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Thread: What stove do canoeists favour?

  1. #1

    Default What stove do canoeists favour?

    Well, not just canoeists, but car campers - basically anyone who doesnt have to hump the thing on their back.

    Reason I ask, I acquired a new stove recently and although it weighs about half a ton, I doubt there can be anything better for canoe camping..

    Not being produced anymore, the optimus hiker 111c. Fantastic stove, huge, hneavy, super stable, built like a tank, hot as hell, burns forever, multifuel (including alcohol) and you can use it as a wheel stop for your landrover when you're not cooking on it.

  2. #2
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    This should be interesting.

    I tend to cook on a fire when I can. When I can't I use a trangia and clickstand. There are hotter, more stable stoves but the trangia is reliable and feels more bushcrafty.

    My concession to not having to carry the kit on my back is that I bring a Kelly Kettle. Although it is light it is huge and only really practical for canoe or car camping.
    John

  3. #3

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    I understand the open fire thing, given the chance that has to be the best solution, best looking, most effective, hottest, most comforting etc. But I'm not getting the trangia. Yeah, it's a great stove for backpacking, because of it's reliability and weight saving, but surely there is an element of luxury available to the car-camper/canoeist that only backpackers can dream about?

    Here's a couple of pictures of my new acquistion, a promo shot and the burner running in anger...





    Fantastic. The closed box measures about 7" square by about 4" deep and weighs a whopping 4 pounds. Most of it is in the steel box, but this is one solid stove. I just boiled 2 litres of water on it, using a 5.25 litre jamie oliver cooking pot, it boiled fast and was rock solid. I would have no worries at all about using such a huge cookpot in earnest. This thing is a basecamp/family/group cooker, no problems.

  4. #4

    Thumbs up

    That's a mighty piece of gear! I used to use an Optimus 99 which is the smallest stove in that range, fitted into an alloy case with a pan/cover (which makes everything taste of petrol if you use it ).
    I finally retired it after 20 years use, because I cannot stand the smell of unburnt unleaded petrol, when I'm out and about, and the "Afterburner" roar was beginning to annoy me first thing in the morning.
    Replaced it with a nice quiet, clean, gas/meths Trangia, plus I cart along a 4.5 billie can and a Grill mesh/skewers for open fires.

  5. #5
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    good old fashioned trangia, or a fire, or the kelly kettle which has yet to be used.
    Obscured by Clouds

    Clipper Prospector 16

    http://lostcoast.blogspot.com

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    I like the Swedish army surplus trangia - available new and unissued for around a tenner including fuel bottle. The beauty of this stove is that it works great with meths but also lends itself well to cooking over an open fire - the 'frying pan' has rings to accept an improvised stick handle and the pot has a bail arm and hook to hang over the fire. It is compact but not light - about 1kg all in.

    I was looking at reviews in Trail Walker or some such and they rated one gas stove higher as it boiled a litre of water in 3 minutes 40 sec, as compared to another one that took 4 minutes. I can't help feeling that worrying about such trivia is not my idea of being outdoors.

    I like the old optimus/primus stoves too. I vaguely remember being tempted by a USSR surplus copy of the petrol optimus, but decided I would like to keep my eyebrows.

  7. #7
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    Standard trangia for me, had it well over 15 yrs and the only thing thats ever gone wrong is the burner jets clogged, quick podger with a safety pin and back in buisness. Some folk say its dangerous refilling them while cooking, i find if you can pick the burner up you can refill it, plus as long as you're not on a groundsheet you can avoid refilling by overfilling the burner.

  8. #8
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    No stove at all! Just one more thing to weigh me down on portages.

    I do have a few, maybe three, in case of burning bans, but the only one I can think of the name of is a Svea. I guess one of the others might be some kind of Coleman.

    I hate them.

    PG

  9. #9
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    I'm amazed people favour Trangias. I used Trangias for many years but in the end I just got fed up with meths getting everywhere (contaminating everything), the pots going black, having to refill the thing in the middle of cooking, and the lack of controllability. It just drove me nuts in the end

    I think with Trangias you either love em or hate em. If you love em - best of luck to you! Its personal choice afterall.

    After the Trangia I tried a petrol stove but this scared the living daylights out of me - flaring up all over the place . I could only get it working properly after a lot of messing about.

    So the solution I now use is any kind of gas stove. Very easy to setup, very controllable, and you can take a bigger one for car / canoe camping or a tiny one for mountain marathons / lightweight hikes. There's no mess and it starts up quickly and easily.

    For me - it has to be gas every time now.

    As regards open fires - I love them too but there's not much scope to use them in the SW. I have had fires on the Brecon Beacons, Exmoor, Dartmoor (on the banks of Burrator Res. - cooking freshly caught trout in wrapped-up newspaper - ), etc, but its not something I rely on - more something I use if the chosen campsite is suitable and the weather conditions are ok.

    I have had a fire on the banks of the Wye a few years back. The Farmer was happy for fires to be used on his site. When I do some more paddling in years to come I'd like to have more open fire cooking on the shorelines etc, where there will be minimal environmental impact and hopefully nobody objecting.

  10. #10
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    MSR multifuel stove for serious winter work, otherwise gas....fast and easy. When I want coffee I want coffee. I don't want to have to wander about looking for dry wood and building a fire. That's for boy scouts!
    If it wasn't for the rain in our lives there would be no rivers. X 2

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    Default Stoves

    Ever since we discovered cheap meths from France we have become Trangia converts. I like the fact they are quiet, work well in windy conditions and are very stable.I know they are slow but the heat output is also constant, unlike pressure stoves which need pumping or with canister stoves where you need to clasp the canister to warm it up. One of the reasons that we stopped using the gas canister stoves was the waste. Because of the poor performance at the canister emptied we always ended up using a new cylinder and were left with a can with just a small amount of gas in it. Technicaly this is a hazardous waste and should not be put in an ordinary bin. Even if you discharge it to the air there is always some flammable gas left inside.The parks authorities in Canada are having to spend a fortune properly disposing of all the empty cylinders left at the campsites each year.
    We do of course cook on open fires a lot and use my Nomad & Yukon fireboxes ( www.canoepaddler.me.uk/fireboxes.htm ) a lot, either with wood gathered along the way or with charcoal from our local Wildlife Trust woodland. Although slow the fire is our favourite as this lets us use the Dutch Oven for baking. And although we have worked out how to do chocolate cake on the Trangia it's never quite the same.

    Chris
    "All right" said Eeyore "We're going. Only don't blame me"

    www.canoepaddler.me.uk

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    You can get hot food in pubs you know.

    failing that I have a mini fire spout. I also have a small gas stove but I've never had to use it yet.

    I don't get the oportunity to camp as my partner is alergic to everything outside, trees, horses, grass dogs etc etc. On a good year I may get out five or six times in the summer.
    Rogue

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    Default What stove do canoeists favour?

    Hi,

    Trangias are great, throw away the meths burner and fit the MSR whispertlite or XGK inside!!

    The gas conversion for the trangia is very good and rids the meths smell. I use the small amounts of gas in the tins whilst at home, for jobs like melting rope, tape, warming materials like lundhags cream etc. Or use on a gas light and leave it burning till it has gone at the end of a trip. Use common sense for amounts left, you get the feel.

    Kelly kettle on most multi-day trips if volume is not an issue. Still use this if we can use a fire as well.

    MSR Pocket Rocket if travelling fast and light. By fast and light, means a 35lt dry rucsac which contains food, spare clothing, shelter, sleeping bag, 1st aid etc, no probs with portages with this kit.

    PB

  14. #14
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    A lot of you seem put off by the smell of the meths and the sooting of the pots You can easily get a free license to buy Industrial Methylated Spirits or denatured alcohol as it is also called.

    See this thread

    http://www.bushcraftuk.com/community/showthread.php?t=7215

    I use this in my trangia all the time
    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Booker
    Hi,

    The gas conversion for the trangia is very good and rids the meths smell. I use the small amounts of gas in the tins whilst at home, for jobs like melting rope, tape, warming materials like lundhags cream etc. Or use on a gas light and leave it burning till it has gone at the end of a trip. Use common sense for amounts left, you get the feel.

    PB
    I use my almost empty gas in the kitchen for the wok. We have an electic hob and the wok doesn't work too well on it.

    I found the gas conversion for the Trangia to be very slow. I used it for a couple of years then gave it away.
    If it wasn't for the rain in our lives there would be no rivers. X 2

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    I have an MSR dragonfly. scary to light if you dont get it just right but very controlable from simmer to Mach 7 or at least it sounds like it could do mach 7.
    One word of warning about pressurised fuel and big pans, you should be carefull not postion cooking pots over the pressure tank. It can cause them to heatup with disasterous results.

  17. #17
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    Fire.

    That's it, either fire in a little pit on the shoreline, or fire in the kelly kettle. Mind you I eat quite differently to a lot of people, so hot food/drink is kinda not too big a deal either way for me ...

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    Default Canoeists Stoves

    Hi,
    I made up a packflat environmental fireplace like the one Bill Mason used in Song of the Paddle. It's great for cooking, sitting round and keeping the midge at bay. It has a double base and doesn't destroy the ground around it. It can even act as a BBQ. It comes to pieces and can be carried in the bottom of the canoe in a stuff bag. Thoroughly recommend it.
    Woodlander

    Life should be a journey from curiosity to understanding.

  19. #19

    Talking

    It is possible to reduce the amount of pot black produced by Trangia burners, by adding up to 10% Water to your Meths.
    Sounds Dodgy, but it does work and I have not found that there is any reduction in heat output.

  20. #20
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    Default Unashamed Plug!

    Have made an adaptor for the small Nomad firebox to use the Trangia burner. Raises it up about an inch to put it closer to the pot on top. Although the burner is protected from the wind the pot still gets the full blast so i'm thinking of making a device to hold a small pot or mug down between the walls of the firebox



    I have made the stand just large enough so that when turned round the burner fits inside.

    As for blackened pans, I learnt long ago not to worry. They heat up faster than shiny ones so use less fuel. There are some interesting pages on the web with programs that show that in the long run canister stoves are more efficient though I suspect they don't take into account how long it takes water to boil when your canister is nearly empty! I have taken to making my own burners for backpacking from coke cans. They actuallly work better than Trangias but without full surround windshield they are not so good in strong winds.
    "All right" said Eeyore "We're going. Only don't blame me"

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    I love me primus omnifuel as it will do gas as well as liquid fuels. Given time and opportunity I will build a fire.
    That's for boy scouts!
    BTW most of my scouts are girls!

  22. #22
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    Default stoves

    Acquired a Coleman double burner multifuel last year for 5 at a car boot sale - big and solid but wow! is it hot. Currently burning petrol / diesel mix of which I have lots - no doubt you can guess how, which burns really well - this is the first camping stove I have owned in 30 years which actually will fry chicken, bacon etc, properly and which is impossible to knock over. I like the way that it can be left pressurised and just lit with a match - have used (and still got) many Primuses but have got fed up with all the mess when lighting.

    Needs at least a 15' canoe to carry it!

    If not that then it is a Trangia - only time they have let me down was in the Alps when walking across the Vallee Blanche and it wouldn't light - something to do with the altitude I think, not likely to be a consideration with open canoeing.

  23. #23
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    Default canoe stoves....

    Hey folks we all have our fav's huh?

    Well I used the swedish army trianga type stove for 18 months and I mean every single day (don't ask it's a long story...) as my sole cooker. It was great in all weathers except when you needed an extra pot or two for different components of a meal...

    Eventually I cautiously bought an MSR whisperlite and use only coleman fuel with it. Hey folks here is a great big big WOW now! It is amazing, no worries once you get by the beginners phase of lighting it.

    Good luck whatever you choose, but if it's fire... please think about the footprint that you always leave...even on a loch shore.

    Woodsmoke

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    Default I want one of those!!!!

    Just where did Martyn buy that big black beast from,I'm using a coleman alpine at present but I always return back to my swiss army trangia for that real fire effect

  25. #25
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    Default What stove do canoeists favour?

    Hi,

    Martyn's stove I believe is either an Optimus 111 multifuel stove or copy there of. It's quite an old design,it was used by many expeditions in thew 60's and 70's. Most folks now opt for an MSR stove being lighter, more efficient and more compact but probably about the same price new.

    PB

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