Alcohol stoves have long been a standard of contemporary ultralight backpackers. Their virtues are well documented. They can be somewhat to extraordinarily lightweight, typically have no moving parts to break, clog, or otherwise misfire, fuel is cheap and easy to purchase, they are silent while operating, and so forth. Aside from cold temperatures, the case for the utility of alcohol stoves need not be made. What might need some justification is an alcohol stove system that costs $127.00 and doesn't even include a pot. Considering the popularity of alcohol stoves for ultralight backpackers was built upon the backs of tuna can stoves, which were in essence free, there better be a good reason for such a tony unit.
In the case of the Clikstand T-2, there may be reasons to consider dropping that kind of coin on a stove with no moving parts. First, consider that this is the same design which, way back in 2005, was one of the best stoves Will Rietveld tested. The T-2 is virtually identical, with the virtues unchanged: excellent stability, easy to use, compact, and excellent wind protection. The T-2 however, goes to 11. It is, you guessed it, made 100% of titanium, and thus lighter and better in every way. The Clikstand T-2 stacks up with leading edge alcohol stove systems fairly well in boil time and weight, and boasts unrivaled versatility. The wide range of possible uses may not appeal to all users, however.
The Clikstand is indeed a system, and must be evaluated as such. I tested what Clikstand calls their Sierra Titanium combo, which consists of an Evernew titanium alcohol burner, ti Clikstand pot stand, ti foil windscreen, and burner adapter. The ti burner is Evernew's lightweight version of the classic Trangia burner, a time-tested and powerful design. The Clikstand itself is the centerpiece of the system and consists of a triangular, four-piece stand which snaps together with authority. It cradles the burner an optimum distance from the pot, serves as a stable, broad based pot stand, provides a rest for the foil windscreen, and serves as the second layer of defense against the wind. The whole thing is quick and easy to assemble or disassemble and fits together well as a unit.
Calling the windscreen "foil" is a bit of a misnomer, as the ti is quite sturdy. The windscreen has a few bends built into it that allow it to hook together at two different widths, to best suit different pots. It then rests on hooks built into the stand. The burner adapter is a pentagonal bit of wire intended to give the Evernew burner better purchase inside the stand. The burner is only just wide enough to sit inside the stand, though my sample was stable enough, and I never found the adapter necessary. The whole thing goes together emphatically and inspires confidence.
- Comparison and Assessment
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