- Feb 24, 2012
- Expensive Fuel
- Can't fly with them
- Tough to find in remote places (aka bush Alaska)
- Are a pain in below freezing weather.
All of which is usually more that counterbalanced by the fact that they are stupid simple, light, compact, and very very easy to use.
- Can / Will burn your eyebrows off
- Bulkier and heavier (mostly)
- Usually require assembly and priming. i.e. less convenient
But fuel is cheap, and some of them will burn almost anything liquid, which is handy at times. And they work just as good at almost any temperature.
Most people are better served by canisters, but for the more interesting trips, liquid fuel has some advantages. Particularly if snow melting or flights are involved. I use both most years.
Excellent breakdown YK....I don't fly remotely nearly as much as you nor do I do a whole heck of a lot winter backpacking so 95% of the time canister stoves are what I use due to the easy of use and lighter setup and generally faster to get from in the pack to boiling water.
I would have thought the engineer in you would have LOVED the over engineered Soto Muka I have one and like it, I also had a Primus omnilite TI because I needed a stove I could use to burn AV gas on our 18 day TMA hunt and not having the weight penalty for the fuel was a huge help to just drain it from the tanks when we landed on the strip. I sold the omnilite, but am getting another one. I like the ability to use just about any type of fuel with it.
I found the Muka stupid easy to use but all the reviews make it seem like a space shuttle launch for some reason. Oh well. Likely keep both for a while and then sell the loser.
For canister stoves I have been using a SOTO canister of some sort since 2010 in conjunction with a jetboil cup. In 2013 I started using the Soto with the jetboil SUMO and its been awesome for being able to cook 3 MH dinners at one boil or 2 and a hot drink or whatever. And the bigger cup means everything nests inside. Having the larger "flux ring" exchanger seems to be even faster at boiling water than the smaller standard sized jetboil.
For stupid easy off the shelf the jetboil is hard to beat if all you want to do is boil water which is all I do most of the time anyways. But its nice to not have a stove that really only works well with the jetboil cup incase you wanna use a pan or something. Plus I found the SOTO windmaster to be faster than the jetboil stove anyways even with the jetboil pot/cups.
Did a video this spring that kinda breaks down the two canister stoves performance (SOTO/Jetboil):
I think a guy if he plans to hunt remote Alaska at all should really have 2 stoves, a canister and a liquid fuel. MSR has been in the biz for a long time and used all over the world as has Primus. In my mind when I hear liquid fuel I usually think MSR just cause they have been a main staple for so long, but I really like the MUKA and I hope to run the omnilite through the paces a bit more.