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What a great Instructable. I can never quite figure out the watts or btu of a candle but 80 sounds right. I have thought a a triple beeswax candle holder from UCO as a source of heat and light. 3 three candles will work. I guess 4 or 5 would be better to actually try and cook. But that is still about 1/2 of heat from a can of Sterno.
Good idea. I have wanted to test fridge/freezer ice block vs chest freezer which is much colder. They both last longer than store bought bags of ice.
I wonder with homemade thermoelec coolers, how much more insulation would improve it. White 1" styrofoam has only a 3.5 r value. Building it with 3 inches of Polyiso or XPS foam would improve cold retention just like a well built ice chest. 1 4 x 8 sheet could make about 12 qt cooler w/ 3 inches insulation.