Jun 13, 2011 at 7:35 pm #1275386
Manfred von RichthofenMember
I've done some searching, and people seem to recommend the below CANISTER options as alternatives to the Jetboil. But looking at the weights, I haven't found much differences between some of the options. Others are a bit more significance. Obviously an ounce or two may mean little to some and much to others. An ounce or two means little to me. 4 is a bit more significant. Not something I'd go home crying about if I had to carry 4 more ounces, but if it wouldn't buy me much I'd just as soon go for the lighter option.
I'm looking at canister stove systems. I'm a lightweight hiker, not ultralight. While convenience is worth something, I don't want a system heavier than I really need. Sometimes I think the convenience of a jetboil could be worth it because it could, say, make me more likely to stop and whip up a quick steaming cup of hot chocolate while I'm snowshoeing. But I really don't know, is it any more convenient than a nice canister stove and a cheap aluminum pot?
Also, when I started looking at the weights, I didn't seem to be saving THAT much by going to a different system, plus the jetboil seems to be quite competitive in terms of cost. So here we are:
Option 1: 9.25oz – 9.75oz, $60-$70
Snow Peak Giga Power – Manual/Piezo (3.25oz/3.75oz) – $40-50
Snow Peak Giga Power Windscreen (2oz) – $10
*Pot (~4oz) – $10
Option 2: 7.9oz, $70
Snow Peak LiteMax (1.9oz) – $60
Homemade wind screen (~2oz?) – free
*Pot (~4oz) – $10
Option 3: 11.75oz, $70
Jetboil Zip – 11.75oz
*For the pot I don't have any ideas. Need anything cheap and light. I'm guessing 4oz at this point, and $10.
So I'd be saving 2-2.5oz with Option 1 over Option 3, but 3.85oz using Option 2 over Option 3. A mark against the Jetboil is I'd sometimes be cooking for 2, and that means 2×2 cups which means I'd have to heat the Jetboil up twice. However, there would be times where I'd take the Jetboil just to heat up some hot chocolate. It's a tradeoff, there. If I ditched the cozy and the measuring cup, it'd be dead even between Options 1 and 3. Why wouldn't I get the Jetboil, at that point, other than a preference for a different pot?
Any thoughts in addition to what I've stated? The fact that I'm asking this gives away that I'm not ultralight, but I guess I'm especially curious of people's experiences. It seems to me Option 1 vs Option 3 isn't a significant difference in terms of weight and I should just go with which system appeals more. But I'm especially curious about difference in user experiences. If I wouldn't be frustrated with the LiteMax, perhaps that would be my best option, so long as it would hold in high/cold/windy conditions if required.
I have an alcohol stove if I need one for summer.
Cost is a big factor.
Thanks!Jun 13, 2011 at 7:41 pm #1748829
@rcowmanLocale: Canadian Rockies
monatauk gnat (1.7oz) and a Evernew 1L pasta pot. (4oz)
I can cook for two in a BPL 900pot (3oz)Jun 14, 2011 at 1:18 am #1748927
What do you use currently?
Why are you fustrated by the LiteMax?
It is not clear to me what your priorities are and there are always tradeoffs.
If you want cheap and light, a Monatauk Gnat with a AGG 3-cup pot, Al foil lid and DIY windshield is the cheapest lightweight canister system by a long way.
A Jetboil may be more 'convenient' (meaning less care required by the user), but is neither cheap nor light.Jun 14, 2011 at 6:32 am #1748960
Monatauk Gnat — 1.7oz $50
Stanco Greasepot — 3oz $7.5 ~5 cup capacity
(w/ MYOG Al pie lid)
MYOG Ti Windscreen — .5oz $15+time
source Ti from
trade the ti windscreen for heavy duty foil and the Gnat stove for slightly heavier option and I bet you could come in at:
and this gives you about double the cooking capacityJun 14, 2011 at 6:52 am #1748969
Jetboil Sol Ti – 8.5 ounces – as light as any other canister system – $150
I have no experience, just heard about itJun 14, 2011 at 6:57 am #1748971
Don't fear the new Jetboil Sol. It's a great stove and heating water for two is not a concern at all. I've supported 4 with my one Sol and could have easily provided boiling for more if needed (provided the fuel). The super quick boil times make waiting a non-issue. Seems very efficient with fuel as well. Love mine.Jun 14, 2011 at 7:16 am #1748979
Dan, does your stove sort of wobble where it screws into the canister? I returned mine because of this, as well as the flimsy cosy. The REI demo model also wobbled on its canister. It seems to me that a full group pot would be a bit unstable because of this. Maybe they don't all do this?Jun 14, 2011 at 7:21 am #1748980
@servingkoLocale: Intermountain West
I have the SOL ti and have no wobble issues. Moreover, I contacted Jetboil to discuss the "flimsy" cozy and was told I could have my choice of the SOL Alu or the Zip cozy. I chose the ZIP and removed the handle for essentially the same weight and more insulation.Jun 14, 2011 at 7:23 am #1748981
Gary – yes, it does slightly, but I do not find this to be a problem. I also have the Aluminum pot which I understand has a slightly more substantial cozy. I didn't have a problem grabbing it with bare fingers.Jun 14, 2011 at 9:47 am #1749045
the real advantage of the jetboil is the lack of flaff
you simply turn it on … and it cooks fast … you can boil water while warming yr hands, or in a canoe, or at a belay, etc …
no fussing around …
sure there are lighter systems around … but the jetboil is a favorite of climbers for a reason ;)
i find it somewhat ironic that some people may argue against a jetboil, especially the lighter ones, yet think nothing about bringing other luxuriesJun 14, 2011 at 10:34 am #1749072
Im thinking of going to a zip good prlce and weight I have a pcs I dont use cause of weight and use a SP100 manual and a SP700cup and lid currentlyJun 14, 2011 at 10:46 am #1749074
Eric – the problem with the Jetboil is that it is heavy when compared to other offerings. And the motto of UL backpackers is that one takes the lightest option that does the same job – in this case boiling water. Even the 'lightweight' versions of the Jetboil are comparably heavy (not to mention will be getting heavier as the neoprene covers are recalled).Jun 14, 2011 at 10:49 am #1749079
canister stoves are generally pretty low on "flaff". Turn gas on, ignite and you can about walk away. Yeah if is windy you will need to shield. And depending on levelness of site and pot size vs stove size you might need to take a couple extra precautions to prevent tip-over. But for most cases where these are required I bet is under 2 minutes extra setup (over jetboil).
Now if I was trying to boil on the side of a rock (like if I was climbing – not hiking) I would probably perfer the jetboil. But for general hiking with sub-alpine sleeping the jetboil doesn't really offer me any advantages. Relative to other options, its heavy, expensive and small.Jun 14, 2011 at 12:35 pm #1749132
are we talking about the same people who use tents instead of tarps, comfy inflatable mattresses, and framed packs?
sure you wont see anyone with a sub 5 lb base weight using a jetboil, but neither will you see em using some of the tents BPL recommends, or other BPLers use … or those exped down mattresses for 3 seasons
everybody has their own "luxury" goods … sure i can use something smaller and lighter, but then i could also use a poncho tarp too, and a simple foam pad, etc …
each to his/her own …
as to how heavy and expensive it is … the OP has a listing of the weights and prices of the stoves hes considering, doesnt seem too much more expensive than the alternatives … and the same could be said for other "luxury" goods as well
this bum wouldnt use it if it didnt work for him in the himalayas …Jun 14, 2011 at 12:43 pm #1749141
New Jetboil Sol Ti is not heavier
Sol Ti – 8.5 ounces
Canister stove – 3 ounces, plus 5 ounces for a Ti 0.9 liter pot, plus 0.5 ounce windscreen = 8.5 ounces
Maybe you can find a 2 ounce stove so it saves 1 ounce
But the Jetboil will use less fuel so will weigh somewhat less because of that, depending on how long a tripJun 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm #1749287
Manfred von RichthofenMember
The Sol and Sol Ti are a bit pricey, for me. I'm not sure why the Zip never gets mentioned. Much cheaper and not TOO bad as far as weight.
What I'm curious now is this: having no experience with any canister stove, how is a jetboil really more convenient than, say, a Snowpeak LiteMax and a cheap Al pot? Both you store the stove in the pot, and both you take the stove out and put it under the pot. Is it because the Jetboil has everything right-sized and it clicks together nicely? Is it partly just the novelty and fun-ness of it? Is the Jetboil really that much easier to use?
I'm trying to figure out what the disadvantages really are of Jetboil alternatives. It's clear the disadvantage of Jetboil is weight. It's also clear enough to me that some of the Jetboil systems should not be classified as "heavy" nor as "ultralight." I think I would be fine with the weight of a Jetboil system. I also don't think I'm too worried about the fuel efficiency of any system–they are all ok for me, so long as they all work in the cold, wind, and high altitude about as well as one another (with a windscreen). The question becomes what the advantages actually are of the Jetboil system. Then I can better make the determination if the extra ounces is worth it.
If the Jetboil is the type of thing where you buy the car, the house, and the helicopter all in one great package where the car is just the right size for the garage and the helipad is just the right size for the roof, and the fuel economy of the helicopter and car is a little better, I'd rather just buy the house that has a garage big enough for the car I choose and backyard big enough for the helicopter I choose. But if there's more to it than that…
Also, I don't need Ti pot suggestions. Those are too pricey, and I can't possibly justify purchasing Ti over Al. Plus at that point might as well but the Jetboil Sol Ti or something for an ounce or two penalty.Jun 14, 2011 at 6:32 pm #1749300
WhOOO, WHOO, wait….we have ppl and this site choosing inflatables, tents and framed backpacks…gonna need a list of names and alias's — this ain't the blaze or bckpckn.net. It is a slippery slope, first goes the tarp for "creature comfort" or b/c the "significant other" needs it. Next "oh my old boney hips need a 2.5 (hell probably more like 3.5) air mat". Then goes the rucksack for a nice frame b/c of the old "bulging disk". Before you know it this has snowballed in to trading in the standard OH+ stove setup for a, a dAmn jetboil….
Eric, you always seems to be a (welcomed imo) devil's advocate from the "other side" of things….but you really just seem to be arguing for arguments sake…
The advantage of the jetboil is the heat exchanger
It requires less fuel to heat a given amount of water
You can save some weight by carrying less fuel
I use a MSR Pocket Rocket which costs about $30. That weighs the same as the Sol Ti when you count everything.
Just make sure and also get a windscreen. There are a number of threads and articles on this site that describe MYOG versions that are easy to make.Jun 14, 2011 at 7:19 pm #1749329
The heat exchanger is on the wrong side of the pot to be really effective…put it on the inside of the pot and then you'd be talking…
I believe Roger Caffin did comparison article that found htx stove stepups save 2-3 grams per liter boiled over standard canister w/ windscreen. If this generalizes to my setup vs the JB ti Sol.. that means it would take 30-40L boiled before you break even with the JB. Probably 1 in 10 of my trips would I boil that many cups for myself.
For the conditions you describe (alpine wind and temps) I would be looking for a remote canister (w/ a fuel preheat, allowing you to invert the canister) setup. One of these sits lower (stability), allows for better windscreen coverage and helps push the stove setup to lower temps (fuel vaporization now happens in the preheat tube) – this will be heavier than the JB though.
I would also expect the JB to outperform the standard upright options present here under these conditions.Jun 14, 2011 at 7:40 pm #1749337
@trebiskyLocale: Southern Arizona
I love my jetboil, but recognize it is a convenient luxury. It is part of my 3 stove arsenal that I choose between depending on mood. It is either the caldera cone alcohol stove setup, the bush buddy, or the jet boil. The trick is knowing what tradeoffs you are making and how it all adds up.
The absolute best part about the jetboil is the integrated french press, and that counts for a lot!
On a really long trip, the bushbuddy wins if you can always count on finding fuel, and it wins more and more the longer the trip. It is just plain fun on a shorter trip too, fire danger and all that permitting. Someday I may get one of these tiny stoves that screw on top of a canister and a Ti pot, but odds are I just won't. If I am really serious about going light in mild conditions, then the alcohol stove wins. And you won't catch me without my exped! And you won't EVER catch me carrying a frame pack again (I am trying to give away my old 8 pound internal frame dana design). My MLD exodus with the exped is still less than half the weight of that thing empty.
So my conclusion, just get the Jetboil for decadent convenience!Jun 14, 2011 at 8:01 pm #1749348
– uses less fuel as compared with other canister stoves IME
– uses all the fuel as compared to other canister stoves IME … ive had snow peaks sputter on almost empty canisters, while my jetboil just keeps on going … i believe several other BPL members may have had the same experience
– store everything without dissassembly, pull out and boil in your hand
– need a windscreen and handwarmer? … just sit with yr back to the wind and boil with pot in hand
– have unstable platform? … do the above
– fast boil time, useful for more than 1 person or melting snow
– weight … not as bad as before with the new jeboils
– price … only if you buy the new SOL TI … the ALs arent awfully expensive, and the zip is the same as any other system
plenty of people here use jetboils happily … they all recognize its not the lightest solution … but then neither are tents, down exped matresses, framed packs, water filters, etc … and many use one of the above or other items not needed
they use it cause it works and its convenient, and you dont need to mess aroundJun 14, 2011 at 8:15 pm #1749357
I don't really want to get too involved in the ongoing debate about Jetboil, but I would encourage you to still consider the Jetboil Sol AL if you're thinking about the Zip. The weight savings is one bonus, but I beleive the Sol also has Jetboil's best, newly designed fuel regulator that helps it operate better at lower temperatures when compared to their other stoves. I also think that one of the best side effects (if you call it that) of the flux ring and the surrounding frame ring of the Sol cup is that it makes windy conditions far less of an issue compared to other canister stoves I've used and have been around. My primary canister stove before my Sol was an MSR Pocket Rocket and while I loved that stove (and I typically paired it with a Jetboil 1.5L Pot for hikes with groups of 6 or more), I'm never going back to the PR after seeing a marked improvement with my Sol in both weight and efficiency. As for price, yes, the Sol is more. I bought my Sol AL at REI during a 20% off sale and got it under $100. There are many other places you can buy a Sol AL on sale as well (heck, I see 'em for $88 with shipping on Amazon right now). I wouldn't pay full price for it either, but with what I did pay, I have had no buyer's remorse yet, and have been the envy of other JB users this spring on my hikes, who are still using the older systems. This stove can flat out boil water like crazy.
If you're going for the lightest option, by all means do your homework and go with one of the above solutions. My fancy feast stove was free, boils water, weighs nothing, and packs small, but I would never take it on a trip unless I was trying to prove something about how little my pack can weigh. It's a PITA to use compared to a canister. HYOH and good luck with your search.Jun 14, 2011 at 8:19 pm #1749359
@daviddrakeLocale: North Idaho
I have Snow Peak GS-100 manual stove, 3.1 oz on my scale, ~$40. With MYOG windscreen, 3.8 oz. Add SP 600 Ti mug (not too expensive–$25-30) with MYOG lid, and the whole package is 6.8 oz. Could also use my aluminum Kmart grease pot with MYOG lid, for the same weight; grease pot was about $6-7. Would add a cup, tho: GSI polypro for 1.7 oz.
Would take one of my MYOG alky stoves for short trips instead of the canister stove, but for 7 days or more the canister is a bit more convenient and the weight (w/fuel) is basically a wash.
Roger Caffin had an article with a pretty cool hack to covert GS-100 to remote canister winter stove, IIRC.Jun 14, 2011 at 9:54 pm #1749380
"this bum wouldnt use it if it didnt work for him in the himalayas …"
mmm. Base camp using a Jet Boil v.s. humping it over 20 mile days for a week. Nice comparison.
Seriously though, any fuel savings you would get with the Jet Boil would be over a what, a week on the trail? And then by how much? 5% better? You are carrying the fuel canister anyway with a Jet Boil or with a PR (as an example) – it is not like you can buy 1 oz canisters for an extra couple of boils. Would you need three weeks on the trail – maybe a month to require an extra 4 oz canister?
As far as a luxury item that Eric brings up – I would rather bring 8 oz of chocolate.Jun 14, 2011 at 10:30 pm #1749390
To save weight on solo trips of less than 5 days I used to just leave the stove behind and carry all no-cook meals.
The JetBoil Sol Ti is fast and easy, and I just plain enjoy using it (I've also used alcohol, Esbit and wood stoves, which are lighter weight, but not as fun to use). One of my favorite things is to pack up camp and start hiking at dawn, then stop by a stream for breakfast and a cup of tea or coffee. The JetBoil makes that a very quick and easy thing to do.
Recently I went on a trip where my JetBoil was the envy of companions who were still waiting for their water to boil when my food was ready to eat.
It's a luxury, but for me it's weight worth carrying. The one thing I didn't like about the Sol Ti was the flimsy cozy. So I called JetBoil to ask for the heavier Sol Al cozy. It's a better cozy and worth the extra .25 oz. It all comes down to personal choice.
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