Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions
Display Avatars Sort By:
Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 17:41:04 MDT Print View

So, in my effort to walk the LNT line, I decided that using twigs and birchbark would have less of an impact on the environment than fuel canisters. I bought a Vargo Hexagon Titanium Wood Stove, shown here:


My questions:

-How's Titanium behave when heated? Does it get super-hot, super-quick because of it's conductivity, and how long does it take to cool?

-How much wood are we talking for boiling a 700ml pot of water?

-How much heat are we generating on the sides of my Ti pot? I ask because I got Plumber's Tape (resistant to 260ÂșC) to wrap the handles of my Ti pot with, and I don't want to melt the tape.

-Anything else I need to know?

Thanks guys!

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 19:56:47 MDT Print View

Just practice with the stove to figure it out.

I HATE cooking with wood, the soot on the pot is unbearable. I have never owned a wood stove, but a long time ago cooked everything over a campfire; at the time I had never heard about such a thing as a backpacking stove.

Wood burning is not really LNT. If you dislike canister stoves there are other alternatives beside wood.

Dan Yeruski
(zelph) - MLife

Re: Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 20:58:25 MDT Print View

-How much wood are we talking for boiling a 700ml pot of water?

3 ounces of finger size split twigs stacked verticle and top lit.

You'll love heating with wood. As time goes on I'll give you some links to my video channel for some interesting vid's on wood burning.

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
Re: Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 21:44:33 MDT Print View

Max, just spend a Friday night testing it out on your patio. Then you'll have a certain clue as to how twig stoves work. You bought one, haven't used it yet, and you're asking us how to do it? C'mon...

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Well, you know... on 03/16/2013 22:06:25 MDT Print View

Hey, just wondering! It's in the mail :) I couldn't contain my curiosity.

Thanks Dan. I expected I'd like it. The few who use wood seem to love it.

Anyone got the scoop on the plumber's tape? I believe it's PTFE, but the melt temp is the same as Silicone.

Edited by mdilthey on 03/16/2013 22:39:28 MDT.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 22:41:58 MDT Print View

I always use wood to cook and I don't plan on changing that. I have only used an alcohol or canister stove a few times. But I haven't owned a wood stove until recently. I always cook over an open fire, doing it any other way just feels unnatural for me.

Typically when we set up camp, we set up a tarp shelter with one side open. We will build a fire in front of the shelter and lay down a bunch of wood and get a big long log fire going. We typically camp in places off trail with an abundance of dead wood, so there isn't an ecological or LNT issue. By building the fire, I can get by with much less camp clothing (saving a ton of weight). It's just super comfortable.

But then I have an unlimited fuel source. I just stick my pot right into the fire. I can carry things like raw pasta or bannock that require a long time to cook and I don't have to worry about using up fuel. There is also a lot of food that you can only cook over an open fire.

I have also built a lot of small stop and go fires just to cook lunch. I will use very small sticks and when I am done, I will dig a shallow depression to push the coals into it and cover it up with dirt. I will always add a little water and stir before. I have done this in some very dry weather and never felt like a tiny cook fire was too risky.

I recommend trying both open fire cooking and wood stove cooking. See which one you like. Keep in mind that fire building takes skill and fire building in wet weather in something that takes years to truly master. But it's a very fun skill to learn and practice.

Here are some good videos to watch for your research:

The split wood fire is a fundamental skill that you need to learn for wet weather fire making:

Building fire in the rain:

Just a video of cooking on a fire:

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Re: Re: Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 22:46:22 MDT Print View


We have different styles. I don't know where you live, but in the densly populated northeast, half the things you described are either illegal or perpendicular to LNT.

I won't dig holes for a fire, let it burn to coals, make a huge fire big enough to warm a group, or build a fire off-trail. All of those are bad news, and some of them have a legitimate chance of starting a forest fire if not managed.

I'm plenty good at making fires- we set one up every time our campus does a trip, but all in campground fire pits.

I got the Vargo because I knew the wood use was somewhere between one and three handfuls of twigs, with easily scattered ashes and no holes or rock circles. So, I've gotta stay thinking small.

If you know what you're doing, do your thing, man! But it won't fly next to the AT where I live :)

Thanks for the videos though. I'll practice that for emergencies.

Edited by mdilthey on 03/16/2013 22:47:31 MDT.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Re: Using a Titanium Woodstove? Quick Questions on 03/16/2013 23:13:47 MDT Print View

Yeah, I understand. In many of the places I have been to, the forest is just overflowing with dead wood. It's so bad that it impedes travel, crowds the forest floor and prevents new growth, and sometimes clogs up what could have been a nice area to camp. There is really no reason not to utilize it. They do controlled burns just to reduce the fuel load. It just keeps building up until one summer it all goes up in an inferno that will burn hundreds of thousands of acres or even more than a million acres sometimes.
These are forest with very high grow rates. They are very much disturbance based and dependent- the complete opposite of the delicate high elevation mountains of the North East.
Sorry, that's kinda off topic. Just describing my experiences cooking with wood and why I prefer it.

I don't dig "holes" to dispose of ashes/coals. That's really bad and there is the risk of burning roots. When I am building a very small cook fire, I just scoot over some dirt and make a very shallow depression so I can cover up the ashes/coals. That way if someone walks by, they won't see it. You can just scatter the ashes instead, it's up to you.

The videos were meant to help you out in using your wood stove. Being in the North East, I'm sure you have to deal with a lot of wet and humid weather. You will need to either split some kindling to get dry wood with a fixed blade knife or stuff enough firestarter in there to burn your way through. You will need to decide if getting a fire going is worth the effort in wet weather.

Edited by justin_baker on 03/17/2013 03:49:43 MDT.

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Useful, maybe critical. on 03/16/2013 23:34:51 MDT Print View

I ate cold food for a year, basically. I'm not opposed to doing wraps and clif bars when it rains. Still, starting a fire in wet weather; a noble and worthy skill.