Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB

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-   -   Do people use cookers, or are they a waste of space? (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/camping-equipment-and-all-clothing/do-people-use-cookers-they-23227)

chunkylover 19 Sep 2006 15:13

Do people use cookers, or are they a waste of space?
Just wondering if people tend to travel with a cooker at all? I know in some countries food is so cheap and available it's not worth it. I'm currently planning a trip around Europe, which considering i'm Australian, isn't cheap:(

I intend to organise my own food (supermarkets) to keep the costs down. From my limited experience, it seems if you want something hot, there is probably BBQ/fire/kitchen available at campsites anyway. From what i've read on the HUBB, people often regret having taken cookers, because they haven't used them.

Any thoughts? Oh, if you do use them, any recommendations on good ones (good value, light/small, run on fuel).


dkmoose 19 Sep 2006 15:26

Always useful to boil some water for tea/coffee - depends on how much you need your hot caffeine fix.

I would recommend a Coleman stove - they don't tend to block and do not need priming (2 facts are probably related, as priming produces soot which tends to block the feeder pipe).

Stretcher Monkey 19 Sep 2006 16:33

Only for caffeine!!
Getting a good cup of coffee on the road is well nigh impossible, even where they grow the bloody stuff! Getting me started in the morning is always more difficult than getting the bike started. I carry my Whisperlite Internationale omnifuel stove, which means as long as there's juice in the bike, there's fuel for the stove, and coffee for me, je je!!

Matt Cartney 19 Sep 2006 16:53

Yeah, a stove is a good thing. A lot of campsites have no cooking facilities and eating out all the time, even at Maccas, is going to add up. I have the widely used Coleman Sportster (533?) and think it's great, no frills reliability at a good price. In the UK you can get them for £30 if you shop around. Runs fine on unleaded. There is also a lighter weight version I haven't tried.
MSR do really good quality stainless steel pans.

Luuk 19 Sep 2006 17:02


Originally Posted by chunkylover
it seems if you want something hot, there is probably BBQ/fire/kitchen available at campsites anyway. From what i've read on the HUBB, people often regret having taken cookers, because they haven't used them.

sorry mate europe is'nt australia, no communal barbys at our campsites or kitchens for that matter. take a cooker, realy worth it, also nice for some soup and thee at lunch. cooking your own food is not only cheaper but often better, i tend to eat a lot after a day on the bike and the standard eating out portion is'n enough than. i use a MSR wisperlite but there are manny good brands, or bring one from oz.

BCK_973 19 Sep 2006 19:34

Yes,a must have!
I had diferent cookers and the one i like the most is the Trangia.Made in Sweden very simple and reliable.It works with burning alcohol.Gas(petrol) cookers tend to burn black all your stuff and poluting all your meal(hahahaha)
It has a wind protector, a little pan and a pot.And yes its not a big deal to carrie an extra container with alcohol.
Good luck in europe!

oldbmw 19 Sep 2006 21:18

for some years now i have carried a little gaz cooker. I can get the cartridges in both france and UK. do not know where else. be aware there is a great range of non compatibility between gaz stoves. If I were to buy another stove it would probably run on petrol.... because of this. However gaz is not expensive to run...
It is well worth having a stove for your breakfast/evening meals... tinned/bottle ready to eat are good too :)
In UK meals even cup of tea is very expensive.. I have paid £1.89 for tea for two in service station :( In France things are different. lunchtime at many supermarkets you can get a simple well cooked lunch for less than 5 euros. Our local lorry drivers cafe ( relais) does starter ( help yourself ham/shrimp/chesse/pate salads and 100 other things) followed by main course, big plate of meat and veg (choice of 4 meats/fish) then cheeses, and dessert. plus coffee, Oh and it also includes a carafe (1/2 liter) of wine, all for 10E50
They also do an evening meal which I have yet to try , although some of our BnB peeps were very impressed with it. So if you are travelling and see a bunch of lorries parked up near some non descript building and fancy a big meal stop there. always 12 noon to 2pm.. Incidentally that is a good time to negogiate any tricky bit of road in France as all the motorists and lorries are parked for lunch.

ct_miller13 19 Sep 2006 23:14

Camp stoves
I take mine on most trips. It doesn't take up much space, weighs just a few ounces and is a nice convenience to have.

I have two different stoves that I use on a regular basis. Both are MSR stoves. One is a liquid fuel and one a gas fuel. The isobutane is nice as a just in case item. The gas stove and fuel canister weigh less than eight ounces and pack to about five inches by four inches. The adapter for the canister is designed for all types of gas canister's.

The liquid fuel stoves weighs about seven ounces, folds up small. The fuel bottles come in various sizes, from eleven ounces to thirty-three ounces. The liquid fuel stove does take a little longer to assemble, however, after using it a few times, it's nothing. I have used all sorts of liquid fuel for the stove, from petrol to diesel, stoddard solvent to kerosene. I have not used avaiation fuel though. The white gas or colman fuel produce the most effecient flame. While petrol comes in second. Diesel works ok, but do to the impurities in diesel the flame is not very effecient. With the liquid fuel stove there are different jets for different fuels.

As with all stoves, a decent wind block and heat exchanger will make for quicker and more effecient cooking.

Contrary to some of the things people have said about liquid fuel stoves, after about thirteen years of regular use mine has yet to fail me. Regular cleaning and maintenance will provide your stove stays working strong. The type and brand is up to you, of course, if you decide to purchase one. Talk to some people to hear what they have to say, also talk to some people at the local climbing/backcountry shop. Some brands are Primus, Coleman, MSR, Brunton, Radius, Svea and Trangia.

Joe C90 19 Sep 2006 23:50

As i do most of my travels in europe in winter, a good petrol stove in esential!
I bought an old primus thing, which has and endless supply of fuel from the bike and is total reliable due to the fact ther is nowt to go wrong!.
It worked really well for thawing the motor at -25c in the czech hills. I always carry a few sealed military rations, well tasty if you really need them.:eek2:

Caminando 20 Sep 2006 14:26


Many good ideas here... OldBMW 's post is spot on for me, as the little camping gaz is widely available . It's a great idea to cook your own and save dosh....also you get to cook your food in some beautiful places, by rivers, woods etc.

Most important is that morning tea/coffee which the gaz does well. Its a really handy little stove-very hassle free. I've used them for years and find them great.

Good roads!

oldbmw 20 Sep 2006 21:07

Oh! I forgot to mention, a windsheild can halve cooking time.

DAVSATO 29 Sep 2006 16:20

gaz stoves
the screw on self sealing type are pretty universal all over europe, the other type thats reasonably easy to find is the blue press on bayonet ones but once theyre on the stove they cant be undone without dumping all the gas.

there seem to be different fillings available too, propane/butane, butane/air, etc. i have no idea what is best but i always go for the one that has the biggest temperature written on the can!!

i have no experience with petrol stoves at all but if they are clean running and work well then fuel is never going to be a problem is it?

oldbmw 29 Sep 2006 20:23

mine uses the 270 470 cartridge sthat are a mixture of butane and propane. These will run in colder conditions than pure butane... Although I would not intentionally be out in that cold a weather :)

Ken & Carol 27 Oct 2006 22:45

Which Stove???
This could take a while....Our experiiences are as follows...

Gaz stoves work well providing you can get the cylinders...I wished they could be refilled somehow. Clean and efficient... Started our RTW in 1997 in California with Gaz and had great difficulty in finding cartridges. Found them in San Luis Obispo at US$5.00 each. Whew!!! This was not good as the same item in Aus. was A$2.50. Things may have changed by now.

Decided after speaking to and observing many travellers on the road (in USA) on a Coleman Dual Fuel...an elcheapo from Walmart US$40.00. Contacted Coleman concerning the total use of petrol/gasoline and they advised that the generator would carbon up after three months and to take a spare. Further research with travellers said that the simple thing to do was to soak the removed generator in Coca Cola and voila the shiny pipe returned to normal. We tended to lubricate the wire as well to ensure it moved freely. In Namibia, Africa Peter & Kay Forward gave us another tip on cleaning...Fuel Injection/Carburetor cleaner... A cap full into the stove tank and burn as usual. We noticed glowing carbon embers dancing around in the flames when this was done.The remainder of the cleaner could be put into the tank of the bike.

Feedback from other travellers about stoves..Remote bottle stoves like MSR, Primus and Coleman. Flame control/adjustablity not as good as the Coleman. Can be a little fiddly and messy.. A lot of carbon residue. Cleaning was an issue and cleaning kit recommended. Have had many travellers stay with us and clean their stoves. Takes time and needs to be done.

Trangia...Can be used with mets, petrol, and gas. Prefer the petrol version as no 'other' type of fuel is required. Its all on the bike. Mets and gas can be hard to find in some countries.

Gas is great..providing you can get the cylinders.

Check out the Aus HU Meeting 2005 report. We had a 'stove burnout.. A very popular event.. I tried to remain unbiased and used a Sierra stove..(Check out in Google) but our preference is the Coleman. We carry two spares..a generator and a diaphram for the pumper. Currently using a leather diaphram moistened in oil. It appears after eight years this item will last for ever. BTW we used our stove every day up to 5 times a day for three years. It burnt so cleanly we would cook in rooms and all you could smell was the food.

It all depends where you are travelling. In choosing this type of stove and providing we can get fuel for the bike,we can go anywhere and everwhere. In Libya and Iran we ran it on leaded fuel but cleaned it more frequently. Hope this is of some help.

Catchulata.........Carol & Ken

skip 21 Nov 2006 17:11

My coleman duel fuel Cooker, never leave home with out it.........

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