Battle of the Survival Stoves 1

Every once and a while I get in the mood to test some of my survival gear head to head. With our survival overnight on the horizon, I thought it might be nice to check out two of the most commonly carried stoves on our team.

Esbit Stove

There are two versions of this stove.  One is sold as the emergency survival stove.  It is sold as a flat piece of metal with a package of fuel tablets with it.

The other version is what you see here.  The stove folds up into a nice little package that fits nicely in your pack.  There is even room in there to store the fuel tablets and even a few waterproof matches.  Again, I don’t see the point of the emergency version as you have to carry that stuff anyway.  No space is saved with the flat folding Esbit.

The first thing I noticed is that it was very easy to open and set up.  The fuel tablets were a joke, however.  They were difficult to light, blew out easily, and did not even get close to boiling a cup of water before becoming consumed.  FAIL.  Note, tablets that come with the stove are a joke.

Pack some aluminum foil to block the wind.  The stove does not protect the fuel from the wind at all.

The Esbit provides no stability for anything put on top.  I am not sure what kind of cooking ware the designers of this stove expected a person to carry with this stove, but nothing I carry would work for this thing.  I suppose I could put my backpacking fry pan in my survival gear….

I expect a stove that can at least boil one cup of water.  This stove:  FAIL.  For now, I will blame that on the fuel tablets.

Cup Stove

This sucker does not exactly fold into a nice small package, but you can use the inside of it to store all of your fire lighting equipment.  I was disappointed there was nothing provided to place the fuel tablets on.  On a bare patch of ground, much of the heat would have been lost to the ground.

This stove came with the same lame fire tablets that are sold with the Esbit stove.  They were hard to light and never boiled the water in the cup that CAME WITH the stove.

I loved the stability provided for the cooking pot.  I think this stove squeaked  by as a winner due to the wind blocking ability and stability.

In short, both stoves need better fuel tablets.  Neither was well thought out for survival situations.

Both Failed to boil water, which was just sad.  Future blog:  Testing different brands of fuel tablets.

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