Forums: Climbing Information: Gear Heads:
backpacking/ alpine stove choices
RSS FeedRSS Feeds for Gear Heads

Premier Sponsor:

 


montafoner


Sep 11, 2004, 6:38 AM
Post #1 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Apr 5, 2004
Posts: 143

backpacking/ alpine stove choices
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I am looking to buy a new stove for backpacking and light alpine use. I am leaning toward fuel bottle vs. canister because there is less excess weight (when empty) and has a lower long-term fuel cost and is more stable. But then again I have this fear that a small fuel spill in my pack would destroy any synthetic material (webbing, rope, tent etc). Please ease my fears.

I know the MSR whisperlite is the standard, but is the simmerlite or international any better? Is it worth the dough to get the XGK Expedition or Dragonfly?

Set me straight and lead me in the right direction.

thanks,
Montafoner


harrisha


Sep 11, 2004, 8:02 AM
Post #2 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Oct 31, 2003
Posts: 314

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

To calm your fears, it is highly improbable that some fuel will spill in your pack. The seal on the bottles is great and you can crank the cap on the rubber o-ring down really tight. Then when your ready to use it use a carabiner or a stick to break the seal. I had a whisper light but abused the return policy at REI to get a Dragonfly once I got back from Philmont. Some bast_rd bent one of the pot supports by attempting to level it by smashing the stove into the ground. The thing no longer locked in place.

I love my Dragonfly. Its heavy and loud at full blast, sounds like a jet engine warming up. It is hot though with the potential to simmer. If you are a backcountry gourmet this is your stove. Its built on a similar platform as the XGK, but has the above cooking benefits.

The XGK is the stove you want if you need a stove that will burn in conditions in which you'd consider poping a flare and waiting for the cavalry to arive.

Canister stove wise I own a Snow Peak Giga Power w/ piezo igniter. I highly recomend the wind screen for it. Deffinently worth the few ounces it weighs. If I were going to get a canister stove now I'd get a Jet Boil System. http://www.mgear.com/pages/product/product.asp/item/103697/level3_id/0/level1_id/0/level2_id/0

If you google "pepsie can stove" you can find my alcohol stove. Its stove but its ultra cheap and light if your goin out for one or two nights after that the fuel gets heavy. Three cheap and light stakes make great pot supports. Efficiency can be boosted with a heat reflector under the stove and a close fitting wind screen. Guarunteed conversation piece if staying in a shelter.


maxter


Sep 11, 2004, 8:11 AM
Post #3 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Nov 1, 2002
Posts: 71

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I used a few different stoves over the years. Reliabilty is the issue. Dismanteling and cleaning sucks when its dark and cold. I now use my 1970's Optimus and Svea. Both boil up faster, have never clogged up and burn hot. No problems other than priming up in real cold conditions.


feanor007


Sep 11, 2004, 8:29 AM
Post #4 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Sep 6, 2004
Posts: 377

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

don't laugh, i'm serious, i love my pocket rocket! it sips fuel and is easy to use. i cooked with it a 14200+ feet, not that is matters, but i've used it from the Gorge, to Colorado. it's light, small, relaible, cheap and hot. three cheers for pocket rockets


rcaret


Sep 11, 2004, 8:44 AM
Post #5 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jul 29, 2002
Posts: 227

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

The Svea from Optimus is a great Backpacking liquid fuel stove , I've had mine for years with no problems although it can be somewhat hard to light in very cold weather and the stove uses heat from the burner to pressurize the fuel tank so you have to keep this in mind when placing the stove on the ground
http://www.rockclimbing.com/gear/product.php?p=591

I have The Snow Peak gas stove too and it is very light and works great .

http://www.2trails.com/...akwhitegasstove.html

I have had some fuel spills in my pack , My fault for buying Cheap fuel bottles , Spend the extra money and double check the bottle cap before you pack the fuel in your pack .


carld


Sep 11, 2004, 8:46 AM
Post #6 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Aug 11, 2004
Posts: 12

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I have the snow peak titanium version to the pocket rocket with the auto-lighter for about 2 years. Itís lightweight, compact and has a better flame than the MSR pocket rocket. I've used it winter camping at 10,000', summers at 12000+, and glacier camping in Washington. The auto-lighter makes it very easy to use, stuck in the tent in the rain or snow. The difficulties are when the canisters are low or its cold they lose pressure. I fixed this by making heat conductors out of 1/2 flattened copper tubing hose clamped to the canister. Last year while making jiffy pop I got butter all over it and it quit working. I fixed it by boiling it in water for about 2 min. If the auto-lighter gets wet it won't work until it dries but you can use a normal lighter, I had to once.


montafoner


Sep 11, 2004, 8:59 AM
Post #7 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Apr 5, 2004
Posts: 143

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Thanks for all the info. Just to keep you guys (and gals) busy, what kind of Optimus liquid bottle fuel stove is best?


az_biner


Sep 12, 2004, 7:35 PM
Post #8 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: May 27, 2004
Posts: 39

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Has anyone used the Jetboil stove?..the one with the neoprene wrapped pot.


galt


Sep 12, 2004, 8:16 PM
Post #9 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jan 3, 2002
Posts: 267

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Stay away from the Jet-boil unless you want boiling water for every meal. Guess I have a bit of a bias (I'm an ultra-light hiker who uses an alchy stove when I can), but the Jet-boil seems pretty gimiky to me. I fired one up in the store I worked in once and true to their word it boiled water in less then 2 min. but I'm super skeched out about the plastic pieces they decided to use (not to mention that pezo ignitor should last you less then a month).
Stick to a pocket rocket or whisperlite.


Partner cliffhanger9
Moderator

Sep 12, 2004, 8:24 PM
Post #10 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Nov 25, 2002
Posts: 2275

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

In reply to:
Has anyone used the Jetboil stove?..the one with the neoprene wrapped pot.

yea read the reviews in the Gear Guide. Also note that it won Backpacker magazine's Editors' Choice award this year so it cant be too bad..

also some good reviews above! be sure to post them to the Gear Guide so they are easier to find!! :mrgreen:


david.yount
Deleted

Sep 12, 2004, 9:19 PM
Post #11 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered:
Posts:

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Northern Lights Alpha Titanium with Piezo Igniter - $50
http://www.bentgate.net/hotrodtitsto.html
or Mountain Safety Research - Pocket Rocket - $40
http://www.bentgate.net/pocrocbymsr.html

3-ounce (86-gram) superlight, both use cannister butane/propane

The Piezo Igniter is _so_ nice to me.

For my backpacking needs I average 0.5-ounce fuel per meal for 2 people. So the standard cannister of 8-ounces works for 16 of my backpacking meals.

For car camping I might use 1.5-ounces per meal (browning fresh chorizo released from the casing, carmelizing minced onion, pan frying fresh fish, pink saute of crushed garlic).

The weight of an empty cannister is 5-ounces, this is lighter than an empty SIGG aluminum or MSR alumnium white gas fuel bottle.

A cannister stove is far far smaller, less bulky, lighter weight, quicker to assemble and ignite, far far more reliable, less fiddly.

Since 1972 I've been using all manner of alcohol and white gas stoves (as well as SFP-solid fuel pellets).... I finally moved to cannister stoves 4 years ago and now I've donated 8 other stoves from my past. The difference in annual cost of fuel used is irrelevant, that is to say, insignificant.

I've owned the Trangia, Svea, stainless steel GI stove, you name it......

David Yount.


greg8941


Sep 14, 2004, 8:25 AM
Post #12 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Aug 2, 2004
Posts: 19

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

http://www.brunton.com/catalog.php?item_id=60&category_id=3&subcategory_id=22&old_item_id=60&old_category_id=3&old_subcategory_id=22

Its kinda expensive but it works great. It packs pretty small and you can controll the output really good. The stove fits inside my mess kit pretty easily.


punk


Sep 14, 2004, 8:34 AM
Post #13 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: May 28, 2002
Posts: 1442

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

In reply to:
http://www.brunton.com/catalog.php?item_id=60&category_id=3&subcategory_id=22&old_item_id=60&old_category_id=3&old_subcategory_id=22

Its kinda expensive but it works great. It packs pretty small and you can controll the output really good. The stove fits inside my mess kit pretty easily.

they made by Primus
you can get the Primus cheaper I have the Yellow stone and the Alpine light and they both Awesome stoves I paid lss then $30 each


scuclimber


Sep 15, 2004, 2:46 AM
Post #14 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jun 30, 2003
Posts: 1007

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I have a Superfly and it works fine. If I was to buy a canister stove again, I would buy the non-Ti Snow Peak Gigapower (the Ti version is $25 and is only .5 OZ. lighter). I work at REI and play with all manner of stoves all day, if that means anything. For a liquid fuel stove, kick out the extra cash and go for the Dragonfly, you won't be sorry. Check out Ezbit too, a bit different.

Colin


aikibujin


Sep 15, 2004, 5:17 AM
Post #15 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Dec 27, 2003
Posts: 408

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

In reply to:
Has anyone used the Jetboil stove?..the one with the neoprene wrapped pot.

Yes, I have. I just came back from a week-long backpacking trip on the Wonderland Trail around Mt. Rainier, using the Jetboil stove exclusively. Prior to purchasing the Jetboil stove, I used a MSR Whisperlite for many years. I've now decided to retire the Whisperlite to car camping trips, and use Jetboil on my future backpacking trips.

Pros:
I really like how the whole unit fits and locks together. The stove can be lifted and moved around when lit. In fact, I often hold it in my hands to warm up a little while boiling water. And it's very easy to use it inside the tent (we did have to do that for two nights), just be very careful because its center of gravity is high, and ventilate your tent well.

It is fuel efficient. Jetboil claims something like 80% efficiency. While I don't know how true their claim is, I do know that one small canister of Snowpeak fuel lasted me six days of cooking dinner at night and making hot drinks in the morning.

Cons:
You can't do any elaborate cooking on this, like baking, frying, shimmering... which to me wasn't a big deal, I can't cook even when I'm at home. My meals were either freeze dried food or noodles with a package of tuna. But to the iron chefs among us, this could be a problem.

Jetboil doesn't work well with a big group. With two people, it's manageable, just boil water or cook for one person at a time. But with group of 3 or 4, it may be faster to have a second stove.

I'm very happy with the Jetboil stove. It may not be the lightest stove, but it is the easiest to use. Sure, you can make an alcohol stove that weighs no more than that 12 oz. can of beer you just drank, but when you wait five minutes shivering in the cold rain just to see one bubble in the water you're trying to boil, you'll come to realize, like I did, that the weight saving is just not worth it.


montafoner


Oct 13, 2004, 8:33 AM
Post #16 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Apr 5, 2004
Posts: 143

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Thanks for your input. I ended up buying the dragonfly. I'm very impressed with the quality. I just wish MSR would finally make a metal pump that could take a beating, unlike the plastic one.


climb14er


Oct 13, 2004, 12:53 PM
Post #17 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jun 25, 2003
Posts: 152

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Canister stoves for three season use:

1) Snow Peak Giga

2) Jetboil

I have the Giga but would get the Jetboil if starting over.

White Gas:

1) XGK !


drake


Oct 13, 2004, 2:35 PM
Post #18 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: May 24, 2004
Posts: 136

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

MSR is working on putting a flexible fuel line on the XGK which should make it more packable.
Alpine routes under 14K, my vote is for the Simmerlight.
Drake


trenchdigger


Oct 13, 2004, 2:55 PM
Post #19 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Mar 8, 2003
Posts: 1447

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

In reply to:
Thanks for your input. I ended up buying the dragonfly. I'm very impressed with the quality. I just wish MSR would finally make a metal pump that could take a beating, unlike the plastic one.

Sweet... based on your requirements, that's what I was going to suggest. It's loud as hell, but simmers (unlike a whisperlite), is solidly built, primes easily, and works great at high altitudes. Have fun with the new toy.

~Adam~


chriss


Oct 14, 2004, 10:22 AM
Post #20 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 92

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

In reply to:
I am leaning toward fuel bottle vs. canister because there is less excess weight (when empty) and has a lower long-term fuel cost and is more stable. But then again I have this fear that a small fuel spill in my pack would destroy any synthetic material (webbing, rope, tent etc).

Set me straight and lead me in the right direction.


1st- There is no more "excess weight" in a canister stove that a refillable bottle stove when empty. Both would have an empty bottle to carry.

2nd- Buying liquid fuel in bulk lowers long term fuel cost (you typically have to by a gallon). However, liquid fuel has a greater chance of going bad if not resealed and stored correctly. Cartridges do not normally suffer this problem.

3rd- Even cartridges leak. There is a rubber seal in the connection point that hardens with cold. Aim the stove away when disconnecting any fuel connection.

I hope you bought a stove that you are comfortable with and not on the recommendation of others.

chris


csproul


Oct 14, 2004, 10:33 AM
Post #21 of 21 (3531 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jun 4, 2004
Posts: 1769

Re: backpacking/ alpine stove choices [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

although not the best for general mountaineering use, I use an alcohol stove from brasslite when not on snow/cold conditions or at high altitude.

pro: 1.4 oz - 2.6 oz(40-70 g) stove, depending on model, and it takes ~2 oz of alcohol to boil a small pot of water...nothing lighter especially when compared to propane or gas stoves. Plus, it's small enough to fit inside a 1 L pot. It is also fairly cheap at ~$40 (brasslite.com)

con: doesn't put out as much heat so not as suitable in my experience for cold or for melting snow, although I know people who use them with some more insulating modifications for use in cold weather. I stick to an MSR when it's cold out.


Forums : Climbing Information : Gear Heads

 


Search for (options)

Log In:

Username:
Password: Remember me:

Go Register
Go Lost Password?



Follow us on Twiter Become a Fan on Facebook