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Ultra Light Bear Canister
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Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Real World User on 04/04/2013 17:19:38 MDT Print View


We had quite a discussion about it here. As I vaguely recall, the issue had to do with the metal cap or no metal cap. The reported weight did not include the metal cap, yet the thing was non-functional without some kind of hard cap. If you added the metal cap, it blows the weight figures out.

It certainly sounded like one of those things that looks good on paper until you actually hold it in your hands.

I own a Garcia, three BearVaults, and one BareBoxer, so I don't really need another.


Ben H.
(bzhayes) - F

Locale: So. California
Re: Re: Re: Real World User on 04/04/2013 17:33:03 MDT Print View

They definitely got a well deserved crappy welcome around here because of their deceptive advertising and unwillingness to admit the error. But... by my adding skills, even with the metal cap, it is within an ounce of the bareboxer.

Open Skies Beckon

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Re: Re: Real World User on 04/04/2013 23:00:47 MDT Print View

My assessments/educated guesses:

It probably behaves similarly to the BearVault in regards to transparency and large opening — both big plusses in my book as one who has used the BearVault a lot.

Weight: okay, so adding the canister portion (21 oz), cross bar (1 oz) and lid (6 oz), it comes to 28 oz IF the weight listed on their website is accurate. If you add the frying pad lid (yes, there's an optional lid for the lid that's 2 oz), then you're at 30 oz. My BareBoxer on my own happy li'l scale is 26.7 oz.

So, weight difference is nothing. cut off a few tags and leave out a few peanuts and raisins. Unless you want the 2oz Lid Lid.

BearVault BV450: only $47 at CampSaver if you wait for one of their 20% off deals. Weighs the most (33 oz on my scale), but opening it is easy and no need for tools.

BareBoxer Contender: $55 + $12 shipping via their website ($12 shipping is steep for the weight). Lighter than BearVault (26.7 oz on my scale), opening needs a tool, but more compact than BearVault. It fits nicely in my Granite Gear A.C. 60 and I would imagine in smaller pack quite well.

Lighter1: $85. I'm REALLY curious about how easy it is to open and close. Can't find anything (yet) that explains it. It looks like at least 2 screws that hold the crossbar in place. That would mean, I'd assume, a tool is necessary to open it.

NOTE #1: The Lighter1 claims 300 cubic inches with a 7" diameter and 9" length. The BareBoxer claims 275 cubic inches with 7.4" diameter and 8" length. WIth just those measurements, it's 344 cubic inches to 346 cubic inches, so all I can figure is that the plastic is thicker and/or the curves are more pronounced on the BareBoxer to give it that much less volume. Or that nice big opening on the Lighter1 is part of the equation.

NOTE #2: I've found that the more narrow, the better. So in theory, the Lighter1 would be beneficial, however it is 1 inch longer than BareBoxer, so it might really stretch a narrow pack if packed horizontally.

NOTE #3: I've found the price differences aren't worth caring about for something like this: get the product that is best for your need, the $20-40 difference will be long forgotten in a year.


If weight is most important: BareBoxer (26.7 oz). Then Lighter1 (28 oz or 30 oz with Lid Lid). Then BearVault (33 oz).

If easy access is most important: BearVault wins. No tools. I've never had any problems, even if I've had to take off a glove for 5 seconds on the coldest mornings. BearBoxer needs a tool, Lighter1 has at least 2 Mystery Screws.

If cost is most important: BearVault wins. Wait for a C@mpS@ver 20% special, you can get it for $47.

If transparency is most important: TIE between BearVault and Lighter1.

If wide, easy access is most important: TIE between BearVault and Lighter1.

If smallest diameter is most important: Lighter1.

If largest volume (of the three in question) is most important: BearVault.

If length/height is most important: BareBoxer.

If having a built-in frying pan (with our without Lid Lid) is most important: Lighter1.

For me: I'd be intrigued by the Lighter1, but I'm wary of how it opens and closes, it's 1 inch longer than BareBoxer, it's 2 oz heavier and it's $20 more expensive. So for me, I'll stick with my BareBoxer.

But if you like what you see with the Lighter1, go for it. It's light, small, semi-affordable and keeps bears from eatin' your twinkies.

Edited by OpenSkiesBeckon on 04/04/2013 23:02:09 MDT.

Barry P
(BarryP) - F

Locale: Eastern Idaho (moved from Midwest)
Re: Ultra Light Bear Canister on 04/05/2013 14:56:53 MDT Print View

There’s a lot of info on this thread. So this is what I got out of it:

Bear Canister chart


John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Ultra Light Bear Canister on 04/05/2013 16:34:07 MDT Print View

Edited by jshann on 04/05/2013 17:38:45 MDT.

. .
(CzechClown) - MLife

Locale: JMT/PCT
"Ultra Light Bear Canister" ........ lighter 1 on 05/13/2013 21:04:50 MDT Print View

Yes, but has "ANYONE" purchased one?

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: "Ultra Light Bear Canister" ........ lighter 1 on 05/13/2013 21:44:37 MDT Print View

hope nobody has wasted their money on that one.

Kevin Burton
(burtonator) - F

Locale: norcal
ursack. on 05/13/2013 22:51:28 MDT Print View

Still very happy with my ursack. I haven't had any problems with bears either.

This reminds me that I actually wanted to start putting my food inside an OP bag so I'm going to add that to my TODO.

I HATE the hard sided bags as they just leave too much inflexibility.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: ursack minor. on 05/14/2013 06:30:52 MDT Print View


Rodents can work over the Ursack Minor.

Make sure you hang them. If they are sitting on the ground or on a limb that gives the critters something "stable" to chew on, they Will get in.

This is an issue acknowledged by the Urasack folks, and not an isolated event.

Edited by greg23 on 05/14/2013 06:41:53 MDT.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Ursack on 05/14/2013 06:59:56 MDT Print View

Not a canister. Not allowed many places. I love mine, but to bring it up here is pointless. I got a deal on a Bearikade and haven't looked back.

Ben H.
(bzhayes) - F

Locale: So. California
Re: Re: "Ultra Light Bear Canister" ........ lighter 1 on 05/14/2013 08:42:01 MDT Print View

"hope nobody has wasted their money on that one." - jshann

Why do you say that John? I have been quite critical of lighter1's advertising, but I think there is a lot to like about the can. I am planning on getting one.

Jim Leonard
(mxracer33x) - F

Locale: West Coast
Lighter1 Review on 05/20/2013 22:08:52 MDT Print View

I just received a Lighter1 Lil Sami. I had planned on using it for my JMT thru hike in July. Besides the pics on the manufacturers website this was the first I have seen of one. I couldn't track anything else down so I made a video instead of pics.

Watch the video then we can discuss.

(and no Im not monetized on youtube)

Poly Can = 20 oz
Canister Lid/Pot = 6.42 oz
Handle/Support = 0.89 oz
Screws and Retainers = 0.38 oz
Pot Lid = 2.22 oz

27.69 oz total weight

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Lighter1 Review on 05/20/2013 22:19:47 MDT Print View

Thanks for taking the time too do a video. Very informative, I still think it is a terrible design. Having the lid being used as a pot is not a good idea. Not legal to be used like that in the King Range as I have stated before. Better off with a Bearvault if you are considering this one.

Ben H.
(bzhayes) - F

Locale: So. California
Re: Lighter1 Review on 05/21/2013 09:43:34 MDT Print View

"Not legal to be used like that in the King Range as I have stated before." - Ken

That is not accurate. You just can't leave uncanistered food out of your reach. Why would your canister be out of your reach when you are cooking? You need the cook-pot and food at the same time. This makes perfect sense as a dual use item.

"I just received a Lighter1 Lil Sami...." -Jim

Thanks for the review Jim! I am glad to actually get an independent look for once. It's good to finally see how the locking mechanism works. If you don't like how the knurled nuts protrude, you could get some button nuts at the hardware store to replace them, but then you would need to bring along a screwdriver (or equivalent). Likewise you *could* slip a nut in the inside to replace the handle, however I think doing that would invalidate the bear rating. I think the handle plays an important structural role in this design. The opening is the weak spot on any bear canister. I am not sure the metal cap provides enough structural rigidity by itself.

I agree that the handle seems to protrude quite a bit into the can. If the handle went in the other way (with the cross-beam on the outside instead of the inside of the can) it seems like you would get much more useable space. Have you verified it only slips in the way you did it?

Pete Staehling
(staehpj1) - F
Re: Re: Lighter1 Review on 05/21/2013 10:19:25 MDT Print View

"Why would your canister be out of your reach when you are cooking?"

All well and good if you never walk away from your dinner while cooking on the stove, while it is continuing to cook in a cozy, while it is cooling, while eating, while washing the pot, or anywhere in between. It seems like a slam dunk that the thing will be walked away from while open at some point by most if not all users.

Jim Leonard
(mxracer33x) - F

Locale: West Coast
Lil Sami on 05/21/2013 10:51:35 MDT Print View

My use is purely as a Bear canister. I do not plan on cooking with the pot/lid. the dual use part of this is not of any concern or use to me. With that said, I would do some things differently. I do not think the handle is necessary. It is easily as stout as a Bear Vault when laid on its side and compressed without the brace. I may modify it to use Dzus Buttons to close instead of the standard mechanism it has now. This will lay nearly flush and be as or more secure. (Dzus buttons or 1/4 turn fastners are what secures the Garcia canister. A tool would be required.

As far as turning over the handle to get some more room, you cannot. The shape does not allow it. The bends made to hold the pot interfere with the pocket to hold it in the canister.

I may just return it and get a BV450 and eat the 5oz.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Lighter1 Review on 05/21/2013 11:42:04 MDT Print View

Give the BLM a chance to actually see one of these. I guarantee they will adjust the wording. You need to be smarter than the bears.

Jim Leonard
(mxracer33x) - F

Locale: West Coast
Lighter1 on 06/14/2013 11:13:38 MDT Print View

The Lighter 1 Lil Sami got to go out for a night of use after all. I went to pick up a BV450 but the local shop was out of stock. So here was my impression:

Fits perfectly in the bottom of a Z-Packs Arc Blast. I used my Merino top to protect the pack from the Screws.

I fit Food for 2 people for 2 days in it. But very tight. The cross brace was only a minor inconvenience.

I didn't cook In the Lid/Pot so nothing to report there.

I would swap out the screws for some button head screws that would be more cuben pack friendly.

The volume wont be enough for my JMT thru so Im going to get rid of this one and pick up a BV450 or Bearikade again. Hopefully I can test the 9" diameter today. I really like the can in the bottom.

Ben H.
(bzhayes) - F

Locale: So. California
Lighter1 Initial Review on 06/19/2013 09:20:25 MDT Print View

I got a lighter1 little Sami in yesterday and wanted to give an initial look review:

canister = 20.85 oz
cap/pot = 6.40 oz
handle = 0.90 oz

total bear canister = 28.20 oz

pot lid = 2.20 oz

I am very impressed with this bear canister. It is a very nice size for a weekend trip. The clear shell is nice for seeing where stuff is located inside. The metal cap/pot is pretty solidly built. I was afraid that it would be made out of thin metal, but it is a very nice pot. I might even try frying up something in it sometime. My only gripe would be the knurled screws are a little small. I had no problem unscrewing them, but it could be a problem for someone with weak hand strength or arthritis (though I would think most bear cans would be a challenge for those people). I can also see Jim's point about the screws possibly catching on UL fabrics. To counter that though, the shape factor of the canister would probably end up fitting much nicer into those same UL packs.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Lighter1 Initial Review on 06/19/2013 11:57:48 MDT Print View

It is about the volume of the small bear boxer but $30 more cost. WOM.