Which Camping Cook Stove Do You Need?

April 20, 2009 | By Guest | Filed in: Camping Gear.

The camping cook stove is both powerful and lightweight and designed to make cooking easier while in the outdoors.

The camping cook stove can be found in a variety of sizes and designs. Gas camping stoves come in basically three different categories: multi-burner family camping stoves, single burner backpacking , and expedition stoves.

Most have the same basic design of a burner or burners attached to a fuel source. Your intended use will determine which stove and fuel type is the best choice. If you have only little room extra and need to heat up a can of corned beef from time to time then a single burner expedition stove may be the way to go.

Different Fuel Types

There are pros and cons of using different types of fuel. One is liquid fuel white gas and the other pressurized gas canisters with several different styles of canisters available. I personally recommend only two fuel types- Coleman style screw on gas canisters or white gas -Coleman liquid fuel-.

The most popular fuel source is white gas, which performs very well. White gas is readily available all over but may not be outside the U.S.

White Gas Stoves

May favorite is the white gas camping cook stove The white gas stoves will produce the most heat of any camping cook stove . The white gas stoves are available in “dual fuel” versions. This allows you to use unleaded pump gas in addition to the white gas. A lot of people use the pump gas and are happy with it. I find it is smelly and if you spill it or get it on your hands, it’s hard to get rid of the odor. Stick with the white gas.

I use only the white gas in the dual fuel stoves. If you run out and can’t buy any white gas – then use the unleaded gasoline. The main advantage of using unleaded gasoline over white gas is the cost. This is the only real advantage to the dual fuel stoves, that and being able to find fuel whenever you need it. I feel the extra cost for the few gallons of white gas used each year is worth paying so you get the cleanliness of this fuel. The dual fuel stoves do cost more.

Liquid white gas burns hotter than the “propane – butane” gas and works better in windy, cold and low atmospheric conditions therefore it is the primary fuel for most expedition stoves. Most often it is lighter and cheaper to use liquid fuel than gas fuel due to the gas canister being heavier and has to be purchased each time. Liquid fuel does not burn as cleanly as gas and is more difficult to regulate the temperature. As for as transporting it’s somewhat safer to carry a gas canister in the trunk of your car than a bottle of white gas.

Pressurized Gas – Propane, Butane

The next most popular fuel are propane gas canisters. If ease of use use is your main concern use a pressurized gas camping cook stove. The fuels are made from blends of butane and other gases. Gas canisters are not refillable and must be thrown away when empty which ads to the landfills. You cannot check to see how much fuel is left in the canister when using pressurized gas. When using white gas, it is easy to check remaining fuel.

Pressurized gas camping cook stove can be lit as soon as the fuel canister is in place. No pumping, priming or preheating the burner.

One last note: Make sure you know how to use your camping cook stove before going camping, use it at home instead of waiting until your in the field.

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