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camping and backpacking stoves. What to you use.

#201 User is offline   eagsc7 

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 09:40 PM

Coming from a family of "pick a stove, any stove" from the shelf and use it. My dad had about 15 Different stoves. Of course, we'd grab 2 and make sure they both worked.

Of course, it took us awhile to choose what stove to get. We finally decided on the MSR Wisperlite International. Reason for this has become VERY useful. On our trip to Hawaii, there was NO White gas OR Canister fuel available on Maui. After checking at 4 different places(the ONLY 4 on the island), we ran to the gas station, and filled up our small can for a total cost of 32 Cents. The fuel lasted the entire time on island, and the extra just went into the tank of the rental. Repeat this for the Big Island.

The Normal Wisperlite needs regular white gas, whereas the international version accepts practically Anything liquid that'll burn. The only thing that really changes is the boil time by a few seconds depending on the fuel you get. OF course, I haven't noticed, cause I'm usually prepping dinner while it starts boiling. Rather fun!

I Love the stove, and my sis recently started using the dragonfly, cause its a hair lighter. She's Serious about backpacking, so that's what shes worried about.

The Steaks

#202 User is offline   ArmyFanGeo 

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 10:00 AM

Look at this baby. Brand new and super cool:

Posted Image

The new BioLite Camp Stove. Yeah, you can stop feasting your eyes on the beauty and Google the thing. Then be even more amazed.

#203 User is offline   cerberus1 

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 06:21 PM

So far I'm not impressed with the biolite, certainly not for backpacking.
At two pounds, I'd be better off with a canister stove and a flexible power panel to power a phone.
Having to feed this thing constantly (like a storm kettle) means time spent doing other chores is out and could ba a real pain-in-the-can in wet/cold conditions.
Just out, I'd have to see real tests on how this holds up over time before considering it.

#204 User is offline   Touchstone 

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 04:48 AM

 cerberus1, on 28 June 2012 - 06:21 PM, said:

So far I'm not impressed with the biolite, certainly not for backpacking.
At two pounds, I'd be better off with a canister stove and a flexible power panel to power a phone.
Having to feed this thing constantly (like a storm kettle) means time spent doing other chores is out and could ba a real pain-in-the-can in wet/cold conditions.
Just out, I'd have to see real tests on how this holds up over time before considering it.


I think the poundage will be kind of a wash. Our Jetboil with fuel canisters is equivalent in weight. Adding on our solar charger probably puts it over the top in comparisons. The new titanium Jetboil would halve the stove weight, but not the fuel. Our solar charger does an adequate job, but it's similar in charging capabilities as the Biolite in terms of time.

I like the fact that I don't have to worry about rationing fuel, or think about how many canisters I'll need to carry for a given trip.

#205 User is offline   briansnat 

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Posted 12 July 2012 - 11:00 AM

 Touchstone, on 05 July 2012 - 04:48 AM, said:

 cerberus1, on 28 June 2012 - 06:21 PM, said:

So far I'm not impressed with the biolite, certainly not for backpacking.
At two pounds, I'd be better off with a canister stove and a flexible power panel to power a phone.
Having to feed this thing constantly (like a storm kettle) means time spent doing other chores is out and could ba a real pain-in-the-can in wet/cold conditions.
Just out, I'd have to see real tests on how this holds up over time before considering it.


I think the poundage will be kind of a wash. Our Jetboil with fuel canisters is equivalent in weight. Adding on our solar charger probably puts it over the top in comparisons. The new titanium Jetboil would halve the stove weight, but not the fuel. Our solar charger does an adequate job, but it's similar in charging capabilities as the Biolite in terms of time.

I like the fact that I don't have to worry about rationing fuel, or think about how many canisters I'll need to carry for a given trip.


The Sierra Zip Stove works on the same principle but weighs half (and less than half if it's the titanium version)

#206 User is offline   ATMouse 

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 02:50 PM

 briansnat, on 12 July 2012 - 11:00 AM, said:

 Touchstone, on 05 July 2012 - 04:48 AM, said:

 cerberus1, on 28 June 2012 - 06:21 PM, said:

So far I'm not impressed with the biolite, certainly not for backpacking.
At two pounds, I'd be better off with a canister stove and a flexible power panel to power a phone.
Having to feed this thing constantly (like a storm kettle) means time spent doing other chores is out and could ba a real pain-in-the-can in wet/cold conditions.
Just out, I'd have to see real tests on how this holds up over time before considering it.


I think the poundage will be kind of a wash. Our Jetboil with fuel canisters is equivalent in weight. Adding on our solar charger probably puts it over the top in comparisons. The new titanium Jetboil would halve the stove weight, but not the fuel. Our solar charger does an adequate job, but it's similar in charging capabilities as the Biolite in terms of time.

I like the fact that I don't have to worry about rationing fuel, or think about how many canisters I'll need to carry for a given trip.


The Sierra Zip Stove works on the same principle but weighs half (and less than half if it's the titanium version)


We used the Zip Stove on the A.T.

Worked good, tho' I understand some places disallow this sort of stove.

Handled properly, it was no more a threat than any other camping stove.

#207 User is offline   theosus 

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 04:27 PM

 elgecko, on 27 September 2008 - 04:18 PM, said:

I'm a huge fan of the JetBoil system.
I've had mine close to a year now and love it. All I do is boil my water and add it to my dry food in freezer bags.
All I have to do is lick the spoon to clean up after cooking.

This is a good site to check out:
http://www.freezerbagcooking.com/


I love freezer bag cooking for a few things like grits and cereal. nothing sucks like having to clean dishes in the woods.

I have two stoves. One is a gigapower canister stove. It came as a kit with a 700ml cup/pot and a spork. Cost me $80 for everything. The other is a cat food can stove which cost me $3, including the hole punch, and a home made "caldera cone" copy made from $2 worth of aluminum flashing. I like both of them. The cat food stove is a lot lighter, even with fuel. But it doesn't simmer and has no "off", just burns out of fuel and stops. I'm taking my gigapower stove on my next trip. I'm making steak and rolls and rice, with hot tea. After seeing two women in our last group with wine, cheese, crackers and salad, I'm suddenly tired of MREs and beef jerky.

#208 User is offline   7rxc 

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 02:45 PM

Bumping for Mike&Jess

#209 User is offline   Chicken Feathers 

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 06:12 PM

 Michael, on 20 May 2007 - 01:18 PM, said:

I own a MSR Whisperlite, 2 Peak one 440's and a 2 burner Coleman propane camp stove. Lately Ive been working on making alcohol (metho) stoves out of pop cans. Here is an example of one type (not mine) Ive been making unpressurized open burners and the sealed top pressurized side jets. All seem to work well. They will boil 2 cups of water in about 7-9 minutes at 6000 ft. and use about 2/3 of an ounce of Denatured or everclear alcohol. I also bought a few Trainga burners. They will boil 2 cups of water in 7-9 minutes and then simmer for another 20 using about 1.5 ounces of alcohol. Not as fast as a liquid gas stove but they are super light, take up very little space and you can get the handmade ones to simmer too with the addition of a simmer ring. For long hiking trips you need to consider that for big meals you need a lot of fuel but you save weight on the stove so its something to think about. As long as I'm just doing meals that need hot water its a great stove. real cooking is more of a challenge and Id take a Whisperlite or the peak one.

You can get Denatured Alcohol at Walmart for about 5.00 dollars a quart. You can get Everclear for about 18.00 a quart. The only advantage of Everclear is you can cut it with water and drink it!! Please don't drink the Denatured stuff it makes you die. If you get into making your own Alcohol it will cost you about $0.60 cents per quart. and you can drink that too. In a pinch these stoves will burn rubbing alcohol which is 70% (140 proof) so you can burn an drinking alcohol that is at least 140 Proof.

These are cool to try to make and if nothing else its a good skill to have for long term survival. I am also learning to make the alcohol for the stoves. All Alcohol stoves require a wind screen and if its really cold they do require a little skill to light. Be very careful Alcohol burns almost clear. in the daytime it is very hard to see them burning.

Advantages of metho (Alcohol)
Very cheap and readily available
Comes in recyclable plastic containers, not disposable metal canisters
Is made from fermentation of sugars, so is a renewable resource
Is environmentally friendly, burning to give only carbon dioxide and water
Is a liquid, not a gas so its easy to see how much you have left
Safer than other liquid fuels - no dangerous flare ups
Will burn at cold temperatures and high altitude - although somewhat slower
Metho (Alcohol) burners are maintenance free since they contain no moving parts and no small jets which can get blocked
Metho (Alcohol) burners are incredibly reliable
Metho (Alcohol) burners are very quiet - almost silent
Spare metho (Alcohol)makes a handy solvent around the house

Disadvantages of metho (Alcohol)
Metho (ethanol) has a lower heat output per weight of fuel than some other fuels. (Ethanol: 30 kJ/g, Butane: 49 kJ/g).
Takes longer to boil water than some other fuels. (About twice as long as gas)

A good link for information about the Trangia burner. All examples apply to a standard pop can alcohol stove.

FYI they burn much cleaner than a gas stove. I do have admit that the Trangia alcohol burner with its simmer ring and lid lets you carry 3 OZ. of fuel in the stove. normally more than all I need for a over night trip of an evening meal, hot drink and a hot breakfast. so if you do not want to make one you can either buy the pop can stoves cheap on Ebay or buy a Trangia.

Anyone else using or making these?

You might like the Catstove (Alcohol) been using mine for 4 years

#210 User is offline   oldsoldier 

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 08:27 AM

I have gone through many, many stoves in my hiking career. Canister, alcohol, multifuel-I still own like 6, and am ALWAYS tempted to buy more. This past summer, I picked up an Emberlit wood stove, from the manufacturer, and, well, I have found the PERFECT stove for me. Living in New England, I have no problems finding a fuel source. It may not work so well in other parts of the world, but, for me, where I hike, its perfect. The design is dead simple: there are 5 pieces. Assemble the 4 walls, and the floor, and start a fire inside it. Done. I was a little apprehensive about using this after a rain (or even during one), but I went out immediately after a rain storm this summer, and had no issues finding fuel to boil water. I have the SS version, which weighs in at around 11 ounces; there is also a titanium one too, that weighs less. The pros of a wood burning stove, for me, anyway, are that you will not run out of fuel-boil times are now irrelevant. There is literally nothing to break, or fiddle with. If you can start a fire, you can use this stove.
Some of my initial concerns, other than the wetness of fuel, was, initially, possible heat transference from the bottom of the stove, to the ground-and possible secondary ignition due to that. However, with over 40 burns on this so far, I havent had that happen. The bottom plate is about an inch or so off the ground-the ground gets warm, but not hot. You can touch the ground under the stove, and it doesnt burn your fingers. It does require some initial prep, gathering fuel, but this is done in less than 5 minutes. And, it doesnt require a lot-some tinder, then, pencil sized sticks, up to thumb sized. You can pretty much feed any size piece of wood through the feeding port, and it will burn.
I have become a convert. I know its not for everyone, but, it certainly fits my style. I dispose of the ashes (surprisingly little, as the fire tends to consume just about everything), by digging a small hole with my heel, putting them in, and pouring water on them. Done. No canisters to pack out, no empty fuel bottles to carry. If you are looking for an alternative to the classic, give one of the wood burning stoves a try!

#211 User is offline   Switchblade61 

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 06:01 PM

I'm gonna throw these stoves here.

Home made wood-burning (coffee-can)stove.

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Tin can, cardboard, wax.

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German (East) Juwell (It's more than 30 years old and still going strong...)

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#212 User is offline   Just1MoreBlackRifle 

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Posted 08 June 2014 - 01:14 PM

 Touchstone, on 05 July 2012 - 04:48 AM, said:

 cerberus1, on 28 June 2012 - 06:21 PM, said:

So far I'm not impressed with the biolite, certainly not for backpacking.
At two pounds, I'd be better off with a canister stove and a flexible power panel to power a phone.
Having to feed this thing constantly (like a storm kettle) means time spent doing other chores is out and could ba a real pain-in-the-can in wet/cold conditions.
Just out, I'd have to see real tests on how this holds up over time before considering it.


I think the poundage will be kind of a wash. Our Jetboil with fuel canisters is equivalent in weight. Adding on our solar charger probably puts it over the top in comparisons. The new titanium Jetboil would halve the stove weight, but not the fuel. Our solar charger does an adequate job, but it's similar in charging capabilities as the Biolite in terms of time.

I like the fact that I don't have to worry about rationing fuel, or think about how many canisters I'll need to carry for a given trip.


I agree.

I went the Jetboil w/fuel and charger route for a long time.

Once I got my Biolite I never looked back. At or less weight. Normally less. Less ruck clutter and I have fuel for as far as the eye can see. Here in the Pacific Northwest it isn't always nice and sunny either. Never been short on biomass to burn.

Could it be improved? Sure. When they do, I'll buy it. It does what they say it does and that works fine for me.

#213 User is offline   Connfederate 

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 04:06 PM

I LOVE my MSR Whisperlite, it is bullet proof! And for over 20 years has been my go-to stove on early/late shoulder-season, and all the winter trips.

And then I discovered DIY alcohol stoves. It can be ruinous...

I've been real pleased with a DIY alc'y stove, Troop 73 Unican Stove Project: https://www.youtube....h?v=KzGJzUxnwCM
I keep my cook set (see below) permanently ensconced in my Jeep. :-D I have a Cat can stove, too (dead-nuts simple) but the Unican works better, especially in colder weather. I've used mine into the teens.

My alc'y kitchen: http://whiteblaze.ne...imageuser=20488
That little beauty in the foreground is my Unican, DIY from a Schaefer can.

It all packs into the grease pot, except the fuel (HEET): http://whiteblaze.ne...imageuser=20488

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