe you could just go borrow one? BTW, stay away from heating the water in the plastic bottle. Nasty chemicals will get in the water that just plain aren't good for ya!

    All the best, Phil
  18. Gravitas


    Sep 9, 2007
    In full survival I have burned out a log with coals (takes about three hours to get a 1 liter depression). Heat small rocks in the fire for over an hour then add them to the water in the log. It will boil faster than any commercial backpacking stove. Plus no harmful chemicals ... just some charcoal which actually adds flavor to boiled water.
  19. warrigal


    May 15, 2005
    No-one ( including me ) have mentioned that heated rocks ( normally one that "live" underwater.
    Or rapidly cooled rocks can explode/shatter.
  20. RoyalM


    Dec 10, 2007
    Here you go, this video shows the hot rock in a plastic cup trick:

    If you have the time check out his other clips, I know some on here already know of hobbexp.

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