Mar 12, 2013 at 3:26 pm #1300382
If you've watched my postings lately, you'll know that I've attempted to "bust" a couple of myths surrounding the Soto MicroRegulator stove (OD-1R): 1) the myth that somehow the MicroRegulator will be able to extract more fuel from a canister of gas than other stoves and 2) the myth that somehow the MicroRegulator will be able to function better in cold weather than other upright canister stoves.
But what of the stove itself? Is it any good?
And it's the world's lightest with auto-ignition? How did they manage that?
And most importantly of all, will it cook my breakfast?!
Please join me as I take a look at The Soto Microregulator (OD-1R)Mar 12, 2013 at 4:14 pm #1964868
delMar 12, 2013 at 5:18 pm #1964886
The little Soto "windscreen" is a lot nicer in that it's light and compact compared to its Snow Peak counterpart, and it can certainly do no harm. It will reflect heat upward, and it will offer a modicum of wind protection. A modicum. But will it really give you good wind protection? Not in my estimation. I think you need something more than that.
What I generally use with upright canister stoves is something like this:
which is made up of tripled or quadrupled household Al foil. It works although I have to brace it with rocks in more significant winds. The "trick" of course is that you have to frequently check with your hand the temperature of the canister. If the canister feels hot to the touch, you have to do something to prevent the canister from heating further.
When not in use, I keep it wrapped around my water bottle and then placed in a plastic bag. It's proved to be a lot more durable than I thought. It does need replacement fairly frequently, but it's held up for a week without a problem. A better solution is tooling foil from a craft store which is more durable than household foil.
I've got an article on my blog which has a lot of ideas about windscreens if you're interested.
Really windy days? I take a remote canister stove and use a full 360 degree windscreen.Mar 12, 2013 at 5:55 pm #1964896
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
If you are going to do a world's lightest post, it would be good to start out with the weight.Mar 12, 2013 at 6:26 pm #1964903
@funnymoLocale: Sunshine State
The weight is in the review.Mar 12, 2013 at 6:38 pm #1964910
If you are going to do a world's lightest post, it would be good to start out with the weight.
No problem (but it is in the review). :) Soto says 73g. My scale at home says 70g. In other words, 2.5 oz. The weight penalty for having auto ignition is zero when compared to a lot of upright canister stoves, but when compared to something like a Monatauk Gnat (FMS-116t), then it's roughly 3/4 ounce.Mar 12, 2013 at 6:49 pm #1964915
I'm in Colorado now hiking some 14ers.
I'm using the Soto, soto wind screen and Jet Boil fuel.
I'm not timing boil times but it is working fine. So far I've been stopping about 12,000 feet for either hot chocolate or freeze dried eggs. I tried freeze dried chili macaroni but sitting around for 13-15 minutes is too long.
The ignitor worked at 12,000 feet once but I'm using a Bic lighter now because I don't want to risk breaking the ignitor.
Look like you will need to test the new one.Mar 12, 2013 at 7:01 pm #1964920
If you're getting your piezo to work at 12,000 feet, that's pretty good.
Look like you will need to test the new one.
That link looks like something of a placeholder. The photo is the OD-1R not the OD-1RX.
The OD-1RX has two sets of detachable pot supports, one for larger pots, one for smaller. I'm not sure how I feel about that although I'm all in favor of greater pot stability. I'll have to see it. They've also changed the burner head so that it is concave instead of convex. It's supposed to help with wind resistance. They're calling it the Wind Master.
Looks interesting.Mar 13, 2013 at 8:50 am #1965046
Judging by this diagram, it appears that the thinking is that the shape of the burner will cause a lot of the wind to flow under the burner head.
Interesting. But I do notice that the sides are of course still open. They've also decreased the pot height above the burner head which could lead to more CO production if they didn't do something to compensate.
I'd like to do some field testing with it.Mar 13, 2013 at 9:09 am #1965055
Thanks for posting that. I searched and went to the Soto homepage but didn't see any info on the new stove.
I like the head design. The pot supports still look flimsy to me. I guess they fold somehow. I wouldn't like it if, they need to be folded and stored off the stove – one more thing to lose. And, in the cold I wear fleece gloves; I don't want to be handling small things.Mar 13, 2013 at 10:11 am #1965075
I haven't seen an OD-1RX in person yet, but just judging from a video I saw (which I'll post a link if I can find it again), it looks like the larger pot supports can be left in place and folded up over the burner head. The smaller pot supports can't fold up (while on the stove) from what I can see. In travel mode, I might just leave the larger pot supports in place and fold them rather than take them on and off although the larger supports look pretty easy on and off. The smaller pot supports look like they have to be fiddled with a bit to get them secured to the stove — not a good thing with cold hands. The smaller pot supports look like they'd be targeted toward minimalists who want to cook with small mug type pots.
The current pot supports aren't so bad. No worse in terms of "floppiness" than on something like a FMS-116t. It seems like a bit of a gamble for Soto to try something like two interchangeable pot supports. I must admit that I'm now danged curious about the stove.
Looks like the weight is up slightly (I see 2.6oz quoted instead of 2.5oz) and the price is quoted as $75.00.Mar 13, 2013 at 3:43 pm #1965230Mar 13, 2013 at 5:06 pm #1965270
Thanks for the video. I'm happy with the current model and wind screen set up. But, I would be interested in your review.Mar 13, 2013 at 5:58 pm #1965285
I'd like to review one. I'm always interested when I see a stove company trying something a little different. I'm sure the detachable/interchangeable supports will work in the technical sense. I'm not sure if they'll work in the market place. The wind resistance remains to be seen as well.Mar 13, 2013 at 6:07 pm #1965288
"The ignitor worked at 12,000 feet once but I'm using a Bic lighter now because I don't want to risk breaking the ignitor"
Are you saying piezo-electric lighters don't work at 12,000 feet?
I wonder why it doesn't work there and what fails.
That would include piezo-electric lighters – I have heard they don't work above 10,000 feet.
I hate the old BIC flint and steel lighters because they don't work if it gets wet.Mar 13, 2013 at 7:52 pm #1965330
I've had piezoelectric lighters fail as low as 7500'/2280m in cold windy weather. I forget the technical explanation but it's something about the density of the air being too low to transmit enough energy to bring the gas to ignition.
Speaking from just what I've encountered, hand held piezoelectric butane lighters tend to fail at lower altitude's than the piezo on a stove — assuming both are in working order. Piezos fail of course for reasons other than altitude. I assume this is due to the volume of the gas put out by a stove vs. a lighter.
I don't think it hurts a piezo to try it at higher elevations; it just doesn't work, that's all.Mar 13, 2013 at 8:33 pm #1965340
Hikin' Jim sez:
"Speaking from just what I've encountered, hand held butane lighters tend to fail at lower altitude's than the piezo on a stove — assuming both are in working order".
Now that's interesting. I've never had a butane lighter fail, other than due to cold. And the cold is not really failure, and easily defeated – put the thing in your pocket for a few minutes. But altitude up to 14.5K,no problem. What sort of failure did you experience with a lighter?Mar 13, 2013 at 8:40 pm #1965345
Do you mean a Piezo-Electric Butane lighter works at 14.5K? Or an old style lighter with a steel wheel and piece of flint?Mar 13, 2013 at 8:47 pm #1965349
Sorry, I should be more specific:
"Speaking from just what I've encountered, hand held piezoelectric butane lighters tend to fail at lower altitude's than the piezo on a stove — assuming both are in working order".
Bics work fine.Mar 13, 2013 at 8:52 pm #1965352
I think Bic makes a piezoelectric butane lighter : )Mar 14, 2013 at 2:22 am #1965425
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> I've had piezoelectric lighters fail as low as 7500'/2280m in cold windy weather.
> I forget the technical explanation but it's something about the density of the air
> being too low to transmit enough energy to bring the gas to ignition.
The energy in the spark from a piezo is barely adequate to ignite the fuel/air mix even at sea level. More energy is needed at altitude to light the gas, for techie reasons.
But a Bic flint lighter seems to always work for me.
CheersMar 14, 2013 at 6:08 am #1965447
> More energy is needed at altitude to light the gas, for techie reasons.
Butane lighters have a jet, just like a stove. At altitude the air is much less dense, so the air/fuel ratio is not the same as at sea level. As the chart below shows, once the air/fuel ratio strays from the optimum MUCH more energy is required to ignite the mixture, more energy than is provided by the spark from a piezo. A hot chip of ferrocerium may provide more energy.Mar 14, 2013 at 9:15 am #1965496
Thank you for that. I think you've put up that diagram before, but I wasn't remembering the explanation last night.
It's not that the thinner air can't transmit the spark; it's that the thinner air changes the fuel/air mix and the spark is then insufficient to ignite the mix. Got it, and thank you.Mar 14, 2013 at 11:31 am #1965549
One of the things that should not be missed here is the advantage that an integrated ignition brings when using a suspended windscreen, something like this:
(this is a windscreen photo from another thread here at BPL.)
It it can be hard to reach in with a lighter, and you might knock the windscreen out of alignment. I really like being able to have everything set up, pot in place, and then I just push the button to get the stove going. I found that very convenient, not to mention efficient: The time from ignition to the time you get the pot in place is wasted fuel. With an ignition, my pot is in place from the beginning.Mar 28, 2013 at 12:22 am #1970391
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