Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 
BCG Holiday Sale

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
BackcountryGear.com
backcountry gear

---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance


Stay Healthy--Eat Well

MARY JANES FARM ORGANIC MEALS

Mary Janes Farm Organic Backcountry Meals

NATURAL HIGH GOURMET MEALS

Natural High

 

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#168197 - 08/03/12 08:54 PM White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels
DieselTwitch Offline
member

Registered: 07/01/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Colorado
So Im looking to find the best fuel/stove combo for backpacking. However they seem pretty much all the same. Right now I use a jet boil. it does ok however it doesn't like to throttle very well.

I've been looking at going back to white fuel or just getting a new type of stove that uses the same fuel cans as my jet boil.

I took a mathematical view of the fuel. I work in the energy field and spend a lot of time dealing with BTUs. My goal was to calculate how much water could a given amount of fuel heat to boiling 200*F (an average between sea level and high altitude) the temperature really doesn't matter so long as its the same in the calculation for both fuels.

I found that Isobutane-Propane contains roughly 21,500 BTU/lb and white fuel contains 19,000 BTU/lb. So being that Im using the 100g Propane bottles I came up with this as my final answer.

1x 100g Isobutane-Propane can (6.9oz total with the container about 2x the weight of the fuel) will heat an estimated 33 gallons of water from 55*F to 200*F

1x 100g of white gas will heat 29 gallons of water from 55*F to 200*F not much less but 11% less than the Isobutate-propane. (if some one could weight a one of the smallest fuel bottles full of fuel that would be awesome!

So with those numbers and relatively small difference. what do you thing is better. the quick click and fairly easy starting of the isobutane-propane or the undeniable reliability of the white gas...?? I really am on the fence. any input would help!

Top
#168199 - 08/03/12 09:16 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: DieselTwitch]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6490
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
White gas stoves plus fuel are a lot heavier. Most people carry them only for winter use, when cold temps make isobutane (not propane, although there's a little in the mix) unreliable.

White gas stoves also have to be pumped. In the 1980's I went on a group backpack and took a MSR Whisperlite (white gas) stove. Everyone else had canister stoves (Bluet was about the only kind available back then). Invariably everyone else was through eating before my water boiled! Needless to say, I switched over, too!


Edited by OregonMouse (08/03/12 09:16 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#168201 - 08/03/12 10:48 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: OregonMouse]
Gershon Offline
member

Registered: 07/08/11
Posts: 1109
Loc: Colorado
A full .325 liter MSR bottle is 378 grams on my scale. This is completely full and not to the Whisperlite full line.

I bought my SVEA 123 stove in 1977 and have used it since. I've never tried another stove for backpacking.

The SVEA 123 does not require pumping. It does need priming which takes some getting used to. It takes about a minute to get it to a full strength flame. If I'm still drinking coffee a minute after everyone else is done, that's fine with me.

The stove weighs 532 grams which includes a 2 cup pot. That and a spoon is my cookset for solo backpacing. I don't like eating out of a freezer bag. I just doesn't stay warm enough for my tastes. It's not a big deal to clean a 2 cup pot.

It's not the lightest solution. However, I think it's the cheapest for a person who goes out a lot. A gallon of white gas costs about $10.00. If I need to, I can use gasoline and it works just fine.

The stove requires very little maintenance. After 35 years, the only thing that needed replaced was a washer in the cap.

White gas is only for the person willing to practice using the stove at home until they learn all the idiosyncracies. I cook breakfast outside a lot at home just because it's fun.

If you want simplicity, the canister stoves are probably better. I keep the SVEA 123R stove because it's the oldest thing I own and it's classy.

Here is a video of me cooking breakfast. It's long, but it may bring back some memories for those that have used this stove.

_________________________
http://48statehike.blogspot.com/

Top
#168202 - 08/03/12 11:44 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: DieselTwitch]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Eight days on a small 4 oz can of iso pro with a canister stove, vs. a three pound white gas stove (before fuel). Unless there's snow to melt, the canister stove wins.

I'll take alcohol on pretty much any trip for the simplicity and the quiet. It's the only thing that beats out a 3 oz snowpeak giga and a small canister for weight. When it comes to just boiling water, that is. If I do any amount of simmering... I take a second alcohol stove for that purpose and a little more fuel.

But, my last trip was 8.5 days, and I did take the SP Giga. I'd report how efficient it was, but my numbers were totally skewed - we found a 16 oz canister of Jetboil fuel in a remote campsite! Since we were going to carry the thing out anyway, we had many hot baths as we went along.... Had we been using something other than a canister stove, it would have been dead weight. grin
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#168214 - 08/04/12 10:18 AM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: Gershon]
DieselTwitch Offline
member

Registered: 07/01/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Colorado
Originally Posted By Gershon
A full .325 liter MSR bottle is 378 grams on my scale. This is completely full and not to the Whisperlite full line.

I bought my SVEA 123 stove in 1977 and have used it since. I've never tried another stove for backpacking.

The SVEA 123 does not require pumping. It does need priming which takes some getting used to. It takes about a minute to get it to a full strength flame. If I'm still drinking coffee a minute after everyone else is done, that's fine with me.

The stove weighs 532 grams which includes a 2 cup pot. That and a spoon is my cookset for solo backpacing. I don't like eating out of a freezer bag. I just doesn't stay warm enough for my tastes. It's not a big deal to clean a 2 cup pot.

It's not the lightest solution. However, I think it's the cheapest for a person who goes out a lot. A gallon of white gas costs about $10.00. If I need to, I can use gasoline and it works just fine.

The stove requires very little maintenance. After 35 years, the only thing that needed replaced was a washer in the cap.

White gas is only for the person willing to practice using the stove at home until they learn all the idiosyncracies. I cook breakfast outside a lot at home just because it's fun.

If you want simplicity, the canister stoves are probably better. I keep the SVEA 123R stove because it's the oldest thing I own and it's classy.

Here is a video of me cooking breakfast. It's long, but it may bring back some memories for those that have used this stove.









Edited by packlite (10/21/13 07:24 PM)

Top
#168215 - 08/04/12 10:24 AM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: lori]
DieselTwitch Offline
member

Registered: 07/01/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Colorado
Originally Posted By lori
Eight days on a small 4 oz can of iso pro with a canister stove, vs. a three pound white gas stove (before fuel). Unless there's snow to melt, the canister stove wins.

I'll take alcohol on pretty much any trip for the simplicity and the quiet. It's the only thing that beats out a 3 oz snowpeak giga and a small canister for weight. When it comes to just boiling water, that is. If I do any amount of simmering... I take a second alcohol stove for that purpose and a little more fuel.

But, my last trip was 8.5 days, and I did take the SP Giga. I'd report how efficient it was, but my numbers were totally skewed - we found a 16 oz canister of Jetboil fuel in a remote campsite! Since we were going to carry the thing out anyway, we had many hot baths as we went along.... Had we been using something other than a canister stove, it would have been dead weight. grin


What 4 oz can are YOU using? mine all weight in between 5.5 and 6.5 oz?

Haha I've found a few of the left behind totally full jet boil cans my self!

Also I managed to "Hop up" my jet boil by putting in a fresh piece of cotton in the primary jet.

Took my stove from this:


To this:

Top
#168216 - 08/04/12 01:36 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: DieselTwitch]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By DieselTwitch

So with those numbers and relatively small difference. what do you thing is better. the quick click and fairly easy starting of the isobutane-propane or the undeniable reliability of the white gas...?? I really am on the fence. any input would help!


Better is all about the context - it depends on what you are doing.

I in fact use both - frequently. I also use an alcohol stove.

My "usual" thing for a weekender will be an alcohol stove.

If I'm going to be out for more than 5 person-days i take a snow peak canister stove

If I am in the winter or shoulder season, I usually take white gas - most often my SVEA 123, sometimes my Borde Bombe, or for deep winter with lots of need to melt snow for water, the MSR whisperlite.

I do prefer white gas in cold weather.
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#168217 - 08/04/12 02:11 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: phat]
DieselTwitch Offline
member

Registered: 07/01/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Colorado
Originally Posted By phat


Better is all about the context - it depends on what you are doing.

I in fact use both - frequently. I also use an alcohol stove.

My "usual" thing for a weekender will be an alcohol stove.

If I'm going to be out for more than 5 person-days i take a snow peak canister stove

If I am in the winter or shoulder season, I usually take white gas - most often my SVEA 123, sometimes my Borde Bombe, or for deep winter with lots of need to melt snow for water, the MSR whisperlite.

I do prefer white gas in cold weather.


I have found that i do have problems with the jet boil in the winter. So i have been looking at a MSR whisperlite universal. I hear that the ability to inver the canister helps the system run better in the cold. However by biggest two issues with my jetboil and almost every other canister stove I have found is

1. it requires you to keep a very close eye on the burner at a low setting. if you are running it at a low setting it will "wink out" after a minute. This make keeping something at a boiler but not over flowing very hard
2. There is a definite lack of adjustability in the burner control. For a few handle that has four to five turn total range its usable adjustability range is about 1/8th to a quarter turn at most. Very annoying to get the right amount of heat.

I'm looking at a few stoves: I may end up getting them all but tell me what you think.

First one I like is the Soto OD-1R Micro Regulated Stove, this is a canister stove. the major feature I love is the regulator. this sounds like it would solve at least my first issue with my jet boil. I also think I could carry my jet boil with me and use this stove with it.

Second ones is the MSR WhisperLite Universal Stove. I like the fact that is can do both cans and white fuel. But I haven't seen it in action and I don't know how it work in respect to my 2 major problems with the jet boil.

Top
#168224 - 08/04/12 06:09 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: DieselTwitch]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6490
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I have a Primus Micron and have had no problems with it at a simmer setting. I've heard that the same is true with Snow Peak stoves. It helps to use some kind of a windscreen (being very careful not to overheat the canister!). The windscreen also keeps the canister warm (without overheating) on 20*F mornings.

I think the "4-oz." canister refers to the amount of fuel. The gross weight of a 4-oz. MSR Isopro canister is 8 oz. (MSR is kind enough to state both on the outside of the canister!) My Primus Micron stove weighs 2.5 oz. I can therefore go out for 6 days for a total weight (stove plus fuel) of 10.5 oz. I defy you to do that with a Whisperlite and metal fuel bottles!


Edited by OregonMouse (08/04/12 06:10 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#168226 - 08/04/12 06:56 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: OregonMouse]
DTape Offline
member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 660
Loc: Upstate NY
I think the "steel meshy" part of the burner head really helps the micron. It acts as a continuous ignition when red hot thus always keeping the flame even at the lowest simmer level.
_________________________
http://ducttapeadk.blogspot.com

Top
#168228 - 08/04/12 08:01 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: OregonMouse]
DieselTwitch Offline
member

Registered: 07/01/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Colorado
Originally Posted By OregonMouse
I have a Primus Micron and have had no problems with it at a simmer setting. I've heard that the same is true with Snow Peak stoves. It helps to use some kind of a windscreen (being very careful not to overheat the canister!). The windscreen also keeps the canister warm (without overheating) on 20*F mornings.

I think the "4-oz." canister refers to the amount of fuel. The gross weight of a 4-oz. MSR Isopro canister is 8 oz. (MSR is kind enough to state both on the outside of the canister!) My Primus Micron stove weighs 2.5 oz. I can therefore go out for 6 days for a total weight (stove plus fuel) of 10.5 oz. I defy you to do that with a Whisperlite and metal fuel bottles!


Your right, no way i could do get a white fuel that low.

I just went and picked up some new toys! smile a Soto Micro-regulated stove, a GSI Dualest Kit and the 230g fuel containers. I'm truly in love with this setup. I took one of the lids off of the small cups and every thing fits inside the duelest kit. Oh and i took out the crapy sporkes. really I could do with only one cup and lid. I cooked a round of pasta in it for dinner and it worked great. simmers super nice. doesn't heat up as fast as the jetboil but thats to be expected without having the heat exchanger on the bottom of the pot. all together with the larger fuel canister (i call it the med sized one at 230g) it weights in at 21.30 oz where the jet boil is 23 oz with just 1 100g fuel container. 2x the fuel for 1.7 oz less. not bad.


Edited by DieselTwitch (08/04/12 08:03 PM)

Top
#168229 - 08/04/12 08:03 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: DieselTwitch]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Quote:


I have found that i do have problems with the jet boil in the winter. So i have been looking at a MSR whisperlite universal. I hear that the ability to inver the canister helps the system run better in the cold. However by biggest two issues with my jetboil and almost every other canister stove I have found is

1. it requires you to keep a very close eye on the burner at a low setting. if you are running it at a low setting it will "wink out" after a minute. This make keeping something at a boiler but not over flowing very hard
2. There is a definite lack of adjustability in the burner control. For a few handle that has four to five turn total range its usable adjustability range is about 1/8th to a quarter turn at most. Very annoying to get the right amount of heat.




I find my snow peak pretty good on both those counts. I definately don't need to baby it when on low, and it adjusts well for me from anything from a slow simmer to a blast.

Quote:

I'm looking at a few stoves: I may end up getting them all but tell me what you think.

First one I like is the Soto OD-1R Micro Regulated Stove, this is a canister stove. the major feature I love is the regulator. this sounds like it would solve at least my first issue with my jet boil. I also think I could carry my jet boil with me and use this stove with it.

Second ones is the MSR WhisperLite Universal Stove. I like the fact that is can do both cans and white fuel. But I haven't seen it in action and I don't know how it work in respect to my 2 major problems with the jet boil.


My three cents? depends on you - I'd look at the snow peak if you haven't - I find it doesn't have the problems you describe - for a general small canister stove the soto looks good, but has a burner pattern I generally don't like (affected by wind!)

Were I buying a new whisperlite - I might buy the universal, but I think it's a bit too heavy for me for a canister stove - so while it's "nice" that it can use canisters I can't see it as a feature I'd use.. the new one "appears" to simmer easier than the old one.

_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#168572 - 08/19/12 11:16 AM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: phat]
DieselTwitch Offline
member

Registered: 07/01/12
Posts: 64
Loc: Colorado
Thanks for the your thoughts. I ended up getting both the Soto and the Wisperlight Universal. I will toy around with them and let you know what I find. so far i've only played with them once. but the soto does do an awesome job of simmering. and it does seam to be effected by the wind.

I we if i could devise a way to counteract that.

Top
#168616 - 08/20/12 10:16 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: DieselTwitch]
verber Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/04
Posts: 269
Loc: SF Bay Area, CA
I appreciate the Svea 123 loyalists. It's the stove my dad and I used when I first started to backpack. I miss it, but I do find iso butane much easier to cook on and manage, provided it isn't too cold.

I have found that the snow peak gigi-power iso butane stove works quite well for me. I made a windscreen which was influenced by something that ortik made... alas, it's no longer on their website and I don't have a picture handy.

That said, for solo trips I like uses esbits in a ULC Caldera Cone. 850ml MLD Pot, stove, windscreen is 4.5oz. Super easy to use, figuring out how much fuel is dead simple because I just could up the number of cooking meals and bring that many fuel cubes. Fuel cups are .5oz from which I get a 16oz boil for my main dish... blow it out, and have enough fuel left for a nice cup of tea.

For a 7 day trip where I cook just dinner, everything (fuel, utensils, windscreen, stove, etc) fits inside my 850ml pot. Fuel is 3.5oz.

--Mark

Top
#168892 - 08/31/12 02:18 AM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: verber]
TomD Offline
Moderator

Registered: 10/30/03
Posts: 4963
Loc: Marina del Rey,CA
Anyone who can't fire up a 123 shouldn't own one. It ain't rocket science. I have a bunch of stoves, none of which weigh 3 pounds, so I don't know what Lori is talking about. My favorite until Coleman discontinued them was my Xtreme. Next is my Primus Micron, works down to about 15F at 7000 ft. Altitude and temperature affect canister stoves. For winter, I have an Optimus Nova, finicky and I don't really trust it, so I carry the Primus as backup. I have a 123 (older, not the R) and would take it for a group, but I haven't used it for years. I made a couple of alcohol stoves because, well, I could. Oh and I also have an MSR XGK, MSR's version of a liquid fuel rocket engine with pot supports. The good news-it will burn virtually any flammable liquid; the bad news-it has two settings-on and off, unless you really know how to fiddle with it.

As for what is the "best" stove, I have no idea.
_________________________
Don't get me started, you know how I get.

Top
#168901 - 08/31/12 01:29 PM Re: White Gas vs Iso-Propane Fuels [Re: TomD]
hikerduane Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/03
Posts: 2124
Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
The 123's are pretty easy provided they have not been left unmaintained over the years. I have 2 and a "R" model, pretty good runners. Canister stoves, I have gotten by with my MSR Pocket Rocket for 8 days on the small canister, boiling water at night. The MSR DragonFly simmers pretty well and if you have the funds to pick up off of eBay a BernieDawg DragonTamer cap, it will run very quiet and simmer unattended for quite awhile if you keep the steam from the pot in view. I have not used the Coleman "X" series, I have a good stock pile of Powermax canisters for them and now have the Xtreme and a Xpedition that I can try out this Fall. Last Labor Day on a trip with JimS, I observed that the morning coffee water was ready pretty.........dang...............quick. They should be neat to try. A canister stove off everyones radar is the Coleman Exponent F1, tons of btu's worth checking out, but discontinued.
Duane

Top

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Trail Running shoes with good support
by pdslates
06/14/18 03:48 PM
ZIPLOCK TOILET PAPER DISPENSER
by PerryMK
06/14/18 10:12 AM
Help neede with clothing
by SQWIB
06/07/18 01:41 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Alice Pak
by Capt hook
01:13 PM
Hello
by Capt hook
01:07 PM
Rain gear for tall people...help!!
by willie1280
06/11/18 12:57 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Homemade Potty Trowel
by 4evrplan
04/23/16 12:04 AM
creating fill marks on titanium cookware
by the-gr8t-waldo
07/18/15 05:19 PM
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 59 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Capt hook, dhri, pdslates, Prainz, seabass199
12589 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
HOME
Backpacking.net
Family Hiking
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Outdoor Gear Daily Deals
Outlets, Sales, Bargains

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum.com