Thanks for all the kind words, friends!
I got more done this weekend and will try to post later tonight.
In the mean time, to answer some of the questions asked about my Hero's engine:
Making alcohol burners from beer cans has become something of a science for budget-minded backpackers, and I found all the information I needed to get started here:
It's really trial and error. For me, the answer was more holes and more fuel, since I don't need to pack my engine into a remote location I don't need to be very efficient. (I do like the idea of climbers who bring Everclear for their fuel source. That way, they can drink more and cook less or cook more and drink less as the spirits move them!)
As for the bottom bearing, it's just a 5/32" steel rod filed down to a needle point to minimize friction. I fabricated a small brass disc with a dimple in the middle to put in the bottom of the stove so the needle doesn't bore through the aluminum.
As for power - I originally planned for two sets of step down gears, but found that they actually produced too much friction. If you wanted to go with smaller steam ports (and therefore more pressure) you could probably increase power, but this is as small as I wanted to go without a safety valve. Hopefully, my flapping wings won't require too much power if I center my pivot points on each wing, so each is like a well balanced teeter-totter.
I'll try to shoot a video next time I fire it up!