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Lightweight Wood-Burning Camp Stoves - State of the Market Report 2011
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Neil Williams
BushBuddy on 06/23/2011 18:34:29 MDT Print View

Is the $95 stove in your review the same one that you have on the website for $144 (members $141? If so, can you recommend a supplier who sells it for $95 please (preferably in Sydney Aust?

Tjaard Breeuwer
(Tjaard) - MLife

Locale: Minnesota, USA
need some more developement on 06/24/2011 08:36:57 MDT Print View

It seems that, aside from inherent issues of wood fueled stoves, all these stoves are lacking in the key requirements of safety/user friendliness: pot stability, ease of lighting and ease of feeding.
It should be possible to deign a stove that does better in these departments and then we can make an fair choice between wood and other fuel stoves based on the pros and cons mentioned at the start.

j lan
(justaddfuel) - F

Locale: MN
Uses of ash from a woodstove? on 06/24/2011 09:36:25 MDT Print View

I was wondering if anyone here uses their ash as a cleaning agent (lye) for their pots or uses the ash to cover cathole fillings? Seems like an excellent use for something that people are considering to be waste? It also helps enrich the soil.

Joseph Reeves

Locale: Southeast Alaska
Fire alone on 06/24/2011 10:05:57 MDT Print View

As someone who loves objects, especially gear, I understand the excitement and interest in wood-burning camp stoves. I even bought a couple over the years and they held my interest for a few days of cooking/boiling. What I found though was that putting my pot on the fire was easier, faster and lighter. It's probably cleaner too.

Granted, I live in the Tongass and there is a lot of wood. I've also become adept at making fire in all weather conditions, including the end of a week of winter rain. We make a fire for breakfast and dinner, and will have a small one for lunch if there is salami to roast or tea to drink

Most look like this
Lynn Sister Dinner

But some...
Morning tea and a nice fire

Donald Kevilus
(fourdogstove) - F

Locale: Woodlands
Needs more development ? on 06/24/2011 10:17:01 MDT Print View

I think this article is a good start, but lacking in many aspects as bought out in other post.
The currant user has a wide selection of some very well designed portable fire rings and crafted wood stoves to choose from today. Some have been time tested and proven in the field.
The Zipp stove is time proven for over 30 years. The "Bushbuddy" is second to none.
It would be hard to improve on it's qualitys offerd to the user. It's been proven under hard use through out the world.

A person must remember the best made stove will suffer operator failure.
It's not the fault of the mfg when the stove is used improperly.
The use of a wood burning stove in your house or on the trail requires the user to
develop skills that only come from a lot of doing.
A person must remember the best made stove will suffer from operater faliure.
You must learn good fire,harvesting and mechanical skills. They are all tied in to the success or failure of the user.
If you are unwilling or unable to do that wood burning may not be for you.

Chris Townsend
(Christownsend) - MLife

Locale: Cairngorms National Park
Lightweight Wood-Burning Camp Stoves - State of the Market Report 2011 on 06/24/2011 11:04:31 MDT Print View

"all these stoves are lacking in the key requirements of safety/user friendliness: pot stability, ease of lighting and ease of feeding."

I didn't find any problems with any of these with the Caldera Ti-Tri with wide Evernew 0.9 litre pot, which I used on a thru'hike of the Pacific Northwest Trail last summer. I found the unit easy to use and stable. I had the alcohol burner as well (which is one reason I chose this stove) but preferred to use wood as it was faster boiling, easier to control for simmering and all round more fun.

Erik Geidl
(ErikGeidl) - MLife
Lighter Ti-Tri on 06/27/2011 00:18:22 MDT Print View

I love articles like this - they really add value to this site.

I carry the Caldera titanium cone and ti stakes, leaving home all the other extras that come with their system, because the plastic carrying cozy dominates the weight of the overall packaged. As suggested by someone else in MYOG, I made a tyvek sleeve out of a used USPS letter. This sleeve keeps my gear clean from soot, and also allows the cone to be spread out around the full circumference of my pack adding a small amount of rigidity, and consuming almost no space, with very little weight.

My personal analysis (possibly faulty, as in all things) was that this is a super-light solution compared to all the other excellent alternatives such as the Bush Buddy.

My cooking experience is right in line with the author here - it takes a little longer, and the fuel I use is tiny little sticks, most smaller diameter than my finger. The resultant ash fine and dusty, possibly because the reflective nature of the cone causes the burn temp to be high.

I'm a wood burning convert :-).

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Lighter Ti-Tri on 06/27/2011 01:03:58 MDT Print View

"it takes a little longer, and the fuel I use is tiny little sticks, most smaller diameter than my finger."

I find the optimal diameter for sticks to be like my little finger, at the largest, and like a pencil, at the smallest.


Marco A. Sánchez

Locale: The fabulous Pyrenees
Re: BushBuddy on 06/27/2011 04:10:23 MDT Print View

The $95 stove is the regular version, while the BPL stove is the Bushbuddy Ultra.

You can order the Ultra from the manufacturer ( for $115.00 CAD.


Addie Bedford
(addiebedford) - MLife

Locale: Montana
A few corrections on 06/27/2011 14:40:59 MDT Print View

Please see the editor's note at the beginning of this article, as well as one corrected photo. Thanks for bearing with us!

Brendan Murphy
(mbmurphy777) - MLife
Wood stoves for large groups on 06/28/2011 09:08:04 MDT Print View

Anyone have any experience/recs for wood stoves for large groups (eg a church backpacking group of 10-20)?

We've been using Whisperlites, which may still end up being the best option as we boil lots of water for dinners (gallons) and drink tons of coffee. It also rains a lot (we're in South Carolina) so finding enough dry wood could be a challenge in certain circumstances.

Thomas Choat

Locale: Wet, Windy, cold, "Westland"
Re: need some more developement on 06/28/2011 09:49:01 MDT Print View

I agree that there is great potential for a wiki development project here, sorting out the good\bad elements of each stove or type of stove, combining the best in a usable, hopefully myog,"best of all possible worlds" stove.

The LNT debate tends to arouse a religious fervor in some souls, but it is certainly a good goal to have. I thought to suggest buying a fire blanket (standard 4'x4' here ), which can be cut up into fourths; use one of the pieces under your cook place to reduce trace and fire dangers. Around here, one can nearly always find a bare rock or sand to set up on.

The ash from a wood fire is largely potassium oxide, which goes back into the cycle pretty fast. What is lost is nitrogen and phosphorus (as pentoxide)but they return partly in the rain.

Elizabeth Tracy
(mariposa) - M

Locale: Outside
Wood stoves with alcohol-stove capability on 06/28/2011 16:06:49 MDT Print View

I'm surprised there's been no discussion so far about the stoves (three in this study) that can burn alcohol, where there is no wood available.

I'd like a stove that can burn wood when I'm below treeline; but that can also burn something else (alcohol and/or Esbit cubes) when above treeline.

The Ti-Tri burns all three (wood, alcohol, Esbit) and seems to get great reviews here. But now the Littlbug Jr. has my attention. Has anyone used the alcohol component of this Littlbug stove? How has it been working for you? Does it easily accommodate Esbit cubes as well?

The wood-only stoves are non-starters in the Sierras above treeline, and for much of the PCT in general.

- Elizabeth

Craig Gulley
(cgulley) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Re: Lightweight Wood-Burning Camp Stoves - State of the Market Report 2011 on 06/28/2011 16:38:29 MDT Print View

I have used the tri tri inferno with the base for 2 years now and never had any issue with leaving any trace burning wood on any surface the stove has been set on.

Keith Selbo
(herman666) - F - M

Locale: Northern Virginia
full impact on 07/19/2011 12:16:55 MDT Print View

"How does cooking on a woodfire and leaving a small pile of ash (which is likely buried), or small fire scar if you will, compare to landfills full of empty steel canisters, Japanese titanium factories, chemical factories, propane production..."

I certainly have no problem with subjecting all stoves to the same criteria. That alone should put canister stoves out of business or at least force mfr's to charge a deposit large enough to guarantee return for re-cycling. However, I doubt that a fully enclosed wood stove would lose to an open campfire if only owing to risk reduction.

I think human impact is an inevitable product of our existence, and the best we can do in the near term at least, is manage it. The minuscule increase in titanium or steel production and concomitant environmental impact is more than balanced by the reduction in damage -- elimination of fire scars and virtual elimination of campfire-caused forest fires -- a fully enclosed stove affords to the lands we've set aside for protection an preservation.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - M

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Lightweight Wood-Burning Camp Stoves - State of the Market Report 2011 on 08/06/2011 00:58:49 MDT Print View

"Fire scars" sounds like a joke to me. Or yuppy propaganda. I can tell you from experience of coming back to the same place, 4 days a week, for a whole summer that if you build your fire, stomp the coals into a fine powder, and kick some dirt over it, nobody will ever see it again.
The biggest mistake is leaving massive coals that stay there for years. If you stomp the coals into a powder, the rains disperse it. Designated fire pits and camp sites suck a location dry of wood, while leaving the rest of the forest cluttered with dead wood. Building a fire in the same place over and over again is what leaves a trace. Dispersed, responsible fire making and covering the coals is the most LNT method of making a fire.
And I have seen oak saplings grow out of a massive pile of coals. Don't buy in to all the LNT propaganda. Go out and see the effects of things yourself and operate by your own terms.
Then again, I hike mostly in well forested, backwoods areas in national forests, so different places may vary. I definitley wouldn't condone blasting a huge fire in the thin treeline of the high sierras.

Curtis Linville
(LongTrekker) - F
180 stove on 11/02/2011 20:11:15 MDT Print View

I have been using the 180 Stove for a couple of years. It uses such a small amount of fuel (twigs) that if I scrape a little soil aside, cook, douse, and then cover, it leaves no scar at all. No ash. No coals. It is much more environmentally friendly than fuels stoves that leak or fill the landfills with canisters.

What I really like about this stove is that it is rock solid, seems that it will last for many years, and is priced under $50. It is stainless steel so is not quite as light as the titanium stoves, but is still lighter than stoves with fuel. And it folds flat with smoky parts inside. Works for me, and I can even grill on it if I want.

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
My review of the Littlbug Junior on 01/01/2012 16:12:10 MST Print View

Pics and Review

In case anyone wanted more info on the stove. Great review BPL, spot on!

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
My CC Sidewinder W/Inferno on 06/06/2012 13:54:39 MDT Print View

Soooo... according to this test it looks like I wasted money buying the Inferno option for my Sidewinder. I wonder, what does Trail Designs think of these results?

Well, I'll have to run my own tests. I find it very hard to believe the Inferno actually REDUCES boil times.

I have a lot of narrow oak moulding strips so I can just cut a bunch of 3 inch pieces and see what happens under very controlled conditions.

P.S. I'll post test results here.

Edited by Danepacker on 06/06/2012 13:59:42 MDT.

Kevin Manley
(manleyk) - F - MLife

Locale: Denver-ish
Re: Lightweight Wood Burning Camp Stoves--SOTMR 2011 on 08/24/2014 12:50:15 MDT Print View

Jay, do you have a link to the burn-off?