Forum Index » GEAR » Esbit Logic

 Display Avatars Sort By: Date (Chronological) Date (Reverse Chronological)
 Jim Morrison (Pliny) - F Locale: Pacific Northwest Esbit Logic on 03/06/2011 16:10:42 MST I'm trying to decide which stove system is lighter and I'd like someone to check my logic here. I have an older version of the Primus Micron called the Micro. It weighs 3.5 ounces. That's the same weight as my Esbit Pocket Survival Stove. Since I would use the same pot the question really just comes down to fuel. I assume (tell me if I'm wrong) I can boil a pint of water with one (1/2 ounce) Esbit Tablet in the field with no wind (or excellent wind screen). So if I used 3 of those tablets per day for 6 days I calculate 9 ounces of solid fuel. But if I take the Primus I start with a 12.9 ounce fuel cartridge (7.75 net LPG fuel wt.). So I need to decide if a 3.9 ounce difference is worth the convenience of faster cooking with the cartridge stove.
 jim jessop (LuckyJim) - F Esbit Logic on 03/06/2011 16:18:48 MST Or better still get an esbit burner from trail designs or similar at less than 1/2 oz and save 3 oz.
 Dan Durston (dandydan) - M Locale: Cascadia Stoves on 03/06/2011 16:38:29 MST The tough thing with canister stoves is that you often can't take precisely the amount of fuel that you need since you're limited to the sizes that canisters are sold in. So you will find yourself in situations where you need about 1.1 canisters but you have to take two, or you could take 1 plus a partial one, but then you're still carrying all that weight/bulk of two metal canisters. The ideal case scenario for a canister stove can look pretty good, but worst cases are pretty bad. Often using other fuels (esbit, alcohol etc) doesn't save a ton of weight, but the simplicity and ease of calculations are worth more to me than saving a couple minutes at meal time.It's also tough to monitor your fuel supply with canister stoves. Yes there are ways of doing it, but often you're not going to be quite sure how your fuel supply is holding up. Edited by dandydan on 03/06/2011 16:40:00 MST.
 Brian Hall (brian2o0o) esbit on 03/06/2011 17:25:28 MST Check out this stove: http://www.amazon.com/Esbit-Titanium-Stove-Foldable/dp/B002AQET2C It weighs in at .5oz saving you around 3oz over your other esbit stove. I use that stove combined with a caldera cone ul and backcountry 700 pot for a total weight of just under 5oz. It all fits inside of the pot too! Edited by brian2o0o on 03/06/2011 17:26:00 MST.
 James Landro (justaddfuel) - F - M Locale: Land of Herring Re: Esbit Logic on 03/06/2011 18:01:31 MST I have the same esbit foldable stove shown above from amazon, but i bought mine through the BPL store. Fits all kinds of pots and i just use tinfoil for a windscreen. Works most excellently! Also just a great thing to throw in a day pack for emergencies.
 Bob Bankhead (wandering_bob) - MLife Locale: Oregon, USA Esbit Logic on 03/06/2011 18:03:43 MST I've used a variety of Esbit stoves for many years here in the PNW on both the PCT and the Colorado Trail. The OP is correct that, unlike with canister stoves, an excellent wind screen is absolutely crucial for any Esbit stove to work...at all!That folding Esbit stove is fine for learners, but there are much lighter options that perform better. It has been my experience that small diameter pots have a hard time balancing atop those folding wings, even when set at an angle.After trying several options, I settled on Caldera Cones (one for each of my two favorite pot sizes) with the impossibly light Graham Cracker tablet holder (yes, they call it a stove, but just barely). The caddy serves as both a bowl and a cup in camp. IMO, there are only 2 disadvantages to a Caldera Cone, no matter if its alcohol or Esbit-fired. One is a user issue; the other I consider to be a design error.1) If you damage the cone itself - I very carelessly tripped and stepped on mine in camp - you may not be able to get it completely together or apart again. The tolerance in the dovetail joints is tight. Forcing it can lead to deep cuts in fingers or hands. To cover my a\$\$ should I repeat my stupidity, I now carry a heavy duty tin foil wind screen that can be pressed into use temporarily until I can replace a damaged CC. An Esbit tablet will burn sitting on anything.2) The fuel must be lit BEFORE you put the Caldera Cone over the stove. In a high wind, this can be a real challenge. Canister stoves have enough pressure to overcome this due to integral (though only mildly effective) windscreens. Most free-standing windscreens for same have an open side or window through which you can light the flame. For solo hiking, I will stay with my Caldera Cone, irregardless of altitude, but I will not take it snow camping. White gas stoves rule that turf; canister stoves are a poor second, even if you sleep with the canister to keep it warm. Two liters is really pushing the BTU limits and burn time for a single tablet so if there are two of us, I take my canister stove. It is possible to put 2 Graham Cracker and 2 Esbit tablets in most Cones, but that's too much hassel for me.You might consider eliminating your mid-day boil (saves both time and fuel weight). I only boil for the evening meal or the occasional cold morning cup of tea. That will bring your fuel weight down to 1 oz per day......or less.Esbit fuel can not spill, leak, or even spontaneously ignite. It takes a while exposed to an open flame for the tablet to start burning enough to continue on its own. I argue with the TSA that the darn box the tablets are in will ignite before they will, but it's a losing debate. I find a cheap Bic lighter works better than a match.From my experience with canister stoves, I've found that I can get 13 one liter boils out of a large (8 oz net) canister; 7 out of the smaller 4 oz net canister. I always start with a full large canister and scratch a mark through the paint with my knife after each use....because I can't seem to remember how many times I've fired the darn thing up. If I think I'll need more than that, I'll carry a second small canister or a partial large one. I weigh my canisters before I leave home and again when I return so I can get a pretty good idea of how much fuel I have left in each for my next trip.YMMVHYOHetc. Edited by wandering_bob on 03/06/2011 18:13:36 MST.
 James Landro (justaddfuel) - F - M Locale: Land of Herring Re: Esbit Logic on 03/06/2011 18:17:02 MST Yes of course a caldera cone with gram cracker is better (more efficient, better pot stability), It is also \$47 compared to \$12 and can only fit a single size pot.
 Bob Gross (--B.G.--) - F Locale: Silicon Valley Re: Esbit Logic on 03/06/2011 18:18:33 MST Bob B., the original poster never said anything about a mid-day boil.Yes, the aluminum Caldera Cone can be stepped on and crumpled. The titanium version is a lot tougher. Plus, you can build a wood fire in it if necessary.For ordinary summer trips up to 12,000 feet elevation, I generally go with the smallest butane stove and the 4-ounce net canisters. If my fuel estimate is near the boundary between one canister and two canisters, and since I like to have something along for unpredicted events, I will carry the one or two canisters per the estimate, and then I have Esbit as my reserve fuel. Yes, the Gram Cracker burner is about as light as you can go, and I have some home-made titanium gadgets to do about the same thing. For each butane canister I carry, I carry at least one half-ounce Esbit cube. If the trip were longer than that, then I would likely have the titanium Caldera along, and then I can forage for twigs.--B.G.--
 Mike M (mtwarden) - MLife Locale: Montana go w/ a smaller esbit stove on 03/06/2011 19:10:59 MST if you want to realize the benefits of esbit, go w/ a smaller light stovethe wetfire, bpl, other names is very light, combine w/ a ti windscreen for just over an ounce total, add two stakes and you have a wood stove to boot :)
 Jim Morrison (Pliny) - F Locale: Pacific Northwest Good information on 03/06/2011 19:52:32 MST Thanks for all the good information here. I get the feeling that Ultra-light people do like the Esbit and that although it takes more skill to operate, and perhaps some advanced experimentation and planning enough people seem to have used the Esbit concept with success. I will definitely be practicing with it before my long trip. I also see another stove Esbit manufactures but it looks a little heavy and at least one person in a youtube video demonstrated disappointing results. Has anyone tried this one?
 Sky Horne (simplyalpine) Locale: Vagabonding.. Re: go w/ a smaller esbit stove on 03/06/2011 20:12:20 MST Looks familiar :) definitely good for overnighters. it's nice to know i can cook with a 14ounce pot.
 ziff house (mrultralite) - F there on 03/06/2011 20:13:10 MST seems to be a mental block about esbit, i've been on long trips, used esbit only, cooked all my meals with no problems and at the end of the trip people still look at me puzzled as to how the thing could possibly work.
 The Idemonster (idester) - MLife Locale: MidAtlantic Re: Good information on 03/06/2011 20:31:04 MST "although it takes more skill to operate"Jim, it doesn't take any skill at all, really. Light the esbit, put the pot over the esbit, wait for boil. That's truly all there is to it. No advanced experimentation needed.If you want the esbit to light a bit more easily, bring a very small vial of alcohol or some such and sprinkle on the esbit tab before lighting. Works great.My setup of choice is the Ti-Tri Caldera Cone. Though Jay Wilkerson had a cool little stove at Coe, Four Dog Stoves Bushcooker, that I liked as well.
 Eric Blumensaadt (Danepacker) - MLife Locale: Mojave Desert ESBIT efficiency on 03/06/2011 20:31:26 MST Rand, at Trail Designs, says the CC Sidewinder will use ESBIT more efficiently tha other ESBIT stoves due to it's conservation of heat.I'm ordering a Sidwinder this week and will be able to put it to the test beside my usual Vargo Triad base and foil windscreen ESBIT setup.I have a feeling he is correct and that the sidewinder will be used by me in summer with ESBIT and winter with wood.
 Snap Judgement (kthompson) - MLife Locale: Eel River Valley Re: Good information on 03/06/2011 21:19:19 MST Unfortunately that Esbit stove seems to do poorly with all types of fuel.Stick with a wing stove or a cone if you want to go the Esbit route.I've gone round with all the fuels. I have returned to canisters. I just want to eat. I also like to cook in the tent when cold. Plus Esbit smells...There are lighter canister stoves now and small canisters too. Edited by kthompson on 03/06/2011 21:21:48 MST.
 Michael Fogarty (mfog1) - MLife Locale: Midwest Re: ESBIT efficiency on 03/07/2011 12:13:58 MST Wider pots are much more efficient as well. I plan to use my H Keg, with the non-wood burning Ti Cone, exclusively with Esbit.I bought the sidewinder system for my Evernew .9 Ti pot to use with the TD alcohol stove, But, you can't get all the components into the pot.Sooooo, I'm going up in size to a 1.3 Evernew, with the sidewinder cone. Rand, assured me that the cone, alcohol stove, and stakes will nest inside this pot, with the lid on or closed.Makes a big difference for me, as I like everything self contained, much less likely to loose the stakes this way, or have them fall out of the mesh bag, and migrate down to the bottom of your pack.I like to do a larger volume single boil too,(24oz) giving me enough hot water for my Breakfast or dinner and a hot drink as well, from one boil.
 Warren Greer (WarrenGreer) - F Locale: SoCal Re: Re: Good information on 03/07/2011 20:56:51 MST Yep, no skill at all. Try it in your backyard if you want. Very easy to know how much fuel you have left and it can't spill in your pack. Trail Designs makes some very cool stoves that can meet your needs. I highly recommend that you (OP) go check them out. I personally am using a Caldera Keg-H. In my configuration, it weighs 4.95 ounces. Here's a photo of my set up.