Forums > Technical Discussion > average burn time of various poi heads?

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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:hi all, i was just wondering, what are the average burn times on the various fire poi? also, what are your favorite, or the ones you have found to work best? which have the longest lasting wicks?

also, for U.S HOPpers, what's the best fuel to use that can be easily found in the states? i personally don't think i'm ready for fire poi yet, but i would like to know the info, as i plan on being up to that level by the spring. thanks for any and all input.

smoochies,
-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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poiaholic22
member

Member Since: 22nd Dec 2002
Total posts: 531
Posted:It depends greatly on what kind of poi you have,how fast you spin and what kind of fuel you use.The longest I have had poi burn was for something close to 10 minutes. Though I soaked them for like 15 minutes.
The more wick you have the longer they will burn becuz they absorb more gas.So for poi I would recommend Cathedral or Accordion style poi.For staff you're better off with Tube Core.
Most people I have met use Coleman fuel(white gas).You can get it basically at any camping store or anywhere camping stuff is sold(Kmart,Walmart,Target,etc,etc).Some people like to use less volatile fuels but I don't know what they are seeing as I don't use them.


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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:hrm, ok, thanks for the info, i was thinking about getting cathedral wicks mainly 'cause i like the size and the fact that you can adujust the tension the wicks are under and therefore how much fuel they'll soak.also, how long will they typically last with good care? 6 months? a year? three months? (averaging two or three burns a week at first, then slowing down to three or four a month) i guess that would be moderate usage? not really sure.

as for white gas, i've played with that alot, and while it's fun, it burns really fast. i read the fuel saftey stuff on the site, so i know you can dilute it, i was wondering more if there's a readily available fuel that alot of people are happy with. sounds like i'll be experimenting a bit.

of course, the natural question is..uhrm, damm! i completely forgot. ah well, guess i'll post when i remember it.

-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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musashii
musashii

starring Skippy the green llama
Location: Seattle, WA
Member Since: 14th Dec 2002
Total posts: 1148
Posted:Re: diluting white gas, I usually add lamp oil(which burns fairly slow) to get longer burn times.

Usually I use 75% white gas and 25% lamp oil, gives me the best burn times for spinning implements...

o, n citronella lamp oil is EVOL...stinky, sooty, extremely smoky and by itself hard to stay lit..never even tried breathing w it, probly tastes like schit too

leest I'm not the only one who made the mistake of spinning it inside tho


First intention, then enlightenment..
Ars Pyronomica

" Life is programmed. Whether death is programmed or not is yet to be determined."

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NYC
NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA
Member Since: 26th Aug 2001
Total posts: 9232
Posted:I've been a big opponent of pure whitegas. Spinning poi outside with pure whitegas is a bit silly as it easily transfers to clothing, hair, etc... Inside, a knocked over whitegas canister is going to kill some people... or at least burn down a club.

I have seen whitegas go badly... and it was always about 10 seconds from going really badly. I've spun it pure just to see what it was like and found no benefit to a 50:50 mix of lamp oil. Plus lamp oil burns longer.

Keep in mind 22 that on a hot summer day, pure whitegas can get pretty tough to control... lamp oil will never light clothing, spectators, floors, ceilings or anything else on fire. Which I see as a major plus.


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musashii
musashii

starring Skippy the green llama
Location: Seattle, WA
Member Since: 14th Dec 2002
Total posts: 1148
Posted:Hmm, there are times tho, where I'll use pure white gas(tho I always spin off and soak outside, n keep the fuel outside) inside

-linoleum
-painted concrete
-buffed hardwood floors

anywhere where I don't feel like ice skating and spinning at the same time, unless there's a brand of lamp oil or some trick I'm missing


First intention, then enlightenment..
Ars Pyronomica

" Life is programmed. Whether death is programmed or not is yet to be determined."

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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:so, after soaking the wicks, i'm taking it that "spin off" means you spin the wicks to get the excess fuel off before lighting? if that's the case, could you put a 2-litre bottle over the head to collect the excess fuel?

oh yeah, and the other thing i was gonna post about, as soon as i started this thread, i did a search for burn time of poi, and actually didn't find anything, which i found suprising.

also, would a wet towel do for a substitute fire blanket? provided it was large enough of course.

-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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musashii
musashii

starring Skippy the green llama
Location: Seattle, WA
Member Since: 14th Dec 2002
Total posts: 1148
Posted:yep yep, thas what spinoff is..tho I dunno bout the 2 litre bottle, I'd be a bit dubious of it myself..

n yep, I substitute a wet towel for a blanket(which will handle most situations I've seen), but I'd still recommend having a fire ext on site


First intention, then enlightenment..
Ars Pyronomica

" Life is programmed. Whether death is programmed or not is yet to be determined."

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poiaholic22
member

Member Since: 22nd Dec 2002
Total posts: 531
Posted:NYC is right about the volatility of white gas.It does sometimes make me nervous but I work with dangerous stuff all the time so the overall theme with white gas is just be as careful as possible.Also you should try different stuff and find the one you are comfortable with.
You could use a wet towel but I would say you're better off with a fire blanket.You'll find yourself in situations when there is no readily available water so just go with the blanket.
If you take care of cathedral wicks they should last you about a year with the kind of use you're talking about.


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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:cool, thanks for the info guys, i really appreciate it. i've still got my fire extinguisher from my Fire breathing days (and , from my experience, everclear works about the best for that, just two points of caution: 1) it'll get you drunk if you hold it in your mouth long enough, and 2) it'll give you sores in your mouth, as it's pretty caustic stuff. but hey, no gingivitis!)

ok, just one more question, are fire blankets resuable? or do they have to be kept in a sterile package or something like that? thanks for all the info, sounds like i'll be ordering some cathedral fire poi in about two months.

-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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NYC
NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA
Member Since: 26th Aug 2001
Total posts: 9232
Posted:Well now there's a difference between an actual "fire blanket" which you'll find in most government buildings and such and just a wet towel or blanket.

A real "fire blanket" is used to put out a person who is engulfed in flames. Probably a good idea to have at a burn but I never have. I usually just bring the oldest nappyest beach towel that I have and make sure it's a little damp. You don't want it soaked otherwise you can get steam burns. Damp towels are good at putting out burning poi... which is, more often than not, the problem.

Poi can be tricky to put out... most of the time you need to smother one wick at a time. Make sure you practice smothering a few just in case you have to some day...

And both chewed up "safety towels" and fire blankets are reusable.

Honestly, for a virgin burn, go to Target/Kmart/etc.. and get a bottle of "lamp oil" and use it at 100%. Once you get cool, you can start mixing it with whitegas.

And I'd start practicing with wicks as soon as possible. You don't have to light them, but you should be very comfortable with the weight and feel before you light.

I'm glad to see someone taking the time to get all of their safety precautions out of the way before they light up. Respect.


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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:wow, thanks for the info, that helps out alot, esp the towel being damp and not wet, as i'd thought it would be.

as for the saftey thing, i've gotten burned a couple of times from fireworks and such, and i can imagine what something on a larger scale would be like. besides, as poi spinning isn't a very popular pasttime in my neck of the woods,i find it's best to be prepared, and i like to present the right kind of image to people unfamiliar with my hobbies. that and i don't feel like getting toasted.

once again, thanks for all of the info in here, i feel much better about getting into fire.
-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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poiaholic22
member

Member Since: 22nd Dec 2002
Total posts: 531
Posted:*so badly wants to bust NYC's balls about the white gas even though knows he's right*

Best of luck with your fire experiences just always remember to be as careful as possible no matter what you use.


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NYC
NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA
Member Since: 26th Aug 2001
Total posts: 9232
Posted:Bust away.. I've just never even heard of something bad happening with lamp oil. Except for slippery floors. Every "close call" I've ever experienced/witnessed has been with Coleman.

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poiaholic22
member

Member Since: 22nd Dec 2002
Total posts: 531
Posted:Isn't the smoke from lamp oil more toxic or have I just been sniffing the white gas fumes to much

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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:well, i've used lamp oil in lamps and never noticed much, but then again the flame was much smaller. what about rubbing alcohol? (isopropyl) would that burn too fast? too dangerous? i've never heard of it being used, just curious as to why, that's all. as for slippery floors, i'll be doing this outside for quite awhile (i don't see when indoors would be even feasible), but if i were to spin indoors, would i use different fuels, perhaps one cleaner burning? other than soaking and spinning off outside, and seperate storage of fuel, i'm not sure what the difference would be. also, i would like to add that i really do appreciate all of the helpful information you guys have provided, it's made me feel alot better about taking this step. thanks,

-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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NYC
NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA
Member Since: 26th Aug 2001
Total posts: 9232
Posted:Don't use isopropyl for anything. It blows out and is unpredictable. And it drips and sprays.

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NickC
Monkey Wrangler
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 183
Posted:I use isopropyl alcohol for trailing.

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NYC
NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA
Member Since: 26th Aug 2001
Total posts: 9232
Posted:How does it compare to coleman/whitegas?

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NickC
Monkey Wrangler
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 183
Posted:It burns approximately 1.5 billion times cooler than coleman. Seriously though, the flame isn't as visible but you can keep it on your skin for a long time.

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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:ahh. i think i saw a firs staff routine with isopropyl then, or maybe benzine. it was a cirque de soliel performance, i wanna say drallion? the one with the criss-cross trampoline's, and some guy was doing staff. in addition to lighting the torches off of flaming fuel residue on this thigh, he would balance the torch, by it's flaming heads, on his feet and such for long perionds of time (several seconds)
if you have seen this done before, any insight as to the procedure involced? while i've no plans to put flaming poi in contact with my bare skin, i'm still interested to know how it was done, 'cause that guy sure didn't let on like he was burned.

-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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Spectre
member
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Member Since: 15th Nov 2001
Total posts: 5
Posted:I saw the cirque de soliel that you're talking about a couple of weeks ago, it was called alegria. My spelling of it probably off tho.

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Mr.Coffee
member
Location: chattannooga, tn,usa
Member Since: 3rd Oct 2002
Total posts: 56
Posted:Yeah, that's it, it's alegria, and i think that's the correct spelling.

does anybody know the Cirque de soliel performance that has poi in it?i saw a clip once, i think it's "run before you fly", but i'm not sure.

-Rhys


--> I'm just a wave acting out in my own particular way <--

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