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Camping Equipment and all Clothing Tents, sleeping bags, stoves etc. Riding clothing, boots, helmets, what to wear when not riding, etc.
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  #46  
Old 3 Mar 2009
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 155
Wood/alcohol/gasoline/kerosene/gas

The arguments for some of these stoves seem flawed. Surley it's the fuel that counts?
  • The tiny woodburners sound "green" but they're not really. Don't weigh much, but then who's counting ounces? They are also a fire risk and dirty your pots. Work in the rain?
  • Alcohol gives only half the heat of gasoline or kero (so you need lots) and availability can be poor. Wind kills it's puny heat. Spill it in your pack though and just let it evaporate. Safe for 10 year old Boy Scouts.
  • Gasoline is available anywhere in the world and you have plenty to spare on the bike. It's also HOT. Only diesel available? No problem.
  • Ditto kero for availability but not nice if you spill it on clothing. Also HOT.
  • Gas is very quick and clean but availability again questionable in some countries. Have you noticed the baffling array of different gas containers? It's HOT though, even at altitude.
A stove must be quick to put up and light, utterly reliable, have good fuel availability, be field strippable and most of all, produce lots and lots of HEAT.
My MSR is very good but requires assembly, my previous stove was a Coleman which was excellent but eventually choked on leaded fuel (which I couldn't fix at the time). The one before that was an ex US Army gasoline stove which was also excellent (stolen). The one before that was a SVEA which was excellent because it came in a tin box but leaked at the knob gland, and the one before that was a tiny metho stove used for picnics. We usually prefered to build a fire because the metho one took too long.

It's all about HEAT, stupid, and do you REALLY care about fossil fuels when you're starving and cold?

(I apologise for those who took offence at my remark "stupid". I would never besmirch all those Hubbers who contribute (and read) all these posts. It was a play on President Clintons desk sign which said "it's the economy, stupid". It was perhaps so subtle, nobody got it. Sorry. I have left the original post in to explain my contrition. Thanks to bert 333 for pointing this out. If you do a Google search on the phrase, it's in Wikipedia)
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Last edited by Tim Wood; 4 Mar 2009 at 13:44. Reason: readers rightly taking offence at "stupid"
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  #47  
Old 3 Mar 2009
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Vancouver, BC - now at large in the world
Posts: 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Wood View Post
The arguments for some of these stoves seem flawed. Surley it's the fuel that counts?
  • The tiny woodburners sound "green" but they're not really. Don't weigh much, but then who's counting ounces? They are also a fire risk and dirty your pots. Work in the rain?
  • Alcohol gives only half the heat of gasoline or kero (so you need lots) and availability can be poor. Wind kills it's puny heat. Spill it in your pack though and just let it evaporate. Safe for 10 year old Boy Scouts.
  • Gasoline is available anywhere in the world and you have plenty to spare on the bike. It's also HOT. Only diesel available? No problem.
  • Ditto kero for availability but not nice if you spill it on clothing. Also HOT.
  • Gas is very quick and clean but availability again questionable in some countries. Have you noticed the baffling array of different gas containers? It's HOT though, even at altitude.
A stove must be quick to put up and light, utterly reliable, have good fuel availability, be field strippable and most of all, produce lots and lots of HEAT.
My MSR is very good but requires assembly, my previous stove was a Coleman which was excellent but eventually choked on unleaded fuel (which I couldn't fix at the time). The one before that was an ex US Army gasoline stove which was also excellent (stolen). The one before that was a SVEA which was excellent because it came in a tin box but leaked at the knob gland, and the one before that was a tiny metho stove used for picnics. We usually prefered to build a fire because the metho one took too long.

It's all about HEAT, stupid, and do you REALLY care about fossil fuels when you're starving and cold?
Great points. The wood stoves are a bad idea anyways. If there is wood, you should not be burning it (Nepal, Death Valley,...) and gasoline fuel is available everyhwere, even along the 800 kms between Quetta and the Iranian border. No wood though.

Your MSR needs assembly? Get an MSR Whisperlite. I did, 15 years ago, and it's still the only stove I ever had.

Stoves are like water filters... there are loads of choices, little pills etc., but the only thing that really does the trick is a Katadydn with a ceramic filter, field stripable, good for 50K liters and gives you instant water (pump). Small too. But yes, $400 and change. Not cheap.
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  #48  
Old 21 Jun 2009
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I've used the 'wood-gas" stoves, propane, and have a Coleman. Propane is clean and my favorite for ease of use. The Coleman liquid fuel is next best, leaving some soot but an even heat source.

The problem with the wood burning ones is that they require constant attention, leave you very dirty from ash, and you burn through wood pretty fast and have to constantly add wood if you're cooking for more than a few minutes. The temperature is not steady either.
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