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Burner Comparison among PowerFlamer Propane 160 Stoves

Below is a review article from Blake McNeil (a customer) who posts on reddit https://www.reddit.com/r/wok/comments/19aptbd/outdoorstirfry_buner_6b_comparison/.  As of January 2024, PowerFlamer propane 160 stoves utilize two burners:  one 5 inches (5B) in PowerFlamer propane 160 manual PF13x160, electronic ignition PF13x160EI and one 6 inches (6B) in PowerFlamer propane 160 integrated ignition PF13x160IEI.   We ask the customer to do the comparison.  Below is his review. 


I use my PowerFlamer Propane 160 wok burner from OutdoorStirfry a LOT, it is my principal cooking
device in my home. Stir fry, steamer or even just boiling up water for spaghetti (why use a piddly little
stove burner when you have Godzilla sitting outside?) my wok burner is usually what I cook on. Even in
the depths of a Canadian winter, you can find me cooking outside on my wok burner. -30C, no problem
the PowerFlamer has the jam to do it right no matter how cold it might be.

When I saw that there was a new burner coming out for the PowerFlamer I asked if I could get one and
compare it to the existing burner, these are my findings, but first some background. My ascent into
Asian cooking came about as I wanted to increase my veggies and reduce my meat intake. Being retired I
need to pay more attention to my diet after years of abuse running various startup companies which left
little time for a healthy diet. I suffered from veggie boredom eating the traditional North American fair
and switch to an Asian diet where the endless combinations of veggies and sauces put an end to veggie
boredom. I started cheap and got an Eastman Kahuna Burner and while it was a big step up from wimpy
stove cooked stir fry, it is not a real wok burner. It focuses all its heat on a very small area and isn’t
designed for a wok. Heat management is problematic if you are cooking for more than one person as it
creates a small intense hot spot that easily burns food while the rest of the wok isn’t very hot. Trying to
mitigate this small hot spot I use a 14” carbon steel Yosukata round bottom Wok which dissipated the
heat a bit but it is a heavier wok so I tend to use a Chao technique (more stirring than tossing of a Bao
technique). Use of a Chao technique was also because the Kahuna Burner doesn’t lend itself to moving
the wok as it isn’t very stable and doesn’t have a wok ring.

Once the welds on the Kahuna Burner started to fail, it was time to step up and the search was on for a
‘real’ wok burner for a home user. Enter OutdoorStirfry, a real wok burner, complete with a wok ring
and when I saw the available stand, it was take my money time. The upgrade to the PowerFlamer from
the Kahuna Burner was a bigger upgrade than from the stove top to the Kahuna Burner. The
PowerFlamer allowed me to up my game and flavor big time. Far better control and a far bigger sweet
spot than the Kahuna Burner. When the new burner came out, I was very interested as to what a new
burner could improve upon.

I bought my PowerFlamer with a manual pilot light ignition system as I thought that would work better
for me than an electronic ignition, so to swap in the new burner I got just the 6B burner with no ignition
system and would swap it with my existing burner.

There are some physical differences between the burners. The 6B is bigger and has more flame jets than
the old burner and more significantly over a larger area.

5B burner vs 6B burner
5B burner vs 6B burner

Disassembling my old burner.

5B burner disassembled.
5B burner disassembled.

Then reassembled it using the new 6B burner. The 6B burner fits all the mounting holes etc, but a couple
of things you will notice. First the 6B is longer which means my pilot flame tube comes up a little short,
not a real problem but something to note.

Lengths for 5B and 6B burners.
Lengths for 5B and 6B burners.

The other thing you will notice is the new burner has a slightly narrower throat so you will need to neck
down the screen to fit.

Inlets for 5B and 6B burners.
Inlets for 5B and 6B burners.

These were the only things I found, otherwise the upgrade was pretty much trivial. NOTE I can’t speak
for the electronic ignition systems, but I suspect they can also be converted but not the length change as
that might be a concern.

5B burner in a stand.
5B burner in a stand. Before with the old burner.
6B burner in a stand
6B burner in a stand.  With the new 6B burner.

Performance changes. I did a bunch of tests boiling water and such but really those show that both
burners boil water just fine, but with the old burner you can see there are two heat zones. First at the
bottom of the wok and then part way up the side of the wok, where the boiling begins indicating a
higher heat in these regions.

Boiling water in a wok.
Boiling water in a wok.

With the new burner the entire wok starts to boil at the same time. This indicates a far more consistent
heat distribution with the new 6B burner. This is very significant as stir fry is the movement of food in
and out of heat zones and the smaller the hot zone the harder it is not to burn food or get a consistent
cooking of food. This larger more consistent heating will also allow me to be even more aggressive with
heat as I’ll have a higher percentage of food in the hot zone and will be able to cook even faster and
capture more wok hei than before. I should mention that I’m cooking for a family so my portion sizes
border on overloading the wok, so the more consistent heating is huge for me in getting a consistent
cooking of my dishes. One other problem with small but intense hot spots is an increase in what is call
‘wok poo’, burnt carbonized food (sugars, starches etc) on the hot spot. When you wipe your wok when
your done and it comes up black then you might have wok poo problem. Having a larger sweet spot and
a more consistent heating of the wok will reduce burning and hence wok poo, your wok will be easier to
clean.

At the end of my testing, which burner am I going with, definitely the new 6B burner.

After some uses including woking a cabbage, carrot, lotus root and beef stir fry at –33C with a –44C wind
chill during a polar vortex (I use my burner all year long here in Calgary), this burner is deceptively
powerful. You don’t need a flame licking your eyebrows to cook on, since there are more gas jets, I’d
recommend starting a bit lower flame than your old setting to cook on and working up from there.


Blake has another post “Got a wok burner, get a steamer” at https://www.reddit.com/r/wok/comments/19bnw74/got_a_wok_burner_get_a_steamer/.  White steams come up surrounded by white snow, quite a scene.  

 

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How to assemble the burner to sit on the stove stand?

Customer (PF13S160IEI_Cover and StoveStandStainless_Wheels)

How to assemble the burner to sit on the stove stand?

Outdoorstirfry: 

To assemble the stand and stove:

  1. Assemble the short leg stove.
  2. Slide the short leg stove with its inlet valve (stove front side) first downward into the stand hole toward the stand front.  The short leg stove should sit on the stand hole well. 
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How tight to apply force between hose and stove inlet?

Customer (PF13S160): 

Hi, stove arrived safely.   Step 7 shows how to connect the hose to the 20# tank.  It doesn’t describe how to connect the other end of the hose to the stove. How tight? Do I need to apply Teflon tape or grease?  Kind Than Thanks.

Outdoorstirfry: 

Inside the hex fitting of the hose, there is a rubber black washer.  We connect it to the stove side 3/8” male flare fitting inlet, finger tight, then apply wrench for additional ½ turn.   A bit of pressure on the rubber black washer helps deal it well.

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custom made cart for PowerFlamer stove.

Customer (PF13S160EI)

Hi,  I just want to share the attached (below) pictures of the wok installed on a cart with a cabinet to store the propane tank.  The finished assembly with the cart looks really nice in case you want to share with your customers.

custom made cart 1 for PowerFlamer short leg stove
custom made cart 1 for PowerFlamer short leg stove
custom made cart 2 for PowerFlamer short leg stove
custom made cart 2 for PowerFlamer short leg stove

 

I ordered this cart from Home Depot or Woot on sale and took the top to the local metal shop to cut out a 12″ circle to drop in the work.

https://sellout.woot.com/offers/nuuk-pro-42-rolling-outdoor-kitchen-island-6?gclid=CjwKCAiAvoqsBhB9EiwA9XTWGRtjjarBp7CBUXy5XH0HVOn0hdSCutSrtGJunxZ4oMAMbfsg8vieGRoCK08QAvD_BwE

https://www.homedepot.com/p/NUUK-Pro-42-in-Outdoor-Kitchen-Island-and-Grill-Cart-MC810/324476042?g_store=&source=shoppingads&locale=en-US&pla&mtc=SHOPPING-BF-CDP-GGL-D28I-028_022_GRILLS-NA-MULTI-NA-PMAX-NA-NA-NA-NA-NBR-NA-NA-NA-PMAX_SHP&cm_mmc=SHOPPING-BF-CDP-GGL-D28I-028_022_GRILLS-NA-MULTI-NA-PMAX-NA-NA-NA-NA-NBR-NA-NA-NA-PMAX_SHP-71700000113461774–&gad_source=1&gclid=CjwKCAiAvoqsBhB9EiwA9XTWGadfD7wB9MSQC11hkjnedzhY2AGdXHlBeRZiZII-hgNZXDIqra3o5hoCO9AQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

 

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Electronic Ignition Does not Work.

Customer (PF13L160EI):

Hi,  I just received my wok burner (order number xxxx). Everything is great but I can’t get he electronic ignition to work. What am I doing wrong?  Thanks.

Outdoorstirfry: 

Sorry for the trouble.  Can you send picture of the ignition area?   Do you see a spark between the white tip and brass next to it when turning the right knob to a clicking sound?   Do you hear hissing sound when you turn the right knob? 

Customer: 

Thank you for a prompt reply! I tried it again and it seems to be working perfectly-I suspect I just wasn’t turning the knob far enough!    Thanks for a great product.

Outdoorstirfry: 

Great that you solve the problem.  The ignition copper tube and the white tip area needs to have enough gas to ignite when the spark is generated.  A few clicks might be needed.  Alternatively, you can hold the right knob for a couple seconds before the clicking sound (90 degrees turn) for more gas accumulation.   We have a video “How to start a PowerFlamer propane 160 electronic ignition stove, both ignition flame and main burner flame?” on this page https://outdoorstirfry.com/support/product-documentation/.   Hope this helps.

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Flat Bottom Cookware Adaptor Question

Customer (PF13CL160):

I received this earlier this month and have had a wonderful first cook!! Love the product. I wanted to ask you, I saw on your website that you used to have a flat bottom cookware adaptor (just steel grates to place on top) so that flat bottom cookware could be used with this (pots and pans). Is that something that is still available for the specific product that I ordered? I see it is for the PF130, and it’s sold out anyways. Is there another product from another source you would recommend that I can place on top of the burner and essentially turn it into a stove for other pots and pans?  Let me know what you think.  Thank you!

Outdoorstirfry: 

Thank for your good words.  The flat bottom cookware adaptor is for our PF13x130 product, not for the one you have.   For your stove, if your flat bottom cookware diameter is >13”, it can simply sit on top of the stove.  If your flat bottom cookware is heavy, please remove the long legs and let the stove sit on a ground for improved stability.

 

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Question on manual stove pilot light.

Customer (PF13x160): 

I have a question on the operation of the pilot light (manual light version) of my current burner. If I light the main burner and turn the valve to ignite the pilot light, it will simply extinguish if I turn off the main burner. I’m wondering what the purpose is for the pilot light, since I cannot ignite it without the main burner being lit.

Outdoorstirfry: 

The pilot flame needs to be maintained about ½”~1” in length.   If too long pilot flame, it becomes yellow.  If too short, it can go out easily.    Hope this helps.

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Question on Natural Gas stove length.

Customer (PF13x160): 

I am a satisfied and happy owner of your propane 160,000 btu burner with the manual ignition, but I am now interested in purchasing a second burner, this time the natural gas version (and I would give my propane burner to a family member). However I notice that supply pipe extends out quite a distance which may not fit in my installation.

Could you please tell me how long the pipe is from the outer circumference of the burner?

Outdoorstirfry: 

The valve inlet on the natural gas stove is about 12” away from its wind guard. 

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Ignition flame for Electronic ignition

Customer (PF13L160EI): 

Hi I have received and been testing the wok burner but i am having some trouble dialing the pilot burner. It seems to always be spitting a long 6 to 8 inch long flame. Is that normal ? Is there any way i can adjust the flame on the pilot ? Plus im kinda worried that the electric igniter might melt if i leave if on.

Outdoorstirfry: 

Thank you for your email and photo.  Electronic ignition is just for ignition, can’t stay on during cooking.   It needs to be shut off after the main burner flame is ignited.  The electronic ignition flame is designed to be long such that the ignition tip does not need to stay inside the wind guard.  You can arrange the tip such that the flamer shoot toward top of the main burner.

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New models and cleaning?

Customer: 

I was wondering if you had a preferred method of cleaning the whole burner. Usually, I don’t clean the burner after every cook. Is there a way that you would recommend to clean it fully? To restore it? What I mean is: rust, debris, what problems to look for…?

Also, have you updated the 160 manual ignition model? Will you continue making it, or is the electric model what you will be focusing on?

Outdoorstirfry: 

When using the stove, try not to spill thing on top of the burner.  Burner holes need to stay clean and without clog.  In case you observe yellow flame, it is time to clean the holes.  

People like pilot flame and manual stove is popular.  We will keep offering it.   We strive our best to update images on our product pages to reflect the latest products as we improve.   For latest look, please check out our product pages at https://outdoorstirfry.com/products/