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Jetboil Personal Cooking System

in Stoves - Canister

Average Rating
4.29 / 5 (35 reviews)


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Andy Goodell
( geekguyandy )

Locale:
New York State
Could have improvements on 12/06/2006 08:56:05 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I've had this since it first came available, and love that everything packs together nicely. The bonus of a cup with a lid is great also.

However, this stove stands so tall on one minicanister with all the weight very high up. It is extremely susceptible to falling over in wind, or the tiniest bump. The stabalizers are a must. My piezo failed after 2 canisters worth, so I just ripped it out and use a lighter. The pot is also too tall for it's width, and it extremely difficult to get a hand in the bottom to clean it. The small canisters are expensive, and overall the stove system is very expensive.

James Pitts
( jjpitts )

Locale:
Midwest US
Does it's job... on 01/08/2007 19:58:55 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

What's with people that review gear they have never owned nor tested in the field? This is a mystery to me.

Anyway, on to the Jetboil.

I bought this because... I had an REI dividend and there was nothing at REI that I wanted. Seriously, it was that lame of a purchase. I figured what the heck, I might find a place for it.

Well, I did. The thing isn't ultralight but it's ultra-convenient. I use it at scouting events and other "backpacing heavy" outings. It's a huge hit on family dayhikes. We can all stop and I can crank out hot drinks (cider generally) for all very, very quickly.

Don't listen to people that complain about crummy cold weather performance. It's a canister stove... they don't work well in the cold. That said, the Jetboil marketing people (who are, after all, marketing people) claim it's a fast snow melter. I found it was useless as a snow melter and this was only in part due to the cold weather performance issues of butane.

I never cook in the mug. I only use it to boil water. That seems to be what it excels at.

It really is a miser with fuel. I took my first small canister of Snow Peak fuel all over, constantly scared it would run out. It kept going and going and going... in fact I think it's still in my closet. I read somewhere that it could easily keep a hiker with boiled water for 8 days on a small fuel canister. I can believe it.

I feel a little guilty reviewing something I only use on a rare occasion and then not for backpacking... light anyway. Hey, it is what it is.

Hey, Hike your own Hike!

Shop Jetboil, Rei, Snow Peak products at GearBuyer
John Haley
( Quoddy )

Locale:
New York/Vermont Border
A bit heavy but works GREAT on 09/02/2007 16:21:11 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I'd been using the JB for almost a year but especially grew to love it on my recent Long Trail thru hike. While others were attempting to get their stoves lit and operating correctly, I was done cooking or making coffee and already eating.

The only drawback is that it's a bit heavy, but the weight does include the pot, which being insulated is really handy.

Although I just purchased a FeatherFire alcohol stove for UL/SUL ventures, the JetBoil will probably remain my go-to stove.

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Glenn Roberts
( garkjr )

Locale:
Southwestern Ohio
Jetboil PCS (with cargo cozy & spoon) on 11/11/2007 12:59:20 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

There's a lot to like about this stove. It sips fuel, boils fast, and is well thought out. The cup that protects the base of the pot during transport doubles (triples?) as a measuring cup and a small bowl for fixing oatmeal - leaving the pot for making tea; it's also a serviceable mug for evening cocoa or cider. However, because I can't use the cup as a second pot, I often end up having to drink the beverage before the food has rehydrated. The spoon is designed to fit the corners of the pot; it then collapses to store handily on the side of the pot. The pot cozy makes handling hot pots a breeze.

However, it is heavy - twice as heavy as the Snow Peak Mini-Solo/Gigapower combo I usually prefer. A titanium Jetboil pot would be a really nice idea, though.

The Jetboil's built-in windscreen/heat exhanger does gain it a great advantage in fuel efficiency - meaning I need only one fuel cylinder instead of two on a trip longer than a week.

The unadorned Jetboil is a little tippier than I'd like, but the Jetboil stabilizer kit (less than an ounce) solves that problem.

One caution: the aluminum pot does a very good job of retaining heat: the unprotected rim of the pot will scorch your lips unless you put the plastic lid back on and drink through the pour spout. (Don't ask how I know that.)

The Jetboil PCS is also harder to keep clean. The neoprene absorbs spilled liquid (like sauces or cocoa), and there are lots of nooks and crannies in the plastic lid and the collapsible spoon. Not a big deal on a weekend trip, but it can become somewhat grubby after 4 or 5 days. (For that matter, so do I.) I've learned to make the small extra effort it takes to clean it thoroughly and, every few days, rinse out the neoprene cozy.

Not a bad system, but the weight and cleanliness issues often made it my second choice for a trip, until one cold night I realized something: I eating hot food. Not warm food, like I was used to, but actually hot food. Normally, by the time my freeze-dried meal rehydrates in a titanium pot, it's still warm, but not hot. With the pot cozy, the food rehydrated and stayed hot. This fact cancelled out the heavy weight, in my logic, and made this my first choice for nearly all trips.

Overall, it's like someone watched how I cook on the trail, then designed a stove for me.

Edited by garkjr on 03/18/2009 23:02:24 MDT.

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Albert K.
( archer )

Locale:
Northeastern U.S.
It's My Choice for 3 Season Trips on 01/19/2008 13:37:45 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Likes:

1. Small/easy to pack
2. Goes from pack to boiling water with amazing speed and ease
3. Fuel efficient
4. Bullet Proof (mine has been anyway)
5. Weather-proof - rain and wind have no impact on operation.

Dislikes
1. Weight - at 15.1 oz. on my scale, there are clearly lighter options. That it's doubles as a cup and bowl, and has a 2nd cup helps a little here.

This stove fits my hiking style nicely. I don't get out as much as I'd like to and consequently, I like to maximize my time in the woods (i.e. hike as long as possible, eat, go to bed, get up and strike out again). The speed of the JB (measured in from pack to producing boiling water) gives me a huge advantage over other stoves I've tried.

It's easy enough to use that even a first year boy scout can fire it up without a problem.

It's fast enough to be able to service two people.

That said, if spending time cooking isn't an issue for you, you're a weekend hiker, or you're going in the winter, this may not be your best option.

Derek Cox
( derekcox )

Locale:
Southeast
Does what it's intended to do well on 02/24/2008 21:18:08 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

Easy to use. Lighter can be easily fixed if you read the troubleshooting guide. Boils water fast and uses very little fuel. Insulated and takes up relatively little space. on the heavier side, but ease and speed help to make up for this.

Derek Goffin
( Derekoak )

Locale:
North of England
good could be improved on 02/26/2008 04:22:38 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I agree with everything everyone has said. All differences are down to different stove needs people have.
I found that it needed a windshield in windy conditions. I shaped the bubblewrap plus aluminium skins that you see to protect car windscreens into a loose tube and hung it by threads from the pot lid. A little flap allows me to work the piezo. if the piezo is in working condition it will light the stove even in strong winds inside this extra windshield. It will often not light in a wind without the extra windshield. The windshield improves the efficiency. I have had no trouble with overheating the neoprene sleeve.
The jetboil has an Aluminium pot. It has been pointed out that the system would be a bit lighter with a titanium pot,I assume with an Aluminium flux ring, as Titanium is not so good at heat transfer. Another reason the jetboil is heavy is it has large bits of oversized steel under the burner. This is ridiculous. Jetboil are not trying. A redesign of this part in slender titanium or even Aluminium, with unneccesary bits removed would save more of weight. I intend to cut some bits of steel away myself to see what I can save.
A lot of the black plastic under the steel is not functional. I have already cut some of that away.

Other threads on this site show how possible it would be to design a remote inverted canister with the jet boil. The pot would then be lower and the second windshield would be easier. It would still be lighter than the present jetboil.
It should then be the best snow melter. Efficiency is really needed most with the amount of fuel needed to melt snow. I imagine it would keep all its existing advantages

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Eric Riddick
( 50Miler )
JetBoil PCS outstanding on 05/06/2008 16:23:44 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I purchased a Jetboil PCS several years ago right after Backpacker magazine gave it an editors choice status. I was very impressed with the Jetboil. While it doesn't boil water as fast as some other systems, it boils water plenty fast enough.

Advantages of the Jetboil PCS over ALL OTHER CANNISTER STOVES:

1) it is extremely wind resistant and reliable in cold, wet, windy environments. You simply will not need any kind of windscreen. No pain in the butt aluminum foil windscreens are needed whatsoever with this thing. Ive used this stove in windy, cold conditons and it simply will not blow out

I don't know why Jetboil isn't marketing this stove more based upon its wind resistance.

Advantages of the JetBoil PCS generally:

1)its self contained, everything fits into a cool looking, compact package that is ergonomic and takes up minimal space in your pack.

2) wont need an external pot, because the Jetboil PCS comes with its own pot

3) You will never get burned because the pot is covered by a foam covering, with an ergonomic handle

4) fast boiling times, even in high wind conditions and reasonable cold

Disadvantages of the JetBoil PCS compared to other cannister stoves:

1) it is a bit heavy, but when you factor in it contains its own cooking pot and the cartridge goes inside the pot while traveling, its only slightly more heavy other cannister stoves.

I realize BPL trashed the Jetboil PCS, probably more because of its weight than any other reasons. However, unless you are a SUL type, the Jetboil PCS will make a fine addition to your backpacking gear list.

The only reason I dont give it a 5 is due to the fact it is heavier than some other cannister systems. Other than the slight weight factor, to be honest I think the Jetboil PCS is the best cartridge stove on the market.

Eric

Edited by 50Miler on 05/07/2008 20:14:11 MDT.

Price comparison from GearBuyer: Jetboil Cooking Pot priced at: $59.95 - $69.99
Reed Jones
( ReedJones )
Even great for UL use on 03/03/2009 14:51:16 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

People keep calling this a heavy stove and I think they are missing the boat. Every time I try to replace mine with any other canister stove set-up, I see savings of AT MOST 6.6 oz and end up with a less usable system in the field.

The JB lid lets you drink hot drinks while they're really HOT (unlike any ultralight single-wall metal pot/mug) while the outer neoprene sleeve keeps them hotter longer. You will need a windscreen with any other ultralight canister stove set-up, while simple precautions let the JB run strong in heavy winds. The JB also uses less fuel, which lets you stretch a small canister over a week long trip with fuel to spare.

I also think comparing this stove to an alcohol set-up is pointless. If you enjoy messing with alcohol stoves, you probably won't be interested in any canister stove for reasons both technical and ideological. I just have hated my experience with using alcohol as a fuel and think most people buying a canister stove probably have had similar bad experiences or else don't even want to go there.

I really think this stove is a great choice for an UL set-up if you value convenience and reliability and don't mind carrying 25 lbs instead of 24. To me, UL is also about functionality "bang for the buck" and this stove nails it.

Jim W.
( jimqpublic )

Locale:
So-Cal
Easy, Safe, Efficient on 03/05/2009 14:10:29 MST Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

4.5/5 for overall performance/weight.


I bought a Jetboil PCS last summer and used it for testing at home, a two week solo trip, and during a few family day hikes. I love the system compared to my past experience with various white gas and older canister stoves such as GAZ and Hank Roberts.

Pros:

+ Elegant system provides ease of use and efficiency of motion. From packed to assembled, filled, and lit in under 30 seconds. After my cuppa, it goes back together and into the pack in just a few seconds.
+ Speed- comes to a boil quickly (~3 minutes for 0.5 liters, ~4 minutes for 0.7)
+ Good pot capacity for my solo needs- works great up to about 750 ml.
+ Safety. Two week's use with a brand new stove, using it 3+ times a day. I never burned myself. The neoprene cozy, rubber lid, and plastic shroud below the burner provide safe places to grip or hold the various components.
+ Efficiency. Three cups water from ice cold (32F/0C) to boiling with under 7 grams fuel. Breezes drop efficiency only about 10%, and I haven't had it blow out even when simmering a very low flame. Cool weather or depleted canister slows it down, but doesn't seem to reduce efficiency due to the insulated cozy and lid. Simmer uses very little fuel- steam baking a muffin for 15 minutes takes only 4 grams fuel. I went 6 nights on 110 grams fuel boiling 6 cups of water and baking a muffin each day.
+ Fuel use less than 20 grams per day with a lot of boiling.
+ Packed ease- With the bottom cup, neoprene cozy, and lid it is a sturdy unit when packed away. I leave the canister attached.
+ Lighter than my old Svea 123.

Cons:
- Sparker finicky, especially when temp is below 40F.
- Heavier than simple canister stove and lightweight pot.
- For above freezing use only unless you take measures to maintain canister temperature.
- Must use small (100 gram Jetpower or 110 gram Snowpeak) canisters if you want to keep canister attached while packed.
- Narrow pot is best for boiling water, not cooking or easy cleaning. It's called "JetBOIL" after all.
- Non-PCS pots require pot support and don't do well in the wind.
- PCS pot capacity is too small for group cooking except in batches.

Notes:
*To fit the fuel can inside of the PCS cup you are limited to Jetboil's Jetpower 100 gram or Snowpeak's GigaPower 110 gram canisters. I have been using the Snowpeak cans due to the slightly greater capacity and lower cost.
*To use any pot other than a PCS cup you must add the accessory pot support.
* Two cup mark on pot is actually 0.5 liter.
* 0.5 liter suggested limit per Jetboil is overly conservative. Up to about 0.8 liters is reasonable.
* Cup releases from bottom of pot just fine as long as you don't turn it.
* Cup/bottom cover (not pot) transmits too much heat to hold in hand when filled with boiling water- not useful as a coffee cup for me.
* Lid seals fine just resting on pot. Do not push it on while cooking, only for drinking or storage. Otherwise you risk problems trying to remove it to check cooking status.
* If transporting with fuel can attached to stove, use a small piece of cloth to protect pot bottom from being scratched by can edges.

Recall note:
Three different models of valve unit have been sold to date. One of those was recalled because it had the potential of leaking when used with certain canisters.

Summary:
I love it. Justification based on packed weight is hard- even with the excellent efficiency it will weigh more than alcohol or UL canister systems for most trips. It lets me stop for breakfast midmorning and dinner midafternoon and easily heat water which makes up for the extra weight.

Edited by jimqpublic on 03/05/2009 14:12:36 MST.

Price comparison from GearBuyer: Jetboil Pot Support priced at: $19.95
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Robert Bryant
( KG4FAM )

Locale:
Upstate
Good on fuel, weird pot though on 03/10/2009 15:37:28 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 3 / 5

I was able to go for 12 days cooking dinner for two and coffee in the morning before the canister ran out. When I say cooking I mean actual cooking, not boiling water and dumping it in a freezer bag to sit and rehydrate something. I am happy with the fuel consumption.

The pot is a weird shape. The narrow deep pot makes it hard to clean without getting food all over your hand. I don't like this aspect at all.

If you are going on long trips where fuel consumption is a major concern this is a good product, but otherwise there are lighter options. I am currently using a .9L evernew pot with a snow peak litemax stove and save about 10 oz and have a pot that is easy to cook and clean for one person.

Gary Dunckel
( Zia-Grill-Guy )

Locale:
Boulder
An additional feature of JB on 03/18/2009 11:41:02 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Mountain House's Pro Pack meal bags fit perfectly in the PCS cup. After adding the boiling water to the bag, stirring it up, and resealing it, you can empty the remaining water from the PCS, drop the bag into the pot, and replace the lid. The insulation keeps the bag warm while it rehydrates. When ready, open the bag, flip the edges over the lip of the PCS, and go for it. You have a handle, the meal stays warm, and you are very happy. Nice added value to the JB PCS.

Shop Mountain House, Nice products at GearBuyer
Mary L Tomkins
( mlt )

Locale:
Southeast USA
Fresh coffee makes it sooo worth the weight on 05/21/2010 12:07:49 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

I love this stove for the convenience of everything being contained in one unit.

And as the title reveals, the coffee press is invaluable to me. I've dabbled in coffee alternatives such as expresso beans, instant coffee, and canned coffee - but nothing can replace a fresh-brewed cup o' joe. The last time I used it was on the beach watching the sunrise while eating oatmeal and drinking coffee - thanks to the Jetboil.

I've taken this baby on day hikes, overnights, ski trips, boat trips, road trips, and picnics. Very versatile.

On my last ski trip I experienced the typical scenario of a meager flame with a canister stove in the cold - we left the fuel in the cold car all morning.

I tried heating it up in my hands but the canister was even colder than I could stand to hold for very long.

I then realized that the 100 gram canister fits perfectly into the Jetboil's plastic cup. So I took the water that I'd been trying to heat (which was very slightly lukewarm by now) and poured a little into the cup with the fuel canister - and it shot flames like a true jet - so much that it scared me and I added colder water to the cup to cool down the canister.

Water is a great insulator and once I got the right temperature down, the fuel ran consistently for us to have some soup and cocoa for lunch in the typical Jeboil-fast time in 26F degree weather.

Edited by mlt on 05/21/2010 12:11:20 MDT.

Erik Smith
( erik.smith )
Hot Fast and Easy on 06/03/2012 09:12:33 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

By far the easiest stove I have used. Love the canister fuel, no leakage in the bag and works flawlessly in all reasonable weather conditions.

I recently used my Jetboil for a group trip to provide coffee and tea for the staff, 4 days of happiness is what ensued.

I only give it a 4 because I feel outside of water boils and soups I would have a hard time cooking in the provided cup. I have yet to try it with a pan.

scott lewis
( slsai )
Jetboil sol and fry pan on 05/28/2014 08:48:31 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 2 / 5

Jetboil sol.

I would agree with others.
Igniter failed after one weekend.
I do like the concept of the all in one package.
Weight. Not as heavy as most complain when you add up all the "pieces and fuel.
I think it is a personal call on the weight. I would much rather have instant flame and hot water in 2.5 minutes vs waiting for an alcohol stove to heat.
I like the quick hat water/food.
cons.
Igniter failed early on in first trip.

I Think the most disappointing was I Had trouble keeping a consistent hot flame in temps under 40 degrees. Boil times maybe doubled at sea level. although it is advertised to work to 20 degrees. I have emailed Jetboil we shall see what they say. This is my first gas stove but I did expect better performance at those temperatures. above 40 it was awesome.

I bought the fry pan to go with it. at 10 oz a luxury but I like to eat well.
the pan was a total fail. Food stuck bad. even just pancakes. took 10 plus minutes of scrubbing at home to clean up. I conducted a trial at home before taking the pan to the field. I could not see getting a pan clean in the backcountry with the mess I had. I tried different foods even at very low diffused flame it just would not work. I returned the fry pan.

all in all jet boil is a good concept, execution maybe not so good.

At this point I will probably continue using jetboil sol. But I would not depend on it in very cold temps. Maybe canister gas is not the best cold temp fuel, Or I need to take care of keeping canister s warm.


I think Jetboil engineers still have a lot of weight to take out of the stove/burner itself. it alones weighs 5 oz

Price comparison from GearBuyer: Jetboil Fry Pan priced at: $39.96 - $49.99
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