I realize this is outside the realm of lightweight backpacking, but it seems like the crew here has vast experience and might be able to provide some insight.
I'm trying to select a two burner stove for car camping. This stove could easily be used 100 days a year, so I want the best solution. Like backpacking stoves, there are basically three options: white gas, alcohol and propane.White Gas
I've used white gas stoves for years when backpacking. An MSR Dragonfly for ages, and now an MSR Simmerlite. White gas is available all over the United States. It is cheap and easy to transport. The basic double burner Coleman white gas stove is a decent choice. But the burners are somewhat anemic (6000 & 7000 BTU). And the fact that the left burner is not independent of the right burner is annoying. The Coleman Gladiator
has more powerful burners and independent generators. I think it would be my top choice, except it appears to be vaporware. I can't find it for sale anywhere.Alcohol
I've made a few pepsi can stoves and really like them for shorter trips in decent weather. Stove alcohol is available at any hardware store. Marine grade double burner alcohol stoves like the Orgio 3000
are pricey, but look pretty sweet. Drawback is that alcohol doesn't have the same BTUs per liter as gasoline. The stoves have lower powered burners. Since they aren't pressurized, my guess is that they might perform poorly in sub-freezing temperatures. Much like a pepsi can stove.Propane
I've never owned a canister stove, but I've backpacked with friends who did. I've used a propane double burner stove car camping for years. Advantages are very high output (you can get propane stoves where each burner is 20,000 or 30,000 BTUs) and easy simmering. Probably the simplest stove to cook with. Drawback is that 1lb propane tanks are a very expensive and wasteful way to fuel a stove. 20lb refillable tanks are much more reasonable in cost, but very unsafe to store in a vehicle. Carrying a 20lb tank means either an external mounting rack and a bunch of plumbing, or an internal vented propane locker with shutoff solenoid and even more plumbing.
Phew! That's my research so far. Thanks for reading it all. My questions are:
1) What have I overlooked in my research (either about the stoves I've mentioned or another type I haven't researched)?
2) What would you do if you were buying a car camping stove today?