Well now i've gone and done it. I had a huge amount of indecision and bought a sterno stove that folds up. I figure that since I am summer backpacking in a relatively warm area that I could probably get by with a sterno for now.
It was a bit of an impulse buy at $4. It is made of stainless steel. I was wondering if anyone has had some personal experience with them, or had any tips with use. Also handy would be some boil-to-time specs.
PS: Is there any way to get a sterno stove to simmer? I heard that you could partially cover the tin with some aluminum foil to help decrease the flame.
Cheap, Since you ask, my first sophisticated camping stove was a folding sterno stove. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> I thought it was pretty cool until my mom bought me a svea for my 19th birthday. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" />
You just set the lid part way on to simmer, <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />but it isn't that hot of a stove, simmering is kinda what it does. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> As the can gets hotter the flame gets stronger. And you set the lid on it to put it out. Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.
My winter hiking partner uses a sterno stove that folds into this little box. I believe he made some soup last time, but I don't remember. He also used just the sterno to cook a hot pocket this one time, that was funny.
I'll have to talk to him about the performance of his stove, but he's only used it in winter which doesn't translate back to summer very well.
Loc: Marina del Rey,CA
Sterno is basically jellied alcohol. You can read about it on Wikipedia. Like liquid alcohol, it is a low energy per weight fuel; probably less than liquid alcohol because of the weight of the gel and some added water.
If you are looking for efficiency, Sterno isn't the ideal fuel. Simple, yes, efficient, no. The only time I recall seeing Sterno is under a chafing dish at a buffet.
If you want an alcohol stove, there are many good designs out there that require only modest skills to make, or you can buy one from a number of cottage stove makers.
Remember-making soup is not cooking-it's heating water.
Don't get me started, you know how I get.
My Svea is in the "Gotta Go" bag. That's the bag I grab if all heck breaks loose and I "gotta go" right now. I figure as long as I can find a gas station or car with gas in it I have fuel for that stove.
Loc: Marina del Rey,CA
I would think twice about burning auto gas in a Svea. Even unleaded has a lot of additives you don't want to be breathing. Plus, I doubt the jet would last long on auto gas before clogging up. An XGK will burn almost anything flammable. They say don't burn alcohol in one, but I have done it when I couldn't get white gas.
Don't get me started, you know how I get.
I'm not advocating the use of unleaded gasoline in a Svea except in the emergency-only context of the "Gotta Go" bag. A "Gotta Go" bag is what you grab when you have to leave your home -right now- due to some impending life-endangering condition. Mine has everything I need to keep myself and 3 others alive for a week, DVD backups of all my irreplaceable files, etc.. From the moment of notification I can be on the road with my family in two minutes. The Svea just fit the nature of the bag because it was laying around, is mostly bomb-proof, and can burn the most common fuel in the US.
A "Gotta Go" bag is what you grab when you have to leave your home -right now- due to some impending life-endangering condition. Mine has everything I need to keep myself and 3 others alive for a week, DVD backups of all my irreplaceable files, etc.. From the moment of notification I can be on the road with my family in two minutes.
Great idea NiytOwl. I have a 72 hour kit, which is similar, except yours is for a week, and mine is...well..not. I have been thinking alot about what stove to put in my kit. Do I put a small alchy, or an esbit? I have even considered some wood burners. But, I always come down to the same conclusion. If I am in an emergency were I have to leave home, I am making a fire. Then the only thing I have to carry is matches/firestarter and a pot of sorts to boil/cook. I would rather carry more food for the weight. But, that is just me. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.
Could you post a list of the contents of your Gotta Go Bag? I have a good Idea of some of the stuff to put in it but the idea of enough for 3-4 people is good. Food? A tent? stove etc. I currently keep that kind of stuff in a rubbermaid container along with a list of homeland security instructions (hide under a desk and kiss you #@$ goodbye).
Loc: Central Texas
Cheap, Sterno is about 60 percent water. Carry a small bottle of denatured alcohol along and when the sterno runs out, just pour a little denatured alcohol into the can and keep using it. Later, you can stuff a little fiberglass insulation in the can for a wick.
My first "ultralight" stove was a folding tripod that held a small sterno can and supported a 2.5 cup aluminum pot. A 1" high chimney fit on the sterno can to increase the efficiency. It was a pretty good cook set and weighed about 8 ounces. They used to air drop these to lost hunters and hikers in the old days.
Good idea Spock, and also, Perilite would work in place of the fibreglas if you placed a small screen over the Perilite to keep it in the can. If you get a spare lid you can poke some small needle like holes in it to make a alchy stove; and replace the solid cap to keep leftover alchy in the stove for the next meal. You'll have to fiddle with that as it's just an idea <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" />
PEPPER SPRAY AIN'T BRAINS IN A CAN!
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