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UL insulated cup
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Robert Patton
(rpatton911) - F
UL insulated cup on 03/13/2006 09:47:11 MST Print View

Can anyone reccomend a UL insulated cup, i currently use a north face insul cupwith lid really want something better n lighter..


Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/13/2006 15:33:01 MST Print View

Several options.
If you want SUL, consider making your own. These can be either super ultra light and of limited durability or just ultralight and last well.

SUL: Foam fast food coffee cups with maybe some thin packing tape reinforcement and maybe a coating on the inside of a food grade polymer such as old fashioned shellac... because styrofoam is not waterproof. You have to avoid crushing. Weight: 0.5.

UL and almost SUL: Ziploc one cup storage container (actually 9 oz. capacity) with lid and some foam insulation taped on the outside. These are pretty durable. For insulation, I use the thin foam from a windshield sun screen. This rig will weigh out at less than 1 oz. depending on your tape and insulation. Alone, the cup is 0.3. You can probably get a couple of years out of one of these occasionally replacing the foam when it gets groady.

UL and very durable: Any properly sized plastic food storage container. They come in 8 and 16 oz. sizes. Tupperwear, GoodCook, Rubbermaid, etc. And they have lids. Insulate with thin foam as above. These will weigh about 2.5 oz in the 8 oz. size with insulation and lids. These will last forever with occasional replacement of the insulation.

These cups won't have handles, but why have a handle on an insulated cup.

Refer to this TLB forum thread for more ideas.

Edited by vickrhines on 03/13/2006 15:36:22 MST.


Locale: Pacific Northwet
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/13/2006 15:49:30 MST Print View

I highly recommend the Snow Peak titanium 150 double wall cup. Weight is 1.6 oz, but with a caveat: It has a 5 oz capacity :)

I'm an espresso drinker and usually drink 2-4 oz of espresso or espresso/hot chocolate so it works good for me.


Scott Peterson
(scottalanp) - F

Locale: Northern California
Re: Re: UL insulated cup on 03/13/2006 17:09:43 MST Print View

I have a Snow Peak Titanium double wall that is the larger version. It goes 4.2 it does not "go" with me anymore. I have found that if you do not have a lid on whatever you are trying to keep does not matter if it is double with these items they are generally not very effective. Most folks I see in pic's who are trying to keep food or bev. hot have a simple plastic insluted mug. I am now carrying one of those plastic cups that comes in right around an ounce and holds 8 ounces ($1.25 at REI). Since I am downing a small amount of coffee...and eating most food out of a bag, there seems no reason to have an insulated mug.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
ultralight insulated cup on 03/13/2006 18:43:38 MST Print View

I would second Vick's recommendation of a Tupperware, Rubbermaid, etc cup with some foam insulation. I personally have been using a 16 oz Rubbermaid for many years with a double layer of duct tape for insulation. For either soup or "cowboy coffee" just add hot water to main ingredient, put the top on and wait the required number of minutes. It retains heat pretty well and makes a great hand warmer if you hang on to it while you're waiting. The whole thing weighs around 3.5 oz. It is also nearly indestructible.

Jason Klass
(jasonklass) - F

Locale: Parker, CO
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/13/2006 19:15:22 MST Print View

Hey Robert-
I used to use an Evernew titanum mug which was OK but the handle didn't fold so it wouldn't stow in mu pot. I think the best alternative is a styrofoam coffee cup. It's about as light as you can get. You can wrap some duct tape around it if you're worried about punctureing it during transport but mostly I find it's OK if you sotre it in the pot. I also have Snowpeak double wall titanium mug which is great but really heavy (it weights more than my cooking pot!). I only use it in the winter. Someone just sent me one of those Orikaso folding cups. It's pretty neat but not insulated. Your lips don't burn though the way the can with single-wall titanium.

Mark Larson
(mlarson) - MLife

Locale: Southeast USA
Re: Re: UL insulated cup on 03/13/2006 19:28:00 MST Print View

A good combo of lightweight and durability is to chop off the bottom of a plastic Coke/Pepsi bottle to your desired volume. The thicker soda bottles will be more durable. You can boil your sawed-off cup to shrink under it down to a different size. Next, wrap it with styrofoam [e.g. from a coffee cup]. You can wrap up the whole thing, or maybe just enough grasp it with or to keep from burning your lips. It shouldn't be too hard to get 12oz of insulated cuppage for less than 1oz.

Wish I could take credit for this idea, but I found it here. Scroll down the page about 3/4 of the way.

Edited by mlarson on 03/13/2006 19:29:21 MST.

Carol Brown

Locale: Idaho
insulated UL cup on 03/14/2006 07:41:48 MST Print View

Mark, I had just placed my order for the $$ Ti Cup, then read your post - even I could make this simple cup for a whole lot less!

Anyone - thoughts on the plastic bottle cup in combination with hot (boiling) water releasing "bad things". I've been reading other threads where there are concerns using freezer bags with boiling water to reconstitute food (but the thicker tupperware seemed to be fine for that application). Would the thicker plastic bottle be more resiliant?

As I ordered my fancy coffee this morning, I noticed the cardboard wrap around the cup so that I could hold it without getting too hot. (I'm sure there is a word for that device, just don't know it.) Seems like the cardboard wrap would work as well as the styrafoam for being able to hold the cup without getting hot fingers? (But certainly not insulated.)


Edited by brownwetdog on 03/14/2006 07:52:57 MST.

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: insulated UL cup on 03/14/2006 14:34:23 MST Print View

The cardboard cup holder certainly does provide some insulation. If it keeps your hand from burning, it is keeping the heat in the cup. Make one to cover the entire cup out of corregated cardboard. Or the thin foam used in windshield sun screens.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/14/2006 15:16:51 MST Print View

I haven't been able to crack 6oz for an insulated mug with a lid. I found some old Rubbermaid ones that are about as good as it gets and the capacity is nothing to brag about. You can get 12oz or better travel mugs with lids, but they weigh about 12oz. too!

I think a lid makes a bigger difference for the weight than the side insulation does. I use a GSI plastic mug that is 2.5oz and it could use a lid --- keeps the bugs and fir needles out of your coffee too.

Years ago Hoagies had a promotional coffee cup that was perfect for camping-- about 8oz. capacity, light, and had a snap on lid. You got one free with a cup of coffee, which made them even better :) It was just a simple single-wall mug with a lid.

I dug around in my gear box and found the insulated mug-- it was made by Thermos, not Rubbermaid, and by golly, it holds 12 ounces and weighs 4.3oz with the lid.

So I went surfing to find an example and I think we're out of fashion. All the insulated mugs made now are some stainless steel Starbucks knock-offs. I found examples of the Hogies mug on Ebay, but they are all odd-ball collector promotional items for oil companies and such and going for $10 + frieght.

Somewhere in the depths of K-Mart or Wally World, there must be a plastic mug. The search for the trail grail continues.....

Edited by dwambaugh on 03/15/2006 16:38:49 MST.

Mark Larson
(mlarson) - MLife

Locale: Southeast USA
Re: Re: UL insulated cup on 03/14/2006 16:11:43 MST Print View

[Thinking out loud] What about something like a 12oz plastic peanut butter jar, or similar? You'd have an airtight, removable lid for mixing-- or you could drill a sip spout in there if you wanted. A nice hand-size. Easily insulatable with styrofoam/ cardboard/ windshield foil. Definitely less than 6oz, but that lid is kind of heavy...

Edit: Whoops. Looks like Vick said that already. Heh :]

Edited by mlarson on 03/14/2006 16:21:40 MST.

Carol Brown

Locale: Idaho
Re: Re: Re: UL insulated cup on 03/14/2006 17:04:13 MST Print View

While at the grocery store, I spotted a Progresso "cup of soup" - the cup is made out of some kind of hardened plastic. It has a lid, but with four holes in it (for venting during microwaving.) It holds 15.25 ounces. I poured some boiling water into the cup to test it out. Although it has some insulation, I found it too hot to hold comfortably after 20 seconds. As is the entire "cup" weighs 1 1/2 ounces. If I throw a wrap of styrofoam and duct tape around the body of the cup, and duct tape over the holes on the lid, it should only weigh 2 ounces. Hmmm, the perfect cup AND dinner. (I'll be eating chicken and rice tonight.) This group synergy stuff really does work. Now, there is the matter of that expensive Ti cup which is headed my way. Carol

Edited by brownwetdog on 03/14/2006 17:05:15 MST.

(craumerp) - M
Re: Re: Re: UL insulated cup on 03/14/2006 18:14:03 MST Print View

My 12 oz. peanut butter jar with nice tight screw on lid and thick styrofoam insulation (from soda can cozy) taped on with duct tape keeps coffee hot for an hour and weighs 1.8 oz.

Bill Law
(williamlaw) - M

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/17/2006 10:30:14 MST Print View

Dale, REI's insulated mug: comes in at around that 4.3oz mark (I bought one last year and at the time I think they included the weight in the description).

I've used equivalent mug (promotional one I got at work) for years and its indestructible.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: UL insulated cup on 03/17/2006 13:58:36 MST Print View

Re REI's insulated mug: That's a pleasant surprise. A plain old GSI plastic mug is 2.5oz, so that's not unbearably more. I assumed they were heavier and you're right, they don't list the weight-- it would be nice if all the online vendors would be consistent with that.

A 15.9oz Snowpeak Ti double-wall cup without a lid is 4.3 ounces and NINE times the cost of the $4 REI plastic one-- good show! The Snowpeak comes with a mesh stuff sack though-- can't have you trail jewelry without a stuff sack :)

I like the mugs with a closed loop handle so you can carabiner them on the outside of your pack after you have packed the rest of camp up. Works for commuting too.

Sidebar: I was looking at long underwear which can vary like crazy weight-wise and it was about 50-50 finding weights in the online listings. Campmor has some deals on light polypropylene and polyester bottoms. Terramar polyester bottoms #04562)are $12 and Duofold polyro's are $10.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/18/2006 18:57:17 MST Print View

My wife and daughter were out shopping and came back with a pack of disposable cups for her to use for school. They are thermal cups of a sort, made from paper with a typical plastic lid and weigh just 0.9oz/25g for a 16oz. cup with lid. See them at
. They found them at Long's Drugs.

They are light, but fragile-- and points off on the sustainability factor.

Edited by dwambaugh on 03/18/2006 18:58:32 MST.

Hamilton Moore
(moorehd) - F
Re: UL insulated cup on 03/18/2006 20:55:51 MST Print View

4.5 oz Campmor 12 oz mug.

I have used these mugs for 6 years. They keep food and drink very warm with the lid on, are big enough to boil water in with hot rocks if you forget/loose your pots, and are cool enough on the outside to drink from. they are also cheap. Not my idea either, got it off yahoo group backpackinglight.

James Hansen
(jamesmhansen) - MLife
big sky bistro mug on 07/07/2014 12:07:55 MDT Print View

The Big Sky bistro mug holds about 22oz and works for both reconstituting food and also for coffee etc. And if you want to carry real coffee with you it also is a french press. But I take the metal press out and just use the mug and starbuck's vias. I'm thinking about cutting the handle off to save weight and space since I usually don't have anything dangling from my pack.