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This may be a stupid question, but I haven't found an answer anywhere else. I obtained a new Roundhouse SR&RL #24 earlier this year, my first live steamer -- (the railway will be built next spring when we do a back yard make-over). I live in Lincoln, Maine, and was lucky enough to visit Eric's in Phippsburg once in 2013. I haven't yet fired the locomotive and I have no idea where to buy butane for fuel, nor what type of containers will work. The owner's manual gives scant advice. I do have an adapter to fit certain cans, but where can I get butane, (or from where by mail), and in what type of container? Thanks!
 

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Check your local Walmart for the 80-20 Coleman butane cans. Get the screw on top type, if that is the kind of adaptar you have. Cabelas carries them also. Some find the Asian butane cans in Oriental stores(and Cabelas), but no such thing around here. If your adaptor has some crimped metal on it, you will use that Asian type can. You also need steam oil. Oil can be shiped, so can the gas, but you get a Hazmat fee that is very high. You should contact Steam in the Garden magazine and subscribe, it has many advertisers in it that you can order from. Also Jason at the Train Dept. is a sponsor here, or over on Large Scale Central.
http://steamup.net/
 

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Hello
There are two basic types of fuel canisters with similar but slightly different fuels.

The first is pure butane in, usually tall thinish cans with a thin plastic or metal tubular spout. They also have a collar at the top which fits certain appliances in a bayonette fashion. Thee cans seem more available. My local Bath hardware stocks them as does wally world in Brunswick. They should directly fuel your #24 without a fitting.

The second is isobutane which works better at lower temperatures. It comes in fatter squat canisters. These are fuel for camping or backpacking stoves. Look in the camping section . I have gotten fuel cans at wally world in the past, they seem to be out at the moment in Brunswick Maine. I did find some at the wiscasset Ames Hardware store which is a good one. Try Maine sport outfitters near Camden. These cans need an adaptor. The train department has em.

By the way, I am hosting a steam up at my place on the 18th, hope you can make it. contact me at Eric (at) shearwater--boats (dot) com
 

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Good advice from others so far, I will just add I get my tall butane cans from a local (VA) smoke shop. You may try smoke shops if there are any near you for the butane

Jerry
 

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Around here, I buy either the Ronson cans (white with red cap) or Bernzomatic (Black cap). Ronsons are available at Walmart and Ace Hardware. Bernzomatic can usually be found at Home Depot.

I hear the Asian grocery store cans are the best value when you can find them. I prefed to support my local Ace /Ben Franklin store. They sell Ronsons in fairly large cans at a reasonable price.
 

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I get my butane from the local smokers shop. We have several like Lo Bob's ect. Our Wally World is always sold out of thier butane cans. I have yet to go in and find them in stock.
 

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My local Korean grocery store has 4-packs of the Asian-style cans for under $6.00 (last I checked anyway). If you're going to Eric's on the 18th I can pick some up for you.
 

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Being you are in Maine, I can have a case of the 70/30 mix cans shipped for about 16/can for the 450ml ones. Full case only though. As to butane, its harder to find in recent years here in NJ. Many stopped carrying and the smokeshop bottles are so small.
 

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Butane is still available around this area at most of the local 'Dollar' Stores. Most sell for $2 a can for the 300ml size. Try Dollar General or Family Dollar if you have any of the larger stores near you.
Found a Family Dollar in Lincoln.
Family Dollar #5207
79 W Broadway Ste B
Lincoln, ME 04457-1314
Phone: 207-794-6547
 

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I use Coleman blended fuel 3250-702T which is a 70% butane / 30% propane mixture available in store at some Walmarts and it seems to work just fine. Jason at the Train Dept. can fix you up with an adapter. You made a great choice with the Roundhouse SR&RL #24 - I ended up with two ( I bought the first one which was used a few times for what I thought was a good price and then lo and behold a shelf queen showed up on Ebay for a little over half the price and I got carried away ). It will be good to hear how your doing with your railroad and the engine because I'm in exactly the same position -interesting times next spring. Let us know how it goes. Thanks.
 

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Some of the Asian fuels can cause problems. I stick to using what the Coleman products or other US manufactures. Later RJD
 

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Who has issues with the Asian Butane? I've been using for years with no clogged jets? Only jets that clog on me are the ones that the tender disconnects. I typically take care of the jet end of the hose and tuck away with foam when storing the tender.
 

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Butane comes in two mixtures. 70% butane/30% propane and 80/20. There is no such thing as pure 100% butane in the hobby, despite what the labels say. Ronson lighter fuel is 80/20. Most of the camp stove and Chinese fuels are 70/30. 80/20 has a lower vapor pressure then 70/30 and can be problematic in winter temperatures.

The camp stove fuels are widely available. All big sporting goods stoves have it. They all have the threaded end that accept the usual filler adapter.
 

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Do you have an REI or as Bob above said possibly other like sports/camping store near you??? I regularly get a full case of 70/30 at a discount without the added shipping expense. Search the net for locations, the gasoline cost may still save you $$$$ in the long run.
 

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While onto books, Marc Horovitz book, "A passion for Steam" changed everything about the hobby for me. It will take you through all the hows and whys things work or do not without boring you to tears and will make you chuckle along the way as well. In addition you will get a brief page or two synapsis of many, many different locos. His way of teaching enabled me to understand to the point I was able to draw a loco from scratch in AutoCAD and it actually ran. A link is below.
http://www.sidestreetbannerworks.com/railways/SteamBook/steambook.html
 

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Try Amazon.com and search for Primus, Optimus, Giga Power or Jetboil. Most of these cans are the short and fat variety and require the threaded adapter that has been described in prior posts.

If your plans call for running outdoors in cold weather [< 50 degrees], consider using blends as they are more user friendly in cold weather.

Also, be careful to get a shipping quote before you commit as shipping costs can be high.

Good luck,

Will
 
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