Another gas question...White Gas vrs Naptha

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Jay H, Jun 2, 2003.

  1. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    I've wondered the difference between "white gas", "Naptha", and "Coleman" fuel... While wondering, I stumbled across this:

    http://web.outsideonline.com/gear/ge.../20000905.html

    pretty interesting cause I've used both MSR "White Gas" and Coleman Fuel which you can find almost anywhere, Walmart, Target, etc. whereas MSR I've only seen at Campmor. Haha, I answered my own question I guess... But I've always wondered the difference between white gas and naptha, some people saying it's the same thing while others say it's not.

    I guess they also have a shelf life which makes me think I should get rid of the quart of MSR white gas I have sitting around for about 4 years... I'm almost done with it but hate to get stuck in the woods with a clogged fuel pump. (Yes it's serviceable but it's a pain when you're trying to relax!)

    Jay
     
  2. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

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    I have always understood that its the same. Naptha I believe would be the "real name", white gas would be sort of the slang and Coleman and MSR would obviously be different makes.

    So ok, I just read the article, MSR might make the true naptha but its costly. I think I'd rather stick to the $5.00 Cdn 4 liter jug of Coleman...it might not be as clean but I have been using it for years with no problems.
     
  3. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Yeah, I left a practically full Coleman jug in Kauai 2 years ago. Apparently, not the only one, found about 3 others just sitting there. I bet the park rangers gather them up and sell them for money!!!

    Anyway, I looked at my MSR white gas and it says "MSR White Gas is a refined petroleum naptha "

    So it seems that "white gas" isn't technically the same as "coleman's fuel" as they both have different refinement properties and specifications, but most likely they behave and burn similarly or enough so that it doesn't matter too much.

    Jay
     
  4. Jay Heyl

    Jay Heyl Stunt Coordinator

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    I just found a backpacking site that defines white gas as "a distillate of petroleum, petroleum naptha, that burns with a white, hot flame." So, if this site is to be believed, "white gas" and "petroleum naptha" are the same thing. Both of these, being common names for complex chemical compositions, are bound to be somewhat imprecise.
     
  5. Karl_Luph

    Karl_Luph Supporting Actor

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    I could have sworn back in the late 60's Standard service stations sold a gasoline that was unleaded and called it "white gas".I want to say it was 100 octane. Obviously you would never use this high of octane fuel for a lantern though. I want to say Coleman fuel is like a 65 octane.
     
  6. Jay Heyl

    Jay Heyl Stunt Coordinator

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    I recall essentially the same thing, Karl. Back in the days of leaded gas, "white gas" was simply regular gas without the added lead. Of course, back then, gasoline was just gasoline. It wasn't packed with detergents and anti-knock compounds and MTBE and all the other anti-pollution crap they put in there today.
     

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