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#123881 - 02/14/08 08:59 PM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: JerryFountain]
BobS Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/08/08
Posts: 924
Loc: Toledo Ohio
Originally Posted By: JerryFountain
SwampDonkey,

Not to disagree with the group here, but I was glad (20 years ago) to dump my Svea 123. Without the mini pump, it is a pain to use at altitude or in the cold, even with the pump it could be better. It is not particularly fast, but for some that is not important. I never used auto gas (the stove was clearly marked not to use it), but even then it required cleaning. The prick (before shaker cleaning) was easy to break or loose. The one piece design is too tall and hard to stabilize in rough terrain or on an ensolite pad in the snow (I finally made a plywood base). If you like this type of stove, I think the Optimus 8R was a much better design (again, get the pump), but I shifted to an MSR XGK and never looked back.

The two piece design works very well, keeps the center of gravity low and, with the original ridgid fuel tube, made a very broad base. The newer ones use a flex tube, but include feet for stability. I have not had a problem with the plastic parts even though I am a klutz :-( and carry lots of hard stuff in my bag. They are also the easiest stove I have seen to repair in the field. The designer actually used them in the field! Parts are available in most of the world (try finding Coleman parts in Katmandu).

I recently replaced my original with the new EX model and it is even better. I have not used auto gas in either one, but the old one ran mostly on aviation gasoline. In both cases, in the old days, the biggest safety hazard was the lead in the gas. Clogging is not hard to deal with. If you want to simmer with this type of stove, get the Dragonfly or Simmerlite (I think the Dragonfly has a larger range of fuels). It is a bit of a problem with the XGK, but it is the best water boiler of the bunch.

Respectfully,

Jerry



Iíve had just the opposite experience. I run gasoline in my Svea, it has a cleaning needle built into it. Open the valve all the way and it pokes up through the orifice and cleans it out. I have done this while the stove was running and at not had to even turn the stove off to clean it.

Several years ago I had an MSR Whisperlite and it clogged up all the time. I had to have a repair kit with me and take it apart in the field to get it up & running again. I will never buy another MSR stove, taking it apart twice in a week long campout made that decision for me. Why does MSR sell so many field repair kits for each stove and also a yearly rebuild kit for each of their stoves? Answer, they need it. I have read a lot of reviews on MSR stoves, and almost all people love them, but then they say to make sure you buy the repair kit. Reading between the lines it tells me I was not the only one that has clogging problems. Even your post says they are easy to field strip, this kinda says you have had to take it apart to clean it while out camping. I have no idea how to take my Svea apart, I donít think I will ever need to as it fires up all the time every time.


The Svea does need to be put on a level surface, but donít they all? I have never knocked over any stove while cooking. I think the Svea is 4700 BTUs output and newer stoves can be as high as 9000 BTUs. This is not a big deal to me as it seems to cook more then fast enough. It will boil a quart of water in 5-min. As far as getting it to lite up, I squire some Denatured alcohol into the cup and all over the generator and light it and let it almost burn out, then light the stove. It works great. I donít have the pump for it, I never felt I needed it. I donít do much winter camping now, but in the Boy Scouts we did several weekends a year. And it always worked well for us in the winter.

I donít have a R8 stove, but sooner or later I would like to get one just to play with, I have read that the R8 is not as hot as the 123. But thatís not a big issue, who cares if a quart of water takes 5-min or 5 Ĺ min?


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#123882 - 02/14/08 09:00 PM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: JerryFountain]
Lono Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 10/19/06
Posts: 1013
Loc: Pacific NW, USA
I'm very happy with an older version of the Primus multi-fuel stove, newer version on sale at backcountry.com for $55 now, http://www.backcountry.com/store/SUN0115/Primus-Multifuel-Stove.html. All metal no plastic pumps etc, great steady flame, fast boil, I assert it even simmers reasonably well. Very reliable, easy field maintenance (as in none, if you perform routine cleaning when off the trail). The Primus MF has never failed to catch a light easily and without flooding. One day when I was convinced I had lost the Primus MF I bought the Primus OmniFuel, which has a crazy quirk of flooding out lots of gas (over the stove, cook area, surroundings etc) before catching fire in order to prime the setup. Lots on interest from fellow campers, mostly harmless, but the OmniFuel mostly collects dust while the MF cooks). I've run gas and kerosene through it, but for me its easiest to just keep a bottle of white gas handy and draw from a gallon can.

I have fond memories of a very old Svea 123, including one where the stove blew 20 feet in the air while starting. Can't recall specifically what that was from, but they have to have addressed that by now.

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#123883 - 02/14/08 09:13 PM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: JerryFountain]
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
Gotta agree with you, I loved my old style XGK...
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#123888 - 02/14/08 10:56 PM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: OldBaldGuy]
Hacksaw
Unregistered


The more I read about these stoves the more I want one...and the more I keep thinking that between my Optimus Crux and Vargo Ti alcohol stove, I have everything I need. It's hard to argue with the dependability of those two.

I was concerned this winter about the Crux in the cold but it just hasn't been an issue despite some inhospitable weather. I read on the web that a French team climbed the alps with the Crux and loved it despite the altitude and the cold...too bad their site is all french or I'd read all about it.

The thing I'm learning from all of this aggregate experience is that each stove has it's pros and cons...you just have to decide on the stove that's going to work best for how you need a stove to work.

I almost bid on one of those 8r stoves on eBay today...but I'm glad I didn't...I have what I don't need is a 3rd, 4th or 5th stove...More for Blast to collect I guess wink

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#123901 - 02/15/08 04:11 AM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: ]
BobS Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/08/08
Posts: 924
Loc: Toledo Ohio
Originally Posted By: Hacksaw
The more I read about these stoves the more I want one...and the more I keep thinking that between my Optimus Crux and Vargo Ti alcohol stove, I have everything I need. It's hard to argue with the dependability of those two.

I was concerned this winter about the Crux in the cold but it just hasn't been an issue despite some inhospitable weather. I read on the web that a French team climbed the alps with the Crux and loved it despite the altitude and the cold...too bad their site is all french or I'd read all about it.

The thing I'm learning from all of this aggregate experience is that each stove has it's pros and cons...you just have to decide on the stove that's going to work best for how you need a stove to work.

I almost bid on one of those 8r stoves on eBay today...but I'm glad I didn't...I have what I don't need is a 3rd, 4th or 5th stove...More for Blast to collect I guess wink



Only five stoves, you need more then that. At least one dozen!


Iím a stoveaholic.
_________________________



You can run, but you'll only die tired.


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#124892 - 02/22/08 10:38 PM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: ]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By: Hacksaw
The more I read about these stoves the more I want one...and the more I keep thinking that between my Optimus Crux and Vargo Ti alcohol stove, I have everything I need. It's hard to argue with the dependability of those two.

Interesting. I bought a Crux this past summer and have had a good experience with it.

I've thought about buying a Vargo Ti alcohol stove. I'm wondering if you could share some more about your experience with it? I was thinking I could use it in lower altitude in mild to hot weather conditions. Potentially a nice weight savings since one doesn't have to carry the steel canisters. Sounds like you're really satisfied, yes?

For winter or high altitude, I pretty much still use my MSR Whisper light. I bought the thing in the late 80's, and it's still going strong. I've never had it jam on me, thank God. I do typically carry a repair kit, but I still haven't opened the repair kit. The "O" rings, the leather cup, etc. do need to be replaced every 5? years. I last did major maintenance on my Whisperlite in 2001, and it's running fine. I did replace the "O" ring on the fuel tank in 2006. I guess I'm just lucky that I've not had jams. Mine is the older version, the kind before they came out with the shaker jet. I'd better buy a new repair kit and always make sure I bring a jet cleaner.
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#124902 - 02/23/08 12:01 AM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: Hikin_Jim]
Hacksaw
Unregistered


I've been very satisfied with the Vargo. When I first picked it up it was because it was on sale and I wanted to try it out...maybe keep it around as a backup because it's so light. Now it's my primary stove except for where I'm cooking for a group or need to melt snow.

I find it easy to light (though not always easy to fill...butterfingers!) and as long as it's shielded from the wind a bit, it's extremely dependable. It might not always be able to bring 2 cups of water to a mega boil (like in winter) but it gets the water hot enough for what I need it for....prepping meals or a hot drink.

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#124911 - 02/23/08 01:20 AM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: ]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By: Hacksaw

I find it easy to light (though not always easy to fill...butterfingers!) and as long as it's shielded from the wind a bit, it's extremely dependable. It might not always be able to bring 2 cups of water to a mega boil (like in winter) but it gets the water hot enough for what I need it for....prepping meals or a hot drink.


First Question: So do you bring a wind screen or do you use rocks or dig a hole? What's worked for you to provide shelter from the wind? I too would be concerned that it would blow out easily.

Second Question: Do you find it can make water hot enough for freeze dried food? Instant Oatmeal? Those foods say that you should have boiling water. Also, in mild weather, can you boil water for purification purposes?
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#124915 - 02/23/08 01:45 AM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: Hikin_Jim]
Hacksaw
Unregistered


1: I use the stove part of my Crusader canteen set. if wind is really bad I'll bust out the HD aluminum foil I carry.

2: In mild weather it will boil water no problem with fuel left to spare. It's perfect for freeze dried food and instant oatmeal...those two things are the primary food I carry if I'm going on a hike. The crusader canteen holds 2 cups of water, perfect for a 2 serving bag of freeze dried goodness.

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#124921 - 02/23/08 02:38 AM Re: Advice on Dual or Multi - Fuel Portable Stove [Re: ]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
OK, so the Vargo is small enough that it fits into a Crusader stove , which acts as a wind break? I'm surprised that the Crusader stove is big enough or am I misundertstanding?

Good to know about the boiling thing. Cool. I may pick one of these Vargo stoves up.

Is it the Vargo Triad you've got?

The Triad XE?
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